I have been making a travel mandolin and have made more progress. After jointing and gluing the padouk boards for the back and setting it aside to dry, I laid the top on the boards, carefully lining up the joint with the centre-line of the top and drew around it in pencil to get the shape for the back.
I cut outside the line on the bandsaw to rough out the shape. Then I put the back through the thicknesser to shave it back a hair’s thickness and remove the glue line. After this I matched the top to it and held the two pieces together and sanded the back to the contour of the top so they matched exactly.
Once satisfied that they matched, I decided to give the top a single coat of shellac to seal the wood and ensure that finger marks don’t mar the finish. I used orange shellac which gave the birdseye maple a lovely rich honey colour.
The next job will be to cut the neck and end blocks and the two side blocks ready for the ribs. I have also selected the timber for the neck. More on that next time.