Bent Necks

Bridge Position & Height

Split Tops

Warped Tops

Split Back Seams

Broken, or Jammed Tuners

Missing Inlay

Broken & Missing Bridges

Broken Necks

Cracked Headstock

Touch Up Damaged Finish

Fix Broken or Damaged Struts

Missing, Uneven or Worn Frets

Replace Missing or Damaged Nut

Loose Neck/Body Join

Replace a Broken Tailpiece

Replace Damaged Binding

Repair Damaged Veneers

Repair Missing Linings

Repair Lifting Tops


Instrument Triage

How do I fix a Bent neck?

If it has no truss-rod to adjust it may require a heat press or resetting the neck.

How do I adjust the Bridge position/height?

Usually replacing the saddle will fix it. I can fill and re-route for a proper saddle slot if it is off. However sometimes you need a higher bridge or neck reset. On an archtop the bridge must sit between the mid points of the "F" holes. Most electrics have adjustable saddles for intonation.


Can I fix a Split top?

Shrinkage splits are easier to fix. Can be very serious if severe, and combined with warpage from string tension.

Is there any way to fix a warped top?

Yes, it is usually caused from string tension. Often visible around sound-hole. Can be very serious if severe and combined with splitting..

What about split back seams?

Split seams can often be fixed fairly easily unless accompanied by warping. Split or missing back ribs or pieces is more serious. Much harder when combined with shrinkage.

Can you fix broken, or jammed tuners?

Can be cleaned, and repaired provided all pieces are present. Very difficult to replace except with modern equivalents.

What if it's missing inlay?

Can be relatively simple to replace, or extremely difficult, depending on location and shape of inlay pieces.

What to do if there is a broken or missing bridge?

Bridges are easy to replace from this site, but setting them up well is harder, whilst essential for good performance.

Can you fix a broken neck?

Level of difficulty depends on location of break, whether it has been previously repaired, and if it has a veneer. Can be done.

What if you've cracked your head?

Not too problematic, more difficult with enclosed tuners and/or head veneers.

Can you replace damaged finish?

Possible to renew, but can be very time consuming. 

How do I fix broken or damaged struts?

Often detected by a rattle, or flexing of the top. Complex, as this often has other causes which must be addressed. Can be repaired through the sound hole. Sometimes the back has to come off if the damage is really bad.

What if I have missing, uneven or worn frets?

Re-levelling or re-fret is possible, but difficult for a non-expert to do well. Modern or period frets can be used.

What if there is a missing or damaged nut?

This can be replaced easily, but may be difficult to set up well for a non-expert.

There’s a loose neck/body join?

Complex repair that could require top removal. I do this type of work.

How do I fix a broken tailpiece?

This can be easily replaced.

What do I do about damaged edging?

Relatively easy to replace, damage to finish involved often more difficult to repair.

Why is there rattling or buzzing?

Badly set up nut, bridge, or uneven frets. Sunken top, dried out guitar.

My guitar is very dirty

Guitars can be 'cleaned' with a damp cloth, then wipe with dry cloth.

Shrunken pieces

This can be a problem, and a complicated fix, depending what and where it is.

What if there is badly spaced frets?

Many old guitars have badly spaced frets. I can fill and re fret. However, it may mean a new fingerboard.

What can I do about Damaged Veneers?

It may have been worn, torn, cracked, lifted, or ruined by an old repair. Can be fairly easily replaced on the head, the neck is more problematic.

What if there is broken or missing linings?

Without these the structure is very susceptible to damage. They can be replaced or repaired, but top removal is involved.

Can you fix a lifting top?

On Italian bowls, it is common to see the top separated and lifting at the sides. This can be difficult to fix, and depends on why it has happened. Often accompanied by warping, loose struts and over-stringing.


This is one of the most important things for your guitar. Guitars like and need it to be about 40 to 50% humidity or shrinking and cracking can occur.

Calgary Mandolin Restoration

In this sequence of photos you can see the transformation of this garage sale special junker into a fully functional piece of musical art. I take great delight in bringing new life to that which was left for dead.


Before our mandolin repairs


After our mandolin repairs