Help please... 1929 Telesforo Julve cracking apart

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
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Joined: Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:28 pm

Help please... 1929 Telesforo Julve cracking apart

Post by capri335 » Tue Jul 11, 2017 1:13 pm

Hi everyone
I just inherited my fathers 1929 Telesforo Julve. It is a rather beautiful guitar but it now has a lot of cracking. I guess that it is best to take each part bit by bit. I would like to do all repairs myself I know that I have the skills, but at the same time I don't want to make it worse! So I am looking for advice on which glues I should use etc. I have to say I have never repaired a guitar before, but I was always good with my hands and I've been in the sign industry for 22 years and that requires quite a skill set. I am sure that I can do this. BUT I will take advice, if it is deemed too hard.

1. The bridge is detached and has been for years. Should I, remove all of the remaining fragments of the Top from the bridge and then fill the top before gluing the bridge back or use the fragments to locate the bridge?
2. The back. The worst cracks are here, one on each side where the back meets the side.

The left side looking at the back.
Rear left crack.jpg
3. The right side back, more a detachment than a crack.
rear right detachment.jpg
4. The binding near the strap peg has come away, but I have the piece.
binding near strap peg.jpg
top view of binding.jpg
5. bottom cracks at the strap peg.
Cracks at strap peg.jpg
6. The fretboard has now started to loose frets.
Fret board.jpg
The sound hole showing the nice marquetry, nothing wrong here.... whew!
sound hole.jpg

Since I removed the guitar from the house there has been a humidity change, but a lot of these cracks were already there.
I wanted to get the guitar professionally restored 20 years ago for my fathers birthday, but my mother didn't think that he would like me touching it!

I would think that the worse cracking is the rear left. should I attempt this first? Or should I do the easier ones?
I really appreciate any help with this.
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Re: Help please... 1929 Telesforo Julve cracking apart

Post by MessyTendon » Tue Jul 11, 2017 6:41 pm

Do all the repairs with hide glue. The back is darn near that you have a big part open, it's a matter of using some heat and moisture and a tool to pry the thing off. Use a heated spatula...or pallete knife...exact etc...just be careful take your time it will probably pop off quite easy.

You can likely salvage part of the binding and put it back in. But it might be easier and more clean to replace both bindings. You should remove the back to do the surgery.

The bridge looks good. Carefully clean it up and re-glue. There doesn't appear to be much tear out. Examine the inside for loose braces etc...with the back off, removing and gluing the braces will be much easier.

The purflings and bindings can be bought from a supplier and you can try to splice in a match. I think that is going to be the hardest part. I've done a few bridge re-glues and heck, your bridge looks amazingly clean the way it broke off. As for bindings repairs, I did a few this year and they turned out good.

But that purfling are going to have to accept a less than perfect match...I mean it will be tough to get a perfect match. The splicing is a delicate procedure.

I am a hobbyist...done lot's of repairs but never any actually building. So take it with a grain of salt. The bottom crack you are going to have to live with. The tailblock glued to the guitar body prevents you from being able to actually compress or move the wood so that the cracks align better. You could smear a bit of hid glue in the cracks to help keep them from separating, or maybe ca glue...I wouldn't try to make it look perfect because that's not possible.

It does look like you should also consider a fresh set of frets.

I think the fact that you want to put your time in your fathers old guitar the repair will have more meaning. You have the confidence to try it, so go for it.

You know I had five luthiers tell me that I shouldn't do a neck re-set because it was too hard for a first time...Well I didn't listen, I got the neck re-set...visually it wasn't perfect, but the neck angle and action of the guitar was so much improved, and the guy I sold it to was really happy and I made 200$.

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Re: Help please... 1929 Telesforo Julve cracking apart

Post by Michael.N. » Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:10 am

Don't remove the fragments from the bridge. It should fit pretty much straight back on. If not you have some fragments that are loose and bent then they will need to be realigned. The other way to do it is to carefully remove the wood fibres from the bridge one by one and glue them in their respective places on the soundboard. That's the time consuming way. The bridge itself doesn't need to be cleaned. The soundboard bridge area may have to be cleaned with distilled water. I would then size it with very thin hide glue, allow it to dry before gluing on the bridge proper.

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Re: Help please... 1929 Telesforo Julve cracking apart

Post by capri335 » Wed Jul 12, 2017 9:38 am

Thanks for the help so far. Very good info about the bridge, Michael. Getting these answers has given me some more confidence.

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