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Johnnyboy
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exclamation.gif posted on 8-14-2019 at 07:30 PM
Specific questions about large crack on the back


Hello,

I've got an ugly crack on the back side of my Ud. Please see the attachments for pictures.

I have got 2 specific questions regarding this:

1. After pushing the crack back from the inside, is it possible to only paint the cracked area exactly the same color as the rest of the back of the Ud in order to hide the crack? Or does the whole back of the Ud need a new finish and paint because only painting the crack would never give the same color?

2. I heard that after sandpapering the whole Ud, painting it again and putting it in the oven, the sound would be even better than before. Is this because wood gets thinner during sandpapering and thus it would resonate more?

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alim
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[*] posted on 8-15-2019 at 09:35 AM


Hello,

If this were my Oud, I will just fix the crack with glue and some sort of clamping (after push it back in to place). No need to refinish etc... It is only cosmetic and on the back of the Oud, and would not affect the sound. Refinishing the whole Oud is a big job might actually ruin the sound of you change the thicknesses randomly. My free advice :)

Cheers,

Ali-
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Johnnyboy
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[*] posted on 8-15-2019 at 02:27 PM


Quote: Originally posted by alim  
Hello,

If this were my Oud, I will just fix the crack with glue and some sort of clamping (after push it back in to place). No need to refinish etc... It is only cosmetic and on the back of the Oud, and would not affect the sound. Refinishing the whole Oud is a big job might actually ruin the sound of you change the thicknesses randomly. My free advice :)

Cheers,

Ali-


Thank you, I wanted to have it cosmetically pleasing as well.

But I wanted to know if it's possible to hide it only by painting the crack exactly the same color as the rest of the back. Is achieving the exact same color possible?
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Brian Prunka
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[*] posted on 8-15-2019 at 03:46 PM


Quote: Originally posted by Johnnyboy  

1. After pushing the crack back from the inside, is it possible to only paint the cracked area exactly the same color as the rest of the back of the Ud in order to hide the crack? Or does the whole back of the Ud need a new finish and paint because only painting the crack would never give the same color?


The back of the oud is not 'painted.' That's the natural color of the wood, it hasn't changed. The clear finish is cracked, which obviously shows the lines where it is cracked. How easy that is to fix cosmetically depends on what finish was used originally.

Shellac: relatively easy, the solvent is alcohol and it's just a matter of applying more and polishing it out. It takes a fair amount of skill to get it perfect but it is possible.

Lacquer: a bit more challenging but new lacquer will melt the old lacquer and it just has to be sanded and buffed out to be even.

Most other modern finishes are nearly impossible and would require stripping the entire back and refinishing. This wouldn't be advisable, as it would require a great deal of care to avoid further damage.

You can test the back with solvents in an inconspicuous spot:
alcohol=shellac
acetone=lacquer

Quote: Originally posted by Johnnyboy  

2. I heard that after sandpapering the whole Ud, painting it again and putting it in the oven, the sound would be even better than before. Is this because wood gets thinner during sandpapering and thus it would resonate more?


No, this is insane, don't do anything like that. I don't know where you heard that but it's nuts. Randomly sandpapering the oud would likely make it sound worse since it would end up not being even, and would also likely make the face weaker.
Putting it in the oven is crazy, it would melt the glue and cause the whole oud to fall apart.





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Brian Prunka
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[*] posted on 8-15-2019 at 03:47 PM


Further, the crack is in the bowl and the wood, not just the finish—this should be fixed by a qualified luthier.



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[*] posted on 8-15-2019 at 05:21 PM


Hi Johnnyboy,

You should heed Brian's advice - it's 100% correct. If you just woke up one day, and the back of your oud looked like that, then the back has serious problems and needs to be fixed by a luthier who works on ouds. If your oud was damaged in a fall, or something struck it, then it needs to be fixed by a luthier who works on ouds. There is no question that your oud needs qualified professional help. Best of luck.

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PaulO
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[*] posted on 8-15-2019 at 09:43 PM


I'd put it in the oven



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[*] posted on 8-16-2019 at 03:40 AM


Excuse my lack of knowledge which caused me to use the wrong terms. I got this info from my luthier but I translated his words the wrong way. I thinky luthier indeed meant stripping the back of the ud instead of sandpapering. Perhaps "oven" is not the correct term either.

Quote: Originally posted by Brian Prunka  
Most other modern finishes are nearly impossible and would require stripping the entire back and refinishing.


I'm really curious regarding this. Why exactly is it nearly impossible for modern finishes and would require the entire back to be stripped?

Quote: Originally posted by Brian Prunka  
The back of the oud is not 'painted.' That's the natural color of the wood, it hasn't changed. The clear finish is cracked, which obviously shows the lines where it is cracked. How easy that is to fix cosmetically depends on what finish was used originally.


