Pat Hawley assembling the ukulele bodyStarting with the sides bent previously
Like most guitar makers, and unlike my experiment, Pat uses an external mold to shape the body of the instrument.
Here's checking the fit of a side to determine where the ends of the side pieces need to be cut.
Clamps hold the parts in the form while the neck and tail blocks are glued in place.
The pieces of lining are shown atop of the glued and thickness-sanded pieces that will later form the front and back of the instruments.
Pat prefers to glue the back on first. This allows him to clean up any glue squeeze out on the inside before adding the front (soundboard). You can't see the back of the sound board through the sound hole, so cleaning up squeeze out there is less important.
A jig like that is very important for guitars which usually have a front and back that is slightly convex. For a ukulele with a flat front and back, a regular router or router table could also be used.
Pat also installs a strip of very hard rosewood around the edges of the instrument. A square ledge is cut around the edge to place this in. Optionally, if a strip of decorative "purfling" is added around the edge of the soundboard, another ledge is cut into the soundboard.
The router is held vertically for this operation using the same jig shown four pictures back.
"When installing bindings I tape them into place then use elastics to bring them in tight to the body. Doing this takes a little time so I use fish glue because it has a open time of over an hour. Fish glue has to be clamped for 12 hours so I can't do the bottom bindings until the next day."
Scraping the binding flush with the top using a cabinet scraper.
Binding helps protect the instruments against nicks along the edge and also helps to visually define the edge, but it's not necessary for the instrument to function, so I skipped that step on my ukulele body.
See also: Me making the ukulele body
Next: Making the neck