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Fingerboard and Top Seam Reglue on the Regal Tenor Guitar

Final couple of fixes on the Regal tenor before I do the neck reset.

The fingerboard on is separating from the neck near the nut.

Should be an easy fix.

The separation is so large that I can easily slip my removal spatula into the joint. I can slide it down to about the 3rd fret or so.

I need to be able to get glue into the whole joint.

Originally I figured I'd inject hot glue into the joint, but then it occurred to me that I could also spread glue onto the spatula and then slide that back into the joint and get glue down into the tighter end that way. Then I can inject glue into the wider opening.

Here we have the spatula covered with glue about to go into the open joint.

And I hit it from the other side as well.

Imagine how hard this would be if the neck wasn't clamped up in the amazing guitar vise. I'd be chasing it all over the workbench.

Then I injected hide glue into the larger opening nearest the nut. I injected almost all of the glue you see in the syringe.

Pressed the joint down, wiped off as much excess glue as I could, and then clamped it up.

Here we see the fingerboard clamped up...or actually down.

The caul under the neck is one I made a while back for just this sort of job. I have a box full of semi-custom cauls now, and it's great to just be able to find one that works without having to make another one.

Another angle of the clamped-down fingerboard.

Two cauls under the neck and one on top, with 2 bar clamps.

After the glue is dry, I have some squeeze-out to clean up. I'm actually glad to see some, because that means there was plenty of glue in the joint. I don't want this thing to come apart!

The last fix is to reglue the center seam on the top. From what I can see, the split isn't all the way through, but it is separating.

You can see the separation after I put the brace jack under the top and raised it a bit to open the seam to get glue into it. You could also use one hand to press open the joint or crack from inside - I've done that - but that's more awkward. With a jack, both hands are freed up to work on the repair.

This is pretty common on older acoustic guitars. It probably causes the owner a lot of consternation, but it's easily repairable. The top was originally made from 2 halves glued together in the middle, and in essence, we're just doing that again.

I had to work quickly before the hot glue began to gel (set), so I didn't get in-process pictures. But I'll describe what I did and you can use your imagination to visualize it.

With the seam opened, I spread hot glue with a brush into the seam. Then I lowered the jack inside the body, and moved it out of the way. The seam mostly closed at that point.

Then I wiped the excess glue off, and clamped the seam flat as you see here.

There's another caul inside the body. Using 2 clamps puts nice even pressure on the joint. I use waxed paper on this kind of repair so the caul doesn't stick to the guitar!

The finished repair. You can press down on it and it doesn't open up, and it looks good.

One thing you may notice on spruce tops like these is that the two bookmatched sides look like they're different shades of color - one appears darker than the other. In this picture, the left side looks darker.

That effect is because of the way the grain fibers run - one half of the top runs one direction parallel to the grain, and the other half runs the opposite direction. The way the light is reflected off each side makes one look darker than the other depending on the angle you view it from.

Now that those repairs are done, I can do the calculation for how much material to remove from the heel and get the actual reset started.


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