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1967 Balladeer Rebuild...

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moody, p.i.
Posted 2014-10-15 1:15 PM (#495001 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...


Joined:
March 2002
Posts: 15290

Location: SoCal
This is interesting to watch. Dan, that original top needs to be kept for postarity. Also, can you put a new face on a headstock? My Legend has a light headstock face and I would love it to be dark rosewood to match the bridge.
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Mark in Boise
Posted 2014-10-15 2:06 PM (#495002 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...


Joined:
March 2005
Posts: 12655

Location: Boise, Idaho
The reference to the imprecise placement of the bracing reminded me of my 77 Folklore. It had issues when I got it from ebay. Looking inside for the source of a rattle, I found a brace had been split where the hole drilled to accomodate the piezo saddle and wire had gone through part of the brace. I glued the brace and it has been fine. In fact, it sounds great. I wondered then why they put the brace right under where they had to drill for the saddle. Maybe that was just the way mine is, not the way the Folklores were designed.
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-10-15 4:05 PM (#495995 - in reply to #495001)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
Thanks, Paul. I'm glad you're enjoying it.

Other than trying to remove the pickups, I have no plans to do anything with the top, other than to send it back to Jay, if he wants it back. The pickups appear to have been glued to the underside of the sound board with CA. CA really grabs onto rubber, so it will be tricky to remove them without damage.

The headstock overlay veneer probably can't be split from the headstock. The only way to change it would be to stain it, or sand it down to the headstock, then glue on a new one and refinish it.

immoody - 2014-10-15 11:15 AM

This is interesting to watch. Dan, that original top needs to be kept for postarity. Also, can you put a new face on a headstock? My Legend has a light headstock face and I would love it to be dark rosewood to match the bridge.
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-10-15 4:13 PM (#495996 - in reply to #495002)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
If your Folklore had the rear-shifted X-brace, then it's possible that the problem was simply that the placement of the brace predated the need to drill a hole for the p/u.

Or, it's possible that the brace was just glued into the wrong place, as are the braces on 485. The combination of rear brace placement and misalignment could have put the brace then under the area where the hole for the p/u was supposed to go. (error cascade)


Mark in Boise - 2014-10-15 12:06 PM

The reference to the imprecise placement of the bracing reminded me of my 77 Folklore. It had issues when I got it from ebay. Looking inside for the source of a rattle, I found a brace had been split where the hole drilled to accomodate the piezo saddle and wire had gone through part of the brace. I glued the brace and it has been fine. In fact, it sounds great. I wondered then why they put the brace right under where they had to drill for the saddle. Maybe that was just the way mine is, not the way the Folklores were designed.
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FlySig
Posted 2014-10-15 6:14 PM (#496002 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
October 2005
Posts: 3849

Location: Utah
Dan, great pictures documenting the original construction. I am surprised the bracing was set up with pencil marks. Presumably some kind of template was used to draw the lines, then hand place the braces.

All that epoxy must have had a significant effect on the tone of that old top!
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standing
Posted 2014-10-15 9:52 PM (#496005 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
December 2008
Posts: 1419

Location: Texas
Very interesting and informative Dan.

"While I was messing around in the bridge area, I decided to measure the scale. This was about 1/16" short."

Just a thought/question: If the neck angle was high (as you indicated), and the upper bout was indented, could those combined factors have been enough to account for the shortened scale? If so, the bridge may have originally been exactly where it belonged.
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-10-16 9:33 AM (#496010 - in reply to #496002)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
Thanks, Steve.

Yes, I agree. It looks like they used a template to draw the lines and then placed the braces by hand. I seem to recall seeing a factory tour video with one of the workers doing just that.

Yep, there is a lot of epoxy. It'll be interesting to see how it sounds with the original brace pattern on clean wood.

FlySig - 2014-10-15 4:14 PM

Dan, great pictures documenting the original construction. I am surprised the bracing was set up with pencil marks. Presumably some kind of template was used to draw the lines, then hand place the braces.

All that epoxy must have had a significant effect on the tone of that old top!
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-10-16 9:38 AM (#496011 - in reply to #496005)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
Thanks!

The collapsing top wood could account for some of the shortened scale. But, remember that this is not the original bridge. This is a replacement that was added at some point in the guitar's life.

But, you do bring up a good point. I'll measure the scale just to make sure it's not a short-scale neck. Because all six strings intone sharp, I don't think it is but I can't hurt to verify.

standing - 2014-10-15 7:52 PM

Very interesting and informative Dan.

"While I was messing around in the bridge area, I decided to measure the scale. This was about 1/16" short."

Just a thought/question: If the neck angle was high (as you indicated), and the upper bout was indented, could those combined factors have been enough to account for the shortened scale? If so, the bridge may have originally been exactly where it belonged.
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-10-16 11:28 AM (#496012 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
I measured the scale this morning. It's 12-5/8" (12.625" ) from the nut to the center of the 12th fret. This puts the scale length at 25-1/4". (25.25" )

Edited by DanSavage 2014-10-16 11:29 AM
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standing
Posted 2014-10-16 11:42 PM (#496023 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
December 2008
Posts: 1419

Location: Texas
DanSavage - 2014-10-16 11:28 AM

I measured the scale this morning. It's 12-5/8" (12.625" ) from the nut to the center of the 12th fret. This puts the scale length at 25-1/4". (25.25" )


Which, I believe, is what it should be. I guess the reason for the old slightly-shortened scale length is actually irrelevant; once you've corrected the neck angle and added a new (flat) top, you'll be able to place the bridge precisely where it belongs and avoid the intonation problems you found on the "before" version anyway.

