Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Vintage guitar repair question (sorry not a Tele)

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by TenaciousP, Sep 28, 2017.

  1. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    Apr 1, 2016
    Hey y'all, I'm getting side tracked from my LP build at the moment with a fixer upper guitar I got from a family member. It is a 60's or 70's Japanese made no-name electric. It is in decent shape over all except the neck is bowed up a small bit and the fretboard was coming off. In fact it was only held on for about the last inch at the nut. With a little persuading, I got the fretboard off. There is a huge steel I-beam reinforcement rod inside of it.



    My plan was to reglue the fretboard by using my 12" radius sanding beam as a clamping caul. It appeared to match the fretboard radius decently. It would also allow the neck wood to be forced back straight. My hope is that by forcing the neck straight while glueing, the lamination of the two pieces would help hold the neck straight. Also it would hopefully encapsulate the steel I-beam tightly enough that it would also provide a significant amount of stiffness to the neck, removing the unwanted up bow. The upbow is only about 1/32" or so. I can easily press the neck straight against a flat surface with just my fingers so I don't feel like it will resist the straightening too much.

    Anyhow, with all that being said, my question is: What type of glue do y'all think was used on a vintage Japanese guitar?

    I am a bit concerned about proper adhesion on the old glued surfaces. I suspect it would be some sort of "modern" wood glue as opposed to hide glue. But maybe not... There didn't appear to be a noticeable glue residue.

    What sort of surface preparation would y'all suggest in this situation to ensure the best possible adhesion?

    I'm not sure how to proceed as my only repair work has been on somewhat older Kay's and such which were assembled with hide glue which remelts with new hide glue. Anyhow, any info and suggestions would be greatly appreciated and I will post some pics of the guitar once I get it back together if any of you would like to see it. It is kinda cool in a weird sorta way ;-)

  2. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    copy.png I made a Teisco Tele copy for one of the challenges here a few years back. I used gorilla polyurethane glue to adhere my reinforcement beam in there to keep it from moving and rattling, but I used regular wood glue on the fretboard to neck wood parts. If you get the surfaces free of adhesive, I bet yellow glue would work there too. Epoxy would be another alternative. I wouldn't use regular gorilla glue for any wood to wood stuff, but some have. YMMV.
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2017

  3. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

    Apr 18, 2014
    Near Detroit, MI

    Use a scraper or sandpaper on the two glue surfaces to make sure some wood is exposed for the new glue. Use Titebond wood glue. I avoid all the 'gorilla glue' as they include foaming agents in some of it that causes more trouble than it's worth messing with. The regular wood glue can be heated and the fretboard removed if ever a need to later.

    I have a Teisco Tulip I bought with severe back bow that wouldn't come out after loosening the truss rod and expect I will need to steam off the fretboard as reverse clamping over the summer didn't improve it.

    Don't use epoxy as that will be too permanent and the next owner that needs to do some work (or you) will be unable to get things apart.

    A hint, just before clamping the fretboard to the neck you should shake a little table salt on the neck. That way the pressure of clamping doesn't slide the fretboard off the neck while you squeeze it down. You don't need much, just some grains tossed on there.
    Flakey likes this.

  4. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County

  5. jkingma

    jkingma Super Moderator Staff Member

    Admin Post
    I use epoxy to attach all my fretboards. I've had to remove a couple fretboards and have had no problems. It takes about the same amount of heat to release it as regular wood glue.

  6. stormin1155

    stormin1155 Tele-Meister

    Sep 26, 2010
    One problem that often occurs when gluing a fingerboard is that it shifts during clamping, and with all the clamps and wet glue all over the place, it may not be apparent until the glue dries and the clamps are removed. One way to avoid this is to remove a fret on either end of the board, and with it positioned in place, drill a toothpick-sized hole down through the fret slot, and use a short piece of toothpick as a pin to hold it in place during gluing/clamping.

    Also, you're going to want to tighten the clamps pretty tight, which may dent the back side of the neck, so you may want to use a caul or something on the back side to avoid that.

  7. philosofriend

    philosofriend Tele-Holic

    Oct 28, 2015
    Another way to keep the board from shifting is to remove a couple of fret markers and put tiny screws in. Be sure to take the screws out, have mercy on the next repairman. Only do this if the fret markers come out easily, don't make yourself another annoying problem to fix by busting the inlay.

  8. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    Apr 1, 2016
    Thanks for all the responses you guys! Maybe I can get around to glueing it together tonight. I did do some research on this guitar last night and found out what it is. This particular guitar is unbranded but says made for General Electric Co by Tokyo Sound Co on the back of the headstock. I found out that it is the same guitar as a Guyatone LG55W. The ones I found online said around 1964 or '65 manufacture. So, I thought that was kinda cool. Here's a pic of it with the neck laying in place. I also have the original floating plastic bridge and nut that aren't shown.


  9. oldfish

    oldfish Tele-Holic

    Aug 23, 2015
    great looking guitar.good luck with the neck

  10. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Friend of Leo's

    Sep 15, 2007
    Glen Head, NY
    Ten ways to skin a cat, but they all involve some kind of registration pin when gluing on a freboard - otherwise you have no guarantee that the intonation will be correct. I like 23-gauge headless pins from a pneumatic nailer, but that's just because my woodworking activities usually consist of finding ways to justify tool purchases...

  11. Andy B

    Andy B Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Mar 16, 2003
    I've got one of those!

  12. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Mar 30, 2003
    Ontario County
    The intonation of those weren't correct when they were new...LOL.

  13. TenaciousP

    TenaciousP Tele-Meister

    Apr 1, 2016
    I've built a few guitars from scratch and usually keep my fret boards from sliding by barely putting a staple in the top of the neck at each end. I then cut them off with my fret nippers so that it leaves just a tiny pair of barbs sticking up. They bite into the underside of the fretboard to prevent movement while clamping. I'm not too worried about the intonation. For one, I've yet to have a fretboard get off enough to screw up intonation. Two, the bridge is kinda like an arch top bridge. You just put it where ya need it to get the intonation you're after.

IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.