I've had a rather nice late 19th C parlour guitar come into the shop with a request for restoration. The soundboard and bridge have some issues and there are previously repaired cracks and a partly raised bridge which needs removing and regluing.
The main issue is the back.It has several splits which again have been repaired by gapfilling splints,
However the result over time has been to lead to the edges of th plits curling outwards and looking very unsightly.
The owner has discussed the optins of either replacing the back or somehow removing it, sorting out the splits, regluing it ansd redoing the edgebandings.
Given the number of splits, I feel that at sometime in its past, the guitar has become badly dehydrated causing the splits to open. Repair was probably undertaken without any attempt to rehydrate, but as the guitar regained its moisture content the expansion of the wood caused the splits to bow outwards due to the inserted splints.
I would be interested to hear people's thoughts on how, or even whether to undetake this repair!
Replacing the back would be one option, with the downside that it would doubtless reduce the instrument's collectability. However, I dont feel confident about repairing the current back without using some fairly hefty internal studs.
Would greatly appreciate some assistance from your collective wisdom and experience..
Dave, Based on my violin repair work, Roger's cutting method will be the easiest, and best, method to use. (take your time!) Router speed will create more problems than it will cure. Once you get your opening started, a little alcohol dripped into the opening will make breaking the glue easier. Minimal alcohol, and a FINE watercolor brush works on violins, and doesn't tear up the existing finish if you're careful.