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Beard reso guitar kit..first impressions

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Total Posts: 4
Hi all over at resohangout I posted that i planned to share my resonator kit build, and one member suggestioned i come on over a wealth of info. I will post an intro and history of myself but thought for now I would forward what I posted about the Beard gutiar kit which i got just today.

the Beard guitar kit arrived today; took only 3 days to get cross country. I thought i would share my initial impressions of the materials in these separate post. of course I will be sharing the build with you all. packaging was fine and all materials arrived in good shape.

-the instructions are very minimal, only 2 pages printed both sides, but the full sized blueprint seems very complete. as the intro states, one should research other guitar making sources to aid in the build if necessary.

-the sides, top, and bottom are good grade ply. top and bottom are flat and seem to be cut accurately; prop by CNC. Sides are pre bent and one side lays nice and flat on a flat surface. the other side lifts off the table a bit. Will have to ponder on how to get it true as a perfect fit is better than a forced, tensioned fit. Both sides are over long so need to be cut to correct
length, as expected.

- the mahogany neck blank is dimensioned well, with the heel to break point at the peghead right at 12.5 in. as it should be. the heel /body angle is just right. The top of the neck has a very slight reverse bow, or just a bit proud in the middle, i would leave as is, except that i plan to inlay two carbon graphite rods in the neck. the blank is one piece as i expcected, i.e. no scarf joint for the peghead, so i plan on re enforcing the peg head angle from underneath the
neck. I haven't yet checked the neck and foot blocks with a square, but they look good and the edges on one side of each block are already rounded over...nice touch

- soundwell is traditional and looks nice, tho for some reason i thought a soundwel would be thicker...will have to rethink my plans of opening up the soundwell.

- The Beard cone appears in perfect shape. the spider needs just two legs bent down just a tad. the casting, of course, is a bit rough so if i'm feeling anal, I will file everything smooth.

- good job on the fret cuts on the ebony fingerboard blank, of course i haven't measured them yet but i'm certain the scale is accurate. Looking at the side of the fretboard, all the fret depths look good and consistant

- All the other odds and ends included seem just fine...includes everything needed, even the strings. The plastic binding material is yellow; the tuners are enclosed.

i am pleased with the quality and am looking forward to getting started. I will be doing the neck first

Apr 22, 10 | 5:17 pm

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Total Posts: 257
Daniel, have fun with building this. Bet it will turn out sweet.
What you said about the sides, one laying flat, and one not, are you meaning that when shaped like they will finally be joined that one is correct and one is not, or do you mean that the edge of one lays flat in one orientation but not in the other?
If it's the latter, I'm guessing that reso's are like regular steel strings in that the top of the sides are flat to give a flat surface to the top, but that the backs are tapered. And you would be ok.
If it's the former, then you might consider calling the vendor.
I'm not sure I read your statement correctly though.
But there are some on here who have built reso's before and probably have better insight than I.
Hope your able to get going with it soon and best of luck.

Apr 22, 10 | 7:15 pm

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Hi Bob thanks for your reply I'll try to explain it better. The widths of the sides are the same along the entire length, so body depth is the same for upper bout and lower bout. one side when sitting on a surface, touches the surface along the entire length. the other side seems to have a slight twist at the waist, so that when sitting on a flat surface, the upper bout rises from the surface 4/32...the very end of the neck joint area touches the surface, as does all of the lower bout. if I place a finger at the lower bout and apply finger pressure at the upper bout, it goes down can see the bottom side of the upper bout pull in as i press down, so i'd say it's a slight twist at the waist. not doubt slight clamping would bring it into aliegnment, tho I prefer not to introduce any stress at all in the body. Also the pieces are too long, so cutting from each end for the proper length may compensate somewhat.

I wonder if I wetted the waist area and clamped the whole sifde down...what that correct the twist?


Apr 22, 10 | 9:27 pm

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That twist is small so should not be an issue if you glue to the end blocks inside a mold. Will you use a mold? If so, where do you get a mold for a Dobro?

Apr 23, 10 | 9:23 am

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Total Posts: 4
If I were to use a mold, I would have to build it myself...hoping not to have to do that. tho, been thinking about doing an inside mold from paper covered core board.

Apr 23, 10 | 2:05 pm
blues creek guitars Authorized Martin Repair Ctr

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USE YEE A MOLD the mold is one of the most important tools . This will hold the shape of the guitar body in symmetry and help hold the neck block in the proper position.
When you go to do the neck set , if the neck block isn't done properly it can make a critical job very difficult.

John Hall
Blues Creek Guitar Inc.
Authorized CF Martin Repair Center
Board of Directors ASIA

Apr 24, 10 | 2:34 am

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Total Posts: 4
THOU HAST SPOKEN...thanks I did come up with a mold idea last night that I can build and I think it will work. The nice thing about square neck dobro guitars is that the neck joint is 90 degree angle, so if i get the neck block right there shouldn't be any problems

Apr 24, 10 | 9:58 am

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Total Posts: 668
Daniel, thanks for bringing this here and please continue to share both the build and some pics if possible. I've been buying parts for my reso's from Beard for several years now and if the kit is as good as the bits and pieces you should have a great guitar.

I'll second what John says about a mold - the simple way that I do it is to cut four pieces of MDF or pressed board a little larger than the body. Clamp them together (actually I use flat head machine bolts with the heads counter sunk so I can run it around a band saw). Make a copy of your plans, cut it out and trace on the MDF. Use either a band or saber saw and cut them all at the same time - smooth with sandpaper

I cut a couple of strips of MDF to go between them at each end - screw the whole thing together with your FH bolts.

You can use the little cutout pieces from the waist to make a waist expander - glue them together, route a little depression and use a turnbuckel to snug them at the sides

In my humble, one of the most important parts of building is thinking about the cauls and jigs and fixtures that will hold everything in alignment - lots of ways to do it, but take the time to figure it out.

ps - picture shows carriage bolts with round heads - better to used FH bolts and slightly counter sink them.

Apr 29, 10 | 11:01 am

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Total Posts: 4
thanks Freeman for all the pics yes i have been thinking alot about the mold. sadly i wil not have a bandsaw available, so doing a solid mold is not what Im thinking of. rather a flat base with 36 individual side pieces placed around in the shape of the body...sort of like the multi mold adjustable molds found on ebay. then some inner turnbuckles Of course with the sound well, I will need to come up with another way of hold the side vertically once the well and top are glue in.

building in ernest will not begin for about three weeks...this week I am shpaing the neck. will try to get pics up on this forum if i can figure out how to do it easily

keep ya posted Dan

May 02, 10 | 5:19 pm

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