FDP Home Page / FDP Forum / FAQ's

The FDP is made possible by the following companies and individual members like you.
Please use the links below to show them we value their sponsorship.

Sweetwater

MOD KITS DIY

Amplified Parts

Musician's Friend

Antique Electronics Supply

Yellowjackets Tube Converters

Guitar Center

Jensen Loudspeakers

Apex Tube Matching

Amazon

WD Music


* God bless America and our men and women in uniform *

* Illegitimi non carborundum! *

If you benefit and learn from the FDP and enjoy our site, please help support us and become a Contributing Member or make a Donation today! The FDP counts on YOU to help keep the site going with an annual contribution. It's quick and easy with PayPal. Please do it TODAY!

Chris Greene, Host & Founder

LOST YOUR PASSWORD?

......................................................................

   
FDP Jam
Calendar
Find musicians
in your area!
  Search the Forums  

FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Beginner to routing, what would I need?

vomer
Contributing Member
**********

Broke Down

in the Brassicas
Sep 26th, 2017 10:00 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

If I were going to learn how to rout, specifically, enlarging pickup routs, what gear would I need? I have a couple of decent electric drills, and a no-brand Dremel copy, and no clue about what is involved. Thanks.

hushnel
Contributing Member
**********
********

North Florida

A Friend of Bill W.
Sep 26th, 2017 11:38 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Well, nothing really replaces a router, it's the speed and power along with a good sharp bit that makes a clean finished rout.

For neck pockets and pickups the template is your friend, the router bit will need to be the same size as the bearing. I make my templates on heavy 1/4 plexiglas with an etched or scribed in center line. Don't try to cut too much on each pass.

Their are a lot of different techniques, I like a good router table too. I consider the router a very usefull but a dangerous tool.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
**********
**********
******

Deus

ex Machina
Sep 26th, 2017 04:54 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

A router is like a chainsaw: dangerous only when used incorrectly.

For a first router (and for the kind of work you intend), I always recommend a laminate trimmer with a 1/4" collet.

This is a small, bare-bones router with enough power to do just about anything you need a router to do on small woodworking projects like guitar bodies, amp cabinets, etc.

The things to pay attention to are many, but the most important thing is PPE: wear good safety goggles and hearing protection, and maintain a firm two-hand grip on the router (if it's a full-size router). A trim router can be used with one hand.

Second most important is depth of cut and feed speed. These two things will vary depending on what sort of cut you're making (the cutter you're using) and the type of wood you are cutting. Several shallow cuts are better and safer than one or two deep cuts.

Third is direction of cut. You almost always want the cutter to spin counter to the direction of cut. This prevents the cutter from biting in and loss of operator control of the router motor. For instance, if your cutter is spinning clockwise, all outside cuts (e.g., the 1/8" roundover on a Tele body's edge) should go counter-clockwise around the body. Conversely, all inside cuts (pickup and control routs) should be cut in a clockwise fashion.

Fourth is keep the sole plate flat against the work. This is critical when doing an outside corner because only about 25% of the sole plate is on the work, and the router will want to tip. So you apply differential pressure on the router to keep that small portion of sole plate flat and in firm contact with the work surface.

Those are the big ticket items.

The more you practice and use the tool, the more you'll learn about what works and what doesn't.

Laminate trim router basics

Peegoo
Contributing Member
**********
**********
******

Deus

ex Machina
Sep 26th, 2017 05:02 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

A decent trim router is about $100 (less, on sale). All the recognized brands like DeWalt, Riyobi, Porter Cable, Makita, and similar home-gamer tools are plenty good for this purpose. The trim router will come with a wrench or two that you use to install and remove the cutters.

The only other things you need (besides some wood to practice on and the motivation to do so) are safety goggles, hearing protection, and a little kit of 1/4"-shank cutters (bits). Spend a little more and get cutters that have carbide edges. They cut cleaner, run cooler, and stay sharper than 'high-speed steel' bits. Most DIY places like Lowe's and Homeless Despot sell cutter sets

like this one.