From what I understood from my luthier, the finish also has a gradient of color. It contains very fine sawdust and in combination with the finish this gives a gradient. Please correct me if I'm wrong.
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[*] posted on 8-16-2019 at 04:50 AM


I like my oud ribs at 500f for 15 minutes and then 6 hours at 175f low and slow baby. Make sure to get that garlic maple cayenne glaze on there. Fall off the bone oud ribs



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[*] posted on 8-16-2019 at 07:48 AM


I can't tell if these are serious questions. Assuming the intent is serious, I am unsure of what is meant by "gradient". A gradient is a slope. Is "ingredient" what is meant?

Some kinds of paint are flammable. If heated they will burn. Wet paint is more flammable than dry but there is still a danger. Same is true for some of the finishes used on wooden instruments (paint is not a usual finish). The likelihood of the oud bursting into flames is high, whether or not there is any actual paint on the wood. ( I can't see any paint in the photos). UNLESS... unless the oven is not turned on. Putting an oud in a cold oven is unlikely to improve the tone but it is safer than putting it a hot one. Of course you'd have to chop the oud into pieces to get it to fit in the oven. Or in the fridge.

Seriously, what did the luthier actually say? Whatever the language, someone here will be able to translate.
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[*] posted on 8-16-2019 at 12:56 PM


Quote: Originally posted by SamirCanada  
I like my oud ribs at 500f for 15 minutes and then 6 hours at 175f low and slow baby. Make sure to get that garlic maple cayenne glaze on there. Fall off the bone oud ribs


Really enjoying the sarcastic remarks guys, keep em coming! :))

Quote: Originally posted by Jody Stecher  
I can't tell if these are serious questions. Assuming the intent is serious, I am unsure of what is meant by "gradient". A gradient is a slope. Is "ingredient" what is meant?

Some kinds of paint are flammable. If heated they will burn. Wet paint is more flammable than dry but there is still a danger. Same is true for some of the finishes used on wooden instruments (paint is not a usual finish). The likelihood of the oud bursting into flames is high, whether or not there is any actual paint on the wood. ( I can't see any paint in the photos). UNLESS... unless the oven is not turned on. Putting an oud in a cold oven is unlikely to improve the tone but it is safer than putting it a hot one. Of course you'd have to chop the oud into pieces to get it to fit in the oven. Or in the fridge.

Seriously, what did the luthier actually say? Whatever the language, someone here will be able to translate.


Perhaps you're taking the terms, for which I already pointed out that I might have translated them the wrong way, too literally which is why you can't tell if my questions are serious or not?

As for color gradient, please look it up. The term color gradient is usually used in computer graphics to specify a certain color range of tones/shades based on coordinates. In general it can be used for a range of color tones/shades.

When translating the luthier's Egyptian words, oven is the translation for the Egyptian word "forn" (phonetically spelled in Western letters) which he said. When the luthier told me the back needs to be stripped and to be given a new finish (he did translate it to "paint" in English himself BTW, that's why I called it "paint") he further said that he can not make it the exact the same color as before. From this I would deduce that the finish also has an influence on the color.

My question from this is simple, why is it actually not possible to make it the same color, as Brian Punks also pointed out ("nearly impossible")?
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[*] posted on 8-16-2019 at 01:37 PM


It's possible that the finish has some color added to it in some way, or that the wood itself has been stained slightly. The wood looks like a natural color so this wouldn't be my first guess, but the pictures aren't great so who knows. If the finish or wood had some kind of dye, then yes it would probably be impossible to match the color. Another possibility is that the wood has been grain-filled, which may contain dye or sawdust particles as well, altering the color of the wood's pores.

Clear finishes do influence the color, in the same way that getting wood wet changes the color; i.e., a finished piece of wood isn't the same color as an unfinished piece.

A luthier isn't going to guarantee making it the same color as an unknown preexisting finish simply because there are far too many variables to make such a guarantee. If nothing else, most finishes are UV-reactive and will acquire a slight (or pronounced, depending on the composition) yellow/amber cast over time, so a new finish will be clear and an old finish slightly yellow, causing a mismatch.


Quote:
As for color gradient, please look it up.

Not directed at me, but you might want to rethink such a flippant response when you are asking questions to which the same answer might be proposed. There are a lot of resources on the internet about instrument finishes, and even more about wood finishes in general.

I didn't suggest that it was nearly impossible to match the color, I suggested that some finishes are not possible to patch. This is due to the chemical composition of most modern finishes, which is something you certainly could look up if you are curious to know exactly how the chemistry of modern finishes work.
A simplistic short answer is that, unlike shellac and lacquer, the chemical processes involved in hardening/drying a modern finish are generally not reversible with solvents so a dry finish cannot be mixed with a new finish seamlessly.

Modern finishes are generally categorized as "poly" finishes (Polyester, Polyurethane aka urethane), Acrylic lacquer or catalyzed lacquer.






