Customer Support 24/7

Repair log

  • Violin Soundpost Patch

    This old family heirloom was brought to me to be restored back to playing condition.   It needs quite a bit of work including a soundpost patch.

    The before pic This is the violin before I started. It's in pretty bad shape.
    all cleaned up The first step was to clean off all the old grime. What a difference it made. If you look closely you can see old touch up from a previous top repair. This is just the first stage of cleaning, it will get all polished up again at the end.
    popping the top The top has to come off. I like to use a super sharp knife for this.
    under the hood Taking a look under the hood, you can see all the old repair cleats. All of this will need to be redone.
    crack close-up Here is a close-up of the first crack. As you can see it has opened back up over the years and will have to be completely disassembled and re-glued.
    clean the crack The old cleats come off and the crack gets cleaned out.
    new cleats Then, in a multi stage process the crack is re-glued and new cleats are installed.
    thinning the cleats Once everything is dry the cleats can be thinned down and smoothed out.
    crack 2 This same process is repeated for all the remaining cracks.
    crack 3 again
    crack 4 and again until they are all re-glued and re-cleated
    making the mold In order to do the soundpost patch a plaster mold must be made of the top.
    plaster The plaster is in and starting to set.
    mold finished Here you can see the final mold. It's not the prettiest mold I have ever made, but it is more than sufficient for this repair.
    spruce I picked out a nice piece of spruce to make the patch out of.
    digging the hole The area under the patch is carved away leaving less than 1mm of old wood.
    patch The patch is now roughed in.
    blocks Small blocks are temporarily glued to the top to assure perfect realignment as I fit the patch perfectly to the hole.
    chalk fitting I use chalk to show where the new wood fits the old.
    starting to fit This is fitting much better now.
    yay it fits Once the piece is fitted, the hole is cleaned out and the patch is split.
    glue time The patch is glued in place on my go-bar table with a fresh batch of hot hide glue.
    carve the patch The patch is then carved down to match the surface of the violin top.
    last two cleats The final two cleats get installed
    completed sp patch Here is what the patch looks like when it's all finished.
    top goes on The top gets glued back on.
    A new soundpost is fitted A new soundpost is fitted
    This is what the new soundpost looks like inside the violin. This is what the new soundpost looks like inside the violin.
    set up The violin gets a complete setup including a finger board planing, a new bridge and strings.
    reaming The old pegs were completely shot, so new ones will have to be fitted. First the old holes are reamed out.
    new pegs And new pegs are fitted one at a time.
    all done After a final polish and some touch up, the violin is finally finished.

    I hope you have enjoyed seeing this old violin transform back into a working instrument.  As always thanks for reading and feel free to post comments and questions.

  • Shutt Mandolin Restoration

    Here is an interesting one.  It's an Albert Shutt mandolin.  For those of you who are interested in learning more about Albert Shutt, check out this link for more information.   http://www.harpguitars.net/history/shutt/shutt.htm

