Finish Dings

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments

Finish Dings

Post by patricio » Sat Jan 27, 2007 7:34 am

I recently took an old guitar (1969) to my luthier. He was going to work on the buzz near the nut on the 4th string and remove some tap plate adhesive near the sound hole, also work on some dings on the top.

He managed to take the buzz out and the excess glue is totally gone.

The largest ding on the top was filled and buffed with some kind of spot laquer and looks great! You can still see the mark beneath the finish, but the repair is totally flush to the original finish.

I asked him how he did that, but he was reluctant to answer (he started speaking in his native language).

What's this secret? and can i do this myself?


Post by Sasquatch51 » Sat Jan 27, 2007 1:35 pm

This depends entirely on the finish. There is no one method that works with all finishes. Some dings (depending on the finish) can be filled with cyanoacrylate and buffed, but it will react badly with some finishes. Some finishes you can fill with a little clear polyurethane and buff....some require other techniques and with some finishes, you are better off just living with the dings.


Post by ljerams » Sun Jan 28, 2007 4:54 pm

With a guitar of that age, the finish is probably an early type of polyurethane or varnish although it could be french polish which was much more common in those days.

Unless you have some knowledge of these finishes and expertise, it would be best to leave well alone.

John O

Post by John O » Sun Jan 28, 2007 5:45 pm

John Gilbert used to use a soldering iron and a damp cloth to "steam out" deep dings. Obviously, extreme care must be taken!


Post by zinsmeis » Sun Jan 28, 2007 10:33 pm

Here's a thought: Some dings add character to a vintage guitar. If they are all repaired, the character is diminished.

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