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  #1  
Old 10-28-2017, 08:22 AM
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Muddy-T Muddy-T is offline
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Default Gently Weeping For My Guitar

Walked into my room this morning only to find my Takamine 12 string in a very sad state indeed.

The bridge has split off entirely, the bottom part still attached to the top, the upper half lying next to it on the floor.

While not quite a top notch instrument this baby has served me well for nearly seventeen years, used it on a score of albums and on many, many live performances.

To quote a well known orange person; "#Sad!"

T
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  #2  
Old 10-28-2017, 08:51 AM
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Default Re: Gently Weeping For My Guitar

I feel your pain, guitarists have a strange love for their instruments

I’m sure you know a great luthier who can bring her back to life....
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  #3  
Old 10-28-2017, 09:44 AM
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Default Re: Gently Weeping For My Guitar

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Originally Posted by YYR123 View Post
I feel your pain, guitarists have a strange love for their instruments

I’m sure you know a great luthier who can bring her back to life....
Thanks for your sympathy Daniel, I appreciate it.

While I'm quite comfortable doing set up, mechanical, electrical and minor woodwork repairs myself this is a job for a skilled professional.

Unfortunately the one guy I would trust to do this job properly has recently retired.

T
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  #4  
Old 10-28-2017, 09:49 AM
amagras amagras is online now
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Default Re: Gently Weeping For My Guitar

There are still songs inside that guitar, use your local classifieds/guitar forum to find a good luthier in town who can fix it.
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  #5  
Old 10-28-2017, 10:52 AM
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Default Re: Gently Weeping For My Guitar

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Originally Posted by amagras View Post
There are still songs inside that guitar, use your local classifieds/guitar forum to find a good luthier in town who can fix it.
Yeah, I'm working on it Andrei. This is not going to be a simple reset and re-glue job though (I could probably do that myself) the bridge is destroyed and can't be replaced by a common string-thru-top design bridge, Takamine has their own proprietary bridge design so repairs will have to be made with either a donor guitar, a new replacement bridge from Japan or a custom made one.

I haven't decided yet if it'll be worth the expense.

T
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  #6  
Old 10-29-2017, 05:16 AM
musicman691 musicman691 is offline
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Default Re: Gently Weeping For My Guitar

Quote:
Originally Posted by Muddy-T View Post
Yeah, I'm working on it Andrei. This is not going to be a simple reset and re-glue job though (I could probably do that myself) the bridge is destroyed and can't be replaced by a common string-thru-top design bridge, Takamine has their own proprietary bridge design so repairs will have to be made with either a donor guitar, a new replacement bridge from Japan or a custom made one.

I haven't decided yet if it'll be worth the expense.

T
Let's assume considering what you've said about using it for all those years & recordings it fits you perfectly for both physical and audio and you love the sound. A lot of that sound is in the age of the instrument and to find anything close to it in a new instrument or even just another could be a long journey. For my money I'd get it fixed. It might not be considered a top-notch axe but it works for you. Case point - Willie Nelson just had StewMac do repairs on Trigger (that iconic acoustic he plays). It's HIS sound just as the Tak is yours. If you want to branch out into another sound then that's cool but if you can find a luthier that will do the job & do it excellently then get it done.

I have to wonder though what caused this to happen? I doubt it was age alone - large humidity change? Did you change strings lately and possibly to a different brand/type/gauge?

I've been doing my own luthier-type work and it's real easy to muck it up.
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  #7  
Old 10-29-2017, 08:24 AM
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Default Re: Gently Weeping For My Guitar

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Originally Posted by musicman691 View Post
Let's assume considering what you've said about using it for all those years & recordings it fits you perfectly for both physical and audio and you love the sound. A lot of that sound is in the age of the instrument and to find anything close to it in a new instrument or even just another could be a long journey. For my money I'd get it fixed. It might not be considered a top-notch axe but it works for you. Case point - Willie Nelson just had StewMac do repairs on Trigger (that iconic acoustic he plays). It's HIS sound just as the Tak is yours. If you want to branch out into another sound then that's cool but if you can find a luthier that will do the job & do it excellently then get it done.
I follow StewMac's YT channel (among others) and he certainly did a fantastic job on Trigger. Although I'm convinced Willie has perfectly valid reasons to stick to that tired old 'War Horse' come hell or high water, it doesn't quite work like that for me.