    Albert Shutt mandolin before restoration As you can see, this mandolin is in rough shape, but we're definitely going to fix that.
    First I'm going to address the broken headstock. First, I'm going to address the broken headstock.
    broken head stock Here is another view of the damage with the tuners removed.
    gluing the headstock I'll start by gluing up the broken headstock. The glue alone is not strong enough to keep this permanently together, so I decided to use a carbon fiber spline as a reinforcement.
    Here you can see me building a jig to cut the slot for the spine. Here you can see me building a jig to cut the slot for the spline.
    The slotting jig in action The slotting jig from the photo above in action.
    I made sure the slot went well beyond the damaged area, but will still be hidden behind the tuner plate. I made sure the slot went well beyond the damaged area.  This will still be hidden behind the tuner plate.
    Next the carbon fiber spine is glued in.  This adds  an extraordinary amount of strength and stiffness to this otherwise weak headstock design. Next, the carbon fiber spline is glued in. This spline adds an extraordinary amount of strength and stiffness to this otherwise weak headstock design.
    Because carbon fiber is ugly, I capped the repair with mahogany. Carbon fiber is UGLY!  I capped the repair with mahogany for a more pleasing aesthetic.
    When the peghead snapped the screws that held the back plate on were torn out leaving these nasty holes. When the peghead snapped, the screws that held the back plate on were torn out, leaving these nasty holes.
    I drilled them out and plugged them with new mahogany. I drilled them out and plugged them with new mahogany.
    After a little clean-up I chemically oxidized the wood to match age of the old surrounding wood. After a little clean-up, I chemically oxidized the wood to match age of the old surrounding wood.
    I put a little finish on to help hide the repair. Just a little finish on to help hide the repair.
    This is what the back of the headstock looks like after the repair with the plate reinstalled. This is what the back of the headstock looks like after the repair with the plate reinstalled.
    On the flip side, the head plate is completely smashed.  The owner and I have decided to replace it completely. On the flip side, the head plate is completely smashed. The owner and I have decided to replace it completely.
    Just beneath the surface I found old body filler that was used by an earlier repair person.  Now I know why it had been painted back. Just beneath the surface, I found old body filler that was used by an earlier repair person. Now I know why it had been painted black. Save the bondo for fixing jalopies. Ugh.
    I picked out a beautiful piece of  macassar ebony for the new head plate. I picked out a beautiful piece of macassar ebony for the new head plate.
    The new head plate being glued on.  You can't have too many clamps. The new head plate being glued on. You can never have too many clamps!
    Here it is after it's been sanded and drilled Here is the new head plate after it's been sanded and drilled
    And here it is once more after it's been french polished. And here it is once more after it's been french polished.
    The original finger board was completely mangled by a careless refret many moons ago.  The original fret slots were cut rather haphazardly as well and the intonation was quite bad, so we decided to replace it with a new one.  In this photo you can see me removing the old board. The original finger board was completely mangled by a careless refret many moons ago. The original fret slots were cut rather haphazardly as well and the intonation was quite bad, so we decided to replace it with a new one. In this photo you can see me removing the old board.
    Laying out the new fingerboard on a beautiful piece of jet black African ebony. I'm tracing the lay out of the new fingerboard on a beautiful piece of jet black African ebony.
    The new board cut and slotted. The new board, cut and slotted.
    The new fingerboard was bound in white like the original. This new fingerboard is now bound in white, just like the original.
    The fingerboard is done.  It was radiused, sanded, attached, and fretted. This fingerboard is done! Radiused, sanded, attached, and fretted.
    Now I just need to set it up.  A new bridge is fitted to the top. Now I just need to set it up. A new bridge is fitted to the top.
    The saddle height has been set and it has been fully compensated. The saddle height has been set and it has been fully compensated.
    The original nut has been shimmed with bone and refitted. The original nut has been shimmed with bone and refitted.
    There you have it.  This old mandolin has been brought back life. There you have it. This old mandolin has been brought back life.

    Thanks to everyone who took the time to read the post and as always feel free to share it with all your friends.

    Andrew Pursell

     

  • Dave's D55

    This is a beautiful mid 70's Guild D55 that has come all the way from Texas to have a number of things done.  Unfortunately in my haste to get started I neglected to take a picture of the guitar in its original condition, that is not a super close up, so you will have to be patient and I promise I'll put a good one at the end.

