I am looking to possibly buy a used made-in-USA

Martin model DX1. It is being sold at a relatively-low

price, due to a large crack on the front (see attached photo).

I cannot repair this myself.

Can someone please possibly give me an estimate of

what a luthier in Mass. might charge for such a repair,

and it this a repair that is going to by stable and worth the money?

Thank you.

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sorry for the above typos...

I don't know how to edit my post

Hi Arthur.

The crack itself is only part of the issue. "What caused it?" is an important factor.

The way it's split makes me immediately think that a blow to the bridge are MAY have occurred. That is simply a guess and my first impression.My intuition also tells me that there may also be unseen damage to the braces.

Personally, I would not consider this guitar for purchase unless I could get a hands & eyes on inspection by a qualified tech.

Also, there is no way to determine long term stability after a crack repair without a detailed visual inspection.

I know none of that was useful, but buying instruments on speculation, sight unseen, has caused heartbreak to thousands of unsuspecting buyers.

Best of luck,


I just got this response from the seller..

"According to the previous owner, he dropped something (a chair or stand... can't remember which) on the guitar. "

Guitars that have chairs dropped on them don't look like that. I still say dryness.

Much more likely than a blow is plain old dryness. The bad news is that there may be other unseen damage like loose braces. The good news is that the crack repair is pretty easy since there's essentially no finish to worry about. Humidity will close it up, glue and cleat, and you're done. Not much else to do.

We can't know where the ax is but we know Arthur is in Mass.  Now just how many yards of snow over the past three weeks have dropped in Arthur's neck of the woods.....

Depending on where the instrument seller is or where the instrument lived it looks likely to be a dry guitar as well to me.  And.... depending on just how long this crack has been open and how long the guitar has lived with no humidification this crack may not close with humidity or if it does and there is permanent shrinkage (I hate that word...) that would result in other cracks if this one is forced shut.

This is also the Martin model with the single bolt glued tenon system that can come loose and need to be redone.

IME this crack may need to be filled or it will crack somewhere else.  That's a bit more involved but certainly is done often enough but will likely cost more to fix.

What ultimately concerns me about this one is the inability to check it out before buying.  As such I would pass on it and find something else that is not such a crap shoot.

We are fixing cracks everyday these days and some will close in our bags over several days and some won't and the ones that won't are the ones that have been open for months or more.  This could be one of those....

As for repair rates rates vary widely all over the country and anything that we offer may not be applicable to your area, Arthur.  But this one looks risky to me and I would not want you to get stuck with a lemon that may require far more than this crack being closed.  Perhaps look for something else.

I am so sick on snow!  Mass has been hit with a record amount of snow in the past 4 weeks.

It is not even funny. People have died. Many roofs have collapsed. This is horrendous.

I can see now why so many New Englanders either winter in Florida, or retire there.

My home is in danger. I have nowhere to put the 1 and 1/2 feet that just fell last night.

Record cold too, have to worry about water pipes freezing.

I'm sorry, I know this has nothing to do with guitars.

Were's too hot here. Our weather is like June/July but that's nothing to the cold back east.  I really HATE being cold. I'm sorry for the weather you're having. No body should have to try to move that much snow. 

where do you live Ned?

I live in Southern California. No, It's not L.A, I live in Orange County which is just south of L.A county  It's cooling back down a bit now, highs into the low  to mid 70's this next week. That's still a bit high for this time of year but we almost never have highs lower than the low to mid 50's and that would be on rainy days. It's stupid to complain about heat when you guys are getting pounded but it's been into the mid 80's and that just too hot for this time of  year. The mosquitoes are already hatching and other insects are buzzing around everywhere.  

When I moved here, someone told me that SoCal has "summer and not summer" for seasons and that's pretty much true. Even our summers are unfairly moderate compared to the midwest. Too bad there are so many people living here. It's be a really wonder place to live if 2/3 of us would move away. 

In the 28 years I've been here, I've seen frost on my car windows about half a dozen times and I once worked with a young guy that didn't now it was frost because he'd never seen it before. 

wow, you are lucky

I would love the 70's right now.

My wife and I spent 2 hours straight

risking our lives on the roof of our house,

shoveling the 1 to 2 feet (no exaggeration)

of snow off of our entire roof. Our neighbor's

roof collapsed under the weight of the snow,

and the poor man's house is now condemned.

Each night the temps get down to between 0 and 10 degress F.

I am 47, and this is the worst winter in my memory.

It sucks, plain and simple.

This a dryness crack, as has been mentioned. The repair is simply humidify the guitar until the crack closes, then glue.

Also I would assume maybe some bracing is loose, which would need gluing. It's not a difficult repair and should cost less than $150.00. I'd charge $80.00 to $120.00 for such a repair.



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