Over the years I have learned not to get too attached to mere objects, whether gear, cars, amps or favorite instruments at the end of the day they are all 'just' tools and can be replaced.

I'm also old enough to have learned my 'sound' is mostly 'me' and not any specific instrument or other piece of kit.

I'm convinced I can walk into any music store and find at least one guitar that will work for me.

If I can find someone to fix the Tak that'll be great, but not at any and all cost.

Which brings us to the proverbial "64GB question";

Quote:
I have to wonder though what caused this to happen? I doubt it was age alone - large humidity change? Did you change strings lately and possibly to a different brand/type/gauge?
It hasn't been on the road for at least a year. Kept at room temperature (20C) humidity at a normal and stable 60/70%. Strings are regular medium light Martins, always tuned down at least a half step. Haven't changed them since the last time I gigged with it.

Last used it just a week or two ago to record a scratch 'Faux Mandolin' part. Not a single indication of anything going awry. No bulge/dip of the cedar top, no string buzz, no wobbly neck. No indication of a crack developing. Nothing.

I remember hearing the distinct little 'ping' of a string setting or stretching the night before but, with over a dozen instruments in the room that is neither a particularly rare or worrying occurrence.

I guess there must have always been a flaw in the rosewood of the bridge and it just took eighteen years to finally suddenly and catastrophically fail.

I've trawled the interwebs for a bit to see if anyone has reported a similar problem but sofar came up with zilch results.

I also wrote to Takamine head office in Japan and included some pictures. See how that turns out.



Quote:
I've been doing my own luthier-type work and it's real easy to muck it up.
I've been there and done that Jack!

T
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  #8  
Old 10-29-2017, 09:33 AM
octatonic octatonic is offline
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Default Re: Gently Weeping For My Guitar

I build and repair acoustic guitars.
This can and does happen without neglect or misuse.
Wood is an organic material and pieces often have imprecations that are impossible to know until something happens.

The bridge can be replaced- it is a non-trivial bit of work and that bridge shape is not one I think you can buy ready made.

A skilled repairer will be able to make a replacement and fit it.
I'd charge about £200-300 for a job like that, including a finish repair so it looks seamless.
If a replacement can be found premade then you are looking closer to £100-150.
If it is a poly finish then it is more difficult to do seamlessly, rather than nitro or oil which can more easily be blended.

If this is a budget guitar then it is probably cheaper in the long run to replace the guitar.
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  #9  
Old 10-29-2017, 11:12 AM
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Default Re: Gently Weeping For My Guitar

^ Thank you for that Octatonic. Pretty much in line with my own assessment.

I can't remember exactly but I think I paid something in the order of 800 bucks for it. Old money, pre €uro days.

I've seen them on offer in various conditions for 300 up to 600 €/$ on on-line market places.

T
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Last edited by Muddy-T; 10-29-2017 at 11:14 AM. Reason: Punctuation
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  #10  
Old 10-29-2017, 11:58 AM
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mjslakeridge mjslakeridge is offline
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Default Re: Gently Weeping For My Guitar

If you don't care how the finished repair job looks, you can buy a replacement bridge like this one:

https://www.allparts.com/GB-0851-0RF...ge_p_1598.html

You would have to carefully measure the position of the current saddle and position the replacement so the saddle is in exactly the same location, so you have the same scale length. Removing the remaining broken saddle with a hand plane and maybe a razor blade tool (like the ones use to remove paint from windows, I don't know exactly what they are called). Then you could use epoxy or wood glue and a couple of clamps to secure it. May not be pretty, but the guitar would be functional again, as opposed to useless now.
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