    Jumping right in, as you can see in the photo, the fingerboard projection is quite low and neck reset is in order. Jumping right in, as you can see in the photo, the fingerboard projection is quite low and neck reset is in order.
    Fist I'll pull the 15's fret . I always use a soldering iron to heat the frets before I pull them.  This softens any glue that might be hiding in the fret slots and insures a cleaner pull. First I'll pull the 15's fret .
    I always use a soldering iron to heat the frets before I pull them. This softens any glue that might be hiding in the fret slots and insures a cleaner pull.
    pulling a fret Number 15 coming out with my hand ground fret puller. I should say a quick thanks to Rob, my old friend, who made this for me when I was just starting out. I can't tell you how many frets it's pulled since.
    drilling steam holes Here you can see me drilling the two seam holes down to the gap between the neck and the neck block.
    heating the extension I use an ordinary iron to apply dry heat to the fingerboard extension in order to loosen the glue. Corrugated cardboard makes a good insulator to keep the top from getting too hot.
    releasing the extension I use a custom ground spatula to gently release the extension from the top.
    sleepy pup Callahan, the quality control specialist, is hard at work.
    steam time It's time for some steam.
    the neck is out. About 5 mins or so later and the neck is free. I like to give the joint a good cleaning while the glue is still soft.
    out go the frets While the neck block drys out, I usually give it a week or so, I'll move on to other things that need doing, like a fret job.
    epoxy on the fret Remember when I said there could be glue in the fret slots? Well you can really see the epoxy the last luthier used on this old fret tang.
    cleaning the slots Once the old frets are out, I use a tiny saw blade to clean out the old glue and junk from the fret slots.
    removing a nut the hard way The old nut was also epoxied in, so I had to cut it out. Never use strong glue for guitar nuts. You only need to keep the thing from falling out when you change the strings. Now I have to ruin this nut to get it out.
    cut nut I don't cut all the way through the nut. The last thing you want to do is damaging the guitar.
    split nut This is what's left after I split the nut out.
    fitting the neck After a sufficient drying period, the neck angle is altered and the neck joint is re-fitted.
    This is one of my favorite tools.  It neck alignment easy. This is one of my favorite tools. It neck alignment easy.
    neck alignment This is another view of the alignment tool. As you can see it lines up perfectly with the center of the guitar, so I know the neck is perfectly straight.
    checking neck projection Here you can see we have perfect neck projection as well. Remember there are no frets in the neck at this time.
    making the glue Now that I'm happy with the alignment and tight fit, it's time to mix up a fresh batch of hot hide glue.
    reattaching the neck Here you can see the neck being clamped in place while the glue drys.
    lacquer chip Now that the neck is back on, I'll start on fixing the chips in the lacquer. I'll start with this big one on the back.
    Lacquer drop fill After the chip is cleaned out, I slowly build up new lacquer one drop at a time. I try and get this stage done right away so I can work on other issues with the guitar while the lacquer takes a leisurely 6 weeks to fully cure.
    more chips There were a few little chips on the rib that I filled at the same time. Later on I'll show you how I level and polish these out.
    dressing the fb Now that the glue is fully cured I can start working on the neck. Here you can see a fancy sanding block I use to dress the fingerboard. This particular one has a 16" radius built into it.
    polished fb What a beautiful piece of ebony. It is completely jet black. You almost never see ebony this good anymore. There is no ink on this what-so-ever. The board was sanded out to 800 grit and polished with micro mesh and treated with a few coats of raw linseed oil. It's just stunning in person.
    The new jumbo frets are in. The new jumbo frets are in.
    frets are leveled The frets are all leveled, beveled and polished to a mirror shine.
    reglue bridge The bridge was lifting just slightly, so I re-glued it to the top.
    re-glue pic guard The pickguard was coming loose in a few spots so that was re-glued as well.
    loose binding The binding was coming loose in a few spots.
    fixing binding Very carefully, the binding was re-glued using heavy tape as a clamp.
    pick up time Next is the pick-up installation. The customer chose a D-Tar multi-source which we carry here at the store. It's a very nice sounding unit.
    old transducers First off, I needed to get the old transducers out from that last system that was in it. You can see one of them here in the mirror.
    old pickup And here they are. Those buggers were glued in tight, but with a little patience and a lot of naphtha, I was able to remove them without damaging the top of the guitar.
    re-routing the saddle slot One of the most important things to make an under saddle pickup sound good is having the saddle slot perfectly flat, so you can see my rig for re-rerouting the saddle slot.
    new slot This is the result. A perfectly flat and even slot. I hardly had to remove anything, but a pickup in compression won't work right without even pressure.
    new pickup The bridge is then drilled and the pickup is placed in the slot.
    in goes the mic Next the microphone and controls are installed together along with the battery pack and the cables are all neatly routed and tucked away inside the guitar.
    lacquer level, scraper Time to finish those lacquer chips. I first level the bulk of it with a razor that I have turned a burr on.
    wet sand Then I wet sand to 1500 grit.
    buffer Then I go to the buffer and polish with med, fine and extra fine compounds
    and the chip is gone And here are the results. A mirror shine and not even a hint of the old chip.
    tuners come off The head stock needs a little loving too, so out go the tuners.
    The tuners get oiled and cleaned. The tuners get oiled and cleaned.
    The head stock gets a good cleaning and buffing out. The head stock gets a good cleaning and buffing out.
    Everything gets reassembled, and a new bone nut is fitted. Everything gets reassembled, and a new bone nut is fitted. No those aren't scratchs, just some residue from the buffing compound that I missed before snapping this shot.

