Crawls Backward (When Alarmed)

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Gibson ES-225T Restoration, Pt. 7 - Making a Nut

Things are picking up on the ES-225 resurrection.  I need to make a new nut, level and crown the frets, get the pickguard ready, and put in the electronics.  Then we get to hear the first kerrang!

I need to get the old nut off the guitar.  I'm almost positive this is a replacement nut - it's plastic and it's a tad shorter than the nut slot.  In any event, it needs to come off.

With a wood block and my trusty fretting hammer (which gets used for a lot more than fretting), I give it a few gentle but firm whaps.

And out it comes.

You can see the mahogany of the neck very clearly in the nut slot.  A ting o' beauty.

I used the old nut as a template for the new one on a piece of unbleached bone.  For the top curve, I used a 12" radius gauge.  Yes, I got it from Stew-Mac.  With all the Stew-Mac junk around here, maybe I can get an endorsement deal?

Then it's over to the ROSS to sand it down.  This is just to get the bulk excess removed.   I'll fine-tune it with files (the old-fashioned way).

You can see I finally wised up and sussed out a way to hold small pieces on the sander.  I was getting tired of having stuff fly out of my hands.

I did splurge for one original part.  This is an original pickguard from a single-pickup ES-225 like mine.  This isn't the one that came off this particular guitar - mine was long gone.  I could have gotten a repro, but for not too much more, I got an original and the original hardware.

It's a little dirty and there is a mound of glue or something on it, so I need to clean it up.

Some very fine sandpaper and some machine polishing later, here's the pickguard.  Some of the scratches are still there, but now it looks like a nicely maintained original piece - which it essentially is.

The entire ES-225T project:
1. Starting - making a custom moulded caul for headstock break
2. Headstock break repair using hide glue
3. Filling headstock crack pt 1
4. Filling headstock crack pt 2
5. Repairing divots in top
6. Installing the tailpiece, bridge, enlarging tuner holes
7. Making a bone nut  (This page)
8. Installing tuners, and wiring
9. Installing nut and pickup
10. Completed - photos of completed ES-225T

Updates March 2015:

11. Bigsby B11 Installation, Pt. 1
12. Bigsby B11 Installation, Pt. 2


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