String snapped and made a mark

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
User avatar
Adrian Allan
Posts: 1082
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 9:56 am

String snapped and made a mark

Post by Adrian Allan » Mon Jun 19, 2017 6:49 am

I opened the guitar case this morning to find that this had happened. The strings are carbon high tension.

Is there any point in repairing it, and what precautions should I take in future?
image1 (2).JPG
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
D'Ammassa Spruce/Spruce Double Top

User avatar
bacsidoan
Posts: 2361
Joined: Sun May 10, 2009 1:59 am

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by bacsidoan » Mon Jun 19, 2017 10:18 am

Did the string really snap or slip?
If the string just slip then you just have to learn to tie a more secure knot for the carbon E-string.
If the string broke then check to see any sharp edge on the saddle and the tie block, including the holes and the bone protecting plate.
Usually, the string snaps at the saddle edge, but this rarely causes any mark on the soundboard. The mark is more commonly due to the whipping action as the string slips.

User avatar
tormodg
Posts: 375
Joined: Sun May 11, 2014 11:13 am
Location: Oslo, Norway

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by tormodg » Mon Jun 19, 2017 10:20 am

Welcome to the club! :)
2017 Yngvar Thomassen spruce
1994 Alhambra 6P (cedar, battered, broken and repaired)
+ various steel string and electric guitars

Sold: 2014 Alhambra Linea Profesional (spruce)

simonm
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 6577
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2009 10:22 am
Location: Germany, Würzburg. Spain, IB

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by simonm » Mon Jun 19, 2017 10:30 am

To protect the top you can get a little bit of plastic that adheres with electrostatic attraction. Check either in a guitar shop or online, should be easy to find.

Did the string break or slip? Carbons seem to have a tendency to slip. If it broke then check if there is a sharper edge on the saddle/bridge or nut depending on which end it snapped at. It is a very small ding so the question could be whether a fix will improve it or make it worse. Depending on the finish it might be possible to make it less visible.


edit. I see bacsidoan had the same question.
my only ding so far was a slipping carbon on a nearly finished guitar. Much worse than yours.

Keith
Posts: 1250
Joined: Sun May 06, 2012 5:48 pm
Location: Land of Daniel Boone

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by Keith » Mon Jun 19, 2017 10:45 am

repair: the ding is so small and a "touch up" is likely to show so it might be best to leave it. consider it a "battle wound".

prevention: I have found taking 220 grit sandpaper to the last two inches or so of the string to rough it up helps. the design of a 12 hole bridge does not lend itself well to "locking down" trebles, especially the high e string and having a rough surface area where the string over laps itself may help. bass strings lock down much better in part because they have, relatively speaking, a rough surface.

I do not play carbon strings but from what I gather they are slicker than nylon so a little roughing up may help. I see you already melt a ball at the end which is good but the balls are touching the overlapping string which suggests the string may be sliding as you bring it up to pitch. Roughing up the ends will not affect the sound if the rough area is only in the tie block section.

A strip of plastic sheet (golpeador material) will help to prevent any string dings.

Note: I noticed the strings are coming out of the bass end side hole of the two tie holes for the strings. I may be incorrect on this one but I thought the string should come out of the treble end hole--or better yet, the lower of the two holes. It could mean on my guitar the lower hole is on the treble side. If, on your guitar, the lower of the two holes for tying is on the bass side then disregard.
be true to the one you love but have many flings with different guitars

guitarras en la espiritu de la:
Marcelo Barbero
Jose Ramirez III

User avatar
SeanWinkler
Posts: 721
Joined: Mon Sep 29, 2008 5:30 pm
Location: Massachusetts

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by SeanWinkler » Mon Jun 19, 2017 12:09 pm

I started a thread a while back looking for an informal poll on this phenomenon:
http://www.classicalguitardelcamp.com/v ... &p=1053522

I'm curious whether it's more common with 12-hole tie blocks vs. 6-hole, and carbon strings vs. nylon. Based on the limited and unscientific sampling I've done, seems to be much more prevalent with 12-hole tie blocks. Which makes me wonder what the advantages might be of that design.
Remember Anthony Weller, please help. Contact myself or Aaron Green for details.

Jack Douglas
Posts: 1210
Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2015 2:37 am
Location: Ashland, Va

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by Jack Douglas » Mon Jun 19, 2017 12:20 pm

Hi Adrian,

My previous guitar, also a 12 hole tie block, had a discreet piece of plastic behind the tie block and not a single mark in the top from string slipping. As the other folks stated carbon is very slippery and when I used carbon, mainly a third string I always added an extra loop for that one string because I had carbon slipping and making a ding on another guitar. So, with carbon, I suggest extra loops behind the tie block. Sanding the ends sounds like a good idea, but I've never tried that. If I were you I would look into the small permanent piece of plastic since you use Hard tension carbon strings.
The ding is your badge of experience reminder.
Tie well!
Jack
:casque:
Hauser III 2014!

