Saturday, July 26, 2008

Disaster! (and recovery?)

Well I got 8 frets installed this morning and then the tail of the fretboard broke off at the 12th fret slot. :-(
I thought I'd just install the frets in the broke off piece and then glue it together with that fret glued in place but when I tried putting in fret 15 it split again. That sheoak is just too brittle when not glued to backing.
I thought about gluing it all to the body and then trying to install the frets but then I'd worry about busting up the body soooo... I took the fretboard off the neck with my table saw and I'll need to fashion a new fretboard.
I have a nice piece of ebony fretboard material I bought a couple years ago, I guess it's time to put it to use!
This may blow my timetable for having it ready for the Windy City Uke Fest. :-(
Pictures later....

Here's the start of fretting, looking good and I love that fretboard!

And here it is broken... ARGH!

I thought I'd try fretting this section and glue it on but it split again at the last fret when I tried to install it. You can click on all these pics if you want to see a larger version for details...

After much thought I decided to scrap the fretboard so I pulled the frets to re-use and here I've started nibbling the fretboard off the mahogany neck with the table saw.

Here is the piece of ebony I had on hand, I printed out a new fretboard template to glue on the fretboard blank.

First fret cut, 14 more to go...

Time to taper to match my neck and put the frets in again. I'm going to put all the frets in this time before gluing it to the neck.

And here is the new fretboard being glued to the neck. I'll need to do some glue cleanup and then, hopefully, I can install the neck on the body. Then I can do some refinishing and measure for placing the bridge and saddle. Installing that will be another hair raising adventure.
Wish me luck!


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