Truss Rod Jig

Talk about modding or building your own guitar from scratch.

Truss Rod Jig

Postby accidentprone315 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 3:49 am

So I'm very close to starting to build my own necks(Thanks to Kevin AKA Strider13 and Paul Rhoney). I think I want to mainly use vintage style one way rods since I can build them myself.

With this type of rod you need a rounded bed for them to sit in. My question is, what do you do with other scale length if you build the jig for a specific length neck? Building a different truss rob jig for every scale length seems like a waste of time and space. Thanks!
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby Strider13 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 6:45 am

Hey Chris,

I was looking over my truss rod jig plans, and it looks like for that there may be a way to use the same jig for standard 25.5" and 24" Fender scales. You would just place some guide blocks to prevent the router from going too far when making a 24" scale neck.

I was hoping to have a kit available through the Ponoko showroom to assemble a truss rod routing jig, but apparently their CNC cutter doesn't leave a super smooth edge on the MDF like a laser cutter does.

I'll look into other options, but hopefully myself and the community can figure out a way to make an easily adaptable jig to rout multiple scale lengths.

Oh, and I do plan on redoing my thread over neck building to make it more concise and hopefully not spread out so much. And actually finish it this time. I have some projects in the early stages that I'm sure a lot of the guys would dig here.
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby Stereordinary » Tue Sep 25, 2012 8:38 am

The trick is to make a truss rod jig system, where even though you still have to make a different set of rails for each scale length, they aren't very large rails and are easy to make.

If you look in the upper left hand corner of the black cabinet in this photo of my old workshop back in Portland, you can kind of see my five sets of rails that I made for five different scale lengths. They don't take up too much space.

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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby accidentprone315 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 8:42 am

Strider13 wrote:Hey Chris,

I was looking over my truss rod jig plans, and it looks like for that there may be a way to use the same jig for standard 25.5" and 24" Fender scales. You would just place some guide blocks to prevent the router from going too far when making a 24" scale neck.

I was hoping to have a kit available through the Ponoko showroom to assemble a truss rod routing jig, but apparently their CNC cutter doesn't leave a super smooth edge on the MDF like a laser cutter does.

I'll look into other options, but hopefully myself and the community can figure out a way to make an easily adaptable jig to rout multiple scale lengths.

Oh, and I do plan on redoing my thread over neck building to make it more concise and hopefully not spread out so much. And actually finish it this time. I have some projects in the early stages that I'm sure a lot of the guys would dig here.


Hey, Kevin. I'm looking forward to your new neck building thread. I have a couple bodies waiting for necks so this is perfect timing.
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby accidentprone315 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 8:46 am

Stereordinary wrote:The trick is to make a truss rod jig system, where even though you still have to make a different set of rails for each scale length, they aren't very large rails and are easy to make.

If you look in the upper left hand corner of the black cabinet in this photo of my old workshop back in Portland, you can kind of see my five sets of rails that I made for five different scale lengths. They don't take up too much space.

Image


I see. So basically construct something where you can interchange the rails for different scale lengths. That wouldn't be as bad as building 3-4 separate router jigs. Is it a different radii for a 24" scale and a 25" scale? Or is just the length of the neck different?
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby Stereordinary » Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:06 am

accidentprone315 wrote:Is it a different radii for a 24" scale and a 25" scale? Or is just the length of the neck different?


They're different radii technically, but not by a lot. You could probably get away with using the same radii for multiple scale lengths, but I would recommend against that.
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby accidentprone315 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:21 pm

Stereordinary wrote:
accidentprone315 wrote:Is it a different radii for a 24" scale and a 25" scale? Or is just the length of the neck different?


They're different radii technically, but not by a lot. You could probably get away with using the same radii for multiple scale lengths, but I would recommend against that.


Do you have the radii for the different lengths? Or maybe a link? I'm going to be doing all of the common scales, 24", 25.5", 34", and probably some baritone scales as well.
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby accidentprone315 » Sat Nov 03, 2012 2:58 pm

Bump! Does anyone know the radii for the common scale lengths? 24'? 25.5"? etc.
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby andrewdoeshair » Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:55 pm

accidentprone315 wrote:Bump! Does anyone know the radii for the common scale lengths? 24'? 25.5"? etc.