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[*] posted on 8-16-2019 at 02:53 PM


Quote: Originally posted by Brian Prunka  
It's possible that the finish has some color added to it in some way, or that the wood itself has been stained slightly. The wood looks like a natural color so this wouldn't be my first guess, but the pictures aren't great so who knows. If the finish or wood had some kind of dye, then yes it would probably be impossible to match the color. Another possibility is that the wood has been grain-filled, which may contain dye or sawdust particles as well, altering the color of the wood's pores.

Clear finishes do influence the color, in the same way that getting wood wet changes the color; i.e., a finished piece of wood isn't the same color as an unfinished piece.

A luthier isn't going to guarantee making it the same color as an unknown preexisting finish simply because there are far too many variables to make such a guarantee. If nothing else, most finishes are UV-reactive and will acquire a slight (or pronounced, depending on the composition) yellow/amber cast over time, so a new finish will be clear and an old finish slightly yellow, causing a mismatch.


Quote:
As for color gradient, please look it up.

Not directed at me, but you might want to rethink such a flippant response when you are asking questions to which the same answer might be proposed. There are a lot of resources on the internet about instrument finishes, and even more about wood finishes in general.

I didn't suggest that it was nearly impossible to match the color, I suggested that some finishes are not possible to patch. This is due to the chemical composition of most modern finishes, which is something you certainly could look up if you are curious to know exactly how the chemistry of modern finishes work.
A simplistic short answer is that, unlike shellac and lacquer, the chemical processes involved in hardening/drying a modern finish are generally not reversible with solvents so a dry finish cannot be mixed with a new finish seamlessly.

Modern finishes are generally categorized as "poly" finishes (Polyester, Polyurethane aka urethane), Acrylic lacquer or catalyzed lacquer.


This has perfectly answered my question, thank you.

Quote: Originally posted by Brian Prunka  
Not directed at me, but you might want to rethink such a flippant response when you are asking questions to which the same answer might be proposed. There are a lot of resources on the internet about instrument finishes, and even more about wood finishes in general.


I was not my intention to be flippant and I proposed it because there is a wider more accurate description of "color gradient" that I'm not going to post here. I am asking questions, admitted my lack of knowledge about ud finishes, for which I couldn't find clear specific details, (I'd love to receive some sources if you have any) and thus showed that I am open for corrections. His post shows that he is already quite sure about what the term means. I find it to be more convincing for him if I propose to look up other sources for the definition, that is all.

Quite frankly, I find his post to be more flippant than I ever intended with mine. Why wouldn't I be serious with my questions? Turning his seemingly serious clear explanation into sarcasm combined with doubting that my questions are serious at all comes across as me not being taken seriously, which is one of the definitions of being "flippant".
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[*] posted on 8-16-2019 at 04:06 PM


Except for the reference to the fridge, I was serious, not flippant. I really could not tell if the whole proposition was a practical joke or serious. I gave the benefit of the doubt and explained that paint burns and ouds don't fit in ovens. It should be obvious. But if the question was serious I thought then that it must because of a translation mistake. And that's what I said.

"Forn" seems possibly related to Italian Fornaio which indeed is an oven, often a big one, and possibly related to "furnace". (?)

In any case baking an instrument seems dangerous to me. I would not do it.

You are right about color gradient. Computer graphics are outside my experience. I looked up "gradient" on its own and the only thing I found was a slope or an incline.
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[*] posted on 8-16-2019 at 07:15 PM


Quote: Originally posted by Johnnyboy  
Why wouldn't I be serious with my questions?


Because the questions were about painting a wooden instrument and putting in an oven.
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[*] posted on 8-17-2019 at 04:07 AM


Ok I'll answer your questions for real...

This oud is not painted. It's varnished with a clear lacquer. The only way to make it close to undetectable is for the crack to repaired seamlessly, which by the looks of it will be unlikely. Then you have to do a lacquer blend which is hard. striping the whole varnish and reapplying the clear varnish of your choice might work if you skip the putting in the oven part. I speak Arabic and that doesn't make sense in either language , get a new luthier.
My advice fix the crack with glue and tape to hold it together while it dries. Live with the varnish how it is.




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[*] posted on 8-17-2019 at 09:59 AM


Quote: Originally posted by Jody Stecher  
Except for the reference to the fridge, I was serious, not flippant. I really could not tell if the whole proposition was a practical joke or serious. I gave the benefit of the doubt and explained that paint burns and ouds don't fit in ovens. It should be obvious. But if the question was serious I thought then that it must because of a translation mistake. And that's what I said.


Yes, I am aware of the part where you were being serious. I was indeed referring to the chopping the oud/fridge reference in combination with thinking my questions being a practical joke.

Quote: Originally posted by Jody Stecher  
Because the questions were about painting a wooden instrument and putting in an oven.