User avatar
zupfgeiger
Posts: 1827
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2012 12:12 pm
Location: Wezembeek-Oppem, Belgium

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by zupfgeiger » Mon Jun 19, 2017 12:51 pm

Carbon is prone to slipping. I had it some years ago. Since that day I secure the trebles with a knot. It never happened again.
The secret of getting ahead is getting started (Mark Twain)

Tobias Braun, Santos copy, spruce/yew, 2017
Andrea Tacchi, Enrique Garcia model, Spruce/BRAZ, 2016
Giovanni Tacchi, Daniel Friederich copy, cedar/EIR, 2017

Pete Beer
Luthier
Posts: 135
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 10:39 am
Location: Argyll, Scotland

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by Pete Beer » Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:21 pm

It could be worth repairing if it it deep enough.

I have just repaired a guitar which picked up an especially deep string ding which the owner left unrepaired. Nine years later, a crack formed starting from that ding. Feeling on the inside, the original ding had pushed fibres out all the way through the top. If your's is not too deep it may be ok.

Twelve hole bridges may be more prone to this in that many players don't seem to know how to tie them. Carbon strings are definitely more prone.

Pete

Gary Macleod
Posts: 961
Joined: Sat Aug 30, 2014 10:13 am
Location: Edinburgh

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by Gary Macleod » Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:53 pm

I melt the end of the string to form a ball which stops the slipping.

User avatar
Adrian Allan
Posts: 1082
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 9:56 am

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by Adrian Allan » Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:03 pm

Pete Beer wrote:
Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:21 pm
It could be worth repairing if it it deep enough.

I have just repaired a guitar which picked up an especially deep string ding which the owner left unrepaired. Nine years later, a crack formed starting from that ding. Feeling on the inside, the original ding had pushed fibres out all the way through the top. If your's is not too deep it may be ok.

Twelve hole bridges may be more prone to this in that many players don't seem to know how to tie them. Carbon strings are definitely more prone.

Pete
Hi - how do I determine if it is deep enough - I can post more photos if needed?
D'Ammassa Spruce/Spruce Double Top

Pete Beer
Luthier
Posts: 135
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 10:39 am
Location: Argyll, Scotland

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by Pete Beer » Mon Jun 19, 2017 3:57 pm

Personally I wouldn't like to assess something like this through a photo. If it is really shallow, say less then half the string thickness, and if the fibres look more squashed than cut, and if it isn't a really thin top, you are probably fine. Easiest thing might be to find a luthier to look at it. Most don't charge, or don't charge much, just to take a look.

Paul Micheletti
Amateur luthier
Posts: 510
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 12:48 am
Location: San Diego, CA

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by Paul Micheletti » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:25 pm

Gary Macleod wrote:
Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:53 pm
I melt the end of the string to form a ball which stops the slipping.
I did exactly that, and it did not stop the string slipping. When the string did slip, the melted ball left a very large dent due to the added flying mass on the end of the string. That circular dent from the ball at the end of the string went pretty deep into the top. I was able to steam it back to about half the depth, but it will be a permanent reminder that I need to tie a 12-string bridge differently.

12-hole tie blocks need a completely different type of knot on the E string. I saw a video here a few months ago with a better tie method, but my search skills are apparently not up to finding it again.

User avatar
souldier
Posts: 857
Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2015 4:45 pm

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by souldier » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:26 pm

The guitar is still structurally fine so the only reason to even attempt a repair is if you can't live with the appearance. If the ding goes through the finish into the wood, I doubt it would be possible to completely restore it back to original. Personally I'd just live with it.

To prevent this in the future on a 12 hole tie block, tie your trebles this way:
12 hole.jpg

Using this method on 12 hole tie blocks, I have NEVER had a treble slip even on different guitars and different string brands including carbon trebles and I never have to melt those ball ends into the string. I made a video on youtube demonstrating how this is done: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q7KjojtCY2k
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Last edited by souldier on Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Success grants its rewards to a few, but is the dream of the multitudes.
Excellence is available to all, but is accepted only by a few." - Christopher Parkening

Paul Micheletti
Amateur luthier
Posts: 510
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 12:48 am
Location: San Diego, CA

Re: String snapped and made a mark

Post by Paul Micheletti » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:29 pm

Thanks Souldier. That was the video I was trying to find just a few minutes ago.

Return to “Luthiers”