Beginning assembly

Once all the various parts of the guitar are completed, it's time to start assembling them. 

First, a step is cut in the heel block to accommodate the thickness of the soundboard, which will be flush with the face of the neck when glued together.

The joint between the neck and soundboard is very important, not so much for structural reasons, but to establish the center line of the guitar.  I use a Plexiglass template and several locator pins to make sure the joint is perfectly aligned.

I sand the sides to rough thickness on the drum sander, then scrape to optimal flexibility for bending.  They usually end up around 1.9-2.0 mm with Padauk.

Using a bending iron and liberal spritzes of water to bend the sides.

The ends are trimmed and the sides are fitted into a shallow outside mold, clamped onto the workboard.

The tail block, with its slight radius, is glued using cauls.