I'm not positive, but I eyeballed mine... It doesn't need to be exact, to work properly. I mean, as long as one end of the rod is anchored, the other end of the rod is anchored with a nut, and the middle are of the rod is going to be pushing forward on some wood when that nut is tightened, it should work.
Image
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I've looked at a LOT of drawings for them, and I noticed that the deepest part of the curve is always at about the 7th fret. So when I do mine, I mark the 7th fret on the blank, and I position the jig accordingly. Oh yeah, to the OP, I use the same jig for all of the scale lengths. The only thing that will differ is where your nut will sit on the heel; closer to the the fretboard, or closer to the back...

Here's my jig. you can see the line marked for the 7th fret. I shimmed the headstock end up a little, because the jig was resting on the headstock, which's angle led that side of the jig to sit too low...
Image
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby andrewdoeshair » Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:56 pm

Here's the same thing happening on a shorter neck
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby Strider13 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 8:29 am

Hey Chris,

Can't remember if I showed this to you before, but I drew up some truss rod jig plans a while back. I used surfaced poplar boards like you can find at Home Depot or Lowes, since they were already dimensioned and smooth. The jig itself is pretty simple in construction, with just a bottom piece, the radiused rails, side support rails, and some cross pieces to stabilize the structure. The necks themselves are held in place by aluminum angle pieces on a sled that slides into the jig. One tip on building it though is to predrill all the screw holes, otherwise the poplar tends to split.

These plans are for the two main Fender guitar scale lengths. If I find some time I'll draw out versions for bass and baritone/conversion scale lengths.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/66506205/Truss%20Rod%20Channel%20Routing%20Jig.pdf
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby accidentprone315 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 11:31 am

Strider13 wrote:Hey Chris,

Can't remember if I showed this to you before, but I drew up some truss rod jig plans a while back. I used surfaced poplar boards like you can find at Home Depot or Lowes, since they were already dimensioned and smooth. The jig itself is pretty simple in construction, with just a bottom piece, the radiused rails, side support rails, and some cross pieces to stabilize the structure. The necks themselves are held in place by aluminum angle pieces on a sled that slides into the jig. One tip on building it though is to predrill all the screw holes, otherwise the poplar tends to split.

These plans are for the two main Fender guitar scale lengths. If I find some time I'll draw out versions for bass and baritone/conversion scale lengths.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/66506205/Truss%20Rod%20Channel%20Routing%20Jig.pdf


That's great, Kevin! Did you build two different boxes for the scale lengths, or make the guide rails interchangeable? I wonder if you could just make different rails, with the radius reversed for 1 piece necks?
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Re: Truss Rod Jig

Postby accidentprone315 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 11:35 am

andrewdoeshair wrote:
accidentprone315 wrote:Bump! Does anyone know the radii for the common scale lengths? 24'? 25.5"? etc.



I'm not positive, but I eyeballed mine... It doesn't need to be exact, to work properly. I mean, as long as one end of the rod is anchored, the other end of the rod is anchored with a nut, and the middle are of the rod is going to be pushing forward on some wood when that nut is tightened, it should work.
Image
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v208/ ... eprint.jpg




I've looked at a LOT of drawings for them, and I noticed that the deepest part of the curve is always at about the 7th fret. So when I do mine, I mark the 7th fret on the blank, and I position the jig accordingly. Oh yeah, to the OP, I use the same jig for all of the scale lengths. The only thing that will differ is where your nut will sit on the heel; closer to the the fretboard, or closer to the back...

Here's my jig. you can see the line marked for the 7th fret. I shimmed the headstock end up a little, because the jig was resting on the headstock, which's angle led that side of the jig to sit too low...
Image


Thanks for the pictures, Andrew. I feel you're probably correct about the different radii. I can't image the difference between a 24" and a 25.5" scale could have that much of an effect on useability.

Also, making angled necks now I see.... 8)
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