Jointing the body blank for the Voodoo Telecaster

Today turned out to be a beautiful day so I set about turning a 800 x 175 x 55mm chunk of African Mahogany into a 38mm thick Telecaster body blank.

First off I used my router to thickness the timber down to the 38mm, taking approx 10mm off one side and 7mm the other.

I don’t have access to a jointer so I had to fashion my own approach to cutting a face that was perfectly straight and at exactly 90 deg. After I’d finished the thicknessing, I ran the piece through my table saw and then cut it in half. The pieces match pretty closely but need some work to match perfectly. I used my sheet of plate glass with sandpaper taped to it (aka my fret levelling tool) to remove any saw marks from one piece. I then taped a strip of sandpaper to this piece and then rubbed the two pieces of the body blank together, flat on the bench, until the saw marks were removed from the second piece. This meant that they fit together nice and kentucky.

One lesson I’d learned so far is that a fleece jacket is probably not the best thing to wear when making copious amounts of sawdust.

I applied the Titebond Original to the two pieces and spread it out with my own unique adhesive spreader (right index finger)…

…and then clamped the whole shebang together, wrapping it in clingfilm to stop the body adhering to the top and bottom battens. A carpenter will will you that you can’t have too many clamps but, according to my wife, they’re all talking bollocks.

While waiting for it to dry I stood back and was shocked to see how much sawdust I had created!

After an hour I removed most of the clamps, the battens and the clingfilm and used a damp cloth to wipe of the excess glue.

I left that to dry for 30mins and gave it a quick sand, just to check that I was happy with the join.

If the weather holds, tomorrow will be neck and body template making day.

5 thoughts on “Jointing the body blank for the Voodoo Telecaster

  1. Is ‘thickness’ really a verb?

    Another ambitious project. I can just about imagine building a guitar from a kit, but not from raw bits of wood

  2. Is ‘thickness’ really a verb?

    Yes, but only in the world of carpentry/luthiery. And the proper tool for thicknessing is a thicknesser. I agree though, just doesn’t sound right does it?

  3. the saw dust is incredible…. looks like you got a nice tight bond. at a glance is looks like once piece….. i have a neck through guitar, and its awesome… im still not convinced about them having more sustain but the comfort factor is incredible.. (if you play that high)

  4. I’m only just catching up with this project; a little afternoon reading for me to be getting through whilst eating a manky cheese sarny. Note pad at the ready for tips and tricks!

    • It is odd coming back to this page because it seems such a long time ago, and amazing to think that the (almost) guitar I can see now once was just big chunks of wood.

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