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 Post subject: Bridge pins split bridge
PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 4:34 pm 
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Cocobolo
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Last Name: Searl
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Somebody dropped this Fender acoustic off at the music store for me to take a look at.

Apparently the customers granddaughter didn't like how two of the mis-matched oversized bridge pins were sitting proud of the remaining four and forced them down to match. Which apparently cracked this bridge. The bridge plate looks good, and the guitar seems hydrated so I'm willing to bet that the big bridge pins are indeed the culprit.

My initial reaction is that to do this properly the bridge should be replaced, however this guitar is likely not worth the cost of that repair, and I bet the customer will ask me to simply glue it. If there is any value, even as a stop gap measure in simply
gluing the crack I'm open to that option, but if gluing the crack really is of no benefit I'm fine with turning the work away too.

I'll call the customer once I've had a good chance to make sure there's nothing else going on, and I've got my head around his options.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:22 pm 
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Cocobolo
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Joined: Sun Apr 25, 2010 4:46 pm
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First name: Mark
Last Name: McLean
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State: New South Wales
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Country: Australia
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Well I am not any kind of repair expert, so discard my comments if better informed ones come along. But this crack does not seem to have any structural implication. From what I can see it is limited to the area between the pin holes? If the bridge is well glued to the soundboard, and the bridge plate is OK, it is probably going to hold together just fine. It is really a cosmetic issue. Given the low value of the instrument it might be best just to fill the crack (CA or epoxy with ebony dust) and replace the pins with a new set of appropriate sized ones, and get her back on the road. This minimalist repair would do no damage. In the unlikely event that the crack later extends across the whole bridge a replacement could be done then (preferably without that crappy height-adjustable saddle hardware).


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:08 pm 
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Cocobolo
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Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2016 8:54 am
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State: Texas
Country: United States
Focus: Repair
Having dealt with this many times before on a myriad of cheapo asian (Fender included) made instruments here are some options for you.

1. Grind up some ebony dust and mix with Titebond, fill gap with the glue/ebony mix. Let it dry, and sand to blend,

2. Flood the gap with superglue, sand to blend, and polish. If you do it correctly this way it can come out almost invisible. This is not advised unless you can make some small dams to keep it from running everywhere.

3. Leave it alone. Sometimes they just work fine and eventually self destruct saving you the time and effort.

If that were mine, I'd go for the CA fix.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2018 8:19 am 
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Brazilian Rosewood
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Location: Magnolia DE
First name: Brian
Last Name: Howard
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I have fixed many like that by pulling them off, gluing and clamping them and regluing. Takes about 15-20 minutes longer than a lifting bridge typically.

IMHO gluing a crack without clamping it back together is feel good technology as it does nothing but cosmetic repair as it has no structural value. And in fact if some day down the line for whatever reason these guitars become worth anything you have completely hosed the next repair guy......

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These users thanked the author B. Howard for the post: fumblefinger (Fri Mar 09, 2018 11:22 pm)
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2018 9:15 pm 
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Koa
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I have wicked CA into cracks like that followed by lightly reaming the holes and they seem to be fine. Make sure the pins fit properly and instruct the owner that they don't need to be pushed tightly into the holes, it is the side pressure of the ball that holds them in place.

However on this guitar you might consider replacing the bridge just to get rid of that adjustable saddle thingie. Kill two birds at once.



These users thanked the author Freeman for the post: Conor_Searl (Tue Mar 13, 2018 11:19 pm)
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2018 11:20 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
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First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Amateur
Freeman wrote:
I have wicked CA into cracks like that followed by lightly reaming the holes and they seem to be fine. Make sure the pins fit properly and instruct the owner that they don't need to be pushed tightly into the holes, it is the side pressure of the ball that holds them in place.


Thanks Freeman, I talked the customer through his different options and wicking some thin CA into the cracks is the route we chose. He'll keep an eye on things, and if it gets worse we'll replace the bridge.



These users thanked the author Conor_Searl for the post: DanKirkland (Fri Mar 16, 2018 3:14 pm)
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