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PostPosted: Sat May 27, 2017 7:32 pm 
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Walnut
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So I'm thinking again....I know I know, a dangerous thing. But hear me out. I kind of think I'd like white bindings instead of the black ones that come with the kit. So, I pulled out a ruler and to the best of my ability I found the kit binding to be just over 2 millimeters by around 6.5 millimeters. Like I said, to the best of my ability.
I couldn't find any specs on what came with the kit, so I am going by my own measurements when I look at this page from stewmac

http://www.stewmac.com/Materials_and_Su ... nding.html

Now I know no one can actually see what I have. But from my measurements, do you think if I ordered the 2.29mm x 6.35mm found on that link it would be the same? That's my inclination.

Also, I am wondering if the sides of the fretboard are supposed to have binding? Especially because you can see the grooves and the frets completely exposed the way I have it now. If it does get binding, does anyone know what size I should order for that? The kit did not come with anything.


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PostPosted: Sat May 27, 2017 7:45 pm 
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You can buy that binding from stewmac. There is no reason it has to be the same. You will cut the binding channel to match the binding you have in hand.

Fret boards can be bound, but there is no need to bind them. If you want you can always nip off a bit of the tang on each end (you would have to do this on a bound fretboard) and then fill in the exposed slots after fretting. If the fretboard is ebony, the fill will be invisible. If the fretboard is rosewood the filled slots will be less visible.

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PostPosted: Sat May 27, 2017 7:56 pm 
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Walnut
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Well John, I already started the routing. I'm not hell bent on going white. I just thought with the lighter woods that came with this kit it would look nice.


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PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2017 11:00 am 
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Koa
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If you have already routed the channels then take you binding to a machine shop or someone with calipers or a micrometer, measure it accurately and try to duplicate that. If the binding is slightly oversize it will stand proud of the wood and be scraped back (which is desirable) but you risk getting it uneven. When I'm routing for binding I set the depth of cut on the router and make several practice cuts on scrap, test fitting the binding into the channel, before I actually start on the guitar. Remember that the top and back meets the sides at a slight angle - you will be scraping the outside of the top edge of the binding at an angle to meet so it needs to be slightly proud.

Binding the fretboard adds a touch of elegance and a great deal of hassle to the build. Many guitars, usually fancier ones (but not necessarily) have bound f/b's - most Martins in the 18 or 28 series do not. If you want to try it I can provide a little pictorial essay but trust me, for your first don't bother.



These users thanked the author Freeman for the post: Dharper (Tue May 30, 2017 9:21 pm)
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 2:17 pm 
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Walnut
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Thank you for your response Freeman. After some thought I decided to stick with the black binding included with the kit. But let me show you this picture of the fretboard...
Attachment:
IMG_0867.jpg


To me this is kind of unsightly no? Doesn't this cry out for some binding to finish it off? If you think so, I would love to see some tips on how to do glue the binding to the fretboard. I hope I didn't skip a process by installing the frets!

Also, while installing the fret markers/inlays I got some excess CA glue on the fretboard, plus some of the inlays are proud of the fretboard. Does anyone have any recommendations to take care of these problems without affecting the uniformity of the fretboard? Thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 2:43 pm 
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That fretboard detail looks just like a normal guitar. If you want to bind it you need to pull all of the frets as you will need to trim the fretboard the thickness of the binding on each side. Then you will needs some tools to trim the tang on each side of each frets so that the fret tang fits inside of the binding. If you put on bindings now the fret board will be too wide and the frets will be too short.

From where you are now with some ebony dust and glue or even black CA you can fill all of the gaps under the tangs. That will clean up the look of the unbound fretboard a bit.

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These users thanked the author johnparchem for the post: Dharper (Wed May 31, 2017 3:15 pm)
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 3:17 pm 
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Walnut
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No thanks! I'll keep it as is. I like the ideas of the ebony dust or black ca.

Does anyone have any ideas about the "proud" inlays that are sticking up a little? I'm afraid to sand them. I don't know what that will do to the fretboard. Same with the excess glue. Can I sand? Acetone? Has anyone come across this in their builds? Thanks.