If you were aware that it might be a translation mistake as you said earlier, then perhaps that's a valid reason to not think my questions are a practical joke?
Furthermore, doesn't it seem too random and unlikely to you to very specifically come here, on a forum dedicated to oud building and reparation, just to throw out jokes in the form of questions and showing pictures of having a real problem?

Quote: Originally posted by SamirCanada  
Ok I'll answer your questions for real...

This oud is not painted. It's varnished with a clear lacquer. The only way to make it close to undetectable is for the crack to repaired seamlessly, which by the looks of it will be unlikely. Then you have to do a lacquer blend which is hard. striping the whole varnish and reapplying the clear varnish of your choice might work if you skip the putting in the oven part. I speak Arabic and that doesn't make sense in either language , get a new luthier.
My advice fix the crack with glue and tape to hold it together while it dries. Live with the varnish how it is.


Thanks for the info. It wasn't a correct English translation from the luthier when he said "paint". When I asked him about it further in detail, he talked about a "polyester" finish. When I asked him about the "oven", he said they called it that while in reality it is a cabin in which there is a heater which rises the temperature to 35 degrees Celsius in order for the polyester finish on the ud to dry out.
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[*] posted on 8-17-2019 at 11:22 AM


Quote: Originally posted by Johnnyboy  




If you were aware that it might be a translation mistake as you said earlier, then perhaps that's a valid reason to not think my questions are a practical joke?
Furthermore, doesn't it seem too random and unlikely to you to very specifically come here, on a forum dedicated to oud building and reparation, just to throw out jokes in the form of questions and showing pictures of having a real problem?

[


The answer to the first question is yes. The answer to the second is no. Some people have an unusual sense of humor. And it is precisely because of the presence of both those elements that I could not tell if the post was sincere or not. You seem to not believe me. You also seem to be more offended by my mild humorous remarks than by the funnier, sillier, more outrageous remarks by others in which there was no serous element at all. I'll make one more attempt to explain and if that is not acceptable to you I don't know what i can do and I would prefer to drop the whole matter. I started out writing seriously. Then I thought about the oven. How can an oud be in an oven and not be harmed? Well, by not heating the oven, that's how. So I wrote what I thought. But then I thought that an oud cannot fit in the oven of a normal home kitchen. Even a pizza oven in a pizzeria would have insufficient height to accommodate an oud, unless it was broken in pieces. So I wrote that. At this point I was in the territory of the absurd so I added the fridge. I'm sorry I offended you. I was not intending to insult you. I was, at that point, responding to the comments made by others that heating a musical instrument in the oven was a good idea, or that low and slow oud ribs are delicious.
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[*] posted on 8-17-2019 at 03:56 PM


Quote: Originally posted by Jody Stecher  
Quote: Originally posted by Johnnyboy  




If you were aware that it might be a translation mistake as you said earlier, then perhaps that's a valid reason to not think my questions are a practical joke?
Furthermore, doesn't it seem too random and unlikely to you to very specifically come here, on a forum dedicated to oud building and reparation, just to throw out jokes in the form of questions and showing pictures of having a real problem?

[


The answer to the first question is yes. The answer to the second is no. Some people have an unusual sense of humor. And it is precisely because of the presence of both those elements that I could not tell if the post was sincere or not. You seem to not believe me. You also seem to be more offended by my mild humorous remarks than by the funnier, sillier, more outrageous remarks by others in which there was no serous element at all. I'll make one more attempt to explain and if that is not acceptable to you I don't know what i can do and I would prefer to drop the whole matter. I started out writing seriously. Then I thought about the oven. How can an oud be in an oven and not be harmed? Well, by not heating the oven, that's how. So I wrote what I thought. But then I thought that an oud cannot fit in the oven of a normal home kitchen. Even a pizza oven in a pizzeria would have insufficient height to accommodate an oud, unless it was broken in pieces. So I wrote that. At this point I was in the territory of the absurd so I added the fridge. I'm sorry I offended you. I was not intending to insult you. I was, at that point, responding to the comments made by others that heating a musical instrument in the oven was a good idea, or that low and slow oud ribs are delicious.


I wasn't talking about the jokes. I sure can take them as I already pointed out to keep them coming. Had a few good laughs from them.
I was talking about doubting the serioussness of my questions.
It's not that I don't believe you, but rather that I didn't understand why you'd think they might be a joke, while you already considered that it must be a translation problem and me showing pictures of my problem.

Not understanding why you'd think my questions are a joke and, in addition, combining it with sarcastic remarks, made your post show a somewhat disrespectful load compared to others. Hence me making a remark about it.
But you just explained that this wasn't your intention, so all is fine.

PS: I have solved the whole oven dilemma; the luthier told me what he really meant by it. Please see my previous post in case you haven't read it yet.
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