Neck and bridge

The neck is made from a single piece of mahogany. Unfortunately I do not have a photo of the plain neck:

The holes in the head look oversized but that was needed for the tuners I have to construct as well!

An old piano served as my supplier for ebony. One of my neighbors wanted to get rid of his old piano, so I could use the black piano keys which were made of real solid ebony! By gluing several keys together I was able to create a larger piece of ebony. From that piece I cut the ebony fingerboard, with a thickness of 1 mm.

The slots for the frets were done with a jigsaw, each positioned at the correct distance on the fingerboard...

The position markers were done by drilling a hole in the fingerboard and filling it with a white colored glue ('epoxy'). When I thought I was finished with the markers I realized I had forgotten one. I did that one later.

The frets are made from high-melting solder wire and glued into the fingerboard. The slanted block was needed to keep the frets in place during gluing:


I kept the neck-body connection simple. A complex dovetail connection makes little sense here, so I opted for a flat connection which could easily be glued together:


The nut is made of real ivory, a left over from a previous project. Working with real ivory fascinates me, so I used it instead of bone. The nut looks a little too high but this will be corrected when attaching the strings:


The next step is the making of the bridge. To get an idea of how much work was involved: it took me 6 hours to make them. Once again I used the ebony from the piano keys. The holes are 1 mm. The saddle is also made of real ivory. It is 0.8 mm thick. Here you see the result, together with a real bridge pin:

The piano key and the bridge:


The bridge pins.

I had the idea to fabricate them from white plastic, but it appeared to be too soft. So I opted for true bone instead. The photo below shows the bone from which I cut the pieces:


A real bridge pin together with my miniature version:


I brought the pieces of bone into shape using a lathe. Then I drilled a hole of 0.8 mm and filled it up with black coloured resin (‘epoxy’). Here you see the end result:

Bone is a very strong material, hardly bends, and so very suitable for small dimensions.