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  #16  
Old 11-10-2017, 11:16 PM
Kitkatjoe Kitkatjoe is offline
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Martin has stood for some of the best guitars for generations. Sometimes things go wrong. I hope we do not hear any more sad stories like these. I still am loyal to Martin, they are made by humans but sound heavenly.
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  #17  
Old 11-10-2017, 11:37 PM
Mr Fingers Mr Fingers is offline
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It's disappointing to hear of these faults, and disappointing, too, to hear that they result from a poor material/application matchup. Hearing that a particular synthetic is hard to glue to a particular wood, I have to ask why use it, then? With some plastics, shrinking can be continuous, and I would be displeased to own an instrument that could pose problems as it ages. It is also disappointing to hear this pretty chintzy approach by Martin to warranty work. It's somewhat disgraceful for a guitar that carries the Martin name to exhibit binding separation. If I found myself out $100-200 shipping to get this fixed, I'd be pissed. I'm really sorry that owners are experiencing this kind of problem. I no longer find Martins very interesting or exceptionally appealing myself, but have always trusted to their reputation. I hope that will not erode. Maybe they invested too much attention to that hilariously stupid clock guitar they produced in an orgy of self-congratulations.
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  #18  
Old 11-10-2017, 11:58 PM
Wade Hampton Wade Hampton is offline
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And perhaps you're investing too much significance in a one-of-a-kind guitar intended to generate press coverage and nothing else.

Truthfully, Mr. Fingers, the whole "Martin is slipping and no longer the paragon of virtue they once were" trope is tired and generally more a reflection of the person writing those comments than Martin itself. There was one gentleman on here for years whose only contribution to the forum was incessant complaints about the Martin Guitar Company; while everyone tolerated him for a long, long time, eventually he wore out his welcome and got banned here as well on the Unofficial Martin Guitar Forum.

I'm not saying or implying that you're running the same risk, only that we've heard this same line of complaint many, many times. While there are occasionally instances when Martin has minor QC problems, just like any other company, the whole "they ain't what they used to be" routine got old sometime in the late 1970's.

Martin faces challenges in the business world of 2017, just like every other firm struggling to remain vital and current. Overall, I think they do a remarkably good job, and I'm far more impressed by them than I am by anonymous people online complaining about them.


Wade Hampton Miller
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  #19  
Old 11-11-2017, 12:29 AM
John Arnold John Arnold is offline
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Quote:
I'm thinking the binding wasn't climatized properly
That would imply that plastic binding moves with changes in moisture, which I doubt.
I do believe that temperature cycling will artificially age the binding, which may accelerate normal shrinkage.
Celluloid is a unique material, in that it contains camphor that serves as a stabilizer. Excess camphor used in manufacturing needs to 'gas out' before using the celluloid, otherwise it can have higher than normal initial shrinkage. Some camphor must remain, otherwise the celluloid will become unstable. But if the celluloid is properly formulated, this unstable stage will not occur for many decades. I have not witnessed this initial shrinkage in binding, but I have seen it in pickguard material, since it is wider and thinner. Shrinkage of an attached pickguard will cause it to curl up on the edges. Some celluloid shrinkage occurs due to the glue used. Acetone based glues tend to swell celluloid, setting it up for shrinkage later. This is the source of the famous 'Martin crack', where pickguards attached directly to bare wood can shrink enough to crack the top.
FYI, celluloid binding shrinkage can be accurately measured if it is completely removed and reattached. This is done when the back is removed to facilitate major internal repairs. The gap generated is usually about 1/8" over the entire perimeter of the body. On a dreadnought, the perimeter is about 62 inches. That would be 0.2%.
And as far as wood shrinkage goes, that is limited to across the grain direction. Wood does not shrink or swell along the grain, and that is the direction the edge binding is applied.
Quote:
Hearing that a particular synthetic is hard to glue to a particular wood, I have to ask why use it, then?
Martin switched to PVC binding in the 1960's because celluloid manufacturing was being phased out in the US. Until recently, celluloid was being made in Italy. Now, the manufacturing is primarily in China.
Making celluloid is inherently dangerous, and strict occupational hazard laws have caused the move to parts of the world where worker safety is less important.

Last edited by John Arnold; 11-11-2017 at 12:40 AM.
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  #20  
Old 11-11-2017, 04:58 AM
Psfam Psfam is offline
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Default binding on a cocobolo HD-28

I had a binding separation on my guitar 2-3 years ago repaired under warranty.

First, the repair was totally invisible and the luthier polished the whole guitar it seemed so it looked brand new. He is an authorized Martin repairman and only commented that cocobolo is comparatively hard to glue, nothing about a binding problem.

Second, and most importantly, Martin is making A LOT of guitars, so it stands to reason there may be more repairs to do. There are also literally thousands of their guitars with no problems. I think a luthier mentioning that he has had several (more than before) problems with bindings is as likely to mean there are more Martin guitars being made today as that there is a problem.

I don't hold it against Martin that my binding came loose. They repaired it. It's a great guitar.
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  #21  
Old 11-11-2017, 10:31 AM
jaymarsch jaymarsch is offline
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I owned a Martin M-38 a number of years back. The plastic binding along the fret board came loose near the headstock. The repair was a quick fix covered under the warranty even though the guitar was 9 years old. No other issues found.

I also think that Martin does a reasonably good job of quality control given the high number of guitars they produce.

I do understand that when you purchase a high end item, it is reasonable to expect that there be no problems. But things are just not always perfect.

Best,
Jayne
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  #22  
Old 07-14-2018, 05:10 PM
anodyne anodyne is offline
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Just noticed binding separation starting at the waist (bottom) of my 2017 00-DB Tweedy . Luckily I have a great tech close by that does Martin warranty repairs. Seems there is a bit of this w/ Martin ... at least I can drive it over vs shipping it away for repair so that's good. Still a bummer hearing how common this seems to be w/ Martin.

