Crawls Backward (When Alarmed)

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Final Setup on the Epiphone FT-145 Acoustic Guitar

Rather than do a whole bunch of separate posts on each of the final pieces on the Epiphone FT-145 resurrection, I figured I'd just outline them all in one post.  I've detailed all of these before, and I'll just link to each of those previous posts rather than write it all again.  Is ok?

Hokay.

So the bridge-gluing worked I think.  It looks really clean.  I did wind up using the original Martin style bridge and it looks good. 

The real test, of course, will be when it gets strung up.  If the bridge doesn't rip off the guitar, I'll call it a success.

Now I need to clean the fingerboard, do a fret level, crown and polish, and then string it up.

I just started using these Dunlop cleaner and conditioner products.  They work great.

If you have a really filthy fingerboard, it's probably worth using something like Simple Green to clean it first to get most of the grime off.  Then you can use the cleaner.

The Dunlop Deep Conditioner works wonders on old boards like this one.  I first used it on one of my old Martin ukuleles, and the stuff is great.

After the cleaning, I did a fret level, crown and polish.

When I did the crowning, I used some of this Pro-Cut lubricant on my file.

OMG.

Where have you BEEN all my life?  This stuff is fantastic!  The file went over the frets like butter!

I need to string the guitar up so I can make a new saddle and get some height measurements.

Got a nice set of ebony bridge pins from LMI.  They have cool abalone dot inlays.  The bridge and the pins are probably worth more than the whole guitar.

The pins won't seat all the way down right away.  They need to be fitted to the bridge.

A little reaming with a 5 degree bridge pin reamer does the trick.

It's really nice to do this work when you have the proper tools.


Now ve make ze saddle of de bone, ja?

Here's a bone saddle blank I cut to fit the new saddle slot.  I haven't taken too much out of the height just yet.

Since this is a new bridge and saddle, I have no real reference to work off for the correct height.

First measurement with it strung up.  I only put the low E string on - I can work off that measurement to get the saddle height correct.

It measures about 10/64 of an inch (!).  I'll bring it down to about 5/64 or so.  The saddle will gradually curve to a lower height so the treble side will be about 4/64.

Mark the saddle for the amount to take off.

You see I have already filed the top curve.  The fretboard is a 12 inch radius, so I used a 12 inch radius guide to mark and file the curve so the strings will follow the curvature of the board.

I then just take that bottom material off with the ROSS.

Before I string it up, I vacuum out all the wood shavings and old dust bunnies.

And there you have it!

A nice new bone saddle, ebony bridge, and ebony bridge pins.  (And a new maple bridge pad).

The bridge is in good shape - there were a couple creaks while tuning it up, but it's fine.  There hasn't been any tension on the new plate and bridge, so the creaking was just due to putting stress on the new parts for the first time.

It plays really nicely!  Probably better than ever.

 
 
 
 

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