Wooden Tricone Build..making it up as I go along

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by lvrpool32, May 12, 2016.

  1. lvrpool32

    lvrpool32 Premium Member

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    I have two solid bodies in the "paint>wait 2 weeks>scuff>paint>wait 2 more weeks" process, so idle hands wanted something to do. Always loved tricones, so thought what the hell, lets try something new.
    I had posted on here looking for build plans, couldn't find any so drew out my own, not too far from the original but things may change as we go along.

    Decided on a quilted maple top, quilted sepele neck, sides and back and an Macassar ebony fret board.
    I cut the top and instead of adding the "basket weave" from the back, it tried to do it as one piece. Still needs some refinement but I am happy with the way its looking.
    The sound well is flame maple, I made it in two pieces so I could have a slight lip at the top so as the cone cover will have a bit more meat to rest on. (I am considering making a wooden cover plate if I can cut the sound hole neat, would be cool to keep the flow of the wood on the top)
    Still have a long way to go, and have never built an acoustic instrument before...but building something new, from a pencil drawing is kinda fun!

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  2. Spotcheck Billy

    Spotcheck Billy Senior Member

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    I have always been intrigued with resonators and really got impressed with an electric resonator that Sonny Landreth played. I hope you can provide lots of details about the way all the resonator/cone parts go together as your build progresses. I am going to follow this thread with great pleasure.
     
  3. lvrpool32

    lvrpool32 Premium Member

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    I did pretty good at cutting the cover plate hole from the top. I was going to match the headstock veneer with the fret board binding, so I think now I'll add a similar binding to the wood cover plate to make up for the wood lost from the cut. The zebra wood fingerboard is from another build I'm doing...actually kinda/sorta like it ! Like I said...making this up as I go along! :thumb:

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  4. judson

    judson Senior Member

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    reso guitars are a friggin blast to play, dont think i have seen a wood tricone with the national type top that is usually in all steel

    they are just flat out fun! i will shut up now and watch

    great project..:applause:
     
  5. mountainwhimsy

    mountainwhimsy Senior Member

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    Keep it coming! Love to see something different!
     
  6. jkes01

    jkes01 Senior Member

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    Looking great so far. How'd you cut the sound Holes?
     
  7. lvrpool32

    lvrpool32 Premium Member

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    Drilled in each corner then a $20 Dremel scroll saw I picked up at a garage sale (had it for 3 years and finally used it!)(I am now like an F1 pit crew when it comes to releasing/installing a blade!!)
    I then took a flat needle file, rounded out the corners (so no cut) and with a small piece of aluminum as a straight edge, filed away. Pretty time consuming, but with a good cup of tea (I am from England after all) and some Disturbed on the old ipod, not too bad!:)
     
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  8. emoney

    emoney Senior Member

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    Have you decided how you're going to bend the sides yet? Post plenty pics of the process
     
  9. Matt_21

    Matt_21 Senior Member

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    Subscribed!
     
  10. lvrpool32

    lvrpool32 Premium Member

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    So I finished the sound well and glued it to the underside of the top.
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    I made the "T" part out of cover plate from two separate pieces of maple. I have to come up with a design for the cut outs, but I want to make the design work with the deadstock design and the way I shape the end of the fret board.
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  11. judson

    judson Senior Member

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    this is looking good...one thought i just had, i know little about resonators and understand the cones actually amplify the sound, cover plates mostly are made from metal from what i have seen....do you think the wood coverplate will dampen the sound as opposed to a metal coverplate?

    the best thing i like on a reso is that metal somewhat of a rattle sound...it is a distinguished sound and is usually easy to identify when heard, i have an all metal body that is a blast to play....

    great looking project...
     
  12. lvrpool32

    lvrpool32 Premium Member

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    Im guessing the bass would come through the neck area sound holes (sound from under the cones)and the treble will come from the cover plate (above the cones) The cover plate won't stay solid, I will be cutting a design into as do the Nationals, just need to come up with a design I'm happy with.
     
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  13. reedy

    reedy Senior Member

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    This is super cool. I'm intrigued with how this is going to sound. The idea of a mellower, more woody tricone is great.
     
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  14. judson

    judson Senior Member

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    yeah i thought of that after my post that it could be a great experiment regarding sound....i know the look will be beautiful, hopefully we will hear it also..
     
  15. lvrpool32

    lvrpool32 Premium Member

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    sorry for the slow updates, but work and a nice little trip to Mexico kinda got in the way :naughty:
    Most of the work has been around making "tools", I made a body mold ready for the sides and I made a heating iron. Looking at the supply houses they where in the $200 range and I wasn't going to chance the cheaper "shipped from China" version. so some scrap wood, stainless exhaust tube and a 200 watt bulb...done! for a grand total of $9!!! and it works. I used it to bend the koa binding around the headstock and the cover plate.
    As far as the build goes - I roughed out the holes in the cover plate, trimmed it to size and added the binding.
    Neck is pretty much done and I did my first "slotted headstock". I didn't want to stray to far away from the National style headstock shape, but it got a quilted top, koa binding and I paid homage to the National shield logo (that's paduak) but with my "N" in the middle. I did mess up the positioning when I cut out the inlay hole, it was off to the right (and I was positive, double, triple checked before I outlined it prior to cutting :rolleyes:), so I adjusted it and tried to fill the gap (about an 1/8") with "maple filler" but it look like ass!! so I see myself digging it out and trying to do some type of real maple "slithers" to fill in the gap.
    more to come...........................

    Nick

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  16. judson

    judson Senior Member

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    this is looking great....
     
  17. mountainwhimsy

    mountainwhimsy Senior Member

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    This is getting me all itchin' to build a resonator! Great stuff!
     
  18. judson

    judson Senior Member

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    i will have to look but is any reso maker using wood as a cover plate? i think it will look beautiful once done but i hope the wood doesnt absorb too much of the reso sound...either way i have to admit it will look great and probably could get over the sound issue as it should retain most of the reso sound from the tri cones...we will see

    .....and hopefully hear !!

    and if it does, i want one !!!!!
     
  19. lvrpool32

    lvrpool32 Premium Member

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    Well as we say back in Liverpool I made a right pigs ear of bending one of the sides yesterday!! The bottom bout was no problem, but the waist and top shoulder ... Well...err... It cracked! After some further investigation the sides are a little thick at about .100", I need to be in the .075-.080" range and NOT soak them as that isn't the desired approach with figured woods.
    I have a spare set of sapele sides or a very nice zebra wood back and sides set I could use instead. We shall see how the bending of the other side goes at the thinner thickness and only localized wetting.

    As I cut the cover plate hole the same as the metal one I can always switch back , even to just do a comparison. I have the cover plate down to about 3/16 thick with some strategically placed little braces so we shall see what it does to the sound.

    Nick
     
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  20. mountainwhimsy

    mountainwhimsy Senior Member

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    Bummer on the side cracks. .1" is a bit thick, even with a bending machine. It also looks like your waist radius is pretty tight, so take your time on that. If you don't have a bending strap to support the outside of the bend, you should look into getting or making one. Cheers!
     

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