Jillard Armada 5 String Bass Run

Discussion in 'Dealers & Group Buys' started by Jay Jillard, Jan 8, 2015.

  1. Jay Jillard

    Jay Jillard I make things.

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    a bit more progress on these, most of my attention has been on finishing a custom 7 string classical guitar for a client, but these are going great too!

    Someone asked about how I glue my tops on, so here it is, it's a pretty common system:

    basically, i have a sheet of 3/4 plywood with some holes drilled into it. I place my body with a garbage bag cutout underneath so i don't accidentally glue the body to the jig (again)
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    spread on some glue
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    once the top is on, I index it using a couple drill bits as pins. this will stop the top from moving around when we clamp.
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    then I pop the second piece of plywood on, and tighten all the bolts evenly. Once the bolts are tight, i remove the drill bits and clean them off.
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    here are all the tops back from the laser cutter (LOOK HOW HAPPY THEY ARE!) this is the best way to get 100% perfect grain matched pickup covers and stuff.
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    and a pile of bobbins that i've been working on, ready to assemble with magnets, then off to be wound!
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  2. Renkenstein

    Renkenstein SS.org Regular

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    HAH! I didn't realize you used the plywood and bolts method for gluing tops....and I thought I was being clever.

    Looking at your clamping setup, I'm thinkin' I may be using too many bolts.

    Looks like you're using 3/8" bolts, maybe? I use 18 1/4" bolts, nuts, and fender washers.

    It's a good method, and works a LOT better than all my random clamps. When I clamp it down, I tighten by hand and then I'll use a nut driver with a deep-well socket on a drill with the clutch on a light setting. I'll tighten the nuts like changing a tire, criss-crossing, while tightening the clutch after I hit them all.

    The drill's clutch(while not 100% accurate) will give at relatively the same amount of pressure on each nut, so you know they're all tightened the same.

    You probably know this already, but I just wanted to share my experience using the same method.
     
  3. Jay Jillard

    Jay Jillard I make things.

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    Yeah, I used to use more bolts, and I used to really crank them down.

    I found that was actually bending the plywood and not giving enough pressure in the middle.

    now what I do is hand tighten the top and bottom (neck/butt) bolts, and then tighten them down pretty good. This does 90% of the clamping, then I do what you mentioned and criss cross the remaining bolts, but only a couple rotations, it doesn't take much, but just enough to ensure that the sides are getting clamped nicely. then i check for my squeeze out and tighten any areas that still need it.

    it works well, is way less finicky than trying to use clamps, and it gets the middle clamped properly.

    Also way cheaper than clamps.


    when I'm using it for veneers, I use a body template between the veneer and the plywood, that way i get a more even pressure across the whole veneer, in case the plywood does try to bend at all.
     
  4. Renkenstein

    Renkenstein SS.org Regular

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    Very cool! I'll try the heel and butt first....I think I did it that way, but I may have tightened down the bouts first since I was having issues with those on a previous build.

    I noticed similar behaviors in my experimentation with the plywood top clamp. Too tight is no good, and it's really easy to over-tighten.
     
  5. ormsby guitars

    ormsby guitars SS.org Regular

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    Jay, we have a hydraulic press, 20 tonne. Cut a spare body template, line the edges with half an inch of cork (on the back side), plus some pieces in the middle. Place the body in the press, the template with cork on top, and then a big block of MDF (4 layers of 33mm, arranged like a stepped pyramid for good transfer of pressure). An off cut of timber as a protective block on top of that, and clamp it down.
    Takes about 10 seconds to clamp, or release. No bolts or screws to lose, and you can do multiple bodies if you have multiple 'cork templates'. This is the press:
    P144 | HP-20 Workshop Hydraulic Press | For Sale Sydney Brisbane Melbourne Perth | Buy Workshop Equipment & Machinery online at machineryhouse.com.au
     
  6. Jay Jillard

    Jay Jillard I make things.

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    thats intense lol

    might not make sense for me at this point in my career, but a press like that would be sweet.
     
  7. darren

    darren Decibel Guitars Forum MVP

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    Yup, i had the exact same experience. What i did was machine the clamping plate on the CNC and to a very slight "dome" profile, so when i clamp (bolt) it down from the edges, it produces even e pressure across the whole plate from the centre outwards, like a two-dimensional bow clamp.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
  8. Jay Jillard

    Jay Jillard I make things.

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    that sounds cool too, But i think my next buy is going to be a decent vacuum press, they look like fun.
     
  9. darren

    darren Decibel Guitars Forum MVP

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    Definitely. And especially good for veneering.
     
  10. ormsby guitars

    ormsby guitars SS.org Regular

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    Ive got two vacuum bags. GREAT for veneering, but not so good for thick tops. Im not sure why, but they just dont get that "seamless" glue line.
     
  11. Jay Jillard

    Jay Jillard I make things.

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    All the bodies and tops have been joined, except that last one.. can't decide if i should use ash like all the others, or maybe do something a little different like mahogany or port orford white cedar? That is one of the extras for now, so I can kinda jsut do whatever I feel like with it =P

    This week i'll get all the roundovers and pocketing done, and transition over to getting all the necks ready.


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  12. AxeHappy

    AxeHappy SS.org Regular

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    Do something ....ing nuts. Go balls deep.
     
  13. Jlang

    Jlang I am Megatron

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    That spalted top is crazy.
     
  14. Jay Jillard

    Jay Jillard I make things.

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    thanks, just wait until the quilt in it pops. =]


    this was the best one of the batch, but there were more of these spalt tops from the same billet that I regret not buying. It's not spongy like spalt tends to be.


    Matt will be a lucky guy.
     
  15. JP Universe

    JP Universe Giggity Contributor

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    Awesome stuff!!! I'm very lucky indeed!
     
  16. AxeHappy

    AxeHappy SS.org Regular

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    Just wait until you get the guitar. Your dick will fly off like you've been chugging gluten.
     
  17. Jay Jillard

    Jay Jillard I make things.

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    So, things have been going...crazy fast.

    All the main woodwork is done on the bodies.. all thats left is drilling some holes, and then a little shaping and sanding. Going to get started on the necks next week.

    made an extra maple one (likely that i'm keeping, unless someone steps up for it soon =P)

    but because it's 'for me' I get to use it to experiment a little.

    So, i decided to bend a piece of maple and glue it into the control area, which is creating some very nice line-work with the veneers. Haven't decided on a finish yet... but this is giving me a very modern-art vibe.

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    and then the rest of the bodies are all at this point basically, A couple are still in clamps for the grain matched stepdown, so they will be dry today.

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  18. AxeHappy

    AxeHappy SS.org Regular

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    Jay, if every luthier ran like you do nobody would have to think twice about ordering a custom.

     
  19. Jay Jillard

    Jay Jillard I make things.

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    mod edit: time to sign up for a Vendor account please
     
  20. Jay Jillard

    Jay Jillard I make things.

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    photo dump (again, my last post got deleted)

    necks are finally all glued up, and rough cut. it just took me forever to decide on how thick to do my laminates, but i'm really happy with how they turned out. even managed to squeez in the special wenge/purpleheart neck for a client. REALLY loving the ash/maple necks with the black pinstripes, i'll be using one of those on my build for sure.

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