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Message started by Acabooe on Aug 2nd, 2008 at 9:28pm

Title: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by Acabooe on Aug 2nd, 2008 at 9:28pm
Well today was my first day at Hana Lima.


Mike Chock is so intelligent and wise about building, it is scary.
Both he and Asa are very friendly.

For those that have been, you may want to ignore the rest of this post, for those that haven't, read on.

I started the class today with just me and one other lady named Sharon. We introduced our selves all around and then it was down to business.

Mike gave us a demonstration of sound by using different ukes. One was just a stick with a nut, saddle, strings and tuners basically. Then there were some with plexi tops and or back etc.
The sound kept getting more and more loud and clear as he progressed with each demonstration.

Later we selected our woods that we are going to use. I choose western red cedar for the top, bubinga back and sides, and a mahogany neck.

We then proceded to cut out our plans, and poke holes through it with a scratch awl. Next it was time to joint up the plates. After that was done, then we worked on the sides. Picking out what parts we wanted to show and then taping them together, and marking them. After that it was time to work on the necks. We took off the tape, and looked at what we had. then we started gluing the heel blocks together. Mike used the chop saw and cut both of our scarf joints for us, and the we went back into the air conditioned part of the shop to glue those up. While that was gluing, we took the plates out of the gluing jigs, and started marking the outlines. Then it was off to the band saw to cut them out. Things were going ok, but when I was cutting out my back board, the band saw blade snapped. I felt bad, but mike just said don't worry, they can only last for so long. I was relived after that. We changed the blade, and off we went again. after the plates were cut, that was pretty much it. We were given our sanding home work, and we broke the gluing blocks down, and we were allowed to take our kits Home. I had so much fun, & can't wait for next weekend.


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by konacat on Aug 12th, 2008 at 11:38am

Week 2?


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by Acabooe on Aug 13th, 2008 at 7:22am
Week 2 was just a wonderful as the first.

Since I had the Hana Lima book, I knew what to expect, and I had already drawn the outlines on my plates ahead of time. That put me about 10 min ahead in the 2nd class.

We used the go bar deck alot during that class. We installed all of our bracing, tone bars, and patches on the sound board, and back board.
We also got our heel blocks marked and glued on to the neck.

As before, Mike spent alot of time teaching us the "Why" of things in addition to the "How" and I was loving every second of it.

in the time that I was at Hana Lima last saturday, I saw 3 men talking to Mike ( at different times ) and I am pretty sure that all 3 of them signed up for the winter class. If there is any one that is interested in the class, but not sure about committing, I would sign up now because the class is already half full.

The class ended with Mike giving Sharon ( my only other classmate ) and I our homework, which was to scallop all of the bracings and tone bars on the soundboard. After class, Mike took the time to sit down wih me for about 10 min and discuss ideas for a new Ukulele that I am working on at home. He and I kicked around ideas on how to make my design better, and more functional ( more on that at another time. ) I really appreciate that he takes the time to make sure that we understand and I like his openess to new ideas.

Thats all for now.
More updates to come.


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by konacat on Aug 13th, 2008 at 12:43pm

Sounds great! With only two students and the 10 week class you have the opportunity for very detailed instruction.  ;DMike is really a great guy and is more than willing to respond to any questions and having the time to pick his brain would be great.

If you haven’t carved the bracing yet I have a thought to add. You can carve your braces in the shape of an upside down V or an upside down U and decrease mass but keep about the same strength.

See my next post since I couldn't get it all on one reply. :-[


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by konacat on Aug 13th, 2008 at 12:48pm
Always be careful with you decrease the height of wood. There is a Cube rule when measuring stiffness of wood. Imagine a brace ¼” wide and ¼”  tall.  it will have a certain degree of stiffness. If you made the same brace ½” wide and ¼” tall the brace would be twice as stiff. However, if you made the brace ¼” wide and ½” tall the same brace would now be 3 times as stiff. So double the width and you double the stiffness but double the height and you triple the stiffness. This is an important point when decreasing the height of wood regardless if it is a brace or a top or whatever. There is a greater impact on wood when decreasing the height!

On of my cohorts from the OLF posted some remarks and a chart that I would like to share as an example of how this cube rule works. Andy Zimmerman shared some date he has recorded during deflection testing of a top. Please NOTE that these figures represent Andy’s individual method of deflection testing with a particular piece of wood and as such are not a map to build by.
Just a bit thinner on a top make such a difference...That cube rule.
Since I measure top deflections you really see it numerically with the dial indicator.   This was never that clear until I started measuring. Just one more pass, and ......WOOOOPS!!!!!!!!!

