The mandolin has is really getting close to finished. There’s still foam, the bottom half’s copper edging, and I imagine something or other will come up to surprise me, but it’s really coming along now.
I know the outside looked mostly finished last time, but that’s because I was finishing up that part first, for reasons… eh, it made sense at the time. XD Also, I was afraid of bumping corner edges off treated wood, so I wanted to get that dealt with. But there was still a lot of work left on the inside. Three main tasks!
First, I wanted to put in a divider to make a little storage box inside the case. My zouk case has one of these and it’s really handy. The divider wall also serves as another level of reinforcement inside the case.
Note the added superfloor (quarter-inch ply cut and sanded to fit around the braces) inside the storage compartment, and the front and back panels added to help support the wall. If the back and front main panels had been thicker, and had the front latch not been in the way, I could’ve routed out channels directly in to them. That would probably have been more elegant.
The opposite side of the wall got the same treatment. It’s less important here since there’ll be foam to support the wall as well, but that struck me as inadequate, so:
Second, routing out the front panels for the latches left the wood there rather thin. While the latches themselves provide some structural support, I decided to address that internally as well. Here’s a piece of ply cut to back the lower latch points, clamped into place. It has holes drilled in it for the latch securement bolts, which stick out through the back. It also serves as support for the storage compartment divider wall, which you can see at the bottom of the photo:
Front Panel Reenforcement (click here for detail)
Note also that it rises above the front panel. That’s on purpose – the handle will be on the front panel, and will tend to pull the front panel forward. If that happens, this glued reenforcement will transfer some of that weight to the lid’s front panel.
Third, I wanted to add either lips or pegs (I ended up going with lips) to help keep the top and bottom of the case lined up when the lid is closed. The hinge does this, of course, but that can be a lot of stress to place on one component. Also, as above, I need to transfer some of the stress from the front handle across the entire front of the case, including the lid panel, for maximum strength. But I already showed pictures of that.
The other three lips are in the lid. They’re small pieces of wood; one on each side, and one on the back, all interior. The back one also serves as hinge reenforcement.
The large arcing thing made out of two strips of ply and held together with a floating C-clamp together make up a spring clamp. This provides outward pressure against the bottoms of both the left and right lips. The tops of the left and right lips are held down with edge clamps. You can also see, not clamped, the reenforcement strip glued down a previous day and shown above. Note the holes for bolts!
Also here’s the back lip, in clamps. If you’re wondering about all those extra bits of wood, that’s just to protect the finish:
Take off all the clamps and hit everything on the inside with an ocean of wood hardner (heh heh “wood hardener”) and you get this:
The divider, all the divider supports, and the lip are all visible here of course. The storage compartment on the right is wide enough, barely, for CD jewel cases! Except where the metal parts are. I’ll line the compartment with fabric later, to prevent them from scratching anything up.
Oh, I guess I left the spring clamp in for this photo. Anyway, here’s the lid. In the lower centre of the picture, you can get a pretty good look at one of the two side lips.
And that’s that! Right now I’m letting the wood hardener dry and giving the glue some extra time. Next Monday hopefully I can do final assembly of the hinge and stuff, and then maybe it’ll be time to talk foam.