(Whether or not Jay will be able to sing in tune with it will remain to be seen/heard.)
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arumako
Posted 2014-10-17 3:57 AM (#496025 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
October 2012
Posts: 846

Location: Yokohama, Japan
Once again, a really interesting and informative thread DanSavage. Thank you! My '82 Fxxxxr F-330 12-string and my '74 Yamaha FG-160 are starting to bow inward at the sound hole (just slightly), and I've been wondering what my options were. Is there a way to fix bowing like this without resorting to a sound board upgrade? The previous owner of my FG-160 actually had a luthier shave the bridge down to try to keep the string action manageable, and it looks like that's what happened to the bridge of the '67 Balladeer you're working on. Anyway, keep up the great work as usual. Thoroughly entertaining stuff!
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-10-17 9:28 AM (#496029 - in reply to #496023)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
Yes. I checked the Ovation Guitars site and 25-1/4" is the scale length used on these guitars.

Yes, but discussion of the causes does make for interesting conversation.

(Having made a few eardrums bleed myself, I'm not going to throw stones about anyone's singing abilities, no matter how bad they sound...)

standing - 2014-10-16 9:42 PM
Which, I believe, is what it should be. I guess the reason for the old slightly-shortened scale length is actually irrelevant; once you've corrected the neck angle and added a new (flat) top, you'll be able to place the bridge precisely where it belongs and avoid the intonation problems you found on the "before" version anyway.

(Whether or not Jay will be able to sing in tune with it will remain to be seen/heard.)
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-10-17 9:31 AM (#496030 - in reply to #496025)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
I've got a `75 FG-260 12-string that's got the same problem. I tried the JLD Bridge Doctor, but it didn't really help. I've decided it's a wall-hanger. I'll probably never get rid of it because it's my first guitar and the one I learned to play on, if you can call what I do, 'playing'.

Thanks, Arumako.

arumako - 2014-10-17 1:57 AM

Once again, a really interesting and informative thread DanSavage. Thank you! My '82 Fxxxxr F-330 12-string and my '74 Yamaha FG-160 are starting to bow inward at the sound hole (just slightly), and I've been wondering what my options were. Is there a way to fix bowing like this without resorting to a sound board upgrade? The previous owner of my FG-160 actually had a luthier shave the bridge down to try to keep the string action manageable, and it looks like that's what happened to the bridge of the '67 Balladeer you're working on. Anyway, keep up the great work as usual. Thoroughly entertaining stuff!
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-11-01 1:40 PM (#500490 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: RE: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA

It's been a few weeks since my last update. Mostly, I've been contemplating the steps to take to bend the bowl to realign the neck. It's important to do this first as this will be the foundation for everything else to follow.

Since the bowl is a vacuum-bagged part, it's very thin as most of the resin has been scraped and squeezed out.

The second concern is the kerfing. Or, more specifically, the glue joint holding the kerfing to the bowl. Since all of this is epoxy, any or all of it could be softened by the heat being applied to the bowl.

Third and last concern is warps. The entire rim of the bowl needs to be supported equally while being heated.

After playing out the pros and cons of all the different ways, I decided on making a fixture or jig that will both push the neck and bowl into alignment, fully support the entire rim and shield the kerfing from heat.

Working in 3D CAD I came up with the design seen in the screen shots. The first shot is the basic design drawing of the jig and the parts needed. Basically, the jig consists of two parts: the neck base and clamp and the body table.

The desired neck angle when viewed from the side is 1.5 degrees. The guitar is turned upside down so the top faces down. The fretboard lies flat on a 1/4" birch ply bed which is bolted to the bench. A Stewmac neck caul is placed on the back of the neck and another 1/4" birch ply plate is screwed to the bench using 3" drywall screws.

The bowl rests on the table which is built up from 1/8" birch ply. The base of the table uses interlocking egg crate construction. The table top is built in two halves which are glued to the top of the base. I'll build the table in my gobar deck so it's flat.

There's a 1/4" birch ply ring that will get glued to the periphery of the top of the table. A 1" strip of nomex paper will get glued to the inside face of the ring to form the kerfing heat shield.

This pic shows the final parts laid out on 12" x 24" sheets, ready for the laser cutter. I'll be sending these drawings to him today or tomorrow. I decided to send these out rather than cutting them myself on my jig saw because of the accuracy. The black lines are cuts and the red lines are etches.

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arumako
Posted 2014-11-02 2:20 AM (#500501 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
October 2012
Posts: 846

Location: Yokohama, Japan
Holy Molly DanSavage! You are going all out on this project! This is going to be another precedent setter for all O restorations. Especially, as Os become rarer and harder to find, restorers all over the world are going to benefit from your work! Thanks a million! It's going to be really interesting to learn how you decide to apply the heat locally around the neck area and at what temperatures! Very cool!
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tpa
Posted 2014-11-02 11:30 AM (#500505 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...