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 4:12 pm 
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You should have done the inlays and sanded them flush before you fretted the fingerboard. Sanding will be difficult as the temptation is to sand parallel to the frets which will leave lots of scratches. I would try using something like A Stanley knife blade or single edged razor blade to carefully scrape back the inlays working along the length of the fretboard between the frets. This should also work for the excess CA on the fretboard. Bob



These users thanked the author Bob Orr for the post: Dharper (Wed May 31, 2017 4:36 pm)
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 7:20 pm 
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Walnut
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Now you tell me! I actually started with a razor blade, but was afraid doing something to the fretboard. Now that you confirmed it, I spent a good 40 minutes widdling away. It's close to perfect now! Thanks.


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 9:32 pm 
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Koa
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Devery , your fret board does look like almost every Martin and so many others - yes the fret ends are a bit unsightly but that is very normal - my first guitar and all of those that attempt to mimic the Martin style look like that. I'll show you in a minute how I bind them but first I'll also say that thinking about the order of each step is fairly important while building - for example I slot and then radius the fretboard (altho frequently I buy them preslotted, that is one operation that is pretty easy to screw up). Then I do the inlay and sand it to radius, after which I scrape which seems to bring the shine of the pearl back. Next I bind if I'm going to, and finally fret. I usually fret the board before I glue it to the neck (because I press in frets) but many people glue first then fret.

Just so you see the steps, I found some pictures of a Les Paul style neck which will be bound in beige plastic to match the body and headstock. Fretboard was slotted and radiused and here the block inlay is being installed

Image

The inlay is flush at the centerline but stands pretty proud at the edges. Sanded with a radiused block and scraped with a razor blade - the inlay looks pretty good. Notice that the fretboard is still full width and the partially shaped neck is above

Image

Next I cut the board to its final width, usually measuring at the nut and 12th fret (or in this case the 16th which is the body joint). In any case make the f/b as wide as you want it minus the width of two piece of binding, maybe 0.060 each. I sand the sides of the board perfectly flat and square, then clamp two pieces of wood to my bench that just fits the f/b. Put waxed paper on the bottom, glue and slide the binding and f/b between the wood and tap everything down with a hammer and block of wood. You want the binding flush with the bottom of the f/b

Image

Miter a piece of binding and glue across the end of the board. The next step is either to glue the board to the neck or to fret it, I usually fret now. The frets have to have the tang cut just wide enough to fit between the binding and each one is different. I cut them slightly oversize, then clamp them to the workbend with a piece of wood with a little slot cut in it -that holds it while I file away the tang

Image

Image

Press (or hammer) each fret in place. I put a tiny drop of CA under the part that overhangs the binding just to make sure it doesn't come up

Image

Clip and dress the ends just as you have done, Glue the board to the neck (which still should be a hair oversize), bring the neck to the board. You really don't want to be removing any of the binding, maybe just a bit to shape it. This guitar has the headstock bound in the same cream plastic and I tried to make the f/b binding sort of continue onto the headstock

Image

And while not a great picture, the idea is that the binding theme is carried all the way around the guitar - body, neck, head.

Image


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 10:43 pm 
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Koa
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While we are talking about binding, I'll just give my humble opinion. I think that binding should tie together a theme and be consistent thru the guitar. Here was my first home made guitar - basically style 28 white and black binding on the body, nothing on the neck or head. Its 11 years old and still my daily player. The edge of the fretboard looks just like yours

Image

If I build a Gibson clone I think that plastic binding looks "right" and I'll bind body, neck and head (and often f-holes and pickguard) in the same materials. Here is an ES-175 style

Image

and a cherry red ES-335, again, all white to stand out against the red and black

Image

If I'm not building a clone or want it to be extra fancy I like to use wood binding. This is an acoustic, koa body with flamed maple binding and center lam on the neck. The head is also bound in maple

Image

Image

A pair of Weissenborns, koa bodies, maple binding on body and necks

Image

And I'm proud of this one, a maple archtop, maple binding with a thin rosewood purfling strip. The fretboard, head and backplate, pickguard and bridge are all rosewood, the body, f/b, head, f-holes and p/g are all bound in maple. Bending those pieces for the f-holes and the cutaway were a son-of-a-gun

Image

ps - that little square piece in the cutaway near the top binding is a router bobble - don't tell anyone


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 11:15 pm 
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You mean that art deco accent?

