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Building A Cuttaway Acoustic Guitar #3: Part 3: Kerfing, Bracing, and Gluing the Back

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Blog entry by DMiller posted 01-13-2019 11:17 PM 697 reads 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Part 2: Gluing the Sides Part 3 of Building A Cuttaway Acoustic Guitar series no next part

The guitar is coming along well; progress however, has been slow as I only have two afternoons each week to work on it. I am grateful for the time I do have though. Over the last three or so months I have been working on it, the kerfing, bracing, and back has went together.

The kerfing definitely isn’t perfect, but I think it is a is good enough to do the job. I definitely learned a bit or two about making it- use straight grained wood, bend to fit BEFORE cutting each groove in it, and cut the grooves 1/4” apart instead of 1/2” apart. If I would have done this from the beginning, it would have went in much better. Lesson learned though!

My instrument and I after kerfing installed:

From this photo you can tell that the body is majorly off center. To illustrate this, imagine that I was to mount the neck directly to the headblock now at the angle the head block is at. Then envision running the strings at the angle the neck is at. This would make the the whole guitar at a tilted angle, and thus worthless.

This photo better illustrates what I am trying to describe in the previous paragraph. To fix this problem, I have screwed an oak board mounted at the head and tail blocks. It forces the guitar into the correct angle it should be. Envision the oak board as the neck and strings. It is only screwed to the head block in this picture.

A close up: for reference, the oak board is 2” wide.

Problem corrected. Oak board mounted at head and tail block. The oak board will remain in place until I mount the guitar top. I hope that the back being glued will act as the oak board. (On the opposite side though.)

Next, I glued the center re-enforcement strip in. It is walnut wood and is the thickness of thicker veneer. The three lines visible on the back is where I had supports running to keep the back from bowing. Sadly, sunlight bleached it but the supported area was shaded.

My clamping method for the back re-enforcement strip: mason jars filled with water.

Next, the back bracing went in. Each brace was notched where the back re-enforcement strip is placed.

Gluing in the backstrips: I placed a board over each two and them placed cinder blocks on top as weights. It worked quite well.

Braces after gluing. By the way, the braces are Sitka spruce.

Beginning to carve each brace: I found it was easiest to use a razor knife over a chisel because my chisel seemed to tear the wood rather than cut it. (I think my chisel was a little dull though.) The wood works very similar to pine or redwood.

The braces after completion:

Preparation for gluing the back:

Back clamped and gluing:

Back once glued!!! I hope to trim it flush tomorrow.

Thank you all for viewing! Any questions, comments and suggestions are appreciated! Thanks!

-- Dale Miller Modesto, CA "I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me." Philippians 4:13. "Woodworking minus patience equals firewood."



6 comments so far

View pottz's profile

pottz

4080 posts in 1252 days


#1 posted 01-14-2019 04:07 AM

thats looking real nice,cant wait to see it finished and wish i could hear it played!

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View DMiller's profile

DMiller

457 posts in 741 days


#2 posted 01-14-2019 04:38 AM



thats looking real nice,cant wait to see it finished and wish i could hear it played!

- pottz


Thanks! I can’t wait to get it done!

-- Dale Miller Modesto, CA "I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me." Philippians 4:13. "Woodworking minus patience equals firewood."

View acove's profile

acove

5 posts in 336 days


#3 posted 01-14-2019 07:43 PM

Looks awesome. What is the timeframe for finishing?

-- Woodworking is neat

View DMiller's profile

DMiller

457 posts in 741 days


#4 posted 01-14-2019 10:04 PM



Looks awesome. What is the timeframe for finishing?

- acove

I hope to be finished by the end of 2019.
Thanks!

-- Dale Miller Modesto, CA "I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me." Philippians 4:13. "Woodworking minus patience equals firewood."

View Pat's profile

Pat

24 posts in 36 days


#5 posted 01-20-2019 05:01 AM

looks real good keep going

-- Pat Elk Ridge Wild Woods

View DMiller's profile

DMiller

457 posts in 741 days


#6 posted 01-21-2019 01:43 AM



looks real good keep going

- Pat

Thanks!

-- Dale Miller Modesto, CA "I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me." Philippians 4:13. "Woodworking minus patience equals firewood."

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