I have a classical guitar on which the strings pulled the bridge off
the soundboard. The bridge actually split with half remaining on the
soundboard and the other half pulled off by the strings. Is this a
repair that I can do? This guitar is a very basic beginners one and
I'd like to do it myself. An tips on how to do this successfully?
I'm no luthier or instrument repairman, but I think you can do it.
De-string the broken bridge, and "dry-fit" it back onto the part that
remained on the soundboard. See how good the fit is. Don't sand or
smooth either part. If you can get a good, clean, dry fit with
almost invisble seams, that's good.
Then it's just a matter of getting the same fit with glue. I'd
recommend a good quality yellow glue (e.g. Titebond II), or maybe
epoxy. You'll have to find some way to apply some clamping pressure
(maybe a baggie of sand, or a clamp with enough reach to make it work
through the soundhole).
There's bona-fide luthiers here somewhere that can discredit me, I'm
Didn't think that you needed a super-u-beaut glue for a bridge as it is
under downward pressure which would hold it.
I have a guitar which I broke the bridge about 45 years ago, stuck a couple
of matches under the strings and the thing still plays well, even though I
While I wouldn't do a valuable instrument for my first try, this is
certainly within the skill range of intermediate woodworkers. Get
thee to a library and pick up a book on acoustic guitar repair. This
is probably one of the most common repairs. You can most likely buy a
suitable replacement bridge or make your own (although you'll need a
tapered reamer for the peg holes). You'll need a few long reach
clamps to clamp the bridge in place while glue sets.
If the split was clean, you may have success just gluing it; I'd try
Bridge should release by heating it with a clothes iron and
carefully prying it loose with a thin table or putty knife. Scrape
off all remaining glue and reglue it with hot horse glue if it's a
decent instrument, yellow glue if it's anything less. Avoid
epoxy. Glues used on musical instruments are chosen
for their reversibility.
Be sure to mark the bridge location before removing it
to guarantee it goes back to the same place. Laying
strips of masking tape around it works well. If you're
lucky, the finish will have broken at the bridge perimeter,
marking the location for you. Slight misalignment can
be compensated by refiling the string notches to correct
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