Friday, May 23, 2014

Project Tip: I See Jigs in My Immediate Future

The keyframe parts still haven't arrived; they must be coming up by bicycle messenger. In the meantime, I will need a few jigs down the road. Woodworking jigs run the spectrum from cutting aids to clamping systems - and everything in between. Fortunately, Mr. Miller's excellent e-book has an entire chapter on helpful jigs, including one for the bentside.

While patiently awaiting the keyframe parts, my son Trey and I will begin constructing the large jig that is a clamping system for the bentside of the instrument. Some harpsichord makers use a solid 1/2" piece of wood and bend it using heat and steam, but I'm going to create a laminate because I'm using the quarter sawn oak in the Mission style. In this case, I will use two 1/8" piece of quarter sawn red oak veneer for the inside and outside of the bentside that will sandwich enough 1/8" pieces of poplar to create a 1/2" thick bentside for the instrument. The image below illustrates the jig clamping a bentside during glue-up.

The other parts of the case sides - the spine, cheek, and tail - will not require lamination. I will simply use 1/2" thick poplar for these. The graphic below illustrates these parts. I will not be working on the case sides until the entire keyboard structure is completed, but why not get something done while I'm in a holding pattern, right?

Graphics from Harpsichord Project 3.1 E-book by Ernest Miller.

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