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making the neck sides square-help

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by jordan_frerichs, Apr 5, 2009.


  1. jordan_frerichs

    jordan_frerichs

    Jan 20, 2008
    Nebraska
    Well i got the neck back for my customer build, and i decided to get the taper be a perfect straight edge, since it is a glue neck. After getting it about level, i took a square, and found out that the sides now had an angle to them, instead of being squared with the body. Any tips on getting that to a perfect 90*?


    This does give an idea for a sweet tool. a square, but the edge, is slightly sharp, so you can use it like a scraper, to get things right. I guess that would be called a 90* scraper. Anyone know if something like that already exists, or will i have to be creative?
     
  2. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    Are you talking about a neck blank, or a neck that's already been shaped?
     
  3. Son of Magni

    Son of Magni

    May 10, 2005
    NH
    Builder: ThorBass
    I think he's talking about the body end of a set neck. This is where good hand wood-working skills come in. I would use a combination of sanding station and hand sanding with a block, but then, I don't do set necks. But you could make a scraper out of a carpenter's square.
     
  4. jordan_frerichs

    jordan_frerichs

    Jan 20, 2008
    Nebraska
    yea. i pulled the square across it and got a decent amount of small shavings and dust. How can i go about sharpening that into something useful?
     
  5. jordan_frerichs

    jordan_frerichs

    Jan 20, 2008
    Nebraska
    the neck is tapered but not rounded. the only part that really mstters in this is the part to be glued.
     
  6. scottyd

    scottyd Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2006
    Waco Tx
    Builder/owner Redeemer Basses
    You should do yourself a favor and build a neck taper jig, use a piece of hardwood with a jointed edge, find a way to clamp the rough tapered neck to the hardwood (I use toggle clamps) and then use a pattern bit in a router to transfer the jointed edge to the neck blank. As long as your blank and jig are planned well you'll get a square edge easily.
     
  7. powerbass

    powerbass Supporting Member

    Nov 2, 2006
    western MA
    This is a picture of a "shooting board". This is a small one for small pieces of wood, a larger one can be made for bigger pieces using a larger hand plane. You need a sharp/square hand plane and a flat, straight piece of solid wood or plywood as the bearing edge. The neck blank is aligned to the edge of the shooting board and held firm, the hand plane rides on the bench and if set fine will carefully square up the edge. Does this help?
     
  8. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    In that case, I'd probably use a well-tuned #5 or #6, marking the high spot with pencil or chalk, and stopping frequently to check my progress with a square. If you're not comfortable using hand planes freehand, you may want to use a plane with an integral fence, or, as suggested above, use a shooting board.

    After you've spent several hours squaring practice stock by hand, you'll develop both the muscle memory and the confidence to tackle your neck-squaring project.

    Good luck!
     
  9. jordan_frerichs

    jordan_frerichs

    Jan 20, 2008
    Nebraska
    i sharpened a square, and it is working pretty good. Using another square i find the high spots, then watch were the scraping square is removing shavings, and it seems to be right on. I like that jig pictured.

    I need to get skills on a hand plane. Bought a surform (cheese gratter:p) today, but it isn't taking anything off. Anyone know whats up there?
     
  10. powerbass

    powerbass Supporting Member

    Nov 2, 2006
    western MA
    the shooting board is the same concept as using a router w/a flush trim bit and a straight edge only the hand plane is doing the cutting. The beauty of the shooting board is that everything is held square so it is easier to true up the edge versus trying to plane a square edge w/the neck blank in a vise etc. A surform is essentially a modified rasp. A hand plane is the way to go. Using hand planes takes some practice - just like playing a bass. A plane needs to be "tuned up" to work well. It is worth learning hand planing skills
     
  11. I've experienced the same issue with the surform plane, but assumed that it was just because it was an old tool. However, because it doesn't take that much wood off, it finishes the surface quite well...like an in-between device when going from a planer to sandpaper.

    I like your idea of using a sharpened square Jordan - it definitely sounds like something that's useful!
     

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