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Old 01-03-2018, 03:06 PM   #1
DMiller
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Hi to all at Guitar Forums! For quite a while iv'e been wanting to build my own jumbo/ grand auditorium guitar and i'm finally starting it. As of now I have almost finished the top and need to have my sides thinned. Yesterday I received my slotted Indian Rosewood fretboard in the mail; I hope to begin working on the neck soon.

The main area where i'm stumped is knowing in which order to build the neck. (I have watched a decent amount of YT videos, which where great, but they all were only doing one of the major building processes, so I couldn't tell which order they were done in.)

Should I install the frets into the fingerboard before I glue it onto the neck, or after? Should I rout the fingerboard down to size using a flush trim bit before rounding the neck, or do it before gluing? Is it best to radius the fretboard before or after gluing it on the neck?
Thank you very much for your help, without you guys I couldn't do it! Hope i'm not asking too many questions. Thanks, Dale
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Old 01-03-2018, 04:24 PM   #2
pdawg0
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I'm far from knowledgeable on this, but I've watched a few videos out of curiosity. I believe the frets would be installed last, after the finger board has been glued down to the fully shaped neck. You could radius the fretboard either before or after gluing it, I wouldn't think it would matter. As a woodworker, I would route the neck for the truss rod, shape the neck completely, then glue the fretboard down and do the edge routing and radius. You want the fretboard to match the neck perfectly, and it would have to be attached to do that. Installing the frets would be the last step before attaching the neck to the guitar body. But, and that's a big but, I've never built a guitar, so this is not spoken from experience.
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Old 01-03-2018, 10:13 PM   #3
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You can do it either way but if you install the frets before gluing it to the neck, you're gambling with cracking the fret board. Its a lot safer to install the fret board before installing the frets. If you plan to radius the neck yourself, make sure you have a template to get that arch exactly right. The next area that will require very close attention is the truss rod installation. You are going to have to put a small block about halfway down the truss rod in order for it to work. That block needs to be large enough to not not focus all the pressure in a tiny location. I've never popped a fret board off a neck but it can happen very easily when tightening the truss rod to straighten a neck. If you're feeling FROGGY, you might consider a Compound radius where the radius is like about a 10 at the nut and gradually flattens out to about 16 at the last fret. The Dovetail joint where the neck connects to the body is particularly touchy. The fit must be as close to perfect as possible. Also do a little research on neckset angle. The angle at which the neck attaches to the body has an effect on whether the instrument sounds bright or dark. I prefer dark because I hate a tinny sounding instrument. I've considered building a Flat Top but never followed up on it. Lots of luck, you're gonna need it.
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Old 01-04-2018, 01:12 AM   #4
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Thanks for the help, guys! I will probably do in the order that you mentioned, pdawg0. Thanks for the advice about installing the truss rod, PKVeazey. Do you happen to have any pictures of installing a block in the neck?Do you put the block under or on top of the truss rod? I really liked this video by Andrew Allen Guitars "How to make a Fretboard Radius Sanding Block," (on YT) this is how ,as of now, I plan to radius the fretboard. (Sorry I can't post links yet.) Thanks for the help, I will do the best I can! Thanks, Dale
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Old 01-04-2018, 02:39 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DMiller View Post
Thanks for the help, guys! I will probably do in the order that you mentioned, pdawg0. Thanks for the advice about installing the truss rod, PKVeazey. Do you happen to have any pictures of installing a block in the neck?Do you put the block under or on top of the truss rod? I really liked this video by Andrew Allen Guitars "How to make a Fretboard Radius Sanding Block," (on YT) this is how ,as of now, I plan to radius the fretboard. (Sorry I can't post links yet.) Thanks for the help, I will do the best I can! Thanks, Dale
The block goes on top of the truss rod and forces the rod to curve under it. Then when you tighten the truss rod nut, it pushes up on the underside of the fret board and bends the neck backwards to remove any upward bow.
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Old 01-04-2018, 05:27 AM   #6
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That makes sense, thanks for the clarification! I appreciate it!
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Old 01-05-2018, 01:41 AM   #7
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This afternoon I was able to do a little more work on my guitar build. Using Andrew Allen Guitar's method of using a router jig and router, I was able to make a fretboard radius sanding pad, which I radiused to 12 inches. I'm hoping to be able to begin rounding the neck tomorrow, if possible. Thanks again for answering the questions iv'e had. Dale
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Old 01-09-2018, 01:13 AM   #8
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What are you guys suggestions on double action truss rods? I'm thinking of getting the Stewmac Hot Rod one. I need a 14-1/4 inch one, not the 12-1/2 inch, right? Thanks!
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