Archive for the ‘Nut’ Category

Split nut – new spacer

Sunday, September 4th, 2011

I didn’t like the ebony spacer I made when I split the kit nut in two. I had used some of the ebony from the striped edging on the body. It was too thin, short and tapered towards the top. Furthermore, there was a gap between the nuts and the sides of the keychest.

So today I made a new one out of some 1/4″ rosewood, the same wood I used for the chanter selectors at the other end of the keychest. I made a tongue along the botton to fit in the narrower groove that I had cut for the ebony one. Not only is it the same wood, it has a rounded front and top like the chanter slectors for a similar appearance. And as an added bonus, the nuts now fit snugly between it and the keychest sides.


Test fit of new spacer for nuts

Keychest ends glued to side

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

Having sanded the keychest sides, it was time to glue the ends to the plain side. I had thought I’d be gluing the four pieces together all at once, but decided that trying to clamp them in their exact positions with the slippery glue would be like herding cats, and decided to do it in three steps to cut down on the potential for messes or problems.


Clamped nut base block with excess glue wiped off

Gluing the block at the back went about as expected and without complication. Gluing the front on was more difficult, though, due to its thinner and taller shape, I suppose. It turned out being slightly in front of the leading edge of the side piece instead of flush with it. So some extra sanding will be needed get all that even again. I expected to be able to align it better than that, but the wood glue seemed to set real fast. At least it is off about the same from top to bottom, and the bottom appears to be down flat.


Front glued in place with veneer pieces protecting from clamp marks

Good thing I’m doing one joint at a time. I definitely would have regretted trying it all at once.

Split nut

Sunday, January 2nd, 2011

I had a busy Christmas and New Year’s with family, but did manage to get a little work done on the instrument.

I’ve seen a lot of pictures of hurdy-gurdies that had individually adjustable nuts for the melody strings. So, I decided to try that route. I used a rough-cut piece of ebony to make the separator between the two nuts. It is part of the same batch of scrap ebony used for the black and white trim around the body that a banjo-maker friend of mine gave me, only this piece was thicker. However, it wasn’t rectangular in cross section, narrowing slightly towards one end.


Nut parts with scrap ebony for spacer

I cut a groove for the spacer in the block that goes under the nut. This mahogany block is not the one from the kit, but one Jerry and I made. I cut the original nut part in half with my scroll saw, but it didn’t come out straight at all. So it took a bunch of careful hand sanding.


Groove cut in block, completed spacer, and divided nut

I don’t know if it will be a problem that the sides of that ebony spacer are not vertical while the sides of the nuts are. Hopefuly not. I could try to angle the nut parts to match, but would rather not due to the risk of another angle getting off. And hopefully the one screw hole will be enough per piece as well.


Nut pieces in position

I put those bevels on the top edges of the ebony spacer. They are not the taper previously referred to. I probably should have rounded the top instead, and it would have looked more like the ebony nuts. Maybe I’ll make another one.
There is supposed to be a center screw through the back of the block which goes down into the head block of the body to hold the keychest in place on that end. Because of the spacer being there now, I’ll have to offset it, or more likely have  two screws.