Ukulele (or guitar) Scarf Joints

Ukulele discussions
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Bob Gleason
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2012 1:45 pm

Ukulele (or guitar) Scarf Joints

Post by Bob Gleason »

First of all, thanks to Charlie and the MIMF for adding an ukulele section to the board index. Worth a try. Hopefully we'll get interest.I make a few guitars, but mostly ukes. These days I have the time to improve some of my jigs. Here is one I re-made in the last few days for cutting headstock scarf joints. I have a 12" chop saw, but I think a 10" would work. The 2 x 4 is screwed and glued at 90 degrees to the normal 90 degree cut position of the blade. The clamps are left over from some project I never finished. Available on Amazon. By flipping the jig around and swinging the blade to the desired degrees, I can cut 14 degree flat heads or 8 degree slot heads. Often still takes a couple of passes with a sharp handplane, but the cut is very close. A sharp blade is important. If you have a sliding chop saw like mine, don't forget to set the stop so that the carriage can't grab and jump out.

Tom Snape
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2012 5:51 pm

Re: Ukulele (or guitar) Scarf Joints

Post by Tom Snape »

I cut scarf joints on my bandsaw using a sled that rides in the slot in the table. The first version was just a chunk of angle iron fastened to a piece of keystock. I had holes set up for 12° and 15°. The problem was that the legs of the angle were not exactly square to each other, so I ended up having to shim the blank. You can see the light colored shim at the top of the blank in the photo. Also it was possible to rock the sled a little, making a less than perfect cut.

I made another sled from good quality plywood, and made sure that the fence that the blank clamps to is square to the base. This works well. It also has a piece of keystock fastened to the bottom that is good fit to the slot in the table. I only cut 15° scarf joints with this one. A little clean up with a plane and it's ready for glue.

Carl Dickinson
Posts: 78
Joined: Fri Feb 08, 2019 5:38 pm
Location: Forest Ranch, California

Re: Ukulele (or guitar) Scarf Joints

Post by Carl Dickinson »

Here's a quick, simple way to cut the joint that I've used on the last couple of guitar necks I've made. Clamps hold the neck blank to the fence and taper jig. I used an 80 tooth blade. The blade is lowered all the way to set up the cut, then crank it up into the neck blank. Tweak the blade angle until you get an absolute 90 degrees on the blank (or scrap). After a clean cut, I've needed no adjustment before gluing.

Paul Montgomery
Posts: 47
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2018 9:09 pm

Re: Ukulele (or guitar) Scarf Joints

Post by Paul Montgomery »

I've had different jigs and methods to do scarph joints. My latest does so much more. It wasn't hard to make, didn't take long, makes me wonder why I didn't do it sooner.

Tyra Noah

Re: Ukulele (or guitar) Scarf Joints

Post by Tyra Noah »

The way you do it makes it seem so simple.
I will try and follow along with your instructions.
Thanks. :D :D

Ed Minch
Posts: 34
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2017 1:59 pm

Re: Ukulele (or guitar) Scarf Joints

Post by Ed Minch »

I enjoy hand tools, and the neck scarf joint is one of the most fun jobs - especially on a uke which only takes a minute or two ... 488198220/

Ed M

Matthew Lau
Posts: 533
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2012 2:03 am

Re: Ukulele (or guitar) Scarf Joints

Post by Matthew Lau »

Hey Paul,

Just saying thanks for sharing that.

I may have to make one also.


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