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Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Update on a couple of projects

When did I last show you the mahogany piccolo? It must have been when I carved the neck. Let’s catch up, even though I think it was visible in the background on a few pics last week when I worked on the travel uke. 

First pic shows the neck attached, the rim profiled, the lining strips glued in and the same strips sanded flush with the rim. 

Then the back braces were installed while the uke was on the solera. The braces have a gentle curve, which together with the more aggressive lengthwise curve of the body gives the back some compound geometry thingie going on. 

Slotting the neck and fretting was done together with the travel uke, and in the exact same way. 

Then I made a bridge and glued it on. This was a couple of days ago, meaning...

... we have the first coats of shellac on! I think it’ll be a fine instrument. 

 A few pics of the reso then. Since last time I have received information from a reliable source, it’s not cocobolo - it’s ziricote. Please forgive me for spreading fake news on the internet, and well spotted Mikael. 

Anyway, I put on a faceplate and a fretboard of the same wood. I think it looks really cool. Ziricote is hard to work and tough on tools so almost every step is a bit of a struggle. But we’re getting there. 

I tried using a scraper but it skidded around, just burnishing the wood. So out came the Festo ROS. When I can’t avoid power tools I prefer to use the best ones. 

Hardly a surprise, but ziricote is hard to finish. The shellac dries slower than on the mahogany piccolo and I must be careful not to rush the process. It will look quite dramatic. 

I have built this to my own specs, but I do have someone in mind. If it turns out good after all the hardware is grafted onto it, I will brush off my school French and write an email to a certain guy. 

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