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acousticsean 07-20-2021 02:57 PM

Top Crack Fix - Cost?
I bought a guitar online but it arrived with a top crack.
I need to go back to the seller and negotiate to pay to fix this or partial refund.

How much will this cost to fix properly with cleat, paint, refinish, etc.?
With the decrease in resale value and inconvenience, it'd be commensurate to fully restored condition.

It's an expensive guitar. yamaha custom shop.
I really like the guitar and am willing to keep it if the seller refunds a significant portion of the price now to fixing and devaluation.

The photos are here:

Thank you for your help.

Peter Z 07-21-2021 04:41 AM

Two weeks ago I got my Martin 000-1 back from a crack repair. My excelent luthier/repairman took 50,- €. I told him he is crazy, as I always do, because his prices are too low. He also made a perfect neck reset on my Loar 700 mandolin for 150,- (including some corrections of factory failures).

I'd say 100 - 150,- USD is what it takes to reapir a top crack.

Piercast 07-21-2021 07:11 AM

Looks like a compression crack. The guitar took a hitů or someone sat on it. ;-)

There might very well be more damage such as unglued braces etc. So you need to have a qualified luthier assess the damage before costs can be discussed.

redir 07-21-2021 08:21 AM

Pics are pretty good and it doesn't look like there are any cracked braces but I would agree that a good tech ought to determine that in person. A crack like that depends... Do you want it to disappear and look like new or just glue it tight and fix it?

IMHO I would not accept a guitar I just purchased in that condition. Perhaps if it sounded amazing and the discount was significant I would. But don't accept a discount that simply covers the cost of the crack repair because you are taking a hit on resale value too.

RoyBoy 07-21-2021 08:32 AM

I'm with redir on this one. That's a clean crack that can be made structurally sound but it's not a typical place for a crack and in a position that will be challenging to cleat.

If you're going to keep it, I'd go for a structurally sound repair. Trying to make it invisible is going to depend on the finish involved. If it's nitrocellulose, you'll have better luck.

I'm guessing the guitar was not shipped in a case. A shame because it looks to be a beauty.

bsman 07-21-2021 09:00 AM

Oh man - that's terrible! I hope that whatever happens you and the seller can come to an agreement.

acousticsean 07-21-2021 09:33 AM

Thank you for the replies so far.
The crack is about 6 inches and is stepped along the grain.
You can also see it went through from the inside photos and videos.

When it arrived, the heavy soundhole magnetic pickup and 9v batteries were tumbling inside just flying around and probably hit the soundboard from inside during transit.

You can see the dimpled mark where the pickup or battery hit near the crack line.

I could hear a rattle and had to re install the pickup and battery securely after taking the guitar out.

redir 07-21-2021 01:41 PM

It never ceases to amaze me how terrible some people are at shipping guitars. Yikes!

acousticsean 08-01-2021 05:07 AM

I returned it. The seller only offered to take $50~100 off.
So back to the seller, it goes!
Thank you for your advice.

The funny thing is - your perception of the guitar changes after you stop babying it.

With less emotional attachment, you could compare it more objectively against other guitars. And the tone wasn't actually better than less expensive guitars.

YamahaGuy 08-10-2021 08:21 AM

Looks like an LL16. I had a relatively new LLX6A that was dropped and had a finish crack on the top and the laminate back buckled and cracked pretty good. These guitars have a poly finish. Very thick. The luthier fixed mine for $200. He doesn’t work with poly, so he glued down the poly part on the top and did a French polish finish in nitro. You can still see the lines in the top (finish) but it's structurally sound.

For that one, I guess a couple hundred minimum based on my experience. And even though the LL16 is a "custom shop" model, the Deluxe model retailed at $999 so I'm not sure it's worth it to fix. I don't blame you for sending it back.

If it was an LL26 or 36, what a shame...

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