Joined:
December 2004
Posts: 439

Location: Denmark
Nice work good and thorough analysis as always. You could make a living out of reviving vintage Ovations. I dont know how the purists among collectors would relate to this, but I for sure would not mind a guitar saying "Rebuild 2014 by DanSavage" on the label sticker.

Edited by tpa 2014-11-02 11:31 AM
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jamesholl
Posted 2014-11-02 11:43 AM (#500506 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...


Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 104

Location: Bristol England
+1
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jay
Posted 2014-11-02 11:47 AM (#500507 - in reply to #500505)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
January 2009
Posts: 1224

Location: Texas

"Rebuild 2014 by DanSavage"

That would be an honor to have that in the bowl...an excellent idea, TPA.

While I was reading Dans post and comprehending about 10% of it (unlike Penthouse, the pictures didn't help), I thought to myself, as Dan is contemplating this bowl bend, thinking that originally it was just a re-top...he has to being saying my name like Jerry referred to Newman

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moody, p.i.
Posted 2014-11-02 4:01 PM (#500510 - in reply to #494306)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...


Joined:
March 2002
Posts: 15290

Location: SoCal
I would guess that Dan is going all out on this for two reasons. First, he loves the challenge, and second, because he knows that this will come in handy on some rebuild down the road.

Jay, don't stress. We ALL say your name like Jerry did Newman's........
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tpa
Posted 2014-11-02 4:20 PM (#500511 - in reply to #500507)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...


Joined:
December 2004
Posts: 439

Location: Denmark
amosmoses - 2014-11-02 11:47 AM
... unlike Penthouse, the pictures didn't help.
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-11-03 12:23 PM (#500552 - in reply to #500501)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA

arumako - 2014-11-02 12:20 AM

Holy Molly DanSavage! You are going all out on this project! This is going to be another precedent setter for all O restorations. Especially, as Os become rarer and harder to find, restorers all over the world are going to benefit from your work! Thanks a million! It's going to be really interesting to learn how you decide to apply the heat locally around the neck area and at what temperatures! Very cool!

Thanks!

The 'how' of applying the heat is already decided: heat gun. I also have an IR thermometer that will allow me to monitor the temperature of the bowl so it doesn't get too hot and so I know how warm it needs to get before the resin softens. As Paul correctly guessed, this probably won't be the last O bowl I bend.

There's two ways to alter the angle of the neck. One is to warp the back area below the neck inward. The other is to stretch the area around the neck pulling it away from the bridge. Of the two, pulling the neck away from the bridge is the best way. Which will happen will be determined by what part of the bowl is softened.

Preliminary tests show the area of the bowl where I'll apply the heat is the area between the of the shoulder of the upper bout and the neck.

To keep the bowl from squeezing in as it's being stretched I'll cut down some gobar rods so they fit inside the bowl across the upper bout, the waist area and the lower bout.

 

 

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DanSavage
Posted 2014-11-03 12:38 PM (#500554 - in reply to #500505)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
tpa - 2014-11-02 9:30 AM

Nice work good and thorough analysis as always. You could make a living out of reviving vintage Ovations. I dont know how the purists among collectors would relate to this, but I for sure would not mind a guitar saying "Rebuild 2014 by DanSavage" on the label sticker.


I've thought about doing that on my 1619, but instead of putting it on the bowl, I was going to put it on the underside of the top.
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jay
Posted 2014-11-03 12:45 PM (#500555 - in reply to #500554)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
January 2009
Posts: 1224

Location: Texas

Heck, I think right under the Ovation tag would look great!

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DanSavage
Posted 2014-11-03 12:48 PM (#500556 - in reply to #500507)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
amosmoses - 2014-11-02 9:47 AM

"Rebuild 2014 by DanSavage"

That would be an honor to have that in the bowl...an excellent idea, TPA.

While I was reading Dans post and comprehending about 10% of it (unlike Penthouse, the pictures didn't help), I thought to myself, as Dan is contemplating this bowl bend, thinking that originally it was just a re-top...he has to being saying my name like Jerry referred to Newman



Hello, Ja-ay...

It's hard to explain something like the jig and how it's going to work. I could have build a 3D model and rendered it, but I'd rather just get the parts laser cut, then build it for real.

Normally, I wouldn't put my own sticker on someone else's guitar without their permission. To me, that reeks of car dealers that put their own emblems on the backs of car's they've sold. If you want something like that, I can probably come up with something tasteful.
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DanSavage
Posted 2014-11-03 12:50 PM (#500557 - in reply to #500510)
Subject: Re: 1967 Balladeer Rebuild...



Joined:
June 2012
Posts: 1949

Location: Lake Forest, CA
immoody - 2014-11-02 2:01 PM

I would guess that Dan is going all out on this for two reasons. First, he loves the challenge, and second, because he knows that this will come in handy on some rebuild down the road.


Yep. I suspect this won't be the last O bowl I'll need to bend.
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