early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
Mr.Rain
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early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:02 am

Hi all,

i was wondering what is the best solution to deal with adjusting an 1800s-early 1900 bridge without a bone?
would you be brave enough to lower the bridge or install a canal for a saddle?

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BTW would you remove the old repair (the 2 stitches) or cover them with a spruce verneer? or just leave it as it is?

what would you do regarding cleaning?
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do you think this is indian rosewood?
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:bye:

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Michael.N.
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Michael.N. » Sun Apr 01, 2018 11:06 am

Putting in a saddle will achieve nothing. Hard to tell going by the camera angle but there seems to be little in the way of string break over the bridge. I guess that it's a neck angle issue which can get pretty involved.
If those butterfly cleats are on the surface I'd remove them. If they are inlaid I would leave well alone.
The guitar has issues that could be costly to remedy to a good standard.
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Mr.Rain
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Sun Apr 01, 2018 12:38 pm

HI Michael
I was told the action is already 4.5mm in the bass side (wich i think is ok),and the neck is straight, was wondering if it was worthy to get a saddle install,or just leave it the way it is...

BTW do you think it is indian rosewood?

JohnH*
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by JohnH* » Tue Apr 03, 2018 4:48 pm

Looks like a lovely old guitar to me. And unless it's a priceless antique I would invest my own time and a few $ to refurbish it. A new bridge, plug (hardwood dowel) and re-drill the tuner holes in the peghead, and a careful refinish. I think the cleats in the top add character. I can't say if it's Indian Rosewood or not.
JohnH*
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Mr.Rain
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:29 pm

To me it is a guitar not a treasure :D

I think i would just fill the string pass wholes and redrill lower ones if necessary, also add a saddle to improve intonation and get some "margin" to play with the action. will see when the guitar arrives. A friend has one very similar (lovely guitar,with a bigger plantilla).

His is brazilian,not sure if this one is indian or brazilian (there was no distinction back in the day...)

Mr.Rain
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Tue Apr 10, 2018 8:43 pm

The guitar arrived. actually the action is 3mm, the former owner measured from the fretboard(+1.3mm of the frets). i think i would consider raising the action a bit(to that i guess i need a saddle)

The shellac in the back/sides is so thick/dirty i cannot see if it is indian or other type of RW (is clear is RW and it is clear it has to be cleaned).

The neck seems ok,it was refretted (till the 12th fret) with the right size of frets, the "butterflies" seem deep in the top wood,and the fretboard was painted (i think it should be cleaned and re-ryed as in other guitars of the period).I also found a crack in the top (near but not beside the fretboard),that was not in the description when i bought it.

The machine heads are still working but the plates are really rusty... (a real pity)

Soundwise it reminded me of the panormo copy i used to have (i tuned it to 415hz as it was nearly there when it arrived),i think i will put some nylgut once I sort the issues it has.
Last edited by Mr.Rain on Wed Apr 11, 2018 8:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Kent
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Kent » Tue Apr 10, 2018 8:49 pm

The tuners look like they were replaced back in 1934.
Looks like you could put a wooden dowel or a piece of round bone on top of the saddle valley to raise the strings to the desired level.

Mr.Rain
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Wed Apr 11, 2018 8:53 am

Kent wrote:
Tue Apr 10, 2018 8:49 pm
The tuners look like they were replaced back in 1934.
Looks like you could put a wooden dowel or a piece of round bone on top of the saddle valley to raise the strings to the desired level.
Thanks for the info, i knew the tuners were old but no idea about how old :mrgreen: .
I think I'll toy with the idea of adding a bone.

Mr.Rain
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:27 am

In the process of getting this guitar back to a proper shape, I started removing the paint from the fretboard and i realized that the fretboard is not rosewood.

As it was not missing material (like rosewood ones I have), I was wondering what wood I will find after shaving the paint.

It is a brown/grey looking wood, with a very tiny pore, and for sure hard (otherwise It wouldn't be in such a good condition).
I was thinking it may be some acacia wood (very hard) or it may be any of the woods called "brown ebony"

if anybody has any clue about the fretboard material in these Ibañez it would be nice (will try to post some picture later)

EDIT: AFAIK it is brown ebony, Maderas Barber told my buddy the same thing about a Julve guitar, the used 3rd class ebony...

