The bridge starts out as a block of African Ebony. I use a template that I created a while back to trace out the overall shape, and placement for the pin holes. The next step is cutting out the final shape on the bandsaw.

The bottom of the bridge needs to have the same radiused curve as the guitar top. This will ensure that the surfaces maintain good contact after glueing. I like to give my guitars a 50' radius top and a 12' radius back. This is a common practice that makes the top and back stronger, and more resistant to cracking. For the bridge, I made a sanding block with a radiused top and applied adhesive sandpaper to it so I can sand the curve onto the underside of the bridge.

The next step is drilling out the pin holes, followed by lots of sanding and smoothing to create the final shape.

Once the bridge was finished I moved on to installing the binding and purflings. I routed the channels around the top and bottom edges, and bent the binding and purflings in my side bending machine. After the bending was complete I taped the binding to the body so I could cut the ends to meet up so that they would look like a seamless loop. Once everything was ready I taped it all in place and applied the glue.

After the glue was dry and the tape was removed I worked on sanding and scraping the bindings down flush with the sides, top, and back.

Just a little more work and the body will be ready for lacquer.

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