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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 5:33 pm 
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Hmmm.... That's a pretty big gap. I think you may want to make at least one new brace -- it looks like the slot in the lower brace is where the big error is -- and use the remains of the one you replace to make some of the smaller/shorter braces. The upper brace looks as though it fits down over the lower brace fairly well and can be salvaged.

Or you could fill in the gaps with small slices of bracewood. I don't have enough experience to truly know how much this really matters. But I think, just aesthetically, I'd make a new brace. It's not the end of the world. Sometimes parts have to be re-made. I've certainly had to re-make a part because I botched the first attempt (and sometimes the second....). If you keep quiet about it, no one need ever know.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 7:14 pm 
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If it makes you feel any better, my first x-brace looked like that. I cut a new brace. I believe you did the same thing I did; you shaped the top of the brace into the joint. Making the peaks on the braces in the joint, causes them to become loose. I'd be willing to bet that they would be fairly solid if it wasn't for the shaping.

My rule of thumb is not to shape the braces within 1 1/2" of the joint. Leave them square. The only thing I do to the lap joint is sand it lightly with 320g paper, then top with a 1" square cloth with hide glue. Some folks use a piece of wood (I have too). Either way is right.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2017 7:25 pm 
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This is what the x-brace looks like on a top I just made. I radiused it, installed it, then started shaping the brace 2" from the center of the x.

I made photos of its creation for the client who owns the guitar. This is a forward shifted brace with a 100° angle.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 7:19 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 09, 2017 5:34 am
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Thanks for all the inputs. I decided to get another set of unscalloped braces and try again. I've attached pictures of the first set I did. you guys tell me - would you go with it or try again?

I did get a Digital sliding T bevel and I tested with some Basswood braces I created with the band saw. I used the same method as RnB showed with his pictures. The second set was worse but the basswood is harder than the spruce. The basswood braces were also 3/8 vs 5/16 thick.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 7:23 pm 
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and here is one more up close picture of that joint...

What would you do?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 7:41 pm 
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That looks considerably better, even if it is still a bit loose.. You could easily shim it with a shaving and go with it. Or you can try it again and see if you can do better. It's entirely how fanatical you want to be.

There is nothing wrong with making a part more than once. You're learning. It would be rather remarkable if you didn't have to re-make a few parts along the way. That is how one learns to do things. I have a large box filled with "learning experiences."

By the way, what are you using to saw out the notch? If you don't have one already, consider getting one of those insanely fine-toothed X-Acto razor saws. That might help. You can use a square block of wood to help make sure the saw is truly vertical.

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There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 10:19 pm 
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The joint looks much better.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:40 am 
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Location: Seattle
I agree with the use of a razor saw. They are shinny enough that you can look at the reflection of the brace to keep the saw at 90 degrees. It is really easy to see if the saw is perpendicular looking at the reflection of the brace against the brace. Make it a little tight and open it with a file if necessary.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2017 11:52 am 
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Location: Chadds Ford, PA
Dittos on the razor saw. I use a 1 inch angle plate to guide the first two cuts on a square brace, then glue that first brace in, then mark, cut and fit the second brace. At least for me this is getting an AHT joint. I will probably change the process as I learn on how to do it right.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2017 12:34 pm 
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Yes - I use a stew-mac .010 razor saw. I think I may know what I am doing wrong. when I transferred the angle to the braces I drew that angle on the edge (top and bottom) of the brace. Then - when I brought the lines down to the middle of the brace I made those perpendicular (90 degrees). I didnt keep the same angle as I cut down.

I think I should keep that same angle - correct?


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