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Friday, December 28, 2007

The 'Pot' is finished

I've inlayed some mother of pearl and ebony into the rim of the pot - I'm pretty happy with the results. I have attached the neck with one bolt and one screw - the bolt looks a bit ugly so I may replace it with another screw. Also, the pine at the bottom of the pot looks out of place so I am thinking of gluing a maple veneer over it to hide it.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The pot

Well precisely...

Here is the oval peghead hole (the shame). Luckily the bushing will cover it up! In my defense, the original holes were all out of alignment and the drill bit followed the path of least resistance.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Creeping forwards

I managed to squeeze in a couple more sessions in the garage. I have glued on the back and fitted the banding to cover the join. I have also fitted a new set of frets (which went well) and drilled out the holes for the tuners. This latter job was a bit sloppy, and one of the holes has ended up oval - I can cover it up but it was a bit slack. Less than Zen.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Mandolin banjo - progress report

I want to get this one finished as soon as possible, so I can start my next proper project (an octave mandola, in walnut). I have made a new rim (constructional maple veneers bent round a mould), and I am going to glue the base on next. This (also in the photo) is a nice bookmatched maple veneer, glued to a thin plywood base. The join will be hidden by a binding round the base.

I have cleaned up the old neck and fitted a new peghead veneer - I have still to put the new frets in, fit the nut and fit a set of tuning machines.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Its Finished

Actually, it was finished a couple of weeks ago, but I haven't got round to posting the photo until today. It makes a great noise!
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Friday, March 16, 2007

Hanging around

The dulcimer is now ready to finish off with Tru-oil. I have put up a sort of gallows in the garage to hang it up for the finishing process. I've tried to make it nice and strong, given what happened with the mandolin! The new pegs (rosewood) arrived and I'm happy that I've made the right decision to use them rather than the (plastic!) adjustable ones. I have had to order a peg shaver though.

Looking ahead, I've been thinking about the next instruments. Currently I'm minded to attack the obsession as follows:

1. Finish off the restoration of the mandolin banjo (I've already cut out the new wood to replace the stuff that went moldy).

2. Make the 'Microlin'. This will be an electronic practice instrument with a built in amplifier - the electronics will be a challenge but I've bought the bits and a beginners electronics starter kit.

3. F-mandolin - So far I've made the mould.

4. Octave mandolin in walnut (following the John Troughton book). Maybe two - why not!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Nearly there...

Well, nearly there. I've added the bindings and made the nut and bridge for each end. I strung up one side for a bit of a test. The sound was very pleasing - louder than I thought, with quite a rich tone. The next step is to clean everything up and apply the finish - I will be using Tru Oil as I did for the mandolin. I'm also not entirely happy with the pegs (they are adjustable), and I may get some plain wooden (ebony) ones.

Monday, January 01, 2007


In close-up. I should also mention that the mandolin banjo is a bit stalled. Basically the wood bending went well but I left the pieces to dry in an old biscuit tin. Unfortunately, there must have been some mold spores present as the wood turned into a multicoloured fungus garden! Back to the ordering catalogue I suppose.

Happy New Year

At last a bit of progress - the twin fretboards are made and glued to the top (which now sports some 'f' holes).