     

    This one is going to take a while, so be sure to check back in every so often to see how it's going.  Thanks for reading, and feel free to share links and post comments or questions.

  • Classical Refret

    This is a cool old Pan classical guitar.  I has a quirky lacquered fingerboard that just doesn't feel right.  My job is to sand off the old lacquer and refret the board. This is a cool old Pan classical guitar. It has a quirky lacquered fingerboard that just doesn't feel right. My job is to sand off the old lacquer and refret the board.
    The first step is removing the old fret wire. The first step is removing the old fret wire.
    Next, I sand down the old lacquer and reprofile the fingerboard.  Cutting in the proper amount of relief is crucial at this step. Next, I sand down the old lacquer and reprofile the fingerboard. Cutting in the proper amount of relief is crucial at this step.
    The wood we found underneath the lacquer was striking.  Given the option to keep the natural grain of the board or ink it to a more traditional black, the owner chose to keep it natural.  I approve. The wood we found underneath the lacquer was striking. Given the option to keep the natural grain of the board or ink it to a more traditional black, the owner chose to keep it natural. I approve.
    New fret wire is hammered in  New fret wire is hammered in.
    The new frets are now leveled. The new frets are now leveled.
    The frets are then crowned, beveled and polished.  Then a few coats of linseed oil is applied The frets are then crowned, beveled and polished. Then a few coats of linseed oil is applied.
    The gaps under the fret ends are filled will hot stick lacquer. The gaps under the fret ends are filled with hot stick lacquer.
    The lacquer is leveled and polished for that perfect feel. The lacquer is leveled and polished for that perfect feel.
    fin That's all there is to it.

    As always, thanks for reading the post and feel free to share it and leave comments below.

  • Pietro Moretti bass repair

    Pietro Moretti in for repair A local teacher in the area recommended me to one of his students who had an accident with their beautiful Moretti double bass. Somehow the upper bout of the bass got squeezed, and both of the upper ribs cracked. Ouch
    Here is the largest of the two cracks. Here is the largest of the two cracks.
    The other crack is so small that I have marked it in the picture so you can find it.  If these cracks were left alone, they would eventually grow could cause major problems.  The other crack is so small that I have marked it in the picture so you can find it. If these cracks were left alone, they would eventually grow and could cause major problems.
    To fix this right, I am going to remove the top to gain access to the inside.  For this I use an opening knife and a lot of patience. To fix this right, I am going to remove the top to gain access to the inside. For this I use an opening knife and a lot of patience.
    The top came off clean and relatively easy.  This is a good sign of quality construction. The top came off clean and relatively easy. This is a good sign of quality construction.
    Once again I have marked the location of the crack in the picture to make it easier to find. Once again I have marked the location of the crack in the picture to make it easier to find.  The pencil marks are from the factory.
    The second crack as seen from the inside. The second crack as seen from the inside.
    To repair the cracks I made thin spruce veneers glued with hot hide glue and clamped with rare earth magnets. To repair the cracks I made thin spruce veneers glued with hot hide glue and clamped with rare earth magnets.
    This is what the finished patches look like from the inside. This is what the finished patches look like from the inside.
    And the other side And the other side.
    While the patches were drying I did a little touch up on the damaged rib.  There was a considerable amount of buckle rash that I fixed while I was at it. While the patches were drying I did a little touch up on the damaged rib. There was a considerable amount of buckle rash that I fixed while I was at it.
    With the work done on the inside, I can now glue the top back on. With the work done on the inside, I can now glue the top back on.
    After a second round of touch up the bass is finished. After a second round of touch-up the bass is finished.

