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Gluing New Bridge Plate on Martin Guitar

It took quite a few hours of effort spread over two weeks to get the old bridge plate off the Martin 12-string.  Ironically, it only took a few minutes to get the new one glued up.

I didn't have any clamps deep enough to hold the new plate in place while the glue dried, so I bought several from a well-known lutherie supplier in Ohio.  I've been putting off buying clamps, since they're relatively expensive, but I'm glad I finally got some proper ones.  These are fantastic.

You can see the two plates I made in the top right of the picture.  The one on the right is the first attempt - it would have been ok but I decided to make a second version with slightly more area toward the end of the guitar - a little more gluing area.  That's the one that went on the guitar.

I used hide glue to attach the new maple plate.  If anyone ever needs to take this plate off (doubtful), it will come off EASILY, unlike the old huge rosewood original.

The new clamps worked perfectly.  I used a big piece of Lexan as a caul, and I also put some weight on the top to hold it down flat.

The top actually has virtually no bellying, which is surprising to me given that this is a 42 year old 12-string guitar.

Obligatory mirror shot of the inside of the guitar with the clamps in place.

Here's the new plate after the glue has dried.  I didn't use a caul underneath, so there are a couple of marks from the clamps.  No big thing.  There was no way I could get a caul in there easily - I was more concerned about getting the plate in place quickly once I had glue on it.

The plate's a nice tight fit, and it's firmly attached to the guitar.  Finally!



The Complete Martin Guitar Restoration Saga
Restoration begins
Repairing heel break
DIY chisel for bridge plate removal
DIY bridge plate removal iron, Pt.1
DIY bridge plate removal iron, Pt.2
Steam removal of bridge plate
Bridge plate removed
Tongue brace removal
Crack repair and brace scallop
New bridge plate Pt. 1
New bridge plate Pt. 2 (This page)
Patching hole in top
Final fitting of top patch
Installing carbon fiber rod
Fret removal
Fingerboard crack repair, Pt. 1
Fingerboard crack repair, Pt. 2
DIY fret bender tool
Refretting Pt. 1
Refretting Pt. 2
Tuner shaft repair
Neck reset - dovetail fitting
Measuring neck set with DIY jig
Gluing the neck with hide glue
Tortoloid Pickguard
Fitting bridge pins
Brace reglue
Making bone saddle
Making a buffalo horn nut
Restoration completed

 
 
 
 

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