Impact-Related Lacquer Cracking or Neck Break? (Vintage-ish Ovation Electric Solid Content)

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HarrySevenHarrySeven Frets: 3084
edited July 14 in Guitar

I'm thinking of parting with this...



Yes, it's an Ovation Preacher Deluxe. All the active stuff works (albeit with a few slightly noisy switches) and it sounds rather nice.

However...at some point in it's life, it's had a wee bump...




NB. I've upped the contrast on these images so the damage is more visible.

I'm pretty sure it's not through to the wood (@ICBM, @WezV - what say you?), but it is a little unsightly.

Now, such things don't bother me (it's perfectly stable and plays fine), but I do realise this is a bone of contention.

It's not a particularly rare or valuable guitar, so sinking money into a localised refin doesn't make fiscal sense.

Hypothetical question - presented with damage such as this - would it put you off a purchase? (that's supposing you were in the market for a weird old Ovation solid*)


*Either that, or (if you can’t suspend disbelief), just imagine it’s a tasty LP or SG you fancy.


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Comments

  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 2954

    Is it a photographic aberration or is there a dead straight line feature, running down the centre of the headstock, through the area of finish damage and along the mid line of the neck as far as the shaded area?
    I fear the Geeks, even when they bear GIFs.
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  • HarrySevenHarrySeven Frets: 3084

    Is it a photographic aberration or is there a dead straight line feature, running down the centre of the headstock, through the area of finish damage and along the mid line of the neck as far as the shaded area?

    There is indeed.


    HarrySeven - Intangible Asset Appraiser & Wrecker of Civilisation. Searching for sh*t guitars so you don't have to.
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 2954
    Two-piece neck?
    I fear the Geeks, even when they bear GIFs.
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  • BridgehouseBridgehouse Frets: 13586
    Two-piece neck?
    Not uncommon with Ovation IIRC - that's def. a two piece as there is grain mismatch as well. 
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 2954
    The question that you have to ask yourself is this.

    How likely is it that a classic headstock break "smile" crack would traverse the glue joint that runs along a two-piece neck?
    I fear the Geeks, even when they bear GIFs.
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  • BridgehouseBridgehouse Frets: 13586
    The question that you have to ask yourself is this.

    How likely is it that a classic headstock break "smile" crack would traverse the glue joint that runs along a two-piece neck?
    I was thinking along similar lines..
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  • valevale Frets: 805
    edited July 14
    i don't have enough experience of these things to call it, but if people who know have acces to basic desktop photo edit facilities, if you desaturate the last big image in harry's op, then roll up the brightness of the black & white image you are left with, it looks as if there is an upper & a slight lower line, maybe 15mm apart (you can play around with contrast too).

    but desaturating the whole image extracts the random mid-tone red wood hue from the basic contrast black & white tones.

    with the little knowledge i have, my guess would be it's a very shallow fracture from a bump but there wasn't a full-on break. old varnishes can be superglassy brittle & can crack & crumble under the tinest stress.

    & if it's a nitro finish, maybe some of that clouding came from a stand or hanger with a wrap around foam headstock support.

    ovations seem hit & miss to me. i like their basses (magnum) better than their guitars.
    what she said.
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  • WezVWezV Frets: 8385
    I don’t think you can say it’s not a break.

    I would be tapping the headstock and neck shaft to establish whether they resonate as one
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 31142
    The neck is a three-piece - the middle piece is just over 1/4" wide, and for some reason is slightly off-centre on this one.

    In my opinion the headstock has been broken and repaired - although I would need to see it in person to be sure.

    It's not at all impossible for a break to go straight across all three pieces like that, the grain is very nearly parallel and the weak point is in the same place for all of them. I've seen it many times on Gibson 70s 3-piece necks and even things like Ekos where the middle piece is a different wood - and plenty of Firebirds and Thunderbirds which have multiple pieces.

    If I wanted the guitar it wouldn't stop me buying it, but it obviously would affect the price slightly. If you're selling I would definitely describe it as a probable headstock repair.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • HattigolHattigol Frets: 549
    A straw poll, hay?
    "Anybody can play. The note is only 20%. The attitude of the motherf*cker who plays it is  80%" - Miles Davis
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  • HarrySevenHarrySeven Frets: 3084
    In that case, I think I may very carefully remove the lacquer in that area for further investigation.


    HarrySeven - Intangible Asset Appraiser & Wrecker of Civilisation. Searching for sh*t guitars so you don't have to.
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 2954
    WezV said:
    I don’t think you can say it’s not a break. I would be tapping the headstock and neck shaft to establish whether they resonate as one
    ICBM said:
    In my opinion the headstock has been broken and repaired - although I would need to see it in person to be sure.
    The finish around the suspect area is strangely crinkly and/or shrunken. Does this continue all the way along the length of the neck and the back the headstock?
    I fear the Geeks, even when they bear GIFs.
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  • BridgehouseBridgehouse Frets: 13586
    It’s all very well, you lot preaching on about it...
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 2954
    I only have to mention "crinkly and/or shrunken" then, you appear. :-p
    I fear the Geeks, even when they bear GIFs.
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 31142
    Funkfingers said:

    The finish around the suspect area is strangely crinkly and/or shrunken. Does this continue all the way along the length of the neck and the back the headstock?
    Yes - now I'm looking at it on a full-size screen, that doesn't look like original Ovation finish at all. The original finish should be very hard, shiny and smooth - it does quite often crack, usually due to temperature/humidity changes, but in long straight lines. That's what I assumed the thread was about...

    There's also a patch on the neck extending about 1/2" to 3/4" from the suspect line which looks like the original finish might have been scraped or sanded through, in which case the crinkly finish is overspray.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • HarrySevenHarrySeven Frets: 3084
    In a few days, I’ll start doing some careful investigation.

    Watch this space! :)


    HarrySeven - Intangible Asset Appraiser & Wrecker of Civilisation. Searching for sh*t guitars so you don't have to.
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 2954
    Would it not be wiser to leave well alone?

    Declare a repaired break. Adjust your asking price accordingly. Let the next owner decide how much money to throw at the guitar.

    Cleaning away the repair finish undermines your argument that the repair is good and stable.
    I fear the Geeks, even when they bear GIFs.
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  • HarrySevenHarrySeven Frets: 3084
    Would it not be wiser to leave well alone?

    Declare a repaired break. Adjust your asking price accordingly. Let the next owner decide how much money to throw at the guitar.

    Cleaning away the repair finish undermines your argument that the repair is good and stable.

    Sounds reasonable.

    But...in that case, what would a notional value be for one of these? (with the identified repair)


    HarrySeven - Intangible Asset Appraiser & Wrecker of Civilisation. Searching for sh*t guitars so you don't have to.
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 31142
    Probably about 75-85% of the value of an unrepaired one in the same condition otherwise.

    The relative rarity - compared to something like a Gibson - does count in its favour.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • HarrySevenHarrySeven Frets: 3084
    @ICBM - the nearest I can find are Viper variants, which seem to be in the £550 - £750 region.

    In terms of this Preacher Deluxe, I’m guessing ‘as is’, around the £400-ish mark?


    HarrySeven - Intangible Asset Appraiser & Wrecker of Civilisation. Searching for sh*t guitars so you don't have to.
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