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2017 5:58 am 
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Walnut
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Nice craftsmanship Freeman!


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2017 11:17 am 
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Koa
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Dharper wrote:
Nice craftsmanship Freeman!


Thank you, but what I'm trying to show is how the binding can fit in with the style of the guitar and the theme you have picked for colors, woods, etc. Here is kind of the antithesis - this is my take on those wonderful all mahogany guitars from the Depression era - particularly the 17 series Martins. Many were not bound, they were inexpensive at the time and had very little bling (15 Martins today are not bound). Anyway, the body and neck are mahogany, headplate, fretboard and bridge are rosewood. The body was bound in mahogany with no purfling - the binding protects the edge and gives it a finished look but still stays with the cheap nature of the guitar

Image

If I can be so bold as to offer my experience it might be helpful when you actually get ready to glue your binding in place. The first couple of plastic bindings I used Duco cement (which is like StewMac's binding glue, some people make a slurry of acetone and chopped up binding). I used wood glue on my first couple of wood bindings. Both worked fine but its kind of a hassle to work the glue into the channel, position the binding and try to tape it in place - invariably you'll get gaps and glue smeared all over the guitar.

For the last few, and this works with either wood or plastic, I route the channel and prebend binding if its wood. I almost always put a coat of shellac on the top and back before routing - it helps avoid tear out of the wood and protects it from the adhesive. I then tape the binding into the channel leaving maybe 1/2 inch gaps between pieces of tape all the way around. Take your time and get it really tight. I then apply a very tiny drop of thin superglue (StewMac #10 or the equivalent from Glu-Boost or LMI) right to the line between binding and wood. I use a pipette and the glue will wick itself into the interface. I'll put a tiny drop at each gap in the tape, all the way around. If I have a section that the tape isn't holding perfectly tight I'll push it in with a block of wood (wrap waxed paper around it) and hit the CA with some accelerator - it kicks off almost immediately. I'll then pull the tape and go back and wick CA into the full length of the line - both on top (or back) and side. Scrape and sand the binding and wood flush, get every little bit of CA off the wood (it will stand out under finish, the shellac helps here).

I have found this particularly helpful with tight bends like waists or cutaways - you can fiddle around all you want getting the binding positioned without glue, then wick the CA into the seam. The CA seems to do an adequate job of holding the binding - I've never had it come loose (I have seen failure of the Duco type of glues). One big warning - I am very sensitive to CA and accelerator and make it a point to wear a full on NIOSH respirator and work with good ventilation.

Anyway, lots of different ways to do binding, that is what is working for me



These users thanked the author Freeman for the post (total 2): pat macaluso (Sat Jun 10, 2017 10:48 pm) • Dharper (Sat Jun 10, 2017 3:38 pm)
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 3:27 pm 
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Walnut
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Sorry I haven't responded sooner freeman, I just got back from vacation. I appreciate all of the pointers you gave me. I had already purchased the glue from Stewmac, so that's what I stuck with. Mostly I followed the instructions from my online manual. I taped the rims with blue painter's tape. I started the binding on the bottom. Glued about a 1/4' at the beginning with CA, then liberally applied the binding glue about 8" at a time. I used binding tape from Stewmac also. I just finished it so now I'm going to let it dry 48 hours. After I'll scrape and sand till perfect! Then I have to move on to the neck...my biggest fear....
And yes I ended up using the black binding, kind of making the first few posts on this thread moot.
Attachment:
IMG_1217.JPG


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 10:53 pm 
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Hmmm..... tape around the whole side. Well that would be good insurance against chip out. Are many other people doing this?

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:39 am 
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Walnut
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pat macaluso wrote:
Hmmm..... tape around the whole side. Well that would be good insurance against chip out. Are many other people doing this?

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I had already routed the binding channel Pat. I did not use tape to do that. Nor did I really have any chipping. I used the blue tape on the rims to prevent excess glue while gluing the binding. I suppose one could use tape to prevent chipping, though.



These users thanked the author Dharper for the post: pat macaluso (Sun Jun 11, 2017 8:13 am)
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