Deep into repair on a 1964 Martin 0-18 where I had to replace the top upper bout from the waist out (see pics) and wanted to see what tricks you folks might have regarding color matching the spruce. I've gotten a pretty good match on the grain etc. Normally I would have opted for full replacement but the balance of the top was in fairly nice shape so this slice and splice method seemed right. I don't want to overspray the original finish so matching the raw wood color is critical. Stories or suggestions welcome.

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That looks really great! More importantly, it looks welcoming. I want to pick this thing up and play it. It's going to provoke typical comments like "Shame about the top, 'cause this is a great guitar otherwise!" Which misses the point, as so often happens, that looks, while important, are not the key to having a blast playing a guitar. (I probably have to make some kind of mandatory Willie Nelson reference here.)

BEAUTIFUL work Eric.

Very impressive (:

All the best (-:

Very nice match, Eric!

When Dichromate is used on maple it produces a very nice oxidized look.  Several years later, though, the maple starts to take on a greenish color.  I have no idea if the same thing would happen with Sitka.  Hope not.


I was told about the green maple issue by my violin friend, apparently spruce does not have the same issue. I found that using a very diluted solution and giving ample drying time gave me a lot of control over the color. The biggest problem I encountered was trying to keep the dichromate off the adjacent spruce as it caused it to go straight to black, next time I age the wood before I join the pieces together. Live and learn. 


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