Surface "cracking" on zither top

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Rudy Mueller
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Joined: Thu Sep 08, 2011 8:33 am

Surface "cracking" on zither top

Post by Rudy Mueller » Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:39 am

The re-finishing of the Förg zither has begun. On string removal, it became apparent that surface finish cracking was more extensive than thought.

Does anyone have thoughts/information on the effect of surface finish cracking on acoustics?

Rudi

kenbloom
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Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2014 11:50 am

Re: Surface "cracking" on zither top

Post by kenbloom » Mon Dec 04, 2017 1:51 pm

HI Rudi,

Usually surface crackling has no effect on tone. The finish sits on top of the wood and the plates are rather thick as well as the higher tension of most of the strings as compared with say the lute. I would say that finish problems have no affect on tone or playability, only looks.
'Ken Bloom
http://www.boweddulcimer.org

Rudy Mueller
Posts: 401
Joined: Thu Sep 08, 2011 8:33 am

Re: Surface "cracking" on zither top

Post by Rudy Mueller » Wed Dec 13, 2017 6:06 pm

ugh. The saga of the Förg continues.

Denatured alcohol did not touch the top finish, and neither did standard paint thinner.

Light sanding has begun. There were several areas where the original stain did not "take", and after light sanding, several other areas appeared where there was some type of filler on/in the wood, but under the finish.... ??? Good old Förg left me with some surprises... there may be other blemishes/defects there when those which are apparent are addressed.

Several "wear and tear" divots disappeared after light sanding, but not through the underlying stain. This may be a longer project than anticipated.

Two other zithers currently in my care are going to a very good home after the first of the year. With the Förg in the shop, I'll be down to playing "Boomer" described elsewhere on this site. Hope the neighbors and the Wendlstoana don't mind.

Blessed Christmas to all,

Rudi

Rudy Mueller
Posts: 401
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Re: Surface "cracking" on zither top

Post by Rudy Mueller » Sat Jan 20, 2018 9:34 am

DISASTER!

Even with light sanding, some of the veneer "flaked off", revealing the particle board (spärholz, garbage-board) substrate underneath, in an area of about 3 x 1.5 cm, above the sound hole, near the top edge.

What failed? The finish? the veneer? this operator? Probably all three.

I proceeded with very light sanding on the remainder of the top surface, and the more I sanded, the darker the surface became (fortunately, with no more flaking). This top surface started off as a medium tan color, and ended up as dark as, and the color of, raw walnut. I can only wonder what chemistry Förg used on this finish.

The surface was then given 5 coats of "Minwax" brand stain, 4 coats of Helmsman high gloss polyurethane varnish, (all with 2 day drying and light sanding between) and polished.

Re-assembly has started. More later,

Rudi

Rudy Mueller
Posts: 401
Joined: Thu Sep 08, 2011 8:33 am

Re: Surface "cracking" on zither top

Post by Rudy Mueller » Mon Jan 22, 2018 11:47 am

Giffbrett was re-honed" as with the F Seith, eliminating the "buzz" on both a strings at the b, c, and d frets. :D

Rudi

NutmegCT
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Re: Surface "cracking" on zither top

Post by NutmegCT » Mon Jan 22, 2018 6:15 pm

As they say, "a spoonful of honing helps the medicine go down!"

Ich gratuliere!

Tom M.

Rudy Mueller
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Joined: Thu Sep 08, 2011 8:33 am

Re: Surface "cracking" on zither top

Post by Rudy Mueller » Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:58 am

Thanks Tom,

:D will order new strings today

I have been getting in more "group" playing; our Bavarian Bavarians survived the Holydays, and are now back in swing. We do about 75 minutes in a stretch, twice a month. Two zithers, hackbrett, blockflötte (recorder) and two accordions.

We also have two brand new zither students in the club; hopefully they can start practicing a few easy pieces with the group soon. Once you get past "staad staad", in harmony, you're on a roll.

rudi

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