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End Block and Top?

#1 User is offline   Buc McMaster 

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 08:25 AM

I seem to recall hearing that the top is not glued to the end block, merely hovering just above it to keep the top freer to vibrate. True? Oui ou non?
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#2 User is offline   duluthdan 

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 09:21 AM

I have watched this factory build process 4 times over the years, and never paid specific attention to this detail. I do know the end block is specifically glued to assemble the sides, and then the tops and backs are attached in a separate step. I would say that it is probably true that the end block is not a glue point to the top, I think, maybe. [confused]
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#3 User is offline   blindboygrunt 

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 09:25 AM

Why buc why ??
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#4 User is offline   Jinder 

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 10:09 AM

I donít know for sure, but Iíve always suspected it was. Iíve owned several guitars which over time have developed wee dimples in the top right above where the end block lives, which I always assumed was down to the woods settling and the end block being glued to the top.

I may be entirely wrong though!
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#5 User is offline   Buc McMaster 

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 10:11 AM

View Postblindboygrunt, on 11 October 2017 - 09:25 AM, said:

Why buc why ??

?? Why not? Inquiring minds want to know...........

......and just as an aside to no one in particular.........GO ASTROS!!
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Knowin' where you're goin' is mostly knowin' where you have been. Buc, from Me & Eddie
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#6 User is offline   Murph 

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 11:30 AM

He's always been a trouble maker....
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#7 User is offline   zombywoof 

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 11:42 AM

I might be dead wrong but I believe Gibson glues neither the top or the back to the end block.
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#8 User is offline   Murph 

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Posted 11 October 2017 - 01:53 PM

View PostBuc McMaster, on 11 October 2017 - 10:11 AM, said:


......and just as an aside to no one in particular.........GO ASTROS!!



Ahem...

Cubbies going for the deuce.......

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#9 User is offline   Hogeye 

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Posted 12 October 2017 - 12:43 PM

Back in the day when Ren was running the show Gibson relieved(for want of a better word) the top and bottom surface of the end block. The relief cuts allowed the end block to secure the ribs but it allowed the top to be free with plenty of room to vibrate without touching the end block. The whole process took about two minutes to accomplish. In an effort to streamline the building process the engineers won the battle and an important part of Ren's design was done away with.

This is difficult to explain but if someone has a guitar built in the early 90's it is quite easy to see how the end block was relieved and how the top was free to vibrate. This also eliminated the stress lines associated with gluing the guitar top to the top of the end block.

If the top were not glued to the top of the end block without the relief cut the top will vibrate and make all sorts of unusual sounds. Most of which are not desirable.
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#10 User is offline   j45nick 

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Posted 12 October 2017 - 01:14 PM

View PostHogeye, on 12 October 2017 - 12:43 PM, said:

Back in the day when Ren was running the show Gibson relieved(for want of a better word) the top and bottom surface of the end block. The relief cuts allowed the end block to secure the ribs but it allowed the top to be free with plenty of room to vibrate without touching the end block. The whole process took about two minutes to accomplish. In an effort to streamline the building process the engineers won the battle and an important part of Ren's design was done away with.

This is difficult to explain but if someone has a guitar built in the early 90's it is quite easy to see how the end block was relieved and how the top was free to vibrate. This also eliminated the stress lines associated with gluing the guitar top to the top of the end block.

If the top were not glued to the top of the end block without the relief cut the top will vibrate and make all sorts of unusual sounds. Most of which are not desirable.


Thanks, Hogeye. That's a perfectly clear explanation that's easy to understand and visualize.
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#11 User is offline   62burst 

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Posted 12 October 2017 - 03:20 PM

1993 J-100:

Posted Image




Strange mark next to tail block (taken with endoscope, which reversed image) . . . anyone have any clue what that's about {Hogeye} ?:

Posted Image






RIP, TP

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#12 User is offline   E-minor7 

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Posted 12 October 2017 - 05:43 PM

View Post62burst, on 12 October 2017 - 03:20 PM, said:

1993 J-100:

Strange mark next to tail block (taken with endoscope, which reversed image) . . . :


Excellent photo-mission, 62b - would be nice to see the inner Bird.
You just can't keep coincidences down. .
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#13 User is offline   Victory Pete 

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Posted 13 October 2017 - 04:05 PM

Was this done at any other time in Gibson's history?
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#14 User is offline   62burst 

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Posted 13 October 2017 - 05:08 PM

View PostE-minor7, on 12 October 2017 - 05:43 PM, said:

62b - would be nice to see the inner Bird.