Last edited by anodyne; 07-15-2018 at 01:30 AM.
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  #23  
Old 07-14-2018, 08:00 PM
drive-south drive-south is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirty Bill View Post
Since the binding is cracked on my Martin D-35 I will probably change it.What do you guys think of using abalone instead of the white binding that's on it now? The white is plastic.
Abalone is never used as binding. Abalone is used as purfling which trims the inside of the binding much like herring bone purfling on HD28.
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  #24  
Old 07-14-2018, 08:11 PM
mirwa mirwa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDrake View Post
He says he has 7 or 8 Martins in the shop right now with the same problem. I am not trying to rag on Martin, but this is all news to me and I find it disappointing. Has anyone else had the same binding issue happen to them recently.
I do Martin warranty repairs in my locality, my undestanding for the bindings coming off is to do with the Martin having used an environmentally friendly glue for a while, the glue holds fine, but take a small knock and it comes loose, I am of the belief they have gone back to using another glue.

Local authorised repair place will sort it out no problems

Steve
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Last edited by mirwa; 07-15-2018 at 01:47 AM.
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  #25  
Old 07-15-2018, 12:56 AM
Direstrats Direstrats is offline
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Hi

Do you have and idea when the change back to a non-evironmental glue was made....I have a D28 made in march 2017, just wondering if this guitar may be have been bound in the problamatic glue...

Thanks
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  #26  
Old 07-15-2018, 04:12 AM
Mr Bojangles Mr Bojangles is offline
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I've got a 1998 martin D-28 at the factory now for a binding separation repair. I dropped it off myself, and it has been there for about three months now. That's all that is being done to it, and my repair bill (including return shipping) is about $300.

I love my Martin guitars, but it does seem odd that there are so many reported cases of loose bindings.
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  #27  
Old 07-15-2018, 06:10 AM
FThomas FThomas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Fingers View Post
It's disappointing to hear of these faults, and disappointing, too, to hear that they result from a poor material/application matchup. Hearing that a particular synthetic is hard to glue to a particular wood, I have to ask why use it, then? With some plastics, shrinking can be continuous, and I would be displeased to own an instrument that could pose problems as it ages. It is also disappointing to hear this pretty chintzy approach by Martin to warranty work. It's somewhat disgraceful for a guitar that carries the Martin name to exhibit binding separation. If I found myself out $100-200 shipping to get this fixed, I'd be pissed. I'm really sorry that owners are experiencing this kind of problem. I no longer find Martins very interesting or exceptionally appealing myself, but have always trusted to their reputation. I hope that will not erode. Maybe they invested too much attention to that hilariously stupid clock guitar they produced in an orgy of self-congratulations.
I agree totally with what you have said. I had a discussion with a Customer Service Rep recently and have to say it was really disappointing. As a result I put the brakes on purchasing a D35E, which has been a long time dream of mine.

As someone said above - Heavenly Sounding Instruments. But issues like this give birth to hell on earth - Having to have warranty work done like the OP can be expensive, inconvenient, disappointing and it erodes your confidence in the manufacturer. This is just another example of why I think I have made the right decision. I still moped around for two days crestfallen because of the experience. Broke my heart!

Hope the OP's repairs can be taken care of in a timely manner with the least expense and inconvenience possible.
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  #28  
Old 07-15-2018, 06:57 AM
simpl man simpl man is offline
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IMHO, it's simply unacceptable on a newish guitar. Pre-shrinking the binding material wouls help to resolve the issue, but big manufacturers probably have to use the stuff as soon as they get it to keep up with demand.

I've fixed a few of them myself using the method above (superglue & patience).
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  #29  
Old 07-15-2018, 01:09 PM
TheDrake TheDrake is offline
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Wow, I didn't expect this old thread of mine to resurface. Anyway, the follow-up to my situation is good. I did ship the guitar to the nearest Martin certified repair shop, Guitar Tex in San Antonio, Texas. They did a great job, took a couple of weeks and was only out the cost of shipping. The guitar looks fantastic, you can't even tell where the separation was or what was repaired. Back to my original post, the tech who did the work did tell me that he had recently seen a lot of Martin guitars with binding separation issues. I think when I originally called and told him of my problem, he said he currently had 8 Martin guitars with bindings in the shop to fix. I don't know if it is a shrinkage problem with the binding material or a defect with the glue, as Mirwa has suggested, but it did disappoint me. Anyway, the guitar is home now, good as new, and still cherished. No hard feelings.
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  #30  
Old 07-15-2018, 01:50 PM
anodyne anodyne is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDrake View Post
Wow, I didn't expect this old thread of mine to resurface. Anyway, the follow-up to my situation is good. I did ship the guitar to the nearest Martin certified repair shop, Guitar Tex in San Antonio, Texas. They did a great job, took a couple of weeks and was only out the cost of shipping. The guitar looks fantastic, you can't even tell where the separation was or what was repaired. Back to my original post, the tech who did the work did tell me that he had recently seen a lot of Martin guitars with binding separation issues. I think when I originally called and told him of my problem, he said he currently had 8 Martin guitars with bindings in the shop to fix. I don't know if it is a shrinkage problem with the binding material or a defect with the glue, as Mirwa has suggested, but it did disappoint me. Anyway, the guitar is home now, good as new, and still cherished. No hard feelings.
Yeah, remembered reading this previously and decided to bump thread rather than create new one given similarities. Good to hear of positive resolution ... other than shipping costs. I've had too many issues/stress from shipping, so glad I've got it Relatively Easy (J. Isbell) in that I can just drive mine over to solid/trusted luthier. I love my 00-DB, so will get the process going soon to get it back in my hands.
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