Posted on May 21, 2020February 5, 2024 by Dale Phillips More Inlay Tricks More Inlay Tricks by Tim Shaw Originally published as Guild of American Luthiers Data Sheet #129, 1979 and in Lutherie Woods and Steel String Guitars, 1997 Most published material on inlay suggests gluing the abalone or pearl shape to be inlaid to the fingerboard with white glue or Duco cement, scribing, then scraping or prying the hapless piece off with a razor blade. If you’re using 0.040" stock, this technique breaks a lot of inlay. I’ve had great success using white glue in very small amounts (about three tiny dots on the back of the piece). Let it dry, then scribe with a machinist’s scribe or a #11 X-acto blade. Pass a lit match across the top of the piece and warm it thoroughly. This will break the glue bond and allow you to slide the inlay off without harm. The glue remaining on the fingerboard can be easily cleaned off, and you can go from there. I’ve also found it helpful to rub the scribed lines with a white or yellow grease pencil, and then wipe off the excess. This leaves a very fine line which is also easy to see.