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How To Trim A Saddle?


Fellow
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Hi all,

First time I try to trim a saddle. One junk violin that I bought has no saddle on it.

So I got a piece of ready made saddle from luthiery supply but it is too big. Some trimings are necessary

I put it on a vise and use a jewry saw to cut it. As I cutting it I use a prier to hold it ( on the vise already).

It seems that it takes forever to trim it down. Is there a better way? Please advise. Thank you.

post-5682-1271601229.jpg

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I flatten the bottom surface and stick it with a layer of paper and hide glue to the end of a piece of wood thats been trimmed to the size I want. You can then stick the wood in the vice and shape easily. I have a couple of boxwood sticks that are the right width, depth and curve at the back. All you can't do is the undercurve of the belly edge.

I only do saddles this way, don't bother with nuts.

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I cut it to length (saw, using bench hook, but the vise is OK), plane to height, flatten the bottom and aquare up the hidden inside edge that glues against the top end grain, plane the bevel on the front, trim the ramps at either end with a knife(everything up to here while holding it in my hand, except the first step). Then I glue it in place, and finish the rest it while it's in. If you think you will mess up the violin that way, you can wrap the edge and rib with drafting tape, additionally de-fanged with nose grease if it's too sticky and you're worried about varnish.

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I cut it to length (saw, using bench hook, but the vise is OK), plane to height, flatten the bottom and aquare up the hidden inside edge that glues against the top end grain, plane the bevel on the front, trim the ramps at either end with a knife(everything up to here while holding it in my hand, except the first step). Then I glue it in place, and finish the rest it while it's in. If you think you will mess up the violin that way, you can wrap the edge and rib with drafting tape, additionally de-fanged with nose grease if it's too sticky and you're worried about varnish.

Yuen, if the above sounds a bit long-winded, try an axe.

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I use a 5" powered bench disc sander. It's fast and you can do a very precise job with it.

+++++++++++++

That is my problem. The only power tools I have are an electric drill and a Dremel 100.

The vacuum cleaner does not count. (I used to have a whole garage of power tools in my younger days)

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Sawzall.jpg

This ought to do it...

++++++++++++

Stradofear was right. ( I was not thinking right.)

Just a knife will do. Why I thought it was a big job? Are you like me, thinking big or kidding me? Bill Yacey :)

I used to fix my own diesel car without problem. Now a little saddle of a violin became a problem for me.

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++++++++++++

Stradofear was right. ( I was not thinking right.)

Just a knife will do. Why I thought it was a big job? Are you like me, thinking big or kidding me? Bill Yacey :)

I used to fix my own diesel car without problem. Now a little saddle of a violin became a problem for me.

I'm just kidding Yuen, It would be silly to be trimming a nut with such a device. This is made more for cutting the string grooves in the nut. :)
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Well, I use a 6x48 belt sander to do work as fine as taking .001 inches off a piece of ebony to make a slide liner for a bow frog.

I also use it to thin down bridges and put bevels on their edges. I'm pretty fearless about using big power tools for fine work,

but I have a lot of experience with them and have learned how to use them gently. They CAN tear up a workpiece in a hurry,

but they can also be used for fine work with a gentle touch.

If I didn't have any power tools, I'd never be an instrument builder of any kind. I really mean that. Power tools allow me to

do stock removal work quickly enough that I can keep my ADD-affflicted attention span on the workpiece long enough to finish it.

However, as I'm getting older and wiser and learning more, I'm also learning just how good and fast some really good quality hand

tools are, when used properly. The more I use good planes, the more I love them. The more I use good chisels and gouges,

the more I appreciate them. But for heavy stock removal, power tools reign supreme in my garage workshop. No hand tool

ever made can even come within miles of the stock removal ability of a chainsaw disc on a 14,000 RPM angle grinder. Cello backs,

rough carved in half an hour. Violin backs in five minutes. But make a mistake and it's firewood right now.

Chris

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