Installing the Rose

Before I installed the Rose, I first thinned the soundboard a bit in the recommended areas. This was nothing more than using a small violin plane (wicked sharp as we say here!) to taper some of the bass region and the treble region down from 1/8″ to 3/32″.

Thinning the Soundbaord

Thinning the Soundboard

The last major thing to do before installing the soundboard permanently is to complete the gilding of the Rose and glue it in. Seemingly pretty simple. The gilding process, using faux metal leaf which has a remarkably wonderful appearance at a very small fraction of the cost of gold leaf is quite straightforward, but requires patience and waiting for coats to dry.

All parts being gilded get about 4 coats of Gesso, then 1-2 coats of red base (aka bole), then adhesive size, followed by laying down the leaf. Small gaps, especially on something like the rose’s sculpted surface require extra coatings of size and filling in small bits of leaf. The leaf is then rubbed down with the tissue that holds the sheets of leaf.  Finally a sealer is added to the entire surface, which goes on milky but dries crystal clear.

Now that this is complete it is time to start prepping for the soundboard installation.

About npcarey

Amateur Luthier, woodworker, music enthusiast, software enthusiast
This entry was posted in Harpsichord, Lutherie, Woodworking. Bookmark the permalink.

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