    Once again, thanks to everyone who reads the post.  Please feel free to share it.

  • Hopf Violin Repair

    This is nice old Hopf violin that was brought to me for a set up.

    hopf before picture This old guy has seen better days.
    The top is coated in grime and scratches.  Most of the cracks have been repaired back in the 20's and are still solid, but there are a few that need tending to. The top is coated in grime and scratches. Most of the cracks have been repaired back in the 20's and are still solid, but there are a few that need tending to.
    The back is in pretty good shape.  No cracks, just a bit of dirt that should clean right up. The back is in pretty good shape. No cracks, just a bit of dirt that should clean right up.
    The peg box is in good shape, but a new set of pegs is in order. The peg box is in good shape, but a new set of pegs is in order.
    With all the old cracks glued up, I did some cleaning, touch up and french polish.  What a difference.  Unfortunately there is some bad varnish work done by the previous luthier and it wan't in books to fix. We can always go back and fix this later if the client so desires. With all the old cracks glued up, I did some cleaning, touch up and french polish. What a difference. Unfortunately there is some bad varnish work done by the previous luthier and it wan't in books to fix. We can always go back and fix this later if the client so desires.
    The back looks good after some cleaning and tiny bit of french polish. The back looks good after some cleaning and tiny bit of french polish.
    Next, the fingerboard gets planed and sanded to improve playability. Next, the fingerboard gets planed and sanded to improve playability.
    Peg time!  The old holes are reamed out to reset the taper and insure round holes. Peg time! The old holes are reamed out to reset the taper and insure round holes.
    New pegs are fitted the freshly reamed holes New pegs are fitted the freshly reamed holes.
    The ends of the pegs are trimmed and burnished for a perfect fit and finish. The ends of the pegs are trimmed and burnished for a perfect fit and finish.
    Hopf Violin new sound post A new sound post had to be made. Note the old repair cleats on the top of the violin. Not the most ideal solution, but it has been holding up for the last 90 years, so we won't be touching that this time around.
    The nut is lowered and dressed The nut is lowered and dressed.
    A new bridge is fitted  and strings go on. A new bridge is fitted and strings go on.
    Hopf violin after All done! The violin is tuned up and ready to go. It has a surprisingly powerful sound that will fill a room.

    A big thank you to everyone who read the post.  I always enjoy making these.  Please feel free to leave comments and/or questions below.

  • Guitar Dent Repair

    In this post I will show you how I fix dents on guitar tops.

    Guitar dent repair Guitar tops are made of soft woods that dent easily. Here are is a couple of nasty ones in a spruce top. This guitar is finished in french polish, but the steps are similar for other finishes.
    striping the finish The first thing I do is strip the finish on the damaged area. In this case I am using high proof alcohol. I need to get back to bare wood.
    the dents are now exposed The alcohol has done it's job and has even started to pop the dent out.
    steaming out the dents Now comes the fun part. I use a soldering iron and paper towel dampened in distilled water to steam out the dents. The steam enters the wood re-inflates the compressed wood. I don't recommend using printed paper towel in your shop as the color can bleed. I have tested this particular brand ahead of time and am sure that the ink is color fast and is not going to transfer to the guitar, but as a general rule it is best to avoid the printed verities.
    steaming dents Now I repeat the process on the second dent.
    time to dry Once the dents are gone the wood needs to dry.
    sanding the area when I am sure the wood is dry I will do a bit of sanding to smooth out top and help blend the coming finish touch-up. I'll start with 120 grit on a block.
    Next I use 220 grit Next I use 220 grit
    final sanding And I finish up with 400 grit feathering out the edges. All and all I remove very little wood. I don't want anyone to ever see or feel that worked here.
    french polish time Touch up time. In this case it's my favorite finish, french polish, so out comes my pad with some matching blond shellac.
    fp looking good The first coat looks good. I think the color is spot on, so all I need to do is body it back up to the original thickness.
    The final result And there you have it. No more dents.

