Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Cutting Corners: Reshaping the Corner Blocks

After gluing in my new set of corner blocks, I trimmed them down with my new corner gouge. The corner gouge for violin making is unique in that the bevel of the blade is on the inside curve instead of the outside. It's trickier to sharpen, but is really an invaluable tool for this step in the process. I thought I could get by without one, but I'm so glad to have welcomed this tool to my collection.

I decided to work on this in the well-lit kitchen instead of in the garage on the workbench (which is covered with car-fixing stuff) and decided to try using a super-giant cutting board to do my gouging. I laid everything out on the floor with this cardboard under the mold to save this pristine cutting board from getting too scarred.

I'm going to remember this cutting board trick. Violins are so small that you could really get quite a lot done on a cutting board if you don't have a workbench handy or just want to work in a new space as a change of pace.

Once the corners are cut down pretty close to the lines on both sides (drawing lines on the top and bottom of the blocks keeps you perpendicular), you can use a file to smooth out the surface. After that, no need to scrape or use sandpaper--the filed surface is just fine (and perhaps better than a slick, smooth surface) as a contact surface to which you'll glue the ribs. 

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