I've got an '83 Martin in with loose binding at the waist. It was loose at the lower bout, I used thick viscosity superglue (Special T from Lee Valley Tools) with good results.


There is a lot of outward tension and it will not stay in place at the waist without some sort of clamp (tape).


I understand stewmac's weld-on cement eats finish, and I am very used to super glue. Any suggestions?


Thanks much!!



Tags: abs, binding, loose

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Based on my relativly limited experience with old Martins, try heating the binding gently with a hair dryer or heatgun, but be careful of damaging the binding or the finish on the top/sides. See if you can get a piece of aluminium foil between the binding and the body as heat protection. You want to achieve enough temperature increase to make the binding more flexible, but not enough to do damage to the finish. It's a fine line,be careful, and go slowly. After it's warmed up, glue it with CA, and tape it down till it's cooled down again. If the shrinkage is minimal (which it seems to be looking at the pictures), it should work. Otherwise you'll have to seperate the binding round the curve up to the neck/body joint, glue it back starting at the waist and around the lower bout up to the neck/body join, and then insert a piece of matching binding to fill the resulting small gap. If you have a piece of matching binding, you can join old and new with plastic cement, which melts them together. If you do it well, it's hardly noticeable, although you may have to tint the new binding to match the old.
I'm sure that some of the wizards around here have a better idea, but that's my take.

That's not too bad. I can't remember ever having to separate the binding the whole way to the neck, but I will carefully separate it another 6 inches or so. Using heat lamps or hair dryers you need to warm the plastic enough that it will stretch. I brush accelerator on the binding channel first so that as I go along holding the binding in place with a pencil eraser, I can touch a drop of thin CA to the binding and it will suck in and kick off instantly. After working along the entire loose region I'll go back with more CA and see if any will wick in between my first spots.
Yea I use a similar method but warm it with a 100W lamp , glue with epoxy , and leave the lamp on till its hard.Len
The end result!

I inserted a couple pieces of heavy paper as heat protection between the loose binding and and the body and carefully used a heat gun on low to increase elasticity. Brushed superglue accelerator on the binding and used LeeValley water-thin superglue in the binding channel. I then saturated the seam with the water thin superglue and watched it wick down into it, seeming to fill up all available space. Scraped, sanded, wet sanded and buffed.

Fairly pleased with the end result. Next time will go with the 100W bulb to start with, then the hair dryer next and the heat gun on low if these fail. Just a little too much heat, a little too quickly, I would prefer to step that down a bit.

Grahame, Greg, Len, I appreciate your responses. I am very grateful to benefit from your repair experiences.


I'm a little late on this discussion, but I agree with all varieties of techniques discussed here.The situation and severity will dictate technique.
I get a little skeched out with superglue sometimes. It's easy to get away from you, and where you don't want it.
Sometimes it take ivoroid binding and cuti it into little pieces and add some acetone to melt it. In about 24 hours it turns to a thick goo. Add acetone until you get the consistency you're looking for and carefully with a tooth pick or syringe squeeze that in there and taple in place.It really glues nicely, but one must be careful. It is acetone based and can hurt the finish like other binding glues. Once again the situation will dictate.
If nothing else it make great glue when building it's all I use for ivoroid or tortoise binding. Works way better than anything else I've ever used.
Heating works well when coupled with patiece, but I've also had binding shrink even worse with heating. I then had to do the old remove, reattach and add a piece at the end and then color match.
Guitar repairs. They all have their own personality, and many time they're just a different kind of asshole.
Take care all,


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