Guitar Repair and Restoration
Bridge Reglue - Martin 000CXE
This is one of the newer Martin guitars featuring a top constructed of high
pressure laminate material (HPL). The guitar came in with the bridge beginning to
lift from the top. While the repair method is similar, the materials of construction
and adhesives used on these guitars require some different techniques to be
employed. This repair was a little more challenging due to the unique vinyl
graphics that had been added to the guitar and my desire to preserve them as
much as possible.
Martin uses a different adhesive
on these guitar bridges than what
is normally used on their
traditional line. Note how close the
graphics are located to the bridge.
A protective mask is used to
isolate the bridge and protect the
surrounding area of the top. The
one I used was actually cut for a
Guild 12 string.
Here I am applying heat to the
bridge which will transfer down and
help break the glue bond between
the bridge and top. The is a timed
operation where I am doing it in
short intervals and testing the glue
bond with a removal knife.
After about five minutes of
heating, the glue feels soft and
this bridge is ready for removal.
This bridge was a clean removal.
Notice how little glue residue is
present within the footprint of
where the bridge was. An
insufficient bond during assembly
was probably what led to the
failure of joint.
Prior to regluing the bridge I am
using a sharp chisel to remove any
old adhesive. The HPL material is not
as porous as typical raw spruce so
roughing up the mating surfaces will
aid the bond which will be made
using a two-part expoxy.
With the mating surfaces prepared
and epoxy added, I clamp the
bridge into place. Even though the
epoxy sets up fairly quickly, I'll
leave it clamped for 24 hrs.
Here's the completed repair. The
guitar is strung up to pitch and no
damage was done to the graphics
around the bridge. This is one is a
great sounding guitar with pretty
cool look to boot.
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Alvarez PD-85 Acoustic
A nasty injury occurred to the
bass side, just below the waist.
After applying glue, the hole is
closed and leveled using a clamp I
made to align the edges of the
Inside photo shows the internal
part of the clamp being pulled
against the side to help close the
Photo of damaged area after finish
View of final repair.