2016 HB Vintage- nice fit with the kerfing, but definitely glued to the top:

Posted Image


Across the braces of the toasted top-

Posted Image

seems to be a sizable bridge plate, the HB/Dove, one-size-fits-all




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#15 User is offline   Victory Pete 

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Posted 13 October 2017 - 05:15 PM

I have always seen the ghost image of the end blocks on the tops of my guitars. I think it is better this way from a structural standpoint. A nice anchorage point right in line with the bridge.
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#16 User is offline   E-minor7 

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Posted 13 October 2017 - 05:43 PM

View Post62burst, on 13 October 2017 - 05:08 PM, said:


2016 HB Vintage- nice fit with the kerfing, but definitely glued to the top:



seems to be a sizable bridge plate, the HB/Dove, one-size-fits-all



Bravo ^ that first shot looks like brick wall over a wooden floor up in the attic. Top-contact, , aha, , good insight as well.

Let those D'Addarios ring out some clean T. Petty Saturday nite, burst. .


Btw. guess the plate tells us the 2 fliers share the same pattern. Probably more or less the same braces/scalloping too.
You just can't keep coincidences down. .
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#17 User is offline   Hogeye 

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Posted 14 October 2017 - 11:45 AM

View PostVictory Pete, on 13 October 2017 - 05:15 PM, said:

I have always seen the ghost image of the end blocks on the tops of my guitars. I think it is better this way from a structural standpoint. A nice anchorage point right in line with the bridge.


I think I understand your thinking but.... It's not correct. Please remember the top is built on a 28 foot radius. To get the top to glue down to the end block you need to press the top down out of the radius and stress the radius. This stress can be seen from the top. That is the ghost image or outline you are seeing. I don't have any numbers on this but plenty of the stress lines you see actually turn into stress cracks as the tops age.

As far as the tone goes? It's a tone killer to put undue stress on the top in any manner. Ren understood this from the start and took the measure to relieve the end block. Engineers and business types have no clue as to the small nuances that go together to define the sound of a guitar. This became quite evident when they made the decision to make pickguards out of "Flubber".

This is just one guys opinion and you can look at both sides of the issue and decide for yourself. I like Ren's idea.
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#18 User is offline   zombywoof 

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Posted 14 October 2017 - 11:52 AM

View PostE-minor7, on 12 October 2017 - 05:43 PM, said:

Excellent photo-mission, 62b - would be nice to see the inner Bird.


The UMGF maintains a Gibson bracing library with plenty of under the hood photos. I don't think it goes past the 1950s though.
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#19 User is offline   E-minor7 

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Posted 14 October 2017 - 12:09 PM

View Postzombywoof, on 14 October 2017 - 11:52 AM, said:

The UMGF maintains a Gibson bracing library with plenty of under the hood photos. I don't think it goes past the 1950s though.

Thanx, I have a couple of them in my archive (really good) - but don't recall them getting close the block-contact-theme.
Might be wrong.
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#20 User is offline   Victory Pete 

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Posted 14 October 2017 - 03:41 PM

View PostHogeye, on 14 October 2017 - 11:45 AM, said:

I think I understand your thinking but.... It's not correct. Please remember the top is built on a 28 foot radius. To get the top to glue down to the end block you need to press the top down out of the radius and stress the radius. This stress can be seen from the top. That is the ghost image or outline you are seeing. I don't have any numbers on this but plenty of the stress lines you see actually turn into stress cracks as the tops age.

As far as the tone goes? It's a tone killer to put undue stress on the top in any manner. Ren understood this from the start and took the measure to relieve the end block. Engineers and business types have no clue as to the small nuances that go together to define the sound of a guitar. This became quite evident when they made the decision to make pickguards out of "Flubber".

This is just one guys opinion and you can look at both sides of the issue and decide for yourself. I like Ren's idea.


Martin glues to the end bock as well. Do you know if this has ever been done at any other time in Gibson's History? I see no evidence of that
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