(This message was last edited by Peegoo at 07:19 PM, Sep 26th, 2017)

Peegoo
Contributing Member
**********
**********
******

Deus

ex Machina
Sep 26th, 2017 05:10 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Lastly, if you'll be deepening existing routs for controls and pickups, you need a small top-bearing pattern bit. There's a little roller bearing on 1/4" shaft on the topside of the cutter.

These work by following the existing rout's edge (the bearing follows the rout) and the depth is increased according to where you have the cutter set up in the router--how far the cutter extends below the sole plate.

Since most Fender and Fender clones have routs that run a minimum of 5/8" deep, the best bet is to get a top-bearing pattern bit that is about 5/8" long.

or get a set like this.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
**********
**********
******

Deus

ex Machina
Sep 26th, 2017 05:15 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Here's a pretty good vid on

router bits

FunkyKikuchiyo

VT

Sep 30th, 2017 07:28 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

The only thing I think I could possibly add is that you can't pay too much attention to string line up. It can be really easy to be too far one way or another and have a pickup that doesn't sit below the strings gracefully. Use the actual string placements as guides, not the center line itself, since the center line isn't always the reference used when the guitar is made.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
**********
**********
******

Deus

ex Machina
Sep 30th, 2017 07:52 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I always run a straight-edge down each side of the neck and make a line on the body (I place a trip of tape) to establish the neck edge line all the way to the bridge location.

Measure between the lines at the bridge and at the neck and mark centers. Connect those two points and that gives you the center line for the pickup routs.

hushnel
Contributing Member
**********
********

North Florida

A Friend of Bill W.
Sep 30th, 2017 09:21 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'll line up the neck to the body and rout the neck pocket before I profile the body. Once the neck is on and the strings are good all the way to the bridge I go to the next part of cutting out the body profile.

I can always go back and deepen the neck pocket if I need to. If that part is all good I can screw up nearly everything else and it doesn't make too much difference.

Most of my technique came from Peegoo and wrnchbndr, years ago when I built my first instrument, The Cuban. I make adjustments in technique according my skills, tools and faulty logic "o)

FunkyKikuchiyo

VT

Sep 30th, 2017 09:52 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I like that, Sr. Goo. My method involved string held where the Es would be and a lot of eyeballing.

Hushnel's method is consistent with manufacturing methods... make your first installation as best you can to the center line, and the rest of them to that first installation instead of the center line. It seems like a really silly distinction, but it can make the difference between something that is right and something that drops strings off the edge of the fingerboard or pickups wildly in the wrong place.

twangdoodles

michigan usa

Oct 1st, 2017 08:14 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Just wanted to point out after watching that video: just because you CAN use a trim router with one hand doesn't mean that you should. That guy was being pretty sloppy with it, you can see the router wobbling around.

For good results you want your work-piece to be either clamped down or placed on a non-skid mat (like a yoga mat or similar) and use both hands. Also, you wanna grip the tool as low as possible to help avoid tipping.

While I'm generally not a fan of dewalt, they do make a few things really well including their latest trim router. It has LEDs and its depth adjustment is very smooth. Making small adjustments has always been a pain with trim routers but dewalt has solved that.

You certainly don't have to spend this much but this is a nice kit and having plunging capability will make your life easier, especially when doing things like pickup routs.

A good place to start...

FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Beginner to routing, what would I need?




Reply to this Topic
Display my email address             Lost your password?
Your Message:
Link Address (URL):
Link Title:




Moderators: Chris Greene  Iron Man  reverendrob  

FDP, LLC Privacy Policy: Your real name, username, and email
are held in confidence and not disclosed to any third parties, sold, or
used for anything other than FDP Forum registration unless you specifically authorize disclosure.

Furtkamp.com 
Internet Application Development

Copyright © 1999-2017 Fender Discussion Page, LLC   All Rights Reserved