3/4 Scale Brian May Red Special Project Part 8: Neck CNC Cut

When I had finalised the neck design in TurboCAD, I contacted Cut CNC in Uxbridge, Middlesex, U.K. again to obtain a quote for cutting the neck. I then sent away the mahogany neck blank (815 long x 100 wide x 55 mm thick) and received the finished product a short while later on 27 September 2013. The image gallery below illustrates the neck as it came back from Cut CNC. I had designed in tuner holes so that I wouldn’t have to drill them myself but with the benefit of hindsight, this was a mistake because it probably increased the complexity and thus the cost of the cut and they turned out slightly oval and thus needed to be manually drilled in any case.

The next stage was to manually smooth the edges in the transition pieces using 120 grit abrasive paper and thus blend in the shape. The results are illustrated in the next image gallery:

The final job was to drill through holes and rebates for the four retaining bolts. I decided to replicate the bolt arrangement on the original guitar and reuse the threaded inserts. I did this by clamping the body and neck together securely, overlaying a paper template of the heel, marking the centres and finally drilling the holes using my drill press. I replaced the original bolts with decorative polished stainless steel versions from Pro Bolt in the U.K. who stock a wide range of high quality bolts in aluminium, stainless steel and titanium primarily for motorcycle engineering and cosmetic upgrades.

Next article:
Part 9: Installing the Tremolo Fulcrum Plate
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Part 7: Test assembly