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Ken_N   

I glued a fingerboard on a viola I was finishing up.  I planned to play it and see how its response changed when I cut the recurve in.  Decided the recurve and edgework looks good when it looks good, and finished it up.  I put a really nice looking sugar ground on it this week, thanks to Jezzupe, (not complaining, I just had another plan in mind) and the fingerboard was still on.  The idea of varnishing under the board is easier said than done; so I wanted it off.  

It wouldn't come off.

I know it is just hide glue.  I know I didn't cover the entire surface with glue.  I know my glue joints are hit and miss. This one hit the bulls eye.  

First off the glue line was perfect.  Never done that on a fingerboard.  Won't be now.  Hard to get anything under it.  Tried a hair drier and water.  Nothing.  Tried alcohol.  (Saw that used at the MVA meeting, Who knew?  Not me.)  That didn't do anything.  Beat on it with a solid little hammer.  I mean I beat on it.  The neck is loose now, and the belly is loose on the upper bout.  But the fingerboard was still rock solid.  But I found a little gap near the nut.  Finally, working on that I got that sucker off.

How do I keep from getting lucky and having that happen again?  Or, what did I do right that made the joint so strong?  I might as well make the neck joint stronger!

Ken

 

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lpr5184   

Hair dryer never worked for me. A clothes iron does the job better. Also I record the glue to water ratio so I know how strong to make the glue.

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Ken_N   

I have 2 1/4 : 1 written on the side of my Behlens Glue container.  It's close to empty.  I used to have a small gram scale, my new scale weighs big parts easy, but only weighs in grams, not .1 gram, so small weights like glue and water for a small amount of glue are just a guess.  

I'll have to pick up an iron at a garage sale.  I won't even attempt to use my wifes!

The neck is still tight to the button, but the back came loose from the ribs a little as well.  I don't know why I thought I could beat on it.  I ddin't know that its shock resistance was that good.  I won't do that again.  Really, I won't.

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If this was not the "final" attachment, meaning you have no reasons left to take it off again, then what I see people doing is only putting small dabs of what they call "weak or thin glue" to hold the fingerboard on temporarily and not a glue line. But, I am a noob, and I know nothing... I haven't even glued a fingerboard on anything yet. :) Glad you got it off, sorry it was a pain. I hope the neck surface didn't need too much reworking.

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Ken_N   

The surfaces of both the neck (Black Cherry)  and fingerboard (Katalox, I couldn't remember what it is, and no one mentions it.  I think it's great, but maybe it glues really well?)  are absolutely pristine!  Is that unusual for a neck?  

 

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39 minutes ago, FrankNichols said:

If this was not the "final" attachment, meaning you have no reasons left to take it off again, then what I see people doing is only putting small dabs of what they call "weak or thin glue" to hold the fingerboard on temporarily and not a glue line.

Yup. If you want something to be easily removable, "spot glue" it with a weaker glue. If you want it to be even more easily removable, glue a layer of paper in between the two parts.

While heat works pretty well for weakening Titbond or epoxy joints, it doesn't do much for hot hide glue. In the final gluing, I glue fingerboards on as strongly as I can. While it may be an uncommon problem, it's just really bad for a maker's reputation if a fingerboard ever falls off during an important performance. :lol:

Often, mine won't come off with just an opening knife, without tearing out wood from the neck or fingerboard. But I've always been able to get them off cleanly with alcohol. A little patience is needed to give the alcohol time to work, and it's best to use alcohol with initially low water content, which also hasn't absorbed a lot of water from subsequent exposure to air. Fresh 190 proof Everclear will work quite well. 80 proof vodka doesn't work very well.

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Ken_N   

I did notice after I let the alcohol, 93 or something isopropyl, sit for a while it did work.

Patience?

 

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10 minutes ago, David Burgess said:

proof vodka won't give a very good outcome.

All depends on if you use it on the violin or drink it.

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34 minutes ago, Ken_N said:

Everclear doesn't stay around long, is that what you're saying?

 

Hah! :lol: could be.

We once managed to keep two bottles, sitting out in plain sight, unopened thoughout the Oberlin session though. :)

But I won't drink the stuff anymore. It does strange and nasty and unpredictable things, even when diluted 50% with water. I have no idea why. Seems like you'd basically end up with 95 proof, but something about it is very different from 90 or 95 proof liquor.

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I mixed Everclear with spring water myself once.  Tasted like diluted Everclear.  It has a definite industrial smell for some reason.  The best vodka has very little odor or taste.  The several moonshines I've tried, also clear, all had a wonderful smell, very sweet like wine.  Not sure if the liquor store versions of it is the same.

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