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Routing the fretboard with Fusion360 and bCNC

Routing the fretboard with Fusion360 and bCNC

The fretboard that I’m making here comes from the drawing of my previous video. The frets are added with my FretGenerator plugin for Fusion360.

For stock I’m using a 9mm thick piece of multiplex, 90mm wide and 600 long. I’ve marked the center and screwed the piece down onto the scrapboard. The router bit is a 6mm flat bit, 25mm long and running at 24000 rpm.

The making of the board consist of 3 parts. The first is a facing process; the stock is too thick and this process takes down a few millimeters in a rough and quick way. It leaves 0.5mm extra (stock to leave) so it can be done more precise in the next process. The facing process also ‘eats’ away more on the sides than it should; that way the dreaded ‘red lines’ in Fusion do not appear. In other words; there will be no collision warnings that the stock is being hit too fast while machining.

The next process is the parallel process. This process is much more precise and creates the curvature on the fretboard itself. This takes up 18 minutes and the router goes both ways (up and down). (click the picture to see my settings in Fusion360)

Once this is done the last process cuts out the shape of the board. It leaves two tabs, one at the top and one at the bottom of the board. This holds the board in place when this process is finished.

The process of cutting the fret slots, Trace, is a new process completely. So after cleaning the machine a bit, I replaced the 6mm bit with a 0.6mm bit. While the centerposition (or zero-position) of the router remains unchanged, the Z zero position must be determined again. After moving the router to the startposition, I moved the x-axis towards the side of the stock (to be centered above 9mm stock again), nulled the Z-axis again and returned the whole machine to the startposition. Now the slotting can begin. It takes off 0.3mm per run up until it is 1.5mm down. Note to self: take off less than 0.3mm per run, it destroys the router bit…

So thats it! I’m pleased with the result; even though this piece of wood was not intended to end up on my guitar, I’m considering to use it though. I really like how the wood turned out after all!

Please have a look at the video for a visualization of it all!

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