.: Restoration and Repair

Repair and restoration is an art in itself. I've learned to resist the urge to "improve" instruments after taking them apart. It's a tempting trap for a Luthier to fall into. Especially when it comes to replacing tops, braces*, bridges, backs, etc; where a repair or restoration would be in fact better. Conservation and not replacement is usually my approach, within reason and moderation. One thing I do try occasionally to improve is structural strength where there are no adverse acoustical considerations. An example of this is the often severely undersized tail blocks in the Greek Bouzouki. I do take them out and replace them with bigger blocks. The distortion at the back of the instrument warrants this; otherwise the tension eventually breaks or cracks the back or the top, or even both. Also, on a lot of Greek Bouzoukia, the outside, back and side clasps, which are added for strength, are sometimes so thin that I need to add an inner solid curfing to make up the lost thickness. On guitars (both repair and new construction), I have begun to add a flat graft (cross grain) under the fingerboard (on the underside of the top). This helps prevent the cracks to the soundboard (on the sides of the finger board) that almost inevitably will eventually develop otherwise.

*No, braces do not develop fatigue with time! If any complain that they do; I take them out, give them an all expenses paid vacation on the bench for a week and back in they go, to do their work even better than before! (It's another matter of course if they have broken, fractured, and lost their arching, etc).


.: Before and After

.: Thank you!

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