Both the F-5 and H-5 arrived at the shop in quite a sorry state. I was told the F-4 had been “decoupaged” with the requisite Bill Monroe bumper stickers and handbill memorabilia. I’m certain it was a most attractive wall hanging! The owner had thankfully removed them and sanded as best as possible before they were brought to my attention.
Unfortunately, there wasn’t much left of the upper bout profiles and the recurve had been turned into a divot pocked golf tee area. Quite a bit of careful recarving and sanding brought these back to original looking instruments. Fortunately, the tops were quite heavy so the recurve did not become to thin. I’m certain that these sound better than they originally did as a thinner top is more responsive.
Period correct alcohol stains were used to replicate the original sunbursts. Although the instruments were a true French polish, the tops were then finished in nitrocellulose lacquer as per client’s wishes. Voila!