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neck laminate jig

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by skguitarsbasses, Dec 23, 2003.

  1. i am trying to design a neck press jig with the help of one of my friends
    this is the idea that we have come up with:


    i'd like to put compression springs between the boards on the 1/4" bolts, this way the boards will stay apart when not screwed down with the cam clamps, which will allow me to slip the laminates into the jig without holding it up.

    the dowel rod holes are going to pass through the excess amount of wood on either side of the neck blank, to keep the laminates lined up, and prevent slipping.

    any thoughts?
    any idea on where to get compression springs that will compress down to about 3/4" under a lot of pressure?

  2. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    - You don't want your springs to be too strong. Remember that what ever force the clamps present will be divided between compressing the springs and compressing the laminate stack. So, I would think that you would want springs strong enough to hold the fixture open and steady, and not more than that. Also, the stronger the springs are, the closer their "closed height" (fully compressed length) is to their free length.

    - You can get the springs from McMaster-Carr. Or you can go directly to the manufacturers, such as Lee Spring and Century Spring (or perhaps Danly, but they mostly do large die springs).

    - It sounds like (if I understand correctly) you may end up gluing the 1/8" dowels into the neck.
  3. thanks for the tips on the springs!

    the dowels will end up getting glued into the neck laminates, but it will be into the excess wood on the sides.
    i won't be cutting the shape of the neck out until after all of the laminates are glued up. so when i cut the neck shape, the dowels will just be cut off as well.

    i use horizontal laminates (a la JP's old method)
  4. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
  5. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    There's one luthier who doesn't have an actual press, but has another interesting solution. I don't recall whether this was for necks or bodies, but this is what he does: a heavy board is placed on top of the glued laminate stack, which is on a workbench. He has dozens of 1x2 or so strips that are cut an inch or two longer than the distance between the top board and the ceiling. He bends them slightly and wedges them all in between the top board and the ceiling, creating the downward pressure on the top board.