Making An Electric Guitar from Oak (part 4 of 9)

In this video, I started by doing some shaping of the end of the frets with an electric file, a hand file, and the orbital sander to round over the sharp edges and make the neck more comfortable to play.

Next I wanted to add some fret dots to the side of the neck.  I had an idea to use cocktail sticks or “tooth picks” for this.  I first marked up where the holes would need to be drilled with an awl, and then I drilled appropriately sized holes to accommodate the sticks, added wood glue, inserted the cocktail sticks, flush cut them and sanded to finish.

To level the frets, I made a sanding block, marked up the fretwire with a sharpie marker pen and lightly sanded.

I was planning to use 2” thick Spruce to make the body which I glued up and cut out on the bandsaw, but I found it to be very light weight so I wasn’t sure how well it would work.  But at this point, someone donated me a big slab of oak – so I decided to re-make the body using the oak to match the neck. 

The body shape that I opted for was loosely based on that of the Charvel Surfcaster – a guitar I once owned and had very fond memories of, it is a very good looking guitar in my opinion – and that’s why I chose it.

The slab of oak had a big bow in it so it took quite a bit of effort to shape this using the jointer and thickness planer.  As oak is such a hard wood, this big slab really put my tablesaw and thickness planer to the test!

Once I had flattened the material, I marked up the body shape on to two pieces using a template.  I would later need to glue up the two pieces to form the complete body shape. 

I cut out the shape on the bandsaw, and then glued and clamped up the pieces to form the body using a couple of large bar clamps.