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Crack in acoustic guitar
Old 27th January 2013
  #1
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Crack in acoustic guitar

Hi,
I opened my case up this morning of my Martin 000-15 and there is a small crack on the face of the guitar right down the middle. I've attached a photo. I hadn't been putting my oasis humidifier in like I should, but am now. I plan to take it in today for repair, but do you think a small crack like this will go back on its own. Are they easy to fix? I generally take really good care of my gear but with this winter not being that cold around here I hadn't thought much about the humidity being low.

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Crack in acoustic guitar-image.jpg  
Old 27th January 2013
  #2
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Lenzo's Avatar
 
6 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
If you're asking if it will repair itself and disappear, I've never seen it happen. If you know someone who does that kind of repair, then taking it in as soon as possible will hopefully prevent it from getting bigger.
L.
Old 27th January 2013
  #3
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tedtan's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Unfortunately, these cracks are pretty common during the winter and in dry environments (e.g., desert). As you note, the crack was caused by the guitar not being humidified properly. Using the humidifier to keep the guitar around 45% RH will prevent future cracks.

As for repairs, it will not repair itself - take it to your tech and have it glued. Once repaired, it will sound and play like before, and the crack probably won't even be visible.
Old 27th January 2013
  #4
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Thanks guys. Yep, I'm taking it in immediately to get fixed. The local shop I go to is closed today, but I'm taking it in tomorrow before it gets worse.

This is the first year I've ever slacked on keeping my humidifier going...won't happen again.
Old 27th January 2013
  #5
Gear Guru
 
kennybro's Avatar
 
3 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Actually looks to be a separation in the top center seam. Not a crack. Probably easily repairable with hide glue and a body clamp. No biggie, as long as you deal with it quickly. Loosen the strings.

If it's a newer guitar, I'd take a lot of photos and contact Martin about paying for the repair. I've stored dozens of acoustics in about every environment you can imagine since the 70's, I've never owned or used a humidifier and I've never had a guitar seam separate like that except on some very old guitars where the glue just finally gave out.
Old 27th January 2013
  #6
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mcgruff's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Have a feel around inside as well.
Old 27th January 2013 | Show parent
  #7
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John Eppstein's Avatar
 
58 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by kennybro ➑️
Actually looks to be a separation in the top center seam. Not a crack. Probably easily repairable with hide glue and a body clamp. No biggie, as long as you deal with it quickly. Loosen the strings.

If it's a newer guitar, I'd take a lot of photos and contact Martin about paying for the repair. I've stored dozens of acoustics in about every environment you can imagine since the 70's, I've never owned or used a humidifier and I've never had a guitar seam separate like that except on some very old guitars where the glue just finally gave out.
What Kenny said. It looks like a defective glue joint, not a crack to me as well.
Old 27th January 2013
  #8
Lives for gear
 
5 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
If you bought it new, you have a lifetime warranty on it, take it to a Martin qualified repairman and it'll be a simple thing to glue and cleat.
Old 29th January 2013 | Show parent
  #9
Gear Guru
 
kafka's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by kennybro ➑️
Actually looks to be a separation in the top center seam. Not a crack. Probably easily repairable with hide glue and a body clamp. No biggie, as long as you deal with it quickly. Loosen the strings.

If it's a newer guitar, I'd take a lot of photos and contact Martin about paying for the repair. I've stored dozens of acoustics in about every environment you can imagine since the 70's, I've never owned or used a humidifier and I've never had a guitar seam separate like that except on some very old guitars where the glue just finally gave out.
+1. Should be a very straightforward repair for a competent luthier. As has been said, check with Martin to see if they'll handle it for you. They're usually very good about this kind of thing.

As far as a humidifier goes, I use one because flattops can sound pretty drastically different depending on humidity. Shouldn't be necessary to keep a guitar intact, but IMHO, a guitar will remain in better, more playable shape if you use one during the winter months. It all depends on how dry your house gets with the central heat on.
Old 29th January 2013 | Show parent
  #10
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kennybro's Avatar
 
3 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by kafka ➑️
As far as a humidifier goes, I use one because flattops can sound pretty drastically different depending on humidity. Shouldn't be necessary to keep a guitar intact, but IMHO, a guitar will remain in better, more playable shape if you use one during the winter months. It all depends on how dry your house gets with the central heat on.
Yeah, good point.
Old 31st January 2013
  #11
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Crack in your acoustic? Can't you just use a pipe like normal people?
Old 26th April 2013 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by indravayu ➑️
Crack in your acoustic? Can't you just use a pipe like normal people?
HA!
Old 28th April 2013 | Show parent
  #13
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Hot Vibrato's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by kafka ➑️
+1. Should be a very straightforward repair for a competent luthier. As has been said, check with Martin to see if they'll handle it for you. They're usually very good about this kind of thing.

As far as a humidifier goes, I use one because flattops can sound pretty drastically different depending on humidity. Shouldn't be necessary to keep a guitar intact, but IMHO, a guitar will remain in better, more playable shape if you use one during the winter months. It all depends on how dry your house gets with the central heat on.
I'd be interested to hear if Martin repairs it under warranty. I'm under the impression that cracks are not covered (I'm not so sure about a seam separation). It's not necessarily a defect since the OP admittedly neglected using a humidifier.

I should mention that, contrary to kafka's post, proper humidity IS necessary to keep a guitar intact (when relative humidity is low). IMO, most acoustic guitars sound better when dry, but they are way more prone to cracking.

P.S. The good news is, unlike other types of body cracks, that seam separation should be barely visible if the repair is done well.
Old 28th April 2013
  #14
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Old Goat's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I see you are in St. Louis. Who is your luthier? The guy at Gravity Strings up by Soulard Market is really good.
Old 28th April 2013
  #15
Lives for gear
 
16 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
I am pretty sure Martin will cover it. You need to take it to a Martin-authorized repair person, or you may not get full coverage.

I have a 1976 D-35 that developed a crack from the bottom of the pick guard down to halfway to the bottom of the guitar. It was covered under Martin warranty.

Repair runs about $10-$20 per inch as I recall. After repair, I can just barely see where it was cracked.
Old 14th November 2013
  #16
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GYang's Avatar
 
3 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
From 12 acoustic guitars in same room (20-25% humidity in winter, 35-50% in summer) no humidifying ever, after 15 years only one cracked and it was very small crack, easy and cheap repair. Only thing that really helped IMO that there is no heater in that room (heat penetrates through walls and doors), so it is colder few degrees than in the rest of house.
and yes, dry guitar sounds better, livelier no doubt.
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