Studio with broken headstock - repair myself or send off

22tactical

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Just bought this broken headstock studio. Looking for a player and not super concerned about the cosmetics. As a novice should i attempt to repair this or should i send it somewhere? Any ideas on what this repair will cost if someone else does it?








 

Barnaby

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I've done a few of these now. That's an easy repair as long as you are careful, take plenty of time and plan the process carefully. I'd do it with shaped cauls and clamping.

However - and it's a big however - if you get it wrong, then you will have turned a relatively simple repair job into a nightmare that will cost a fortune to fix up.

There also seems to be a bit missing on the side, so you might need to make a patch for that unless you (a) have the piece or (b) don't mind a rough section there. Still, that might be camera angle.
 

Zentar

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If you have clamps and proper glue that looks like a good shade tree luthier job. Heck, LPs break so often you should go ahead and learn how to fix runout breaks.
 

Barnaby

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As to how much it would cost if someone else did it, I really can't say for sure, but imagine that just getting the headstock glued up would not be too prohibitive. Where it could get pricier is in the refinishing.

Something like this can be repaired to be virtually invisible. I've done at least one that most people would not notice unless they were told it was there. That means more than just a spot refinish, however - you have to do at least the whole neck.

One last point - I suggest strongly that you try not to work the crack back and forth to see how it fits. That tends to bend, distort and crush the fibres inside, making the surfaces less likely to mate well when gluing. It's best to leave it alone until you actually apply the glue and clamping pressure.
 

Caretaker

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About $200-250 to get a GOOD repair done.

If you are interested someone here was looking to buy broken headstock guitars.
 

22tactical

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As to how much it would cost if someone else did it, I really can't say for sure, but imagine that just getting the headstock glued up would not be too prohibitive. Where it could get pricier is in the refinishing.

Something like this can be repaired to be virtually invisible. I've done at least one that most people would not notice unless they were told it was there. That means more than just a spot refinish, however - you have to do at least the whole neck.

One last point - I suggest strongly that you try not to work the crack back and forth to see how it fits. That tends to bend, distort and crush the fibres inside, making the surfaces less likely to mate well when gluing. It's best to leave it alone until you actually apply the glue and clamping pressure.
I was thinking I would remove the tuners and see how close it was ... Then test a clamp. I was hoping I could find a cheap les Paul clamping jig but so far I haven't found anything.
 

fumblefinger

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Do some searching here. There are some masters within the fold.

If you're not concerned with appearance, it might not be too bad. From looking at the pics my concern would be the crack that is perpendicular to the headstock face, but hasn't gone through the overlay completely. That may be tough to get glue into. Other than that, this looks similar to this one. Fixing a broken Gibson headstock - Strange Guitarworks

Here are some links from our own crew.
http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/luthiers-corner/222412-headstock-crack-repair.html
http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/custom-shop/278972-headstock-neck-break-repair-another-thread.html
http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/luthiers-corner/167230-1952-les-paul-headstock-repair.html

And for good measure I've attached a couple of shots of the simple jig I use and one in clamps. Remember, Titebond I is your friend.

Good luck!
 

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ggwatt

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Where are you located? There is a very good chance someone here with experience would be willing to help you with this.
 

22tactical

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Do some searching here. There are some masters within the fold.

If you're not concerned with appearance, it might not be too bad. From looking at the pics my concern would be the crack that is perpendicular to the headstock face, but hasn't gone through the overlay completely. That may be tough to get glue into. Other than that, this looks similar to this one. Fixing a broken Gibson headstock - Strange Guitarworks

Here are some links from our own crew.
http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/luthiers-corner/222412-headstock-crack-repair.html
http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/custom-shop/278972-headstock-neck-break-repair-another-thread.html
http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/luthiers-corner/167230-1952-les-paul-headstock-repair.html

And for good measure I've attached a couple of shots of the simple jig I use and one in clamps. Remember, Titebond I is your friend.

Good luck!
Thanks. Will review these threads.
 

David Mccarroll

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Without trying to sound nasty, general rule of thumb would be, if you have to ask whether you should try this repair or send it out, the answer is send it out.