    Thank you everyone for taking the time to review my post.  I hope you all found it interesting.  I don't recommend trying this at home, as you can easily make a bigger mess than you had.

  • Gibson Blues King Electro guitar repair

    Blues King Electro in for crack repair This beauty has recently come to the shop for some crack repairs. The owner had a tragic strap malfunction and the guitar fell and landed squarely on the binding of the lower bout.
    Gibson rib crack In this photo you can clearly see the rib crack. It runs from the output jacks at the base all the way to the waist.
    Gibson top crack As you can see, the top of the guitar took a bit of a beating as well.
    Mixing the glue Step one for this repair is to mix up a fresh batch of hot hide glue. I find this to be the best possible glue for crack repairs. It is extremely strong, penetrates deep with capillary action, and is nearly invisible when it drys.
    gluing the crack I use quick clamps with waxed pads to clamp the crack being extremely careful to keep both sides of the crack level.
    tape marks the spot Here you can see I am using painter's tape to map out the locations for the reinforcing cleats that will be glued to the inside of the rib.

     

    Cleaning up the squeeze out inside the guitar Looking on the inside, you can easily see how the glue penetrated the crack. This squeeze out will prevent the spruce cleats from gluing flat on the inside, so I am using an extremely strong magnet wrapped in sandpaper to clean it up.
    This is the result of the clean up. This is the result of the clean up.
    cleats going in guitar And here is what the first round of cleats look like being magnetically clamped on the inside.
    And here is what it looks like from the outside. And here is what it looks like from the outside.
    More cleats The second round of cleats are installed in the same way. I do them in two steps like this so that the powerful magnets don't get too close together and interfere with each other.
    Starting the retouch Time to start the retouch. First I start by cleaning the area, sealing it with hot hide glue and then softening the edges of the crack with acetone.
    color matched drop fill Next I mix up a custom color to match the existing amber lacquer. Then I just start building it up to level the crack. This is the first round of drop fill. I will have to repeat this process many many times as the lacquer drys and shrinks back.
    The Lacquer is all polished up Sorry I miss a few photos of the drop fill process, but this is a close-up of the spot after the lacquer is leveled and polished.
    And this is finished result of the repaired top. And this is finished result of the repaired top.
    Just in case you were wondering how the rib turned out, here it is after touch-up. Just in case you were wondering how the rib turned out, here it is after touch-up.

     

    Thanks to everyone for reading the Gibson Blues King Electro guitar repair post, and I hope you found it enjoyable.  As always feel free to post links to your social media of choice and leave comments below.

  • Martin Backpacker repair

    This little guitar has seen some trauma.  Unfortunately a well-meaning roommate has done more harm than good trying to fix it.  Let's see if I can do a better job. This little guitar has seen some trauma. Unfortunately a well-meaning roommate has done more harm than good trying to fix it. Let's see if I can do a better job.
    Going in order from easy to ugly, this is what need fixing.  First is a simple top crack at the sound hole.  This will get glued and cleated. Going in order from easy to ugly, this is what need fixing. First is a simple top crack at the sound hole. This will get glued and cleated.
    The top is loose from the ribs on the bass side.  No big deal. The top is loose from the ribs on the bass side. No big deal.
    The end block is completely cracked in half and will need  some glue. The end block is completely cracked in half and will need some glue.
    And lastly we have the treble side, which is a complete mess.  This is why gorilla glue should never ever ever be used on a guitar, ever. Gorilla glue is a polyurethane glue that foams up when exposed to too much water.  Worst of all it gets into the wood fibers and makes my prefered glue, hot hide glue, refuse to hold.  No worries though, this guitar will sing again. And lastly we have the treble side, which is a complete mess. This is why gorilla glue should never ever ever be used on a guitar, ever. Gorilla glue is a polyurethane glue that foams up when exposed to too much water. Worst of all it gets into the wood fibers and makes my prefered glue, hot hide glue, refuse to hold. No worries though, this guitar will sing again.
    Nothing that I know of dissolves Gorilla glue, so it must be removed by force.  Some gentle persuasion cleans up the exterior dribbles with little added trauma to mahogany rib.  Nothing that I know of dissolves Gorilla glue, so it must be removed by force. Some gentle persuasion cleans up the exterior dribbles with little added trauma to mahogany rib.
    Now I need to reopen the crack so that I can relevel the two halves of the rib.  I do this with a sharp thin knife. Now I need to reopen the crack so that I can relevel the two halves of the rib. I do this with a sharp thin knife.
    With the crack open I can clean out the remaining glue on the inside.  Some sanding is unfortunately necessary to remove the polyurethane sodden wood. With the crack open I can clean out the remaining glue on the inside. Some sanding is unfortunately necessary to remove the polyurethane sodden wood.
    The hardest part is getting the rib halves to line back up again.  After a bit of wrestling I got it glued back together. The hardest part is getting the rib halves to line back up again. After a bit of wrestling I got it glued back together.
    In order to keep the rib from splitting again at that weakened spot I put in spruce cleats on the inside.  You can think of these as permanent sutures to hold the wound closed. In order to keep the rib from splitting again at that weakened spot I put in spruce cleats on the inside. You can think of these as permanent sutures to hold the wound closed.
    More cleats going in.  More cleats going in.
    While those cleats were drying I fixed the top crack.  Those are powerful rare earth magnets clamping the reinforcement cleats to the inside. While those cleats were drying I fixed the top crack. Those are powerful rare earth magnets clamping the reinforcement cleats to the inside.
    Heating up a fresh batch of hot hide glue to fix the last of the rib and block cracks. Heating up a fresh batch of hot hide glue to fix the last of the rib and block cracks.
    Here you can see the rest of the cracks are glued and clamped. Here you can see the rest of the cracks are glued and clamped.
    With the camps off, I cleaned up the excess glue and did a little filling in the large crack. With the camps off, I cleaned up the excess glue and did a little filling in the large crack.
    This is the final result.  It's all tuned up and ready to play. This is the final result. It's all tuned up and ready to play.

    Thanks to everyone who read the post.  Putting this old Martin Backpacker back together was a snap and I hope you enjoyed watching the progress.

  • Ariana's violin restoration

    This is a fun little restoration job for a really nice lady and her son.  Nothing major going on, but the owner's family wanted to see how fiddle went back together.  I hope you enjoy.

    So this violin came to me in two parts.  The neck joint failed some time ago and the whole violin needs to be set back up again. So this violin came to me in two parts. The neck joint failed some time ago and the whole violin needs to be set back up again.
    As you can see the neck angle was out a bit on this fiddle, so a little neck joint work will be called for.  We are shooting for 27mm. As you can see the neck angle was out a bit on this fiddle, so a little neck joint work will be called for. We are shooting for 27mm.
    There we go.  Perfect, let's get that neck glued back in. There we go. Perfect, let's get that neck glued back in.
    One clamp is all you need to glue a properly fitting violin neck. One clamp is all you need to glue a properly fitting violin neck.
    The fingerboard has lots of wear from previous use and the relief is too much, so a planing is in order. The fingerboard has lots of wear from previous use and the relief is too much, so a planing is in order.
    Much better.  The string wear is gone and the relief is set low for fast playing. Much better. The string wear is gone and the relief is set low for fast playing.
    New bridge time.  Fitting the feet. New bridge time. Fitting the feet.
    The bridge is all finished.  The string height has been set nice and low for fast fiddling and the bridge has been carved for tone. The bridge is all finished. The string height has been set nice and low for fast fiddling and the bridge has been carved for tone.
    Lastly the nut is lowered and dressed.  This violin is ready to ship off to Florida for Ariana's son to enjoy. Lastly the nut is lowered and dressed. This violin is ready to ship off to Florida for Ariana's son to enjoy.

    Thank you Ariana for letting me restore this wonderful old fiddle for you and thanks to everyone who read the post.  I hope you all enjoyed it and found it interesting.  Please feel free to leave comments and questions below.

Items 1 to 10 of 22 total

Page:
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3

Back to top

Locations: 28673 Bayberry Ct E. Livonia, MI 48154

502 W Webster Rd. Royal Oak, MI 48073