Page 2 of 2 FirstFirst 12
Results 26 to 34 of 34

Thread: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

  1. #26
    Registered User j. condino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Asheville, NC
    Posts
    2,502

    Default Re: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

    Quote Originally Posted by rcc56 View Post
    When you're strictly a repairman working in a basement shop with limited space and budget and you need a jig for a job you're not going to repeat often, you learn to improvise....

    Sometimes. I often find myself in a situation with an amazing piece of ancient old air dried wood from an estate that has been cherished and passed down for generations, with only one chance to get it perfect. In those situations I may very specifically build a complex jig just to eliminate any margin of error.

    I have had a Stradivarius in my hands. You are correct, especially with the "player grade" ones that have been in the trenches. There is something almost magic about the patina from 300 years of use. I often wonder if he and my ancestors ran into each other at the farmer's market or the hardware store. The population of northern Italy was much smaller than it is today and Cremona is only 75 miles from Condino. I've been known to ride my bicycle that far in a day...

    Plate thicknesses and deflection are always a colorful topic. I've handled hundreds of redwood sets from the "Lucky Strike" tree; that was incredible- like rust colored red spruce. I've also handled hundreds of redwood sets that were close to wet mushy cardboard and smelled like a litter box.

    8mm- that makes me smile; 9mm is about what I strive for on a top center thickness for a double bass with stiff spruce!

  2. #27
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2022
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

    Progress Report #3

    Made some headway on the neck last week. I laminated two pieces of rift-sawn Afr Mahog for the neck blank and I had LMII slot a 17" scale Ebony fingerboard. I am also using LMII's single compression rod for this build, something new to me. I have read that these rods need to stay under the centerline of the depth of the neck, so I routed a slot that slopes down away from the nut. I installed the rod with a filler strip made of Jatoba. This wood rivals Ebony for density, we use it quite often for bass fingerboards.

    I then went ahead and glued up the fingerboard. Normally I would rough cut the neck profile first, but I am trying a slightly different order of operations. I pre-drilled for the 1/4" MoP fret markers and used the 3rd and 15th as registration using small brad nails. I am going to wait until I get the soundboard glued to the dish before I make any more progress on the neck. I am still not sure if I will end up floating the fingerboard, or gluing it to the top with a shim. I understand that I want to keep the bridge around 1/2"-5/8" to keep the break angle a little lower. Does anyone have any recommendations for how to approach the fingerboard extension?

    I also pre-shaped and glued up the two transverse back braces. I will carve those next and get my kerfing glued up. I am a little disappointed with the unsightliness of my fill job, but you'll have to try really hard to see it through the soundhole...

    In the headphones: Baroque Music for Mandolin and Flute - Duetto Gioconda
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220818_170156 (1).jpg 
Views:	27 
Size:	725.8 KB 
ID:	202835   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220818_171842 (1).jpg 
Views:	22 
Size:	686.4 KB 
ID:	202836   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220819_134131.jpg 
Views:	25 
Size:	892.8 KB 
ID:	202837  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220822_170433.jpg 
Views:	27 
Size:	689.3 KB 
ID:	202838   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220822_164926.jpg 
Views:	36 
Size:	940.4 KB 
ID:	202839   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	71Iqu1loulL._SS500_.jpg 
Views:	23 
Size:	48.7 KB 
ID:	202840  


  3. The following members say thank you to Madphingers for this post:


  4. #28
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Kentucky
    Posts
    15,489

    Default Re: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

    Quote Originally Posted by Madphingers View Post
    ...I have read that these rods need to stay under the centerline of the depth of the neck, so I routed a slot that slopes down away from the nut...
    For the record and for those reading and learning, a single action truss rod must be below the neutral axis of the neck in order to function properly, but due to several factors the neutral axis of a neck shaft is not the center line (center plane in reality).

    For those who want more explanation here it is in brief:
    for a symmetrically shaped piece of wood (board), the neutral axis is the center. When bent, wood to one side of center will be in compression while wood to the other side will be in tension. A neck is not symmetrically shaped. It is some variation of a U/V shape so there is more wood to the fingerboard side of center than there is to the back-of-neck side and thus the neutral axis is toward the fingerboard side from center. Add to that the addition of a dense, stiff fingerboard and the neutral axis moves even farther toward the fingerboard from center. This all means that the truss rod can be installed at or even slightly above center and work well as long as it is below the neutral axis.

    All that said, there is no reason not to install the rod deep in the neck shaft, and it probably improves efficiency to do so.
    Fwiw, I install truss rods in a similar manner to this application; well below center and deeper toward the heel of the neck where there is more wood.

  5. The following members say thank you to sunburst for this post:


  6. #29
    Registered User j. condino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Asheville, NC
    Posts
    2,502

    Default Re: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

    Truss rod perspectives are a funny thing....

    About 8 years ago I was struggling with them. I asked fifteen of what I consider the best builders in the world their opinions.....and got about 25 contradicting opinions.

    So....I made up ten different complete necks with ten very different truss rod designs. Guess what? Every one of them worked almost the same, so I use the one that is the most simple to produce with my tooling and approach to building.

  7. The following members say thank you to j. condino for this post:


  8. #30

    Default Re: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

    Efficient, yes. A perfectly rigid rod will exert torque dependent on only two points - the anchorage near the nut and where the lower end presses on wood in the heel. So maximum torque the lower that point is. The rest of the rod doesn’t matter.
    However, the rods are not very rigid so an L shaped anchor will have a less-defined point of contact and the rest of the rod also will deflect and bear on the channel.
    I guess current practice, and materials are good enough for the job.

