Laminated neck design

Laminated neck design
This method is designed for a guitar with a total body depth of 100 mm where the neck joins the body.
Timber: 3 lengths of back sawn timber 640 x 100 x 20 mm. The best local timbers are New Guinea Rosewood, Queensland Maple and Silver Ash.  For a nice contrast Silver Ash can be used as the central laminate with either of the other two timbers on the outside. Or the darker timber can be used as the central laminate with Silver Ash on the outside.
  1. Route the truss rod channel in the centre of the middle laminate with a table router and fence. If you want to reinforce the neck with carbon fibre, route the channels on either side of the truss rod channel.
  2. Cut 100 mm from the ends of the pieces that will be used for the outer laminates.These off cuts will be used to make the head block.
  3. Trace the outline of the lateral view of your guitar neck from the plan onto a perspex sheet. Carefully mark the nut and the neck joint positions. Scribe a line from the neck join mark at 91 degrees to the plane of the neck (as shown). The template should include a 20 x 87 mm tenon and a 80 x 20 mm neck  extension for the central laminate.  Cut out the template.
  4. Draw the outline of the  neck , tenon and neck extension on the middle laminate, carefully marking the nut and neck joint positions.
  5. Draw the outline of the outer neck laminate on one of the other pieces, including the nut and neck joint marks.
  6. Stick the pieces together with double sided sticky tape with the long (central) piece on the bottom. Ensure that the grain of the wood for the two outer laminates runs in opposite directions. Ensure the nut and neck joint marks are aligned.
  7. Cut the neck shape for all three pieces on the band saw up to the neck join line. This leaves the outer pieces longer than they need to be for final adjustment when they are fitted. Remove the outer pieces and cut out the remaining “foot”,  tenon and neck extension shape on the middle laminate. The tenon is designed to be 2 mm shallower than the mortice depth which means that the angle of the neck is set by the little “foot” at the bottom of the heel as it rests up against the guitar body. This foot is flush with the 91 degree line previously scribed and if the side of the body is true, there is a strong chance the neck angle will be true. In the unlikely event that this is not the case, it can easily be adjusted (see “Fitting the Neck”)
  8. Using a table router, route a  30 x11 x 11 mm channel into the inner and upper side of both outer laminates to accommodate the neck splice which provides support for the fingerboard all the way through to the upper face brace.

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