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Julie Mo

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About Julie Mo

  • Birthday 04/26/1951

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  • Location
    Charlotte County Florida
  • Interests
    Woodworking, guitar building, sailing, golf

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  1. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    I'm always amazed at how many people think nothing of working in the canal waters. And every year there's a mile swim across where the river and bay meet. No one has been eaten yet. But what sticks in my head was the time we went to look at a house, just to do a drive by. When we stopped in front of the house, the man next door comes over and raps on our window. I roll down the window and he says, "You wanna see the house?" I told him we were in the market but would contact a realtor if we were serious. He says, "I'll show you." And with that he returns to his house to get a key. When he comes back we're standing outside waiting for him. He's wearing a sleeveless T-shirt and I see a large tattoo on arm of a boxer posing for a fight. Under the boxer is the words, "Let's get started." He's about 70 years old. There are two brand new Cadillacs in his garage. Images of a mob hit man float in my mind. While showing the house, we walk out back to look at the dock. He points across the canal and says, "I have a friend who lives over there. I swim over when I want to see him." I asked about alligators in the canal. He looks at me and says, "They don't bother me." I think I know why.
  2. Wood Allergies

    Sapele is in the Entandrophragma and I've never had any kind of reaction with sapele. And I've worked with a lot of it. It is possible this isn't even sipo. The place I got it from has a mill in South America. They are primarily a wood flooring company and the owner got into slab wood, live edge stuff. They have a fairly small stock of hardwoods. Whatever it is, my respiratory system doesn't like it. But I still have a fair amount of it left. I'll have to hermetically seal myself and do a thorough wash down afterward.
  3. Wood Allergies

    Have you ever encountered a wood that you are so allergic to even a respirator won't save you? I have. Sipo, or the scientific name - Entandrophragma utile. Yesterday, while wearing one of these and with a MERV 13 filter running, I was sanding guitar sides made from sipo. All total I worked maybe 45 minutes sanding. Part of that was spent using a Festool RO sander attached to a Festool HEPA vac. The only time I spent in the workshop without the respirator was walking in to put it on and walking out after taking it off. By evening I could barely breathe and my lungs rattled like a bronchial infection patient.
  4. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    There's a river that feeds into the bay the canals connect to. Some say the river makes the water brackish but it's salty enough for dolphins and rays to come into the canals to feed. There have been some reports of alligators in the canals and I've heard pictures prove it but I haven't seen them. The problem for alligators who stray into the canals is there is nowhere to get out of the water. The seawalls are too high. But there are times when the tides will rise up over our dock. A smart gator hunting humanoids would do well to show up during high tide and sample a tasty morsel of a humanoid sitting on the dock, sipping on an umbrella drink.
  5. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    We live on a canal. A few days ago there was something moving around in the water. It looked like it had one eye right at the surface. I don't think it was a snake because there was no tail trail in the water. Neighbors have said they have seen the same thing. No one knows what it is. Pretty much everyone here who keeps their boat in the water pays a diver to clean the bottom about once a month. Guys replacing the seawalls are in the water all the time. Dolphins, manatees and rays - no problem. But the one-eyed monster...
  6. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    A girlfriend of mine went to get in her car to go to work. Sitting right under the door was a snake. So she went to the other side, opened the door, slid over to the driver's side and drove to work. When she went out to lunch, there was the snake, sitting right under her door. Mind you, she drove over 20 miles to work. A guy from work heard her freaking out and came over to shoo it away. It stuck it's head up and slithered somewhere under the car. Going out for lunch was cancelled. After work she went out to her car and sure enough, there was the snake, waiting for her, under the driver's door. The same guy was there and this time he swiped a stick quickly under the car and flicked the snake away. Before it could slither back, my girlfriend hopped in her car and burned some rubber. In the paper the next day there was a picture of a snake coming out of a car vent (different snake). There's a lot of snakes here.
  7. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    I'm leaning toward curly maple and using the fumed mahogany for purfling. Maybe see if the blonde mahogany fits into the scheme. Right now I'm working on a curly maple headstock veneer. I'm going to see if incorporating the fumed and blonde mahogany in with that works.
  8. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    Not by my estimation! I can pick and putz but I'd say I'm pretty awful. What attracted me to building guitars is no matter how well I can make them, no matter how visually appealing they may be, the music that comes from them far outshines anything I can create - as long as the player can play!
  9. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    Well, I'm certainly learning a lot. Although I have built 6 electrical guitars, I had no idea of all that goes into the soundbox (body) of an acoustic guitar and how it affects the sound. I used to think sustain was a necessary element in all guitars but I learned someone who plays the guitar hard doesn't want much sustain because the notes would clash. They want notes to die quickly. Some luthiers talk about choosing certain woods for certain players, even specific customers, and then customizing the bracing and everything else for that particular player. WHEW! All I want to do is hear something musical.
  10. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    I've been working on the end piece and have two possibilities. This one uses black/white/black plastic as trim for the curly maple This one replaces the plastic with mahogany veneer fumed/blonde/fumed. The blonde is .75mm and the fumed is .5mm. I put on some mineral spirits to highlight the woods. I'm leaning toward the all wood version...
  11. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    Besides sustain, which may or may not be a desirable quality (depends on the player), and structural strength, the braces also affect the sound the guitar produces. You can carve the braces to get more bass or more treble. You can highlight certain notes. One luthier compared the braces to marimba bars, which helped me to understand what we're trying to do here. For me, this being my first, all I tried to do was get some resonance out of the soundboard before gluing it to anything. I wanted to hear something musical and avoid dead spots. Holding the thick brace that's above the soundhole, I would place the soundboard close to my ear and tap a finger on the opposite side. You actually hear the plate resonate. I did that all over and if anything sounded dead, I'd use those violin planes to carve the braces. It's a dance where you want to get the most musical sound without weakening the top to the point it will fail, usually a few years down the road. This process of tuning the soundboard starts with choosing the wood. I've read of experienced luthiers going through dozens of top halves looking for the perfect pair. I had four to choose from. But, now that it's together, it produces sound. Which is a good thing.
  12. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    Today I finished the inside of the maiden acoustic guitar. Tomorrow the bottom goes on and it will be too late if I missed something.
  13. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    The doctor called today with the results of my blood test. Results were so good I ran the the cookie jar and grabbed the biggest chocolate chip cookie I could find.
  14. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    Today I looked at the hull of my model, now sitting high on a shelf in the workshop closet. I asked myself if I thought I'd ever finish it. The answer was, "If I finish it, where will I put it?" From keel to top of mast, it's almost 5' tall. Then I heard the voice in my brain ask, "And who is going to dust it?" Then I went to the kitchen and ate a donut. Problem solved.
  15. The "What have you done today?" thread.

    Not me. Brian. I can't forget. I am constantly reminded of things that showed up at the front door.

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