Guitar neck scarf joint

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
Dmitrypey
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Location: Kirkland, WA

Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by Dmitrypey » Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:18 am

Hi,

I currently do not have a bandsaw, although, I am looking at a WEN 10”.

I was wondeting if anyone has any advice on how to make an 15 degree angled cut in the neck blank by hand to make a scarf joint.
Do I have to have a bandsaw for this?

I have all kinds of hand saws, and even recently, purchased the fancy japanese saws, but can’t make a straight cut without venturing away from drawn lines.

Almost all youtube videos that demonstrate this cut, involve a bandsaw.
The Courtnall book shows a picture of him doing it by hand, but I don’t know if there is a way for to keep the saw straight.

Thank you.
1974 Teruaki Nakade

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senunkan
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by senunkan » Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:40 am

I usually cut using the "fancy" Japanese saw (ryouba saw 両刃鋸 meaning 2 sided saw - cross cut on one side and ripping on the other side) that you mentioned and it works much better than more common push saw for me.
To start off the cut I have a guide block to set the angle.
And I make sure the blade if firmly press against the guide block.
After the cut is deep enough, you can remove the guide block if you want.
I think you just need some practice to get the hand saw to track properly.
After that you can easily clean up with a block plane.
So make sure you allow some waste for the cleaning up.

As for bandsaw I don't think it is necessary but it is good to have.
However with all tools, it will need some tune up before it can get that kind of precision that you desire.
Most bandsaw cut will drift without tuning.
Sen CL Goh
2013 Sen Goh (S - IR)
2010 Sen Goh (S - IR)
1996 Ross Gutmeier (C - IR)
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Dmitrypey
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Joined: Fri Jan 19, 2018 5:18 pm
Location: Kirkland, WA

Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by Dmitrypey » Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:50 am

Hi Senunkan,

So, I actually used the ryoba saw, but since it is flexible, I thought this is what was causing it to track away...

When you start your cut, do you start it on the side of the blank, or on the wide portion?
1974 Teruaki Nakade

JohnNguyen
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by JohnNguyen » Thu Mar 08, 2018 2:55 am

I used a hand saw for rough cut, glued both piece together with double tape, and smooth it out with a hand plane. It took some patience, but the result was not bad at all.

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Dmitrypey
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Location: Kirkland, WA

Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by Dmitrypey » Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:02 am

Hi JohnNguyen,

Thank you for the post.
Could not see your images.
1974 Teruaki Nakade

JohnNguyen
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by JohnNguyen » Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:09 am

Dmitrypey wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:02 am
Hi JohnNguyen,

Thank you for the post.
Could not see your images.
I think if you right click on the image icon, there is an option to display the picture in separate tab, at least with Chrome. I do not know how to embed pictures to the post.
Cheers!

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senunkan
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by senunkan » Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:12 am

Dmitrypey wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 1:50 am
Hi Senunkan,

So, I actually used the ryoba saw, but since it is flexible, I thought this is what was causing it to track away...

When you start your cut, do you start it on the side of the blank, or on the wide portion?
On the side of the blank with a guide block to fix the angle of the scarf
Image
Sen CL Goh
2013 Sen Goh (S - IR)
2010 Sen Goh (S - IR)
1996 Ross Gutmeier (C - IR)
Alhambra 4P
Yamaha CG110

Dmitrypey
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Joined: Fri Jan 19, 2018 5:18 pm
Location: Kirkland, WA

Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by Dmitrypey » Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:29 am

Senunkan,
I see now!
Thank you
1974 Teruaki Nakade

Dave M
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by Dave M » Thu Mar 08, 2018 5:44 pm

It is worth saying that so long as you have plenty of length of neck shaft to play with, even a very rough cut can be cleaned up with a plane. My cuts on the bandsaw never seem to come out very well but planing as described in all the books, ie turning the head over and clamping with the neck shaft so that the two faces are aligned then using something like a Record number 4 plane quickly tidies it up.
Dave

gauchita
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by gauchita » Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:25 pm

I have only ever cut the neck joint by hand. Cut with a good quality and sharp tenon saw. True the surface with block plain, finishing with a sanding block with 80 grit paper.

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Michael.N.
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by Michael.N. » Thu Mar 08, 2018 7:49 pm

Japanese saws are good for cutting the scarf, at least the ones with the back. They tend to have thin plate and not much set - which can be problematic if you are unpracticed. Once they start to go off track it's virtually impossible to adjust and get them back on track.
One of the hardpoint 14" toolbox saws such as the Bahco are perfectly suited to it - cheap, fine cut and without the back of a tenon saw.
I always clean up with a plane. Shouldn't need any abrasive.
Historicalguitars.

simonm
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by simonm » Thu Mar 08, 2018 8:30 pm

Pretty much any saw will do. I draw a rectangle on both sides to mark the angle. The guide block is a good idea too. Then as others said, tidy it up with a wood plane. I mainly use a large to medium (4) to large plane (7) for this. If there is a stubborn angle somewhere I might use a block plane for a "local intervention" but then finish it with the bigger one.

Once I have a nice clean planed surface I would not go over it with sandpaper of any grade. Like most gluing operations, glue up as soon as the joint is ready. If you want to glue later, just before you glue up run the plane lightly over the surfaces to freshen them. Practicing on offcuts of any sort of wood will save you wasting good neck wood.

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geoff-bristol
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by geoff-bristol » Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:29 pm

Its only a rough cut - you have to plane it to make the joint. One tip - before making the cut, plane the underside of the neck face really flat and true. This is where your cut and planed smooth face will joint against. It easier while not a bitter end with a feather edge !

Saw cuts like this can wander - its a fine angle to the grain. Do it side on. A fence will help start the cut but not needed after that.
Tip - start the cut a few mm - then mark your lines at 90 deg across the face to suit the cut you have started ! Mark them so that the line stays on ( then follow them ! )

Also - leave spare on the head piece - and - the heel end of the neck - and do not glue the stack on until the head scarf is done. That way - you can do a really wonky cut - and have the spare length to straighten it on neck and the head ( depending on which way you went off of the 90 deg ) - then set the position for nut, heel etc.
I have cut a few wonky ones - hardly matters, unless trying to get neck and scarf out of a very tight length - then I am more careful.

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Steve Ganz
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Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by Steve Ganz » Thu Mar 08, 2018 11:11 pm

Dmitri,
Without a band saw or a large table saw with a taper jig, you are going to be using a hand saw.
If you are only doing one neck, just waste a bunch of wood when you plane the angle of the scarf.
If you are going to do more than one neck this way, make a jig, similar to a mitre box, that will hold the neck and saw in the correct relation.
Steve

Dmitrypey
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Joined: Fri Jan 19, 2018 5:18 pm
Location: Kirkland, WA

Re: Guitar neck scarf joint

Post by Dmitrypey » Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:55 am

Thsnk you everyone.
Will give it a try and will report back!
1974 Teruaki Nakade

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