This type of neck construction is primarily utilized for the higher end classical guitars. It is a useful method for acoustic guitars too, but not as prevalent as the Laminated Neck and Headstock Method.
The purpose of a laminated neck without the headstock is strictly for structural reasons – and for some of the Classical Guitars, it is for traditional purposes too.
In The Classical Tradition:
Usually the upper priced classical will have a laminated neck consisting of, 2 pieces of Cuban Mahogany with a center reinforcement strip of Ebony. See our article on Guitar Neck Wood Selection for tips on cutting and matching your wood and wood species selection.
Tools and Materials:
Let’s Get Started:
I am assuming that you have read or are familiar with Preparing The Neck Scarf Joint. If not, you should read it and understand the proper steps in cutting this most import of joints for the Guitar neck. Adjust accordingly for Classical Guitar Head-stocks as their angle and thickness varies from that talked about in the above article. Refer to the Guitar Plans for this information.
Rip Neck Woods To Proper Width:
Decide on the center strip options. In building a classical guitar neck, consider a 5/16″ to 3/8″ wide strip of Ebony. This can be cut from a spare Ebony Fingerboard or a fingerboard scrap. Cut all the lumber to the proper widths and prepare all gluing surfaces to be extra smooth. Double check the neck width as it should be at least 3″ to match the headstock width. Make sure all pieces are the same thickness as well to facilitate proper gluing.
Neck Stock Gluing:
Place a sheet of waxed paper beneath the neck wood. Glue the pieces together by spreading Titebond on all gluing surfaces. Spread the glue with a finger or a small straight piece of Maple veneer. Slide the pieces back and forth until resistance is felt. Lightly clamp (4) steel C clamps at or Bessey Clamps equal points along the neck wood. Lightly tap the wood from the top so set the wood flat on the work surface. Now give the clamps a few more turns and tap to flatten once again. By this time there should be minimal movement of the glued surface and you can crank down pretty hard on the (4) clamps. Set aside to dry overnight.
Trim Prior to Gluing the Scarf Joint:
Once the glue has dried, run the neck blank through a planer or drum sander to complete level both faces. Trim the laminated wood(s) flush to the scarf joint. Trim both sides of the neck blank to exactly match the width of the uncut headstock. This will make the gluing of the headstock much easier in our next step.