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May 22, 2019 - 5:13:27 PM
26 posts since 5/1/2010

I recently posted about my intentions of replacing a fingerboard.
Well, I did so, using Tite-Bond Hide Wood Glue, and after a week of trying to get used to this change, decided I didn't remove enough wood from the new fingerboard.
So, today I've been trying to remove the fingerboard by wrapping the neck in hot, wet cloths. That damned glue wouldn't budge!
Now, I'm trying to steam it off over a pressure cooker on my stove.
Still, no dice!
What's with this Tite-Bond? I thought this stuff was reverseable.
Should I have diluted it first?

May 22, 2019 - 5:18:49 PM

218 posts since 1/5/2009

To get tight bound to break down, you have to apply heat from an industrial heat gun. Try not to burn the fingerboard. Once you have a slight gap you can then use wedges to remove it adding heat as required to soften the glue.

May 23, 2019 - 4:26:04 AM

4199 posts since 9/26/2008

Next time, maybe not tite-bond.

May 23, 2019 - 4:47:02 AM



653 posts since 6/8/2013

you could always make cuts , then chisel it off, not easy , not good but if all else fails

May 23, 2019 - 5:30:07 AM
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3606 posts since 6/24/2007

One can do a great deal to a fingerboard while on the violin. That's where all the final shaping generally takes place.

May 23, 2019 - 5:31:30 AM



9203 posts since 12/2/2007
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I think Fiddleharp used this glue, not the usual Titebond:
I don't know why it wouldn't br reversible, but I do think fingerboards are usually glued on very lightly.
I'd take Steve's advice and shape it on the instrument.

Edited by - DougD on 05/23/2019 05:34:21

May 23, 2019 - 6:12 AM



9203 posts since 12/2/2007
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Here's an article about liquid hide glue that discusses reversibilty. They used a hair dryer.

May 23, 2019 - 6:45:29 AM
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91 posts since 8/26/2016

This is one of the reasons "Hot Hide Glue" fresh out of the glue pot has been the standard for centuries......

May 23, 2019 - 3:00:02 PM
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908 posts since 6/26/2007

The common complaint about this glue is that it fails in high humidity conditions, which is to be expected. If it gets thoroughly dry and stays dry, it is pretty strong. Yours is probably too dry for heat alone to soften it and the exposed area vs. the glued area is tiny, so getting moisture into it is not easy. If you can keep that area damp long enough it will probably let go, but you may have to be patient. Diluted hide glue is the standard for attaching fingerboards for the reason you have encountered, and even then freshly glued joints can be pretty strong. Good luck.

May 28, 2019 - 2:37:15 AM

26 posts since 5/1/2010

Update for those who've been following this thread: I ended up slowly and laboriously sanding excess wood off the top of the fingerboard and nut while they were still attached to the fiddle.
The fiddle is now quite playable, and I'm satisfied with the results, but I sure hope I never have to embark on such a project again in the future!
I only did it because the old fingerboard was rotten and literally falling apart.
Thanks for all the interest and advice!

May 29, 2019 - 2:31:50 PM

828 posts since 1/25/2008

They don't call it Tite bond for nothing! Don't know who told you it was reversible. I've used small amounts of Tite-bond in certain applications where I don't want it to EVER come apart.

May 29, 2019 - 2:35:25 PM
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908 posts since 6/26/2007

Doug, he used Tite-Bond LIQUID HIDE GLUE. Reversible when you don't want it to be.

Jun 2, 2019 - 5:36:22 AM

828 posts since 1/25/2008

Ooops! Missed the liquid hide part. That's a different animal. Luthiers usually don't rely on softening hide glue to open joints. The fact that the hide glue of fairly brittle is used to advantage. Once the joint opening is started, a little wedging pressure will usually continue the joint opening. Sometimes a little drop of alcohol (careful not to get any on the finish) will further dehydrate the glue and make it even more brittle.

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