A router may be too heavy for your medical condition, so I'll suggest a routing table as well for the router.
For bits, depends on the design you desire. Rounded, squared or Henry the 4th type thing. Usually, the bits at the local hardware store, have an illustration of how the bits will cut onto the wood. That should give you an image of how your necks will end up. The rounded bits are shaped like a Hersey kisses.
I have used various methods:-
1. shaping entirely with a spokeshave.
2. Using a palm router and a 45-degree router bit to remove the bulk and then finish with a spokeshave, rasp and sandpaper.
3. I have used a 3/4 inch round over bit, on my next build, I will be trying a 1 inch round over.
See the link below for Chicken Bone Johns video on shaping necks,
I tend to change depending on what material I'm using.
I often use my router, but I use it attached to a router table. I feel it's easier to handle like that.
If I use a laminated product like plywood, I will use a rasp (surform) as it's the only safe way to go.
For the rest, I usually rout first to remove the bulk of the material. If I'm happy with the shape, I just lightly sand down a bit. If not, I then move to the belt sander with 60 grit paper.
I sometimes use a spokeshave as it does do a great job but since I always use soft woods like spruce for my builds, the grain structure makes it harder to get good results with a plane or a spokeshave.
Usually rasps and sandpaper. Surform to rough it out and a finer rasp then up through the grits.
A couple times I used a large peice of cherry half-round topped with a 1/4 inch fretboard and it worked really well.
The first one I made 20 years ago was a "one off" and i carved the neck with a steak/paring knife.,.,in 2013 when I started building many I moved on to using a round over bit in a router.,.,3/8" bit for a month then I moved on to a 1/2" round over bit.,.,never tried the rasp method, bought a spoke shave but have not tried it either.,.,.,
all of the above :-) However, the 9 inch Shinto Rasp will become your favorite tool...if you let it :-)
hi, on my CBG 3-4 string necks I just use a round over bit in my router, as shown by others here. The router is jigged upside down in my bench vice. And then sandpaper, no carving or rasping. KISS principal.
However when doing acoustic or electric guitar necks I use tools selected from the photo here that work best with whatever timber the neck is made of.
Like Del said about the Shinto rasp, I don't know if mine is a Shinto but it is a Japanese hand cut rasp, sharp as.
I use this technique.