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Restoration resp. the reconstruction of an instrument’s playability

 

Music as well as music instruments is part of a valuable heritage in every culture. In relation to each and every cultural society instruments may vary in form, shape and sound. In European societies the guitar has become an essential part not only of our musical heritage but also of our musical experience and habit. In the course of its historical development some guitars have become veritable masterpieces and represent a high quality of handicraft art as well as the craftsman skills of its builder.

Why should your instrument not also be worth of preservation?
Even if an instrument is not build by a famous luthier, is can still be worth carrying out a restoration. The majority of the owners value particularly the intangible value of their instruments. Aged instruments often embrace stories and tales, traditions and unique moments that are of prodigious significance to their owner. It can for instance be a guitar that is passed across generations in a family such as a “Wanderglampfe”, which is brought along by the grandfather as memento from the First World War.

Restoration of historical guitars

New turning pegs for a flamenco guitar from the 1940s, without name. Restoration of an Otto Body around 1905, Innstruck.

 

Sometimes you discover secret and unexpected things.

The handwritten reference was discovered only after opening the instrument:
“The stains at the bottom inside are done by me. A further cleaning endangers the accurate tuning.”
Treppendorf by Lübben, 11th October 1926
Dr. Max Grossmann"
Fixing a loose crossbeam.


estoration refers to the reconstruction to a preferable authentic condition. In regard to guitars this implies particularly the playability of a guitar, but without the uncompromising replacement of old components. After all traces and signs of age form the character of an old instrument. For instance, references can be found in old instruments, such as unknown inscriptions made by pencil or on a slip of paper.

Preparation for the sealing of an 3-piece back.... ...the back is now glued.

The restoration of old instruments often demands the whole spectrum of a luthier’s craft skills. In some cases even the dissembling of the guitar in all its parts is necessary. Thus, the recreation of authentic components can be a challenge. Especially old guitars are distinct and particular attention should also be given to the traces of its builder. Since signs of age and even changes due to previous repairs are often manifested and can be traced back.

The bridge is replaced (flamenco guitar 1940). Opened violin after a rough cleaning.

Conclusion: Restoring an old guitar is an exciting handicraft task that results in a guitar, which can be enjoyed playing again.

These guitars are waiting to be played again.


 

 
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