View Full Version : Army-navy bracing
I have a Gibson Army-Navy mandolin in for repair with a very sunken top. The brace under the bridge area is cracked almost all the way across the instrument & someone added a brace in front of the original brace that is, more or less, just a chunk of triangular wood glued to the top & it's coming loose also. The second brace is so big that is was difficult to see past it and made it impossible to work inside. I have the back off, it looks like the original brace was flat, but it's hard to tell. Was it originally flat or did they make them with a radius? If it had a radius, what was the radius? It seems like a bit of a radius would be beneficial, but I don't want to stray too far from original. Other than the sunken top it's in great shape and sounds really nice. It was brought to me because the action was too low and the customer wanted the bridge shimmed up, which had already been done. Any advice will be appreciated.
I'd make the main brace, directly under the bridge, 5/16 wide x 3/8" high, with a 25' radius. I would add a brace just below the soundhole, all the way across, 3/16 wide x 1/4 high, same radius.
I played an Alrite, (the model that preceded the Army Navy)that had been converted to X bracing. It was a really nice player. This may be something to consider. You should save any braces that you remove. This will serve to maintain originality to some extent.
Eh? Rebrace it to an X, but save the originals - so someone can put them back in?
...so someone can put them back in?
Ya'll don't make fun, it's neat history to have the old (original) brace in the case. Better than gum wrappers.
Take a look at the threads below if you'd like to see what others have done when rebracing these.
Thread 1 (http://www.mandolincafe.net/cgi-bin/ikonboard.cgi?act=ST;f=7;t=46981;hl=rebrace)
Thread 2 (http://www.mandolincafe.net/cgi-bin/ikonboard.cgi?act=ST;f=7;t=41204;hl=alrite)
Thread 3 (http://www.mandolincafe.net/cgi-bin/ikonboard.cgi?act=ST;f=7;t=21363;hl=alrite)
Thanks guys. I won't be x-bracing this one, I want to keep the sound as close to the same as I can. The customer loves it, and I have to say it does have a very nice sound.
Dave, I was thinking along those lines, thanks.
Paul do you have any advice on this one?
Mike, we were typing at the same time. Thanks for those links.
Thanks Dave, I was just repeating what I read somewhere. Alrites and Army navy models do have some collector value.