Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Jay Turser JTA-Flag300 - A Thousand Tiny Pieces

We'll just play this one out until it explodes
Into a thousand tiny pieces
What's your story universe?

Thinking that one bolt would hold the joint together, I had abandoned my repairs to the dovetail joint on This Old Guitar.  With the fingerboard off of the neck, it was time to add on what seemed like a thousand tiny pieces to make the dovetail joint work.  First, I took a baseline measurement of the neck angle.  Without the fret board on the neck, I could clamp the neck into the body and checked the projection of the neck onto the bridge.

By placing a 1/16" shim, I could increase the neck angle about 1/8" at the bridge.

Knowing that, I felt confident I'd be able to use shims to make the necessary neck angle adjustment when the time comes to put glue in the joint.  I picked up where I had left off on the dovetail joint, fitting up and attaching wood to the neck part of the joint, and filling back a few little areas that had chipped and split off.

Then came the first of two new pieces to replace a part that had broken off at the tip of the joint before I took possession of This Old Guitar.

The neck block was in need of some similar work.  Instead of filling in the bolt slot, I decided for the time being to try using it as a secondary tenon joint.  The edges were less than square and smooth, so I added some scabs.

After some filing and sanding, I had flat surfaces adjacent to the bolt slot again.

Turning my attention back to the neck side of the joint, I did some rough reshaping to the sides of the tip repair repair with a file and chisel.

Before checking the depth fit, I removed the plastic heel piece.  This allowed me to see some of how the depth of the joint was fitting up.

Obviously, there was still a lot of filling in that needed to be done on the tip repair, but it could wait and would not affect the depth fit.  I was pleased with what I saw at the first fitting.

With a clamp holding the neck into the body, you can actually see some of the bottom of the tip repair in between the heel and the body.  One more piece was needed to rough out the depth, so I prepared another scab, applied some glue, clamped it in place and set the neck aside.

While the glue on the tip repair began to dry, I started cleaning up the back side of the fret board.  The factory epoxy used at the neck joint left quite a mess.  Worse, that epoxy stunk when I scraped, grinded and sanded it off.  After about ten minutes, the flat surface was restored, revealing clean rosewood.

One nice detail Jay Turser did on this fretboard was to cut a pair of grooves near the long edges of the rosewood.  This makes it easier to bend the rosewood flat when attaching it to the neck.  I left cleaning out the grooves, along with final scratching of the renewed rosewood surface to allow for better glue penetration, for when it's time to reassemble the neck.

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