Category Archives: Bracing the Back Plate

Bracing the Back Plate

Moving along things have been going well so far. No major mistakes or difficulties to trip me up.

In the next step I will attach the braces to the back plate.

This pic was in the last step but I am posting it again as it is the beginning of the layout for the braces. Here I use a square to mark my center point of each of the four braces.

Then I use my square with the brace in position and mark where I will saw.

All four braces positions marked for cutting.

With my braces cut to length I check the layout.

Using my hand saw and a square block I cut across the spruce seam inside of my pencil mark. Then I carefully chisel it out and pare it back for a snug fit.

Everything in position I check for square. Looks pretty good.

Then I lay out the guitar and brace positions on the radius dish.

Put some sandpaper down and start sanding the radius into the brace.

Once all four are done I check for the fit. Again it looks good.

Then I do some rough shaping on the braces at the spindle sander.

And then finally glue them in position.

In the final step for bracing the back plate I shaped the braces with my block plane, scraper and profiled sanding block. The shaping is just round-over on the edges and a scallop on the ends.

I used a low angle block plane and profile sanding block on the length. The scallops were done before glue-up and then I used a scraper to get the ends down to 3mm.

Close-up of shaping.

Next step I move on to the sides.

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Bracing the Back Plate

Like the cat in the hat I’m stuck inside with all this rain today so I might as well move right along with the next post; Bracing the back plate.

Strike your center line with a pencil. Lay out the shape with the half template. Flip it over and do the same.

Take me to the river…. Oh sorry meant to say take it to the band saw and cut it out leaving about 1/4″ around your line.

I put it through the drum sander and took it down to around 2.6mm and then did the final thicknessing to 2.5mm by hand up to 240 grit.

Now I will glue some cross cut strips on the seam to strengthen it. Cross cut strips ensure it will never come apart.

Close up of cross cut strips. These are cut from the waste of the top plate and fit in between the braces so they only need to be around 6″ long.

Mark the top and bottom of the body and then mark the center point of where your brace will cross.

Cut the cross cuts to size and then I tape them together along a straight edge.

I then glue the strip on the back using my straight edge rule to keep it in line.

After it is all glued up I sand it and begin laying out the position of the braces.

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