Hey there folks,
So, when it’s time for the top and back to finally unite in the construction of our Boulder Creek USA-Series guitars, it’s a pretty big moment, you know? We’ve put a lot of effort into carefully selecting the best wood, getting it prepped just right, and shaping and bending those sides with utmost care. The back has already been bookmatched, sanded, and had the braces, neck block, and tail block installed. So, it’s finally the moment we’ve been waiting for, but the question is, how do we bring these pieces together in the best possible way?
Now, some mass-production factories might use vacuum systems or large hydraulic presses to make this process quick and easy for a bunch of guitars, but we’re not about that here at Boulder Creek. We strive for the best possible joining and the highest quality outcome in this new relationship between top and back. That’s why we swear by the traditional “Go-bar deck” method for this crucial step in the process.
You might be wondering, what the heck is a “Go-bar deck”? Well, it’s an age-old technique used to glue up the tops and backs of acoustic instruments like violins, mandolins, and guitars to their bent and shaped sides. It’s not some mass-production gimmick; it’s a tried-and-true Old World approach that gives our skilled luthiers the fine control and finesse they need to create the perfect bond between back and sides.
Here’s how it works: The Go-bar deck has a sturdy base tabletop with a “canopy” shelf attached by four vertical support corner posts. This canopy sits at a higher level than the base, creating space to place the top and side together on the table. We then place a flexible dowel or rod in between the back-and-side assembly on the bottom stationary table and the parallel top shelf. This creates spring-back pressure that presses against the gluing surface of the back, holding it tightly against the side in the perfect gluing position. This essentially acts as a pressure clamp, ensuring the two surfaces are firmly joined, allowing the glue to dry and form the strongest possible joint.
In the case of this rosewood OM USA-model, you can see it right there in the Go-bar deck, with the back clamped in place and the glue setting nicely.
So, there you have it – the magic behind how we bring our Boulder Creek USA-Series guitars together with precision and care. It may not be the quickest method, but it sure gives us the best results, and that’s what we’re all about. Rock on! 🎸