Nahhat restoration, final comments

10:19 am Oud

Last month, as I was preparing to put the final touches on the Nahhat: adding a fingerboard extension, making sure all the braces are tightly glued, gluing a few small cracks in the face (the oud’s face, that is), and gluing the rosette back on, a new member of the AOSF, nay player Hector Bezanis, mentioned in passing that he is an expert on wood. He offered to help. And boy did he help..

Hector, a master wood carver, had all the expertise, tools, and even wood, that I could have dreamt of. Quickly I did some calculations and took some measurements, and gave him the exact specifications of the fingerboard that allows for maximum playability and beauty. He took it from there, he cut the perfect ebony fingerboard, and carved the bottom of it so that it will fit snugly over the imperfections of the warping face. I went home and glued it without a problem, and within twenty four hours I had the fingerboard. The action was exactly as I had invisioned it: under an eighth of an inch at the fifth.

Hector also introduced me to another master craftsman, Giorgio di Costanzo, an expert on antique restoration and wood finishing. I was looking for an approach to do the final cleanup of the face, using materials that would clean the face and then evaporate leaving no trace. Giorgio, immediately identified the different materials that are needed to clean the oils, epoxy, and dirt that had become embedded in the wood.

The result?

Judge for your self:

Nahat, after

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