How to Fix a Hole on an Acoustic Guitar With the Hole on the Sound Side

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Things You'll Need

  • Wood glue
  • Wood filler
  • Sand paper
  • Tweezers
  • Wood stain

Despite our best efforts, sometimes we damage our prized instruments. Acoustic guitars can get nicks and holes, especially if you play with them a lot or travel with them. Sometimes when we buy used guitars, we discover the former owners have made modifications to the instruments, such as drilling holes to attach pickups. These small holes are easy to repair quickly and inexpensively. You might even get lucky and find some of the wood pieces have been knocked into the guitar. You can use these to repair the body or to find a suitable match to create your patch.

Retrieve any splinters, fragments or wood pieces from inside the body of the guitar. Use tweezers to remove any splinters or fragments from the edges of the hole. Locate some wood to match the color and grain of the body of the guitar. Make sure it is the same thickness.

Fit together any salvaged wood pieces that you were able to retrieve. Glue them together and allow to dry. Determine the size of the hole you need to fill. Cut out a wood patch that will properly fill the hole.

Sand down both sides of the wood patch. Sand down the edges of the hole you are filling. Apply wood glue to the edges of the hole. Place the patch over the hole and allow it to dry. Use a clamp or weighted object to keep the piece in place as it dries.

Sand down the patch. Pay particular attention to the edges. Sand the edges smooth. Wipe away any remaining wood dust. Apply a coat of wood stain to the area. Allow to dry. Examine the patched area. Determine if the color matches properly. Apply a second coat of wood stain to the area if necessary.

Fill in any smaller holes with wood filler. Allow to dry and apply stain to the filled-in area. Apply a second coat of stain if necessary.


  • Some wood stains may be flammable. Do not use flammable materials near an open flame. Apply wood stain in a well-ventilated area. Always read the warnings on the label.


About the Author

Chris Auman is a graduate of the writing program at Columbia College, Chicago and studied basic manuscript editing at the University of Chicago's Graham School. He has contributed articles to City Search, Centerstage, "Illinois Entertainer" and the "Chicago Tribune." Auman has written product reviews, music and book reviews, and has also provided web content for various real estate companies.

Photo Credits

  • Polka Dot RF/Polka Dot/Getty Images