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[16 Jun 2010 | Comments Off on Martin Custom Bridge Replacement – Part 3: Final Fitting | 4,360 views]
Martin Custom Bridge Replacement – Part 3: Final Fitting

The third and last article in the story of the restoration of a pre-’34 Martin guitar with a broken bridge. The first two parts of the Martin Custom Bridge Replacement cover removal of the broken bridge and the carving of a replacement.
The first step in getting this replacement back on the guitar is ‘fitting’ it to the guitar top. Like many of us, over the years, pretty much all guitars gain a bigger belly. Under a lot of tension from the strings, changes occur in the wood of a guitar. …

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[14 Jun 2010 | Comments Off on Martin Custom Bridge Replacement – Part 2: Carve New Bridge | 5,054 views]
Martin Custom Bridge Replacement – Part 2: Carve New Bridge

This is second part of the story of replacing a broken bridge on a, rather lovely, pre-1934 Martin. This update is slightly tardy so feel free to catch up on part one (where we remove the broken bridge) first.
Done? All caught up? Splendid.
Now the broken bridge is off, this is how it all starts. You can see the removed bridge sitting on a block on Brazilian rosewood that will become its replacement. Brazilian rosewood is in extremely short supply and is very tightly controlled species as it was over-harvested for …

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[14 Dec 2009 | Comments Off on Martin Custom Bridge Replacement – Part 1: Bridge Removal | 5,382 views]
Martin Custom Bridge Replacement – Part 1: Bridge Removal

This is a bit special.  It’s a lovely, pre-war Martin.  Actually, it’s pre-1934 if you want to get a little more precise (but only a little) – it’s fitted with bar frets.
It’s been through the wars a little and has, at some stage in the past had a long side-crack repaired. That repair has lasted some time from the look of it and doesn’t overly concern me.
What is a concern, however, is the bridge.  The leading edge has cracked and broken off under string-tension.  The owner saved the piece that …

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[18 Nov 2009 | 3 Comments | 6,129 views]
Update: More On Gibson’s Brush With The Law

As noted in the last post, Gibson have had a brush with the law resulting in Federal agents seizing wood and instruments from Gibson Guitars’ Nashville plant.
It seems that they have also seized computers and records.
Musical Merchandise Review have some additional information on this and apparently, Gibson is under investigation for violating the Lacey Act for the importation of particular, endangered species of rosewood from Madagascar.  After a coup in January, the new president of Madagascar legalised the export of rosewood and ebony from his country. The president’s opinion on …

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[18 Nov 2009 | 2 Comments | 3,750 views]
It’s The Feds! Quick, Flush The Wood

Rather an odd piece of news this. Seems that federal agents raided Gibson’s guitar manufacturing plant in Nashville and seized guitars, wood and other items as evidence in a possible case of illegal use of restricted woods.
The use of some woods that are used in guitar-making is restricted and tightly controlled. For instance, it is almost impossible to properly source Brazilian rosewood (generally considered to be the most desirable) in any quantity. Restrictions exist on other tropical hardwoods and instrument-manufature tonewoods too.  It looks like the Feds …

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