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Old 03-08-2018, 09:57 AM
HFox HFox is offline
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Default does Hot Hide Glue make a difference in the Tone/Voice

Well, I seem to have caused a bit of a wrinkle in The Force with my Bling post.
So.... Does the use of Hot Hide Glue add to the tone/voice of an instrument versus other adhesives ?
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Old 03-08-2018, 09:59 AM
HodgdonExtreme HodgdonExtreme is offline
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:01 AM
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martingitdave martingitdave is offline
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The general consensus is "maybe." However, there is no consensus on "how much." I've played amazing guitars made with hide glue and titebond. I played duds made with hide glue and titebond. Generally, however, the hide glue process is labor intensive and reserved for more expensive instruments, which might have an advantage to begin with. Look for articles by the various guitar builders on the topic. Opinions from guitar aficionados, like me, are significantly less relevant.

Edit: Evidently I am misremembering, or reading different material, because there appears to be no consensus here. I have edited my statement. LOL
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:05 AM
mcduffnw mcduffnw is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HFox View Post
Well, I seem to have caused a bit of a wrinkle in The Force with my Bling post.
So.... Does the use of Hot Hide Glue add to the tone/voice of an instrument versus other adhesives ?
Your doing this fer fun aren'tcha...whack the bee's nest and run back and watch the swarm.

But...just to play along...no...no the type of glue does not make a difference that anyone could discern in the tone. It's all in the wood, and technique of the maker working it.

Now stop riling up us critters...and go play your guitar for heaven's sakes!!! You want to find something that will REALLY effect the tone of the guitar?...your learning how to play your guitar, and improving your technique...THAT will REALLY make a difference in the tone that YOU CAN HEAR!!!

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Old 03-08-2018, 10:07 AM
Mycroft Mycroft is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HFox View Post
Well, I seem to have caused a bit of a wrinkle in The Force with my Bling post.
So.... Does the use of Hot Hide Glue add to the tone/voice of an instrument versus other adhesives ?
Must be a slow day at work...

Actually the proper question is if it would "change" the tone/voice of the instrument. "Add" presumes any difference would be for the better, while "Change" also allows for a negative effect.
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:10 AM
Silurian Silurian is offline
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Not as much as Unicorn horn nut and saddle.
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:15 AM
musicman1951 musicman1951 is offline
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Yes.

Is it enough of a difference to justify the $500 up-charge? That's a whole 'nother kettle of fish.
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:20 AM
Jimmy Caldwell Jimmy Caldwell is offline
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Default Hide Glue

Quote:
Originally Posted by martingitdave View Post
The general consensus is "yes." However, there is no consensus on "how much." I've played amazing guitars made with hide glue and titebond. I played duds made with hide glue and titebond. Generally, however, the hide glue process is labor intensive and reserved for more expensive instruments, which might have an advantage to begin with. Look for articles by the various guitar builders on the topic. Opinions from guitar aficionados, like me, are significantly less relevant.
Whose general consensus? IMO, this is another non-issue similar to the abalone/pearl trim topic started by the same poster. Lots of builders use hide glue, some for it's physical properties (quick tack, ease of disassembly, regenerative properties, etc.) and some for it's marketing properties. Count me in the former. I've built lots of guitars both ways and I can't discern any tonal difference whatsoever, nor can my clients. In fact pretty much any guitar I build regardless of deviations in materials or methodology sounds like one of my guitars. Once you reach a point in your building career (say 20-30 guitars) you'd be hard pressed to build anything that didn't sound like one of your guitars.

I use it exclusively for all critical joints and have for about ten years, but not for tonal reasons. Just my .02.
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:29 AM
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probably not as much as the fish protein glue now used by some folks.

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Old 03-08-2018, 10:54 AM
woodbox woodbox is offline
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I'll letchaknow as soon as I get my guitar off the Tonerite.
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:57 AM
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Groberts Groberts is online now
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Quote:
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I'll letchaknow as soon as I get my guitar off the Tonerite.
You mean the one with the abalone shell purfling?
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Old 03-08-2018, 11:21 AM
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I asked a couple of established luthiers, whose guitars are well-know around here, this question. (I won't name them because our conversations weren't intended for attribution.) One pretty much flat-out said, "no." The other suggested that it might, but the main appeal of using it was that customers wanted or expected it in a high-end instrument, so he gave them what they wanted.

I've read a lot about how it dries differently, etc., etc., but remain unconvinced. That's not to say that I'm right and others are wrong, necessarily; just that a convincing case capable of persuading me hasn't been made yet. And if I sort all the guitars I've ever owned into those I have liked best vs. the rest, I wouldn't wind up with all the hide glue instruments in the first pile. In fact, two of my most disappointing guitars were made with hide glue, although I don't think the glue had a thing to do with my disappointment in them.

Hide glue does have an advantage if repairs are needed. Unlike most glues, it can be moistened and heated and thus "reactivated." When I was briefly infatuated with the idea of learning fiddle, I discovered that a lot of fiddle players kept a palette knife handy so that they could repair plate separations. Dipping the palate knife into hot water and then sliding it into an open seam would soften the hide glue. Then using the chin rest as a clamp, you could do a quick repair that worked very well. That sort of thing isn't so likely to work with modern synthetic adhesives.

One additional thing that does appear to be true is that some other types of glue can creep under certain conditions. That's been empirically demonstrated. That might be part of the issue with the need for neck resets on instruments, for example. If the prolonged strain on the joints can result in the glue creeping, the affected joints can slide slightly out of alignment. But a lot of vintage (and presumably hide-glue-based) instruments also show the sorts of geometric distortions that necessitate neck resets. So, who knows?

If you like hide glue for whatever reason, then go for it. If you don't, that's okay, too. Clearly very good guitars get built both ways and I have never noticed a big enough difference between those that have used it and those that haven't to make me care about it one way or another.
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Old 03-08-2018, 11:33 AM
guitar george guitar george is offline
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Default does Hot Hide Glue make a difference in the Tone/Voice

About the same difference as abalone inlays.
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Old 03-08-2018, 11:38 AM
HFox HFox is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HodgdonExtreme View Post
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Old 03-08-2018, 11:53 AM
Zigeuner Zigeuner is offline
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Someone asked about whether an upcharge is justified when ordering a guitar from say C.F. Martin. I certainly think it would be. I've used hide/fish glues and it's certainly a lot more work. That means that it can't be done in regular production but rather off to the side with a technician who is trained to use hot glues. There is also a lot more time involved in using hot glues and it requires good technique.

As to the difference in tone, perhaps there is some on the plus side, but I suspect that it's mostly in the mind of the owner/player.
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