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Question about tapering

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by anonymous278347457, Jul 19, 2007.

  1. anonymous278347457

    anonymous278347457 Guest

    Feb 12, 2005
    I've been wanting to build a whole instrument(Last time I just bought a neck)

    I think I can just about hack a body :D

    After reading a few guides, heres the order that I understand is the way to do it.

    Glue neck laminates> Plane/sand> Cut taper of neck with saw/router> Glue on fretboard>(Cut headstock) Carve back of neck> (cut fret slots> Radius) > inlays/binding> Fret> setup/Fret level.

    My question is, when do I taper the fretboard? Should I do it before I glue it on? Or do I switch the order around and glue it on and then taper the whole thing? OR, are fretboard blanks already pre-tapered?
  2. I cut the fretslots and rough taper the fingerboard and neck before gluing. I cut to the line after everything is glued up.
  3. anonymous278347457

    anonymous278347457 Guest

    Feb 12, 2005
    Do you think it can all be done without a bandsaw?

    I've only got a handheld power drill, a router, jigsaw, belt sander, orbital sander and a plane.
  4. dblbass

    dblbass Commercial User

    Mar 24, 2007
    Beacon, NY
    Owner of MBJ guitars, Maker of fine sawdust for Carl Thompson Guitars
    you can rig up the router to act as a jointer and use that until it gets real close then sand it.
  5. T2W


    Feb 24, 2007
    Montreal, Canada.
    I use nothing but a table saw and router for the actual building. I cut the slots on the fretboard then glue it to the neck blank, then I remove the bulk on the back side of the neck with a press drill, then plane it with my router (on rails). For tapering I clamp a straight edge onto the fretboard and use a top bearing 1" long router bit. thats why I rough shape the neck before tapering, that way you only cut through 1" or less of wood when tapering, and not 2" or more. Thats all. Then I sand the fretboard (no radius) and glue on the wings. oh yeah, the headstock is cut at the same time as the truss rod groove, otherwise the fretboard might be in the way when youre giving the headstock an angle. You definitely dont want to damage a fretboard, they are a pain to take off, and a real problem if you used anything else but Liquid Hide. I dont think any other glue allows you to heat and remove like liquid hide does. Good Luck.
  6. Sure! I did about my first 5 basses without a bandsaw ...I used a jig saw.
  7. scottyd

    scottyd Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2006
    Waco Tx
    Builder/owner Redeemer Basses
    +1 thats how I have been doing it too.
  8. Gone


    Mar 21, 2006
    Cape Town
    Jayda custom basses, builder
    Remember it's a lot easier to route the truss rod slot when you still have a straight edge on the neck.

    I.e. route truss rod slot before tapering

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