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Installing Truss Rod and Regluing Fingerboard on the Kay K22 Guitar

At the end of the last post, I mentioned having to drill an access hole for the adjustment nut on the end of the truss rod.  Here I am doing just that.

The nut will pass though the dovetail into this hole.  I'll drill a matching hole in the neck block in the guitar, that's how it will be accessed via the soundhole to adjust the neck.

First test fit of the truss rod.  Looks good.  I left a tiny bit of clearance on each end, since the threaded rods actually protrude a bit from the brass end blocks.

The nut end is sticking up a bit, it easily pressed down when I put silicone on the rod for the final fitting.

The rod is just shy of the top of the neck surface.  That last pass I did with the router probably wasn't needed, but it was hard to gauge the depth.  The extra depth doesn't affect anything in any event.

The Stew-Mac installation instructions say to put a small amount of bathroom caulk on either end of the rod, and a tiny amount in a spot or two along the length of the rod as extra insurance against rattles.

My fit was very snug, but I agree this is a good idea.

That router bit is pretty much required if you want to get an exact fit into the slot.  I suppose you could find another one that works, but that bit is machined exactly for this truss rod.  Why mess around with something else?

Here's the rod installed in the neck.

You can see a minimal squeeze-out of silicone around the brass block.  Exactly as per the instructions.

You can also see the tiny bit of threaded rod coming out of the end as I mentioned above, and how it has just enough clearance in the slot. 

Pretty good for a first-time install I think.

Here's the adjustment end of the rod.  It's a 4mm hex nut.  It will be easily accessible through the soundhole when the neck's back on the guitar.

Now to glue the fingerboard back on!

The instructions for the rod say to cover the rod with a piece of 3/4 inch wide masking tape and spread the glue on the neck "using a notched glue spreader."

I didn't have a spreader, so I fabricated one from a plastic Home Depot putty knife using a Dremel cutoff attachment.  I figured I should relabel it as to its new use. 

Note to Toy Making Dad: ¡Económico! ¡La Espátula es muy barato!

Here's the new tool in action.

See the tape over the truss rod.  The idea is that the glue will spread evenly over the wood, and go just to the edge of the slot.  The instructions say this is to keep glue from going onto the rod and preventing future removal.

Who's going to remove the rod in the future?  I suppose if it breaks, but hopefully it won't.

Remember when I took the fingerboard off and there was some wood from the neck that remained glued to the board?  Here's where it actually was a good thing.

This is the dovetail end - I used this to align the neck on that end.  Worked out perfectly.

I put some drafting tape on the side of the neck to protect it from squeeze out, then I clamped the board back on the neck.

Those plastic things are fingerboard clamps.  They work great!  Whoever designed them is brilliant. I understand they break after a few uses, but who cares?  Just get a bunch of them - they're cheap.

I used my 12 inch radius block on the heel end along with a bar clamp and a caul.  Had a nice amount of squeeze-out, so I'm confident all will be fine.  The board is perfectly aligned on the neck.

To be honest, I thought about using hide glue, but I was very concerned about the working time.  I used Titebond and I needed a few minutes to get everything clamped down.  It just wasn't worth trying to use hide glue here.  I'll use it for regluing the neck after the reset.


Post a Comment 1 comments:

  • Toy Making Dad said...
    February 10, 2014 at 12:04 AM
    "La necesidad es la madre de la invención." Somewhere at the Despot Head Office in Atlanta they are trying to determine how much to charge for their glue spreaders and more importantly, where to hide the price in the store so no one will know how much it actually costs.

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