Fixing A Bridge on a guitar
Wednesday 11th of March 2009 01:07:11 PM
By: Jake Farey
See how to repair a broken or damaged bridge. Use our in-depth guide and little care to fix your bridge without resorting to expert attention.This guitar is a Gibson acoustic
Glue joins can fail for a number of different reasons. For a start, PVA and Aliphatic resin glues are not 'gap filling' substances, so if the two surfaces do not fit perfectly, they will not stay stuck together. There's 160lbs of tension on an acoustic bridge, and 160lbs is a lot – just think of a 12-stone adult hanging from a guitar bridge that's stuck to a wall. It's asking a lot of the glue!
The next reason for glue failure – and probably the most common – is changes in humidity and temperature. I've had a guitar workshop in the south of England for about 20 years and in that time I've probably had to reglue two bridges, but since opening a workshop in London, we're getting about two a week. The reason must be humidity. In the capital I struggle to keep the humidity in my workshop up to 38 per cent, which is pretty good for building in, but the humidity in the city regularly gets down to the very low 30s or even high 20s. As timber starts drying out, it starts to shrink across the grain. Bridges are stuck on across the grain, so if the soundboard shrinks and the bridge stays the same length, then something will give – and it's normally the join.
This a Gibson Roy Smeck from about 1936, a fine instrument made primarily for lap-style playing, though they can be converted to regular Spanish-style. They truly are lovely-sounding guitars. This one has a lifting bridge – you can clearly see the crack between the bridge and the soundboard – so we need to remove it and re-glue it. If left alone the bridge could pull off while under tension, which could smash the soundboard to pieces – and that normally can't be stuck back together. So we'll fix the bridge, and since this one's had its nut lowered (pointless, with no frets) we'll re-raise the action at the nut, and the Smeck will be able to be find its true role as a lap-style guitar once again.
See how to Fix a Bridge on any acoustic guitar. Use our in-depth guide to Fixing a broken bridge on a Gibson Acoustic without resorting to an expert.
Fixing a guitar bridge, Fixing a guitar bridge, removing a guitar bridge, removing a guitar sadle, fixing an acoustic guitars bridge, changing a guitar brdge
Read how to fix a bridge on a Guitar, This guitar is a Gibson acoustic.
1. Fixing A Bridge on a guitar
2. Fixing A Bridge on a guitar | Removing Saddle and Bridge
3. Fixing A Bridge on a guitar | Installing the Saddle and Bridge
4. Fixing A Bridge