Another round of metal polish and wood cleaning for the . Now it only needs strings and tuning.

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Original tweet :

Coking coal prices just crossed over 150 $/tonne. 15% up this month alone. The futures curve has steepened further into backwardation.

Steel sits comfortably above 5 000 yuan/tonne, and is yet to catch up with coal.

But with China bracing for brown-outs, watch out for aluminium. It is "only" 23% up for the year. Looks like a rocket ship on the launch pad.

Gently drilled the neck to the right depth and finally screwed it in. And it looked perfectly aligned. With strings and tuning, the should be rocking again.

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Now comes the most critical step in this first repair story. Using the E and G strings plus a sewing line along the middle I could get to a perfect neck alignment. Then inserting the 6 mm drill bit through the body loopholes I marked the exact points to drill in the neck.

The screws are about 1.5 mm wide, so ended up opting for 1 mm drill bits. I could not easily find drill bits so small specifically for wood. But the steel ones they sold me in the local hardware store made the job perfectly.

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The next step was to drill cavities for the machine heads screws. This one of the things can easily go wrong if it isn't set up correctly. A tool like a set square is indispensable.

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The repair story goes on. With the replacement neck down to the correct size, it is now time to install the machine heads.

The first task was to fit in the casings. Even though the loopholes have the same width as the original, it took some sanding and hammering to get the casings in place.

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Last week I was busy applying a wood finish to the sections of the replacement neck that were filed and sanded to the right size.

Try as I might, fine sanding the "lacquer" never brought up the gloss, not even the faintest satin. Sourcing the right products in a foreign land can easily lead to these misunderstandings.

Some go to their balconies to soak up the sun, whereas others...

The saga continues with grinding and sanding to bring the replacement neck down to the correct dimensions.

Yesterday evening I was checking the trends in commodities markets and ended up making the chart below.

This is the sharpest rise in commodities prices since at least the beginning of the Iran-Iraq war.

Most agricultural commodities have not moved yet, but from past episodes one should expect them to trail fossil fuels.

Also worthy of note is steel, which is yet far from catching up with the hikes in coal and iron ore.

Interesting times ahead.

It is a simple task with the appropriate polish. Just takes a bit of time. The before and after.

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Today was polishing time in the repair story. The machine heads, albeit of decent quality, had their dose of tarnish.

Another major mismatch is depth at the last fret, the is almost one millimeter thinner.

All in all it is better the replacement is longer and thicker, the shorter and narrower. The next few days will involve a good dose of grinding and sanding.

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