Cracked body? what to do?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Hauhnar, Dec 27, 2013.

  1. Hauhnar


    Jun 6, 2011
    The title pretty much says it all. I found this out a few weeks ago. I don't know how it happened; I had lend it to some friends of mine a week before i discovered it. Initially i thought it was paint crack but on closer inspection, I'm pretty sure the body's cracked. They must have dropped it on the road to a gig or something. There's also a chip on the back of the headstock about the size of a coin, where all the finishing comes of and you can see the neck wood (it has matching neck and headstock). I approached the guys who borrowed it; two different bands actually, but they vehemently stated that they know nothing about it.
    I don't really know what my options are at this point and was hoping you guys can help me out. Is it worth fixing? Or should i just leave it as it is and buy a new one later on?
    The bass is an Ibanez sr520, it's a discontinued variation of the sr500 model.

    Attached Files:

  2. Hi.

    "With friends like that, Who needs enemies?"

    Items rarely improve or even stay in the same shape when one lends them, there has to be such proveb or a two in a culture as old as in India.

    As for the repair;
    If the bottom portion of the bass feels solid, I wouldn't do a thing.
    If the bottom prtion can be moved, I'd either rip it apart and reglued it, or worked some glue into the cracks and clamped it.

  3. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    the saddest gear destruction stories i hear usually start with this sentence :rollno:
  4. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    +1 I can't see that much damage being done with the bass still in the case there is no way nobody noticed that? I would take it to a qualified tech it can be repaired but it come back to how much is it worth? but at least take it to someone to see if the crack is stable.
  5. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 29, 2008
    I convert 4 string Rickenbackers to 5 string basses.
    Ya ... when I was young I learned the hard way not to lend out basses.

    Musicians + Drugs + Borrowed Bass = Problems
  6. spaz21387


    Feb 25, 2008
    Portland oregon
    I wouldnt loan gear to other bands. My bandmates I trust but other musicians will break it and claim it was like that when you gave it to them...
  7. Hauhnar


    Jun 6, 2011
    yes. lesson learned. i'm never going to lend my bass again, unless i'm there in person at the gig. i'll take it to a tech once my exams are over.
  8. superheavyfunk

    superheavyfunk Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2013
    I've had to do repairs similar to this on electric guitars in the past... If the crack is wide enough, you might want to try mixing some super glue with some isopropyl alcohol in a syringe and shooting it into the crack. Clamp it and leave it for a few days. That should hold it.

    If the crack isn't wide enough to slip a syringe in, the damage likely isn't enough to actually compromise the integrity of the instrument, even though it may be ugly.

    Sorry to hear this happened to you... Hopefully your "friend" owns up to it at some point and will be willing to help you pay for the repair or a refinishing of the body.
  9. JustForSport


    Nov 17, 2011
    Never tried Super Glue w/alcohol (may work, tho), but boat repairs are sometimes done by drilling small holes along the crack- an inch or so apart-, and injecting a thin epoxy (or can be wood glue in this case), then clamping as poster above replied. This can be stronger than the surrounding wood. Then re-finish as req'd.
  10. bolophonic


    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    Is isopropyl alcohol a solvent for super glue? I don't know if that is a good idea.
  11. superheavyfunk

    superheavyfunk Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2013
    It's worked for me several times. A luthier in Quebec showed me the trick when I bought a '66 fender mustang body from Atlanta and it arrived cracked due to mishandling on the past of the postal service. I later used the trick on a Jackson guitar that was brought to me... Worked like a charm! I recommended trying it... I can post pics of the repairs I did, if you like.
  12. Stilettoprefer


    Nov 26, 2010

    I know for a fact that acetone is. I don't think isopropyl alcohol is going to work as well as acetone would (but I've been wrong before). I've actually used acetone to reflow dried superglue while working with the CMM at work.

    Fingernail polish remover will also work to thin super glue, as it is largely just acetone.
  13. landau roof

    landau roof Reupholstered User

    Jul 29, 2010
    Downstate CA
    What to do?

    I would finish off the job on whoever you lent it to.
  14. bolophonic


    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    Best answer.
  15. 96tbird

    96tbird PLEASE STAND BY Supporting Member

    I wouldn't use acetone! There's a finish on the bass to think about. As for alcohol, I've never tried it. I have attempted repair on my buddy's Hamer guitar neck. He had a crack across the grain in the center lamination (the widest piece of laminate) of his neck just under the locking nut bolts. I flowed some CA into it and it seems to be holding. Not what I'd normally do but there was not a lot of choice. We wanted to try and stabilize it. Besides there were four other laminations outside of the crack to support it.
  16. uOpt


    Jul 21, 2008
    Boston, MA, USA
    My money is on excessive temperature changes, at a too high rate of change. The guy might not know.
  17. Could you post a pic of the tire tracks on the gig bag, or did your friends already clean those off?
  18. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011

    Not all CA is created equal so you might want to do a little testing before you commit to this.

    If you want to use CA (super glue) to fix the crack, just get some thin CA, it flows like water and will run through a hypodermic needle with no problem. It will also flow through a plastic (PTFE) capillary tube not much larger than your average IV needle. I'd bet you could apply a little lateral pressure to open the crack enough to get some thin CA down far enough in it to hold the chunks together. Have some paper towels handy to wipe up any excess CA that squeezes out. The trick is to wipe without stopping. If you stop the paper will bond to the puddle of excess glue. It can be worked down, but it's much simpler if you get as much excess as possible off before it sets, which it does really quickly.

    Here's a link to the applicator tips available from BSI. They are the most common brand but are not the only brand available. They are available at most hobby shops, just make sure you get the tip that fits your glue bottle nozzle. BSI also offers all manner of CA, including thin.

    That said, I can tell you from experience that Devcon 2 part epoxies (5 minute and 2 ton) can be thinned with denatured alcohol. I've done this a few times when I needed to flow some epoxy into a tight space. It (denatured) also does an excellent job of cleaning up any excess epoxy before it cures.
  19. Hauhnar


    Jun 6, 2011
    i thought of that before, but it doesn't explain the chip on the headstock. (see attachment.. sorry for poor cell phone pics. that's the back of the head stock where the paint comes off down to the wood. you can actually see and touch the 5pc maple)

    there was nothing wrong with the gig bag.

    Attached Files:

  20. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Step one: call the person you loaned it to and tell him that he will receive the bill for repairs. No negotiation.

    Step two: have a professional repair it, up to and including a full refinish if needed - which it probably will be. If it needs a refin, the bill will run a few hundred dollars.