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Sunday, February 19, 2012

The Belly

Here is the rosette and pickguard inlaid into the belly. I made them quite thick, so there was a lot of scraping to get them flush with the belly wood. Sandpaper wasn't suitable as the ebony dust would stain the spruce wood.

The next job was cutting out the soundhole, and after that the more tricky task of cutting a wedge shaped slot into the part of the belly that slopes downwards. In retrospect, I probably should have done this before the two halves of the belly were glued together, but in the end I used a scalpel and a razor blade, and I was reasonably happy with the outcome.

The next stage was bending the front. I first made a groove in the back of the belly that went about two thirds of the way through (leaving a bit less than 1mm of wood). After a bit of experimenting I found it was best to put some water onto the belly at the join, and then apply heat to the front while bending. Once I had the required 15 degree angle I clamped it onto a wedge while it cooled.

The lines on the last photo show the position for two of the three braces.

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