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FDP Forum / FDP Unplugged - Acoustic Instruments / Weighing DIY to fix cracks on Martin D15M

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tiller2
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Nov 6th, 2017 10:19 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

A couple more.

Crack 4

tiller2
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Nov 6th, 2017 10:20 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

But there are no cracks on the top, nor the back, and it looks kinda nice.

Martin D15M

Hammond101
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Nov 6th, 2017 10:26 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'd send it to a pro. Yes, the clamps etc. you will need to do it right will cost more than the actual repair would if you send it out I would thing.

That this is pretty. It's a shame it got beat around.

Peegoo
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Nov 6th, 2017 10:29 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Those are cosmetic cracks due to abuse; they're not structural. That's good, because the guitar can be tuned up and played with no risk of it imploding.

Also, they are all closed cracks. All of them are easily fixed by rubbing glue into the crack from both sides, and backing it (inside) with a small, thin cleat of spruce or other light, stiff wood, glued in with the cleat's grain running at 90 degrees to the guitar's mahogany grain.

It helps to first gently nudge the wood to get both sides of each crack flush with each other. If one side of the crack is depressed, try to pop it out without causing further damage.

The most difficult part of the repair is leveling, sanding, and filling the finish to conceal the repair as best you can. On a $400 guitar, it makes no sense to spend a chunk of $$ on a refin.

If that were my guitar, I'd glue and cleat the cracks, call it done, and play it with battle scars and all.

It's a $400 Martin. That's not too bad a deal!

Peegoo
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Nov 6th, 2017 10:32 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I see no need to apply clamps to close any of these cracks, because you'd have to crush the surrounding 'good' wood in order to close the crack.

All the cracks are small and short, and none run to a joint or glue line that I can see.

Chris Greene
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Nov 6th, 2017 10:33 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Where did you buy it that these cracks were unseen and undisclosed?

tiller2
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Nov 6th, 2017 10:39 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I confess I was dumb. It was in a very dimly lit apartment of a guy who was kinda down and out. He was nice and kept up a patter of conversation. I don't know why my critical brain wasn't on. I was also in hurry.

I'm glad there weren't higher stakes involved than $400 in disposable income; and the guitar is redeemable.

tiller2
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Nov 6th, 2017 10:43 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Yay Peegoo, a vote for devil-may-care DIY!

I'll see which way the repair estimate pushes me off the fence.

stratcowboy
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Nov 6th, 2017 12:57 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Maybe this is one of Martin's new "Road Worn" series. LOL...

Peegoo
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Nov 6th, 2017 01:49 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

It's not so much devil-may-care; it's being practical. The guitar cost you $400. New, it's $1100 or so. Repaired, it will be worth $600-$800 or thereabouts. If you dump a bunch of $$ into it to bring it up to the best shape possible, it would make more sense to sell it for whatever you can get for it and buy a new one.

The guitar will hold up fine and play and sound great with simple repairs.

Also, that guitar has a very thin satin finish on it; it's not a thick glossy surface. That thin finish makes concealing a repair much more difficult than on a glossy finish because it's thin to start with, and the grain is visible in reflected light. Unless it's completely stripped, sanded and refinished, spot repairs will be very hard to conceal.

On a thicker finish, it's easier to hide a spot repair: you build up the surface with clear finish to level out any surface irregularities in the repaired wood beneath.

If you want real devil-may-care:

1. Remove the strings.

2. Rub some Titebond II glue into the cracks, gently wipe off the excess with a slightly damp cloth, and let it dry overnight.

3. Apply some racing decals over the repaired areas to hide 'em.

4. Re-string it and play the devil out of it.

Example!

tiller2
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Nov 6th, 2017 02:02 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Thanks Peegoo. You suggest Titebond II because of its gap-filling property?

If I could gently squeeze the cracks closed, would hide glue be a valid option? Or Titebond I?



Peegoo
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Nov 6th, 2017 02:56 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I recommended Titebond II because of its extreme resistance to weakening due to moisture when cured. It's rated for exterior use.

That means you can use it in the cracks to bond and seal the wood. No need for a finish over it.

tiller2
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Nov 6th, 2017 04:48 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Good to know.

FYI to fix basic cracks, including finish touchups, Steve charges $15-$30 per inch, depending on the type & thickness of the finish. My repairs might run $210-$420.

(This message was last edited by tiller2 at 07:18 PM, Nov 6th, 2017)

Peegoo
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Nov 6th, 2017 06:04 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

If you're willing to spend the $$ for a pro repair, get a description of how he'll repair the finish. A good tech can cover their tracks well.

hushnel
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Nov 6th, 2017 07:09 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Once it’s all stabilized according to Peegoo’s recomendation take a high quality photo of the grain, then print a couple lazer printer water slide decals and slip them over the repair. Wipe down with Tru-Oil.

(This message was last edited by hushnel at 09:09 PM, Nov 6th, 2017)

tiller2
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Nov 6th, 2017 07:45 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

hushnel, you blow my mind :O

(This message was last edited by tiller2 at 09:45 PM, Nov 6th, 2017)

reverend mikey
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Nov 6th, 2017 08:06 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Do not...I repeat, DO NOT put racing decals on that beautiful old Martin! Peegoo, what are you thinkin' man?!

Hey, tiller2, you just bought yerself a 20 year old Martin for $400 - congratulations! It should be well seasoned and broken in already... and the wood may be higher quality than what they're using on these now.

I say follow Peegoo's other advice - use some TB II glue on it and call it a day.

Still ... hard to miss some of those cracks - you really were in a hurry!

Peegoo
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Nov 6th, 2017 08:10 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Har!

Hey, tiller2 is the one that brought up devil-may-care, not me!

tiller2
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Nov 7th, 2017 07:07 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Yeah, rev, I impress myself sometimes...

I will indeed take a crack at fixing this thing; I'll use Peegoo's method, but I'm also considering heavy magnets from Stew Mac to clamp on cleats I'd make from a piece of mahogany I have. Might as well learn something new.

I'll take my time and tackle the easiest cracks first. I might outsource the crack with the dent, or not.


Peegoo
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Nov 7th, 2017 07:20 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Those 'crack repair magnets' at Stooge Mac are plain ol' neo mags that are a bog standard part.

You can get them much cheaper from Amazon or Fleabay.

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FDP Forum / FDP Unplugged - Acoustic Instruments / Weighing DIY to fix cracks on Martin D15M




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