Custom Dreadnought Guitar #63 182


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This new dreadnought guitar is a straight-up bluegrass guitar featuring a Torrefied red spruce top, East Indian rosewood back and sides, Waverly tuning machines, and all hot-hide glue construction. Like the former Torrefied-topped guitars I've built, it's a real boomer. I can't wait to get it in the middle of a bluegrass jam!

Construction Photos

The top and back are joined, and the plates and sides are sanded to finished thickness. The rosette is installed, and the soundhole is cut. The bracing patterns are laid out on the insides of the plates. The maple bridge plate is glued in place.

The back center reinforcing web is glued in place. The Torrefied red spruce bracing is partially shaped and glued in place with hot hide glue. The sides are cut to profile and bent to shape. The head and tail blocks are glued in.

Kerfed lining and side reinforcing strips are glued in place. The top and back are fitted to the sides and glued into place. Recesses are routed for the maple bindings, and they're glued into place. A mahogany neck blank is created, and the dovetail joint is routed.

Channels for the truss rod and carbon-fiber reinforcing bars are extended from the neck into the body of the instrument. The ebony fretboard blank is cut to profile, radiused, slotted, and frets are pressed into place. The ebony headstock overlay is applied, and the mother-of-pearl logo is recessed. The fretboard is glued to the neck, and the neck is shaped to finished dimensions. The instrument is sanded to perfection, and the areas to remain unfinished are masked off.

Pore filler is applied. The finishing process -- vinyl sealer, followed by clear nitrocellulose lacquer -- begins. After two series of three coats each, the instrument is sanded perfectly level, then two final thinned coats of lacquer are applied. The instrument is then allowed to cure for a couple of weeks before final rubout and setup. When the lacquer is fully cured, the instrument is wet-sanded with increasingly finer grits of Micro Mesh paper. The tuning machines are installed. The neck and bridge are glued to the body.

Saddle and nut are fitted, and the tortoise pickguard is installed. A set of strings and some serious setup work, and it's ready for a new life as a not-tree.

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