Mr.Rain
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Thu May 10, 2018 1:31 pm

The Guitar is being restored right now, the varnish was a sticky paste(was advised to forget about it), so it will get a new finish(french polish).

Under the thick layers of sticky shellac there were many hidden surprises (the binding had several big bald spots,filled with goo, now rebuilt with verneers), other spots were missing material (headstock manily).

It still needs a fret job but will preserve the current non original 1.25 mm nickel frets(was willing to re-fret with brass frets but could only get 1.5mm)

Will also rebuild the original 189X case it came along with,putting a new velvet (the old one is tattered and falling apart)
Last edited by Mr.Rain on Fri May 11, 2018 1:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Michael.N.
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Michael.N. » Fri May 11, 2018 8:20 am

Be careful what people say. '3 rd class ebony' probably refers to the colour, it could be a perfectly good stable quartered piece of wood. On the other hand I've had '1 st class' very black ebony in which there was all manner of runout and nasty twisty grain. I know which I'd rather use for a fretboard and I'm certain which of the two is the more stable.
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Mr.Rain
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Fri May 11, 2018 8:27 am

Michael.N. wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 8:20 am
Be careful what people say. '3 rd class ebony' probably refers to the colour, it could be a perfectly good stable quartered piece of wood. On the other hand I've had '1 st class' very black ebony in which there was all manner of runout and nasty twisty grain. I know which I'd rather use for a fretboard and I'm certain which of the two is the more stable.
Yeah the categry is just based in the color,it has a nice grain(and it is quarter sawn ) so I will dye the fretboard and leave it as it is (as it is straight after more than 100 years) .The other option was to paint it as it was done back in the day,if the dyed fretboard doesn't convince me I can always paint it black :mrgreen:

BTW fixing small sections of bindings seems to be a pain...

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Michael.N.
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Michael.N. » Fri May 11, 2018 9:27 am

Indian ink makes a good black fretboard dye/stain. I've used it on modern oak. The vast majority of players woudn't be able to tell the difference from a foot away. Fill the grain and they'd have real problems, including me! I normally use bog oak which of course does not need dyeing but on experimental guitars I use modern oak dyed with Indian ink, as in the one below. The only 'problem' isn't so much the surface where the fingers contact but the edge of the fretboard. Dye/stain (any) won't penetrate very far into hardwoods like oak. Tiny bit of sanding and you are back to the natural oak colour which then means you are left with the issue of staining it without it getting the black onto the neck wood.
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Mr.Rain
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Fri May 11, 2018 1:17 pm

Will use some alcohol based leather dye i used before, it penetrates really deep into the wood (used it to dye verneers).
May apply a bit of shellac to the fretboard (as my other antique Valencian guitars have it)

Will try to string the guitar(ambra 800) before the shellac and see how it sounds.

May consider to add a shim to raise the "saddle-less" bride as the accion was under 3mm both sides, also may glue a strip of rosewood into each string "hole" to improve the string angle(there is some missing material as over 100 years of use took their toll in the bridge). Still it puzzles me how small is the string angle in all the Valencian antique guitars I have seen, leads me to think they were build with very little string angle


Regarding to the tuners, they are so rusted i will use some thin post tuner i had around while I think of some good "non expensive" replacements.
May consider to clean them with electrolysis as some weeks in vinegar did very little for them...

Mr.Rain
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Re: early 1900s ibanez without a saddle bone/ancient repair/cleaning etc

Post by Mr.Rain » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:52 am

The guitar is ready to get FP, got most of the other work done (frets are leveled,action is 3mm)..

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Little by little my collection of valencian guitars is growing (mostly Salvador Ibañez):
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the other little sister is near to playing condition (2mm action will have to raise it is too low for me!)

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Just got this one playing too (still will need a refret and fretboard job,but not bad considering one side had to be totally re-constructed...)
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