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So I picked up a cheapo Yamaha for $5 at a garage sale today....with the intent to repair the soundboard, so It will become a decent beach/campfire guitar. I'm not worried too much about how it looks, because it will be a beater, and sound quality is not a big issue either. I just want to be able to re-string it and play it. I've been able to find information on removing and replacing the bridge, and bridge plates, however the previous owner took such great care of this instrument, that when the bridge cracked, it continued to pull up the soundboard, creating a nasty bulge, and tearing apart the soundboard beneath the bridge. Any advice for repairing this, so that when I go to attach a new bridge, it holds up?

Tags: Bridge, break, crack, damage, soundboard, split

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Hi Kev , Ihave a customer by the same name and he's an awsome player. As for the soundboard, it looks like the laminations have come apart , this is one reason we tend to hate cheap guitars.As the bridge is quite small , I would think you might replace it with a larger Martin style belly bridge , just try for close match on string spacing.Also the plate is probably ply as well , so you might look at some maple there.You need some clamps that will reach around the s/hole and press each side of the bridge / plate , and since its not a quality job , perhaps a hi strength epoxy would gap fill and glue the mess up .If its too hard to get the plate out , just stick the maple over it, use a caul of some sort wrapped in waxed paper so it wont stick. A couple of cheap bridge pins will help hold the bridge in situ while glueing , then drill them out later.Len
As you said you know how to remove and replace the broken bridge (that's quite easy) and bridge plate (this is not so easy), then the game's done! Once you have the new parts, clean and sand the area (also inside) and make a sandwich with glue instead of mustard! Clamp, clean the excess of glue, let it dry, re-drill the pin holes and re-string. This is the short way to describe all the process. As it's supposed you aren't going to do it a second time (because the cheap value of the instrument), use a strong glue (I'd go with UHU Bison or similar) that can fill the top crack; you'll have an indestructible bridge area. It's superfluous to add that you must be very careful and precise in positioning the new parts; they must fit exactly the old places. It's superfluous but conclusive! Use the pin holes as reference and put two or three screws or metal sticks of the same diameter until the glue and clamps device has done it's work.
Best luck.
Antonio
P.S. There's also a longer step-by-step version about this repair if you change idea and start thinking that the instrument worth it.

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