Top Separation Repair on 'Bowl-Back' Ovation

If your acoustic guitar top is starting to separate or lift a little from the guitar sides, it’s usually a reasonably straightforward job to repair.

Basically speaking, it’s a matter of some glue and some good clamping. Good clamping is the secret to all good glue jobs and it’s not too much hassle to clamp most acoustic guitar tops.

However, on a guitar like an Ovation—with a moulded, curved back—things are a little less cut and dry. Applying pressure along the edges of the top is a bit more tricky.

Hence, this monstrosity.

Crazy clamping on an Ovation

Crazy clamping on an Ovation

The guitar’s neck is held in my vice.

I’ve a couple of mats below to cushion it and conform to the shape.

The other side is held in place so it doesn’t start to ‘flip’ when I…

Clamp the top using my workbench as a clamping point.

This way, I can get a decent, downward pressure on the top so it’ll re-glue to the sides. We’re not talking tons of pressure here—this is a fine (if less than graceful) solution.