Here is some data from my collection on one of my guitars
Lutz L-OO 64     0.153
Lutz L-OO 75     0.143
Lutz L-OO 120     0.127
Lutz L-OO 169     0.11
Lutz L-OO 241     0.096
Lutz L-OO 275     0.091
Lutz L-OO 290     0.087
Lutz L-OO 330     0.083

The 1st number is the degree of deflection and the 2nd is top thickness. See how quickly the top loses stiffness with slight changes is thickness.

I just thought that some of you might be interested in this information.  Thanks for sharing Andy!

Have fun and keep us posted. Photos are ok too.  [smiley=thumbsup.gif]


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by Acabooe on Aug 13th, 2008 at 9:48pm
Hey Philip,

Thanks for that info.
I had no idea that chaanging the size/ dimentions of a piece change the stiffness, and other aspects so quickly.

Incidentily I have already shaped, glued, and scalloped my bracings.
I made them the shape of an upside down "U".

Yeah, Mike and Asa are great, and I am excited to learn everything that i possibily can from them.

I will post photos, but not yet.
Maybe after a few more classes when i have some real progress to show.

Thanks again, and I'll keep everyone posted.


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by Acabooe on Aug 16th, 2008 at 8:22pm
Well, today was my third class at Hana Lima Ia.

We started the class with mike inspectig our homework from over the week ( scalloping soundboard braces ). Then we moved on to triming the braces to about 1/8" inside the Ukulele outline with a razor saw.
After that was pau, it was time to move on the the neck.
First we used the radial arm saw to cut the heel slots that our sides will eventualy go into. Next Mike took our necks, and cut the profile, and the inside heel area with the big band saw. Because of the depth of the blade, the saw couldn't make tight turns, so we were then instructed to take the necks over the and ocilating sander ( I think that is what it is called) and sand off the rest.
Then came the nibbiling jig to reduce heel mass.
After that, it was back inside to the table and a short demonstration about heel carving with a chisel, file, micro plane, and sand paper.
Sharon and I then set to work shaping our heels with the above mentioned tools. Things were going alright, untill I started using the micro plane. It cuts so fast, that I didn't realise until it was too late, that I had cut off some of the top mounting surface of the neck. Mike says that it may be close, but he thinks that I can still continue on as normal. I felt sad that I had messed up the neck like I did, but I learned a lesson about checking my work more often.
Mike then took his lam trimmer and cut the shelf on our necks that the sound board will attach to.

Next up we used a hand drill, brads, a caul, and glue to attach our necks to the sound boards. I took a little longer to get my neck, to body joint correct, but it worked out in the end.
While those were gluing, we moved on to the fretboards.
There was alot of measuring, and marking.
Then we put them into the fret slotting jig, and cut our slots on Mike's table saw. Some more measuring and marking and then off to cut the fretboard taper.
Then we decided marker dot location, & that was it for the day

Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by Acabooe on Aug 27th, 2008 at 8:04am
The other day was my 4th class at Hana Lima.

We started out by drilling and insaling the marker dots on to the fret boards.
After they were sanded flat, we fretted our fretboards.
Then it was time to file and bevel then, and last they were clamped to the work table and left to sit.
Next our ears were glued and clamped.
Finally we bent the sides in the benders, cut them to size, and put them in the holding forms.

This coming class will be on sunday because  mike has an appointment to go to on saturday.


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by konacat on Aug 27th, 2008 at 10:24am

Sounds like you are moving right along on your build. [smiley=thumbsup.gif]

You didn't mention any problems in bending so I will assume all went well. How did this experience compare to your previous attempt at bending?


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by Acabooe on Aug 27th, 2008 at 3:18pm
This time went alot better then the two previous times that i have bent.
So far so good.


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by Acabooe on Sep 2nd, 2008 at 9:22am
Well, the other day was my 5th Hana Lima class.

It went good, but there were some times that I got very frustrated.
What we did was to take the sides out of the mold, dry fit them, and then glue them to the sound board. I had alot of trouble getting the butt joint at the tail block to be flush. I did evenutally get it right. Then we glued in the upper and lower tentalones or kerf liners.
That was pretty much it.
Most of the class we were learning about different methods of doing things. Oh yeah, I also got my headstock veneer jointed ( koa )
We box up next week, so I am very excited about that.
I will post up some pictures once I am finished ( which is in 4 weeks )


Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by Acabooe on Sep 7th, 2008 at 8:02am
Well yesterday was my 6th class.
We attached the backboard to the body, glued the headstock veneer on, shaped and attached the fretboard, and rough cut the neck to fit the fretboard. We also drilled out the sound hole and cut and shaped the bridge.
Well, that's about it.
4 more classes and then I'm done.

Title: Re: Hana Lima Fall 08 Class
Post by Acabooe on Sep 14th, 2008 at 3:26pm
Yesterday was my sixth class, and it was alot of fun.
We spent almost the whole time shaping the neck and headstock.
I am feeling very proud of how my Ukulele is turning out, and can't wait till it is finished.
I'll put up pics when it is done.

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