  9. #31
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2022
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

    Progress Report #4

    Progress has been a bit scattered this week, nonetheless I am moving forward!

    I was able to shape the back braces and am pleased with the tap tone of my dish, it is nice and "ping-y" with a good sustain. Throughout this process, I have been recording the tap tones of the dish as well as the top pre and post-bracing, and while I carve the braces, so I can not only keep my reference point, but have a better understanding of how each step of the building process affects the tone of each piece of the Mandola. Of course, I have no experience, so I am just going with my instincts, but I am learning a LOT and look forward to applying this experience to future builds.

    I then glued up my kerfing, and the following day I also started binding the back edge of the dish with celluloid tort.

    I installed inlays on the face and side of the fingerboard, radiused the board (12") and glued up some headstock wings. I am waiting for my tuners before I create my faceplate and cut the rough profile of the neck.

    As for the top: I ended up binding the edge of the sound hole with celluloid tort, the same I am using on the body. I reinforced the area behind the sound hole with a .040" veneer made of Jatoba, a very dense tropical wood we often utilize for bass fingerboards. I then glued up my X braces with their 15' radius and was able to take a crack at starting to shape them earlier this morning. I am flying completely blind here, but I have started by tapering them down to 1/8" around the edges. At the intersection, they measure 5/8" at the moment. I left extra material because I think I have thinned down my top a bit more than I should have. I brought it down to .110", and while it isn't what I would call "floppy", being that it is Redwood, I wanted to give it more than enough support. I plan to take a bit more off the braces, and I also added 3 additional braces shooting off diagonally from the X, 2 on the treble side and 1 on the bass. I am not sure what you would call these braces, but after doing quite a lot of reading, I have decided to try to tune the top tighter on the treble side, and a bit looser on the bass side.

    The dish now also has it's 15' radius along the top rim, and I have notched it out to receive the X braces. Another hour or two of brace tuning and I will be ready to glue up the top. I am very excited to have a complete body soon!

    In the headphones: Mosaic by The Montana Mandolin Society
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220823_175610.jpg 
Views:	21 
Size:	889.8 KB 
ID:	202934   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220825_172827.jpg 
Views:	22 
Size:	793.7 KB 
ID:	202935   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220826_163007.jpg 
Views:	21 
Size:	806.3 KB 
ID:	202936  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220826_164938.jpg 
Views:	22 
Size:	810.6 KB 
ID:	202937   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220825_172847.jpg 
Views:	26 
Size:	655.3 KB 
ID:	202938   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220826_160544.jpg 
Views:	26 
Size:	936.7 KB 
ID:	202939  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	s-l500.jpeg 
Views:	21 
Size:	37.6 KB 
ID:	202940  

  10. #32
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2022
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

    Progress Report #5

    Well, things got REAL busy here at the shop. I have actually still made a ton of progress on the Mandola (it is almost done), however, I have not done a great job of documenting the work.

    Here you can see the bracing pattern I ended up with for the top. The top has been glued.

    I then moved on to fretting, fitting and carving the neck. I used Stewmac Medium/Highest which has a .080" crown width. We use it on all of our basses and I love it. I chose a slightly asymmetrical "soft V" profile for the neck, with a little more shoulder removed on the bass side to allow for my thumb to wrap around a little more comfortably. I have also put two threaded inserts in the butt end of the heel. This was so that I could test fit the neck and string it up before I glued it in, but will also act as extra insurance against future shifting...

    Currently, the mandola has 10 coats of Tru-Oil on it. I used to use the stuff on all my basses before I had a spray booth and love working with it. After every 5 coats, I buff/level the instrument with 0000 steel wool. I am aiming for 15 coats on the whole instrument and an extra 5 coats on the top to ensure good protection for the softer Redwood.

    I have also attached a short video clip from when I first strung up the 'dola after fitting the neck, but before gluing it in. The action was atrocious and it was nowhere near intonated, but I was pleasantly surprised with the tone and the SUSTAIN. Is TOO MUCH sustain a problem?

    https://youtu.be/TLZrMN1zPX8
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220830_171544.jpg 
Views:	15 
Size:	931.6 KB 
ID:	203342   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220910_113803.jpg 
Views:	21 
Size:	988.8 KB 
ID:	203344   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20220910_113856.jpg 
Views:	20 
Size:	343.5 KB 
ID:	203345  


  11. The following members say thank you to Madphingers for this post:

    webber 

  12. #33
    Registered User talladam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Campbell River, BC, Canada
    Posts
    59

    Default Re: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

    Sounds pretty cool! I haven't really played many Mandolas so I'm not sure what they typically sound like. Yours seems like it would be good for some 'Planxty' type stuff.
    Eastman MD-315

  13. #34
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Fort Lauderdale, FL
    Posts
    3,577

    Default Re: Bass Builder Undertakes Mandola Build

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	ADBFD5B0-544E-4543-973F-821AC56296D5.gif 
Views:	1 
Size:	917.1 KB 
ID:	203360
    1924 Gibson A Snakehead
    2005 National RM-1
    2007 Hester A5
    2009 Passernig A5
    2015 Black A2-z
    2010 Black GBOM
    2017 Poe Scout
    2014 Smart F-Style Mandola
    2018 Vessel TM5
    2019 Hogan F5

  14. The following members say thank you to pheffernan for this post:


Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •