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PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 3:35 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
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Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
So, the music store in town sent me this little Taylor guitar. There are 3 cracks in the top, I tried to show two them in the photos I took, you can kind of see the lines in the glare on the top, there's another small one in between. They haven't really opened at all, but are definitely mobile.The bracing seems to be good inside, although there really isn't that much of it. Would squeezing some tite-bond into the crack and then cleating be the appropriate fix? I've done that for single cracks before, but that whole lower section on the top of the guitar flexes like crazy, I've never really seen that before, and so didn't want to assume.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 4:04 pm 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
Country: United States
Status: Professional
Connor here is what I do:

1). Rehumidify the instrument until the cracks are closed. This may not apply in your climate but in mine it's dry as hell in the middle of the winter here....

2). With one arm in the sound hole which sucks with a torn rotator cuff.... I pulse the crack up and down as I rub in a mixture of half water, half Titebond Original and a fresh bottle too no older than a year. Wash hands first, glue lets dirt migrate off our fingers and into the cracks.

3). Once I have wet beads of glue visible on the inside I repeat number 2 above but with full strength Titebond Original. I find that the thinned stuff helps the thicker stuff wick into tight cracks. Both of #1 and #2 happen in two minutes or so, work smart and quick.

4). When again I see glue on the inside, just little beads is all I need to verify that I'm through the top I wipe clean, slap waxed paper on the crack and then 1/8" thick plexiglass and rare earth magnets with at least 40 lbs of pull. The magnets ensure that it all dries level.

Be careful with the magnets they can bite you if you place them too close to each other, metal, your hard drive..... and you may never view a belt buckle the same way again once one launches in the direction of your family jewels.....

5). When dry, I let it dry over night I remove the magnets and install little diamond shaped cleats with beveled edges cross grain across the cracks spacing them between braces while also ensuring that the braces are indeed glued well.

6). Clean up with warm water on the outside.

7). Bill the client, call the client, next.

;). Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas to you too!

Also you can use HHG keeping things warm too and there are times that we prefer that.



These users thanked the author Hesh for the post: fumblefinger (Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:28 pm)
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 10:05 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 327
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
Thanks Hesh. Out of curiosity is it necessary that the cleats are the same wood as the wood you're repairing?


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:54 pm 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
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Conor_Searl wrote:
Thanks Hesh. Out of curiosity is it necessary that the cleats are the same wood as the wood you're repairing?


No but I like to do it anyway most of the time. For example spruce cleats on a spruce top just look more in order and add very little mass to the important lower bout of the top.

But there is nothing stoping you from say spruce with a hog top, koa top, WRC top, etc. Just keep the cleats small.

Mine are around 3/4" long, 1/2" wide, diamonds and about .050" thick and beveled on all edges. I've seen smaller and I've seen larger so what works for you has some personal taste room too. I would just suggest keeping them small.

The gluing of the crack is pretty effective but the cleats are insurance and after all this ax has shown at least for now a tendency to crack.

Check the bridge too FYI. GS Mini's can have lifting bridges and the top is a rather profound dome as it is. The bridges are pinned with two nylon pins near the wings but I've had to reglue a goodly amount of them regardless of the pins.

I like these guitars and they can be very well made with some models having some nice exotic woods and decent fit and finish.

Anyway lots of ways to fix cracks and cleat them too. This is just what I've been doing for some years now and I've not had one open up and come back. I would estimate that I've done a couple hundred this way.



These users thanked the author Hesh for the post: dpetrzelka (Wed Dec 13, 2017 2:41 pm)
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:36 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 327
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
Thanks again Hesh, I don't know how you have the time to informatively chime in on here as much as you do, and get things done at your shop. I've found it incredibly helpful.



These users thanked the author Conor_Searl for the post: Hesh (Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:02 pm)
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:06 pm 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
Country: United States
Status: Professional
You're very welcome Connor.

In another life I used to have I would have to answer 50 emails a day after being in the air for maybe five hours and this was before Internet connections on planes. I'd get to the hotel, get out the lap top and two hours later and with my blood pressure hitting the roof my 50 email replies would be sent and I could kick back. Problem was it was the next day already...;)

Anyway I'm very fast at expressing myself in writing, that's a problem sometimes but I'm aware of it and really trying to work on it.

Take care and good on ya for doing repair work!!! Everyday folks like us do things other's can't (or won't...;) ).


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:19 pm 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
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First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
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I can't add anything to what Hesh has said except that Taylors seem to be very sensitive to humidity swings and top cracks are not at all uncommon (I have one coming to me today). If the guitar shows any of the other classic signs of being dry (sunken top, sharp fret ends, buzzy action) then before you start trying to repair the crack get it hydrated first. That might take a month with a couple of sponge/baggies in the case - I often put one inside the body of the guitar. Then give the owner a good lecture on humidity control.

https://www.taylorguitars.com/sites/def ... Guitar.pdf



These users thanked the author Freeman for the post: Hesh (Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:13 pm)
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 4:48 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 327
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
Thanks for chiming in Freeman. I live on Vancouver Island, which is on the west coast of Canada. I think we're pretty lucky here, with the exception of one or two days in the bleakest part of winter humidity is rarely a large issue, (wood heated homes are another story...)
The trade off is months of clouds and rain. :shock:

I talked to the customer this morning, he said the guitar was in a high traffic area, there's no dent in the top, but it definitely looks like it took some kind of bump.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 7:52 pm 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
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First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Actually I know exactly where you are located and have been following your progress on the forum. I live in a little town in the middle of Washington State, but we come up to B.C. often for skiing, climbing, kayaking and knocking around Vancouver. Sooner or later we should get together (you definitely should plan to come down to the next GAL conference).

My Mini came in to day and like yours, it took a bump rather than humidity. The seam between the top and side was open for about 3 inches, it had a 1x1/2 bump in the top and a crack in the soundboard. The repair turned out to be pretty straightforward - I wedged the seam open with some tooth picks and worked Titebond into it and the crack on the top (I'm not good enough with HHG to risk the short working time, most of the damage was clean wood and its my understanding that Titebond will adhere to old Titebond). Anyway when I clamped the seam closed it also pulled the top crack closed and I got nice squeeze out on the inside. Only thing left was to cleat the crack - it started and ended at braces and they seemed tight so I put one cleat inbetween.

I learned a trick when locating cleats - I've got these long clamps in several different lengths that will reach about anywhere inside a guitar. Take a piece of blue tape and wrap it back on itself so the sticky side is out, stick it on the inside jaw of the clamp and stick the cleat on the tape. Orient the cleat cross grain to the top, put the glue on it and carefully insert it without touching the insides of the top. That kind of clamp will clear braces nicely. Move it around until the outside jaw is just above the crack and you know the cleat will be too - put a caul on and snug it up. I can't tell you how many times I've tried to reach inside a guitar to position a little piece of spruce - one day a big light came on (duh).

Image

Image

Hope yours is as easy as mine, I charged the nice lady one hour of my labor and threw a home made humidifier in the gig bag for her.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 9:31 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 327
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
Freeman, I'd love to connect! Either your neck of the woods, or mine. What is the GAL conference?

I'll keep that trick with the clamp in mind. I've used tiny rare earth magnets that I've taped to the back of the cleat before so I could see where I'm placing it, but I still find it finnicky, I think that clamp would give a lot more control and precision.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 9:39 pm 
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Koa
Koa

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Posts: 1439
First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Conor_Searl wrote:
Freeman, I'd love to connect! Either your neck of the woods, or mine. What is the GAL conference?



Guild of American Luthiers is headquartered in Tacoma and their conferences are held there every couple of years. You should be a member for just the books, plans and support, many of the same folks you meet here

http://www.luth.org/


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2017 9:48 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 327
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
Freeman wrote:
Conor_Searl wrote:
Freeman, I'd love to connect! Either your neck of the woods, or mine. What is the GAL conference?



Guild of American Luthiers is headquartered in Tacoma and their conferences are held there every couple of years. You should be a member for just the books, plans and support, many of the same folks you meet here

http://www.luth.org/


I just looked at the schedule for this summer, I was really impressed. I'll have to look into it a little deeper. Thanks for the tip.

And thank you too on the comment you made about how much you charged your client. I've really been trying to figure out how much to charge for different things, when I teach a guitar lesson it's easy, but when it comes to the repair stuff I'm constantly trying to figure out the balance between charging by the hour, and charging a set price for a typical job. However in this case looking around the internet at different shops repair rates, the book rate on fixing three different cracks in the top of a guitar is way more than it would cost to level and dress frets and set up a guitar. But it will take me way longer to set up a guitar with a fret dress than it will to fix these cracks. I suppose one could make the argument that fixing a crack requires a more experienced and knowledgeable hand than setting a guitar up does, but still...


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2017 5:00 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 327
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
Turns out I've got a loose brace in there too. But its too far back for any of the clamps I have, and the one I have that's like the one Freeman has pictured is too long to fit into the sound hole of this little guitar. Do you think 40lb rare earth magnets will give me enough clamping pressure to reglue the end of the loose brace?

I thought I'd try and use a mini go bar to push the brace up against the top and then clamp the outside of the guitar to counter the pressure from inside the guitar, but I don't think I'd be able to get it in fast enough once I take the glue into account.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 6:52 am 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
Posts: 10040
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
Country: United States
Status: Professional
Conor_Searl wrote:
Turns out I've got a loose brace in there too. But its too far back for any of the clamps I have, and the one I have that's like the one Freeman has pictured is too long to fit into the sound hole of this little guitar. Do you think 40lb rare earth magnets will give me enough clamping pressure to reglue the end of the loose brace?

I thought I'd try and use a mini go bar to push the brace up against the top and then clamp the outside of the guitar to counter the pressure from inside the guitar, but I don't think I'd be able to get it in fast enough once I take the glue into account.


Yep, I use rare earth magnets with 40+ pounds of pull, the 3/4" long ones all of the time on the flats of brace ends. Works great. Be sure to place a piece of waxed paper over the magnet in the box so you don't glue it to the guitar.... Also be sure to use some kind of transparent caul on the outside, I like thin plastic or plexiglass to prevent the outside magnet from scratching the instrument.

Be aware of belt buckles too..... :roll: :D

Use either Titebond original or Titebond extend since it will take you a while to get some glue under the brace end. The magnets sit nicely on the brace end flat and if well positioned they stay there. Hang the sucker to dry over night and then carefully remove.

By the way with the right tenacious protective caul on the outside and I like them clear so I can see through them you can often drag the magnet on the inside into position including having them jump onto the brace end provided that it's not a brace end too far.... (too high) by dragging the outside magnet.

Also by the way often clamping the end of a very stiff brace also serves to clamp down the middle if that's loose too. Feeler gauges can be used to shove glue under the loose end and brace. We also use hypodermic needles including butterflies at times too when that's a better option for glue delivery.

Sounds like someone rode that mini hard and put it away wet..... Nobody ever brings us anything unless it's messed up..... :D


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 4:35 pm 
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Cocobolo
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Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 327
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
Okay, I'm, a little perplexed. This Taylor mini has some kind of channel routed around the whole perimeter of the top of the guitar. One of my cracks runs right along the edge of it. I've got glue squeezed into the crack and it seems to be sealed pretty good, but there is no room to put a cleat on it inside, it would hang over the edge of the routed channel. Any suggestions, or is the glue enough of a fix?


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 7:09 pm 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
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Status: Professional
Conor_Searl wrote:
Okay, I'm, a little perplexed. This Taylor mini has some kind of channel routed around the whole perimeter of the top of the guitar. One of my cracks runs right along the edge of it. I've got glue squeezed into the crack and it seems to be sealed pretty good, but there is no room to put a cleat on it inside, it would hang over the edge of the routed channel. Any suggestions, or is the glue enough of a fix?


Taylor rabbits the edges of the lower bout of their tops on the inside thinning the edges in an effort to make the top more mobile and the guitar more responsive.

Lots of builders do something similar and thin the edges of the lower bout, I did it too.

A cleat near by so long as you are sure that the glue went all the way though the crack and you could see beads on the inside should do.

Good job Connor!


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:00 pm 
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Cocobolo
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Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 327
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
Hesh, I just got some heavy duty magnets in the mail. You weren't kidding. A person could really hurt themselves with these...


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2017 5:43 am 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
Country: United States
Status: Professional
Conor_Searl wrote:
Hesh, I just got some heavy duty magnets in the mail. You weren't kidding. A person could really hurt themselves with these...


It took two years for our's to arrive..... The first time we ordered them they never showed up.... So we reordered and the same thing happened....

The third shipment showed up and then the first two showed up a year or two later.... They got stuck to the inside of a mail box somewhere and stayed there for over a year....

Now, these days they are packaged better in very large boxes and suspended in the middle.

Be careful my friend they can launch when you don't expect it and hurt you. I recently tore a rotator cuff and was not being careful and one launched at my belt buckle..... :( :o :roll: :D No harm done but for a minute there I was checking to make sure nothing got amputated.....;)

Some tips:

1). Plexiglass makes good topside cauls in that you can see though it.
2). I sharpie a line on the outside of the plexiglass to be the crack that I am covering with it and tape the plexiglass in place.
3). Positioning the topside magnet can be used to drag the underside magnet in the box in place if it's hard to reach. Likewise you can drag it back where you can get it this way too at times.
4). I cover the inside magnets with waxed paper so I don't have to figure out how to get it unglued from in the box...... Duuuuh ;)
5). Careful they will pick up sharp stuff like steel wool debris, always keep your bench clean.
6). They sit nicely on the flats of brace ends in the box.
7). The plexi caul can be use to help level a crack on the outside.
8). Watch spacing, get two sets too close and your life and finances may change......
9). Sometimes stacking multiple magnets makes for a better handle.
10). I wrapped mine in 180 grip paper and super glued it to the sides. Much easier to grip and pull apart.

Dave Collins has made many fixtures for using these with V's in them for clamping braces. I made a extension tool that holds a smaller magnet and let's it launch into position blind in the box by positioning the other small magnet on the outside of the box.... I use it for setting cleats and named it but the name is obscene so I can mention it here....

Hope this helps Connor, Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2017 1:20 pm 
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Koa
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Location: Durango CO
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Full battalion deployed yesterday.!!
The steel cups on the back (from Rockler?) of the magnets knock down the field on that end and really help manageability. Scary learning curve but game changingImageImage

Sent from my SM-J727V using Tapatalk


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