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I am always on the lookout for a new or different tool or method, and the cheaper the better. Here are some items that I've found lately that worked out well.

My wife uses false finger nails, and part of the kit are these great little sanding boards; stiff foam with fine and finer grits. I guess around 220 and 300 maybe. Work great for sanding carved tops, neck angles, etc. Check with the wife, girlfriend, sister, etc.

Another item found at the big box store, is double-sided masking tape. I believe this was Duck brand, and it's incredibly cheap, and holds very well. I loosen it with the old standby, naptha dripped under the template. I was having trouble with the other stuff being very thin, but this is a little thicker and conforms to tiny irregularities. 

Last item is a cheapie nail file. I believe these are diamond coated, as they stay sharp a long time, but cost only about a buck or less. 

Thanks to Frank's site for the inspiration to look for new uses for old or free stuff. I'm always picking up old knives for other uses. Cheers.

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Here's one trick for literally zero money spent. The traditional fret benders can be used for work-hardenind fretwire. Instead of just running the wire through, hold your free hand where the wire exits and hold it straight as it passes through. This in essence bends the wire to the desired radius just for a brief period while it is trapped between the two bearings, but when it exits you hold it down and force it to straighten out again slightly (to a flatter radius). Very fast and can be done indefinitely. But beware, I managed to workharden a Jescar wire to the point it was springing back. I do up to five hardening runs at most now, then put a radius to the wire as usually. Doing it this way you eliminate the hassles of holding the wire and bending it by hand.

I like to use Micro Mesh for a range of jobs. Its useful for getting out scratches in metal work, plastic, polishing frets and for giving Tru Oil a high gloss finish. I use it a lot both wet and dry. The biggest problem is that it tends to get clogged even when wet. Today I took some old and grubby pieces and put them in the washing machine. Hey presto twenty minutes later clean and very usable micro mesh. - I did wait until 'erindoors went out.

I've attached a bunch of these cheap towel holders to the bench so I've always got my various cloths to hand.

I find the containers that some glues come in get clogged all too quickly and you end up spending twenty minutes with a bradle and a knife trying to coax the blessed stuff out of the tube. This is often the case with wood glues and PVA. I now put these glues in the squeezy canisters that ketchup, sauce or mayonnaise comes in. I've been using them for two years now and they have never clogged, nor has the glue gone off in the pot.  I wouldn't use the squeezy Marmite pots as getting the sell of Marmite tends to linger and makes the glue a trifle festy. 

Steve

I just want to pass on this tool I love so much. It is an adjunct to the pallett knife as recomended by Frank Ford and others.
I had a japanese style flush cutting thin blade saw I picked up some where and it was dull, rusty( of course, this is Hawaii)
etc. So I took a pair of aviation tin snips to it and cut off the toothed edges, filed and sanded it and polished it etc. The blade is .015 inch thick, very flexible!
Being a good 6 inches long and with a long handle as well , I can reach loose braces back inside the guitar. Comes into
play in a variety of situations.
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frankenstien: a friend who has a cabinet shop gave me a rigid radial arm saw that he smoked the motor in, cant get a new motor, so it sat taking up valueable realestate  in my shop for about a year. then i got a brain storm. after some hacking, i installed a router were the moter was. but i didn't stop there, i had all that table space, so then i mounted another router in the right side of the table, but i didn't stop there, on the left side i took a belt sander layed on its side, i cut off the forward handle, and the plastic case that covered the front wheel, then bolted a 3/4 board that fit in the fence slot to hold it in place. now i have a work station were i can do most off my opperations it works great.

Thought I'd share this photo of my knob height setter...

I put a neodym supermagnet in the metal holder for the screwdrivers. Makes them magnetic too and it's easy to mount the screws for the tuners.

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