Square neck spider resonator

Re: Square neck spider resonator

Postby Peter Wilcox » Fri Jan 27, 2017 2:31 am

I trimmed up the bindings with the router, and cut a 30 degree angle on the top down to the binding.

bound-box-top.jpg


bound-box-bottom.jpg


tail-top-detail.jpg


tail-back-detail.jpg


So now it's just a matter of final sanding and (ugh!) applying finish.
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Re: Square neck spider resonator

Postby Mike Conner » Fri Jan 27, 2017 10:34 am

Peter,
I really like your design and material choices. I have a locally made square neck from highly figured Sapele and a Port Orford Cedar top plate. The construction is post (not soundwell) and the top plate is supported by a plywood cone ledge. Maple binding (and fret markers) like you have done.

The beveled edge on the top plate is really a neat design choice. Of course, with normal dobro playing (lap style or hanging from strap) you arm would usually be hitting the edge, but it looks really cool!

My dobro really sings and you can feel the whole body resonate (pun intended). I think your version is likely to be pretty amazing. Can't wait to see the final product!

As a side note, guitar straps do not work out as well as a more heavily built leather strap specfically made for dobro. A purpose built one will help keep the dobro steadier when standing. I have a Wechter-Scheerhorn and the Masterso custom dobros, and both have custom straps made by Martin Gross in Germany and fitted with quick release strap locks. No financial interest here, just an appreciation for the craftsmanship of Martin Gross and his straps. A fine build like yours should have some quality accessories to match!

//mike
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Re: Square neck spider resonator

Postby Peter Wilcox » Sun Jan 29, 2017 8:41 pm

Thanks for your input, Mike. I don't think the 30 degree bevel on the edge of the top will be a problem - I'll give it a slight (maybe 1/32") rounding at the top edge - it should definitely be better than the 90 degrees between the top and sides of a normal guitar, which doesn't seem to cause any problems.

Those Martin Gross straps are certainly nice looking, but cost as much as my whole guitar. I hardly ever play standing, but I have some Peruvian Indian woven straps that seem to work OK. A wider, stiffer strap would be nice though - maybe I'll make one. :D
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Re: Square neck spider resonator

Postby Peter Wilcox » Wed Feb 08, 2017 4:19 pm

Final sanding done. I wanted to try a sort of burst, so I wiped on some dilute violet dye to the periphery, then sanded back a little to try to keep most of the dye in the dark figure. Over this I wiped on garnet shellac to turn the violet a warmish brown. I'm afraid it didn't work out too well, giving it a ragged look - oh well. The pic on the right is after several coats of brushed on (foam brush) General Finishes HPT gloss, which I'm trying for the first time. Weather is too crappy to spray outside - rain and 60mph winds. I'm going to give it about 8 coats over 3 days, hopefully thick enough to sand to flat and finish sand, and polish after a week or so.
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finishing-1.jpg
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Re: Square neck spider resonator

Postby Peter Wilcox » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:03 pm

I've had trouble with this finish. Can't brush on a smooth layer without leaving brush marks, even though I'm using a foam brush. When the weather gets better maybe I'll try spraying it (on a different instrument.)

brush-marks.jpg


After 8 coats, when I sanded enough to get out the marks, I started to sand through, so put 4 more coats on the back. Since the wood figure looks old and grungy due to my attempt at a sunburst, I just sanded to 1200 grit and buffed, giving it an aged looking finish. These pics are prior to sanding. More later.

neck-finish.jpg

top-finish1.jpg

back-finish1.jpg
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Re: Square neck spider resonator

Postby Peter Wilcox » Tue Feb 21, 2017 8:56 pm

Made a bone nut and maple saddles. Put it all together - it actually sounds pretty good, even with a cheapie cone and used strings, no sound posts or baffle. I'm happy. Eventually I'll buy a nice cone and new strings for it after I break in in.

top-done.jpg

back-done.jpg

oblique-done.jpg
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Re: Square neck spider resonator

Postby Bob Francis » Tue Feb 21, 2017 11:05 pm

Really nice work
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Re: Square neck spider resonator

Postby Peter Wilcox » Sun Feb 26, 2017 1:22 pm

Thanks, Bob. I took it to an acoustic jam yesterday - it sounds pretty nice, is a one-of-a-kind instrument, and style-wise already looks like it's many decades old. Perfect for an old fart like me.
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