I have to assume the $200 - $250 quotes include retouching the finish - if you just want a good solid glued repair, then I'd suspect you'd be looking at a lot less than that.

If you DO want to do the repair, read up as much as you can, be prepared, have everything you need at hand, do as many dry runs as you need to until you know you can make the join as good as possible and not panic in the process; professional repairers please chip in here, but don't even think about using hide glue; Franklin Titebond is the ONLY glue you should be contemplating for this repair - have a look on StewMac's website for tools, supplies and info - that is a rare pleasure in any case!

A Les Paul Studio is not an enormously expensive guitar, but still a good instrument, and deserves to be fixed properly.
 

22tactical

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Without trying to sound nasty, general rule of thumb would be, if you have to ask whether you should try this repair or send it out, the answer is send it out.

I have to assume the $200 - $250 quotes include retouching the finish - if you just want a good solid glued repair, then I'd suspect you'd be looking at a lot less than that.

If you DO want to do the repair, read up as much as you can, be prepared, have everything you need at hand, do as many dry runs as you need to until you know you can make the join as good as possible and not panic in the process; professional repairers please chip in here, but don't even think about using hide glue; Franklin Titebond is the ONLY glue you should be contemplating for this repair - have a look on StewMac's website for tools, supplies and info - that is a rare pleasure in any case!

A Les Paul Studio is not an enormously expensive guitar, but still a good instrument, and deserves to be fixed properly.
Several people have mentioned titebond so thats what i will order.
 

MuellerID

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DIY. It's not difficult. I used 4000 PSI epoxy from the local hardware store on the last one I did (Loctite product, I think). Blue tape around the crack so the epoxy doesn't get everywhere. Also, make sure you get the epoxy way up in to the crack with a toothpick or something. Clamp it, wipe off the squeeze out, and then use an exacto to gently scrape the sharp ridge when it dries. Then wet sand wit 600 grit or so.

The only reason you'd want to pay somebody to do that job is if they could make it perfect, as if it never happened. On a cheap guitar, this is totally unnecessary.
 

fumblefinger

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DIY. It's not difficult. I used 4000 PSI epoxy from the local hardware store on the last one I did (Loctite product, I think).
Of course if you use epoxy and the headstock slips, or isn't positioned exactly, you're SOL. Even if you can heat it up enought to get the epoxy to release, it will have soaked into the wood and make any attempt at a reglue difficult, if not impossible. To say nothing about what that amount of heat will do to the surrounding finish.

Even the pros who do dozens of these won't risk epoxy or CA. Stick with Titebond I.
 

David Mccarroll

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DIY. It's not difficult. I used 4000 PSI epoxy from the local hardware store on the last one I did (Loctite product, I think). Blue tape around the crack so the epoxy doesn't get everywhere. Also, make sure you get the epoxy way up in to the crack with a toothpick or something. Clamp it, wipe off the squeeze out, and then use an exacto to gently scrape the sharp ridge when it dries. Then wet sand wit 600 grit or so.

The only reason you'd want to pay somebody to do that job is if they could make it perfect, as if it never happened. On a cheap guitar, this is totally unnecessary.
Epoxy is a terrible choice - at the very least it is utterly undoable if you screw it up, at the worst epoxy is simply a poor adherent for wood, sorry, you needed to do a bit more research before doing this - if it worked out fine, all good to you, if it hadn't your repair guy would have charged you double to undo what you had attempted before he/she could actually fix the break.
 

David Mccarroll

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You don't need a clamping jig by the way - both the front and back face are flat - you have no compound angles or odd forces to deal with - it's a compression glue joint - especially with the headstock veneer still intact as far as it looks - so the pieces kind of can't fall out of alignment - you are just applying compression at 90 degrees to the fracture to squeeze the surfaces together, that's all - luthiers - please jump in if you feel I am wrong here.
 

22tactical

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I ordered glue for my repair. I have been trying a few trial fiittings and clamp positions. Its not quite the seamless crack i was hoping for but im afraid to remove too much material.









 




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