Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Weissenborn ukulele repair - Pt. 3

Part 3 - Repair continued.

Most of the repairs in Pt. 2 are standard and straight out of repair 101. The back brace however, was more of an issue;

 Here you can see the old repair job in attempt to stabilize the brace, hide glue was simply applied in a no doubt well meaning but ultimately useless repair.

Brace removed.

 Brace crack re-glued.

Before the brace is re-glued in place, the old glue squeeze out had to be removed from where the brace would actually sit to insure a good joint. The old squeeze out surrounding the brace was left in place since there is no way to cleanly remove that without either abrasion or chemical treatment. Those always leave a slight trace either by texture, look or smell, and I try to keep their use limited to removing modern synthetic glues. I wanted to preserve the original interior look, and its story.

Its difficult to appreciate from the above pictures but the strong curve in that back brace takes a lot of pressure to force the back into its pronounced arch. The ukulele was in mostly original condition and I did not want to remove its back for this procedure with all the associated risks to tone. However, no matter how hard I tried I could not get that brace to tuck into its original position without popping out of its small incision in the linings.

On our weekly catch up Steve Evans of Beltona fame suggested small blocks be glued to the linings to provide the support for the brace to be glued. Once the glue was dry, they could then be removed and the back could remain in place. And so - it is these small spruce blocks (one on either side) that took this from a typical repair to a truly great one. Many thanks Steve!

Completed brace re-installation with blocks removed.

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