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best person for sanding off a refin?

JordanS0012

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
78
ive seen people have this done but want to know sho the best is because obviously its really difficult and time consuming. whos the best guys to talk to about trying to sand off an old refin? i saw a fiesta red strat that cescos corner had where somebody did a great job, would love to see the original sunburst on a jazzmaster i have and want to use the best
 

Highnumbers

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,739
For some reason, I doubt that anybody would take on such a job.

It would be more time consuming (read: expensive than refinishing a guitar, possibly to the point where it’s not financially feasible.

And there’s no guarantee that it would turn out ok and look good. You don’t know how somebody prepped them finish underneath. Did they get a sanding block on the old finish to prep the new paint to adhere?

It would be shame to spend a couple thousand dollars having somebody strip the finish off, only to find out it looks terrible underneath.
 

JordanS0012

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
78
fair enough lol, yeah thats definitely a fair point. there is some sanding on it so i wanted to send pictures to see somebodys opinion, you are correct its really not worth it but id love to get an opinion if anybody knows anybody good!
 

Jayyj

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
10,546
Somebody did it on here a few years ago, hugely laborious but he did it. Be aware you don't know what's underneath until you do the work so it's a big gamble on how it will turn out however painstakingly the finisher works. Just because you can see sunburst in places doesn't mean someone didn't start stripping it, get bored and just paint over the rest of it, for example.

Could we get @Laurent Brondel or @jumping@shadows to weigh in?
 

jumping@shadows

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
150
I’ve done this before with excellent results on a ‘68 Goldtop, ‘56 TV Special and ‘59 LP Custom, all oversprayed with nitro. I set up an overhead blacklight rig and used fine sandpaper and compounds to remove the overspray, then shot a misted flash coat to mute the shine and settle the original finish, and all guitars looked 100% stock under blacklight.
It was EXTREMELY time consuming and tedious however, and I don’t know what I’d charge to do it now, plus as others have said, there’s usually a reason a guitar is finished over, and you may not like that reason!
 

Spider-Man

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,904
If you search YouTube, Matthew Scott did this with a ‘59 Strat. I think there’s a video where he documents the process. That one was successful.

There’s also another series of videos where he attempts it on a Blonde Strat without any luck and ends up getting that one refinished.
 

Laurent Brondel

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,600
I’ll just repeat what others have said above: an old refin will blacklight like an old finish, so there’s no way to know if the original finish underneath has been left intact or was partially sanded off.

I have a black ‘64 Coronet where the original silver fox colour shows on the worn parts of the neck and on dings on the body sides, I’m tempted to try removing the black, but it’s a very old refin that actually looks legit, and great, so why bother when I could be left with an ugly mess, and a guitar to refinish in the end?
 

treeofpain

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,378
I have done it a few times. As others have said, even the most meticulous job will not change what is underneath the refin. It may be worth trying if you have, for example, a custom color finish underneath an overspray on a 1959 Strat. There is a tremendous upside, and the downside is that you pay extra to have it refinished again with no change to the current value.
 

Fitzer

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,916
If it’s a guitar potentially worth north of say, $10,000, it’s worth trying and investing the time.

If it’s like, a ‘74 Jazzmaster with a thick poly sunburst finish underneath, maybe just love it for what it is and let it be.
 

RAG7890

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,545
Might be worth giving Joel Wilkins a call, assuming you're based in the US.

You can find him on Instagram under (@jw.restoration).

As others have said..............time consuming & therefore costly to get it done correctly.

This YT says it all IMHO.



:beer
 

JordanS0012

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
78
thanks everyone!!! its a 63 jazzmaster, 63 body/63neck/66 assembly. its a partsguitar so would def be cheaper to just buy a 63 body with original finish, but the body is super lightweight and sounds amazing, and i can see the sunburst underneath in the neck pocket, but everyone here is correct that it could possibly have multiple layers and is not “worth” the money.

its been my main player lately and i have just been enjoying it so much id love to try and reveal the original burst, and just take the hit if not
 

Jayyj

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
10,546
thanks everyone!!! its a 63 jazzmaster, 63 body/63neck/66 assembly. its a partsguitar so would def be cheaper to just buy a 63 body with original finish, but the body is super lightweight and sounds amazing, and i can see the sunburst underneath in the neck pocket, but everyone here is correct that it could possibly have multiple layers and is not “worth” the money.

its been my main player lately and i have just been enjoying it so much id love to try and reveal the original burst, and just take the hit if not

One option might be to try in an area under the pickguard where no-one will see it and see if you can unearth more of the original finish, then decide whether to spend money on it.

One slight concern I'd have if the original finish is visible in the neck pocket but not elsewhere is that getting paint out of neck pockets and control cavities is a lot fidlier than it is the outside bits, so often people don't bother strip those bits. So before getting too invested in it I think it's worth seeing if there's actually anything to uncover beyond those areas.

I've only refinished one old Fender, a '63 Musicmaster, and that had some original Olympic White in the neck pocket but otherwise had been totally stripped. And sprayed in a fetching blue to yellow rattle can sunburst - now a rather more elegant Sherwood green!
 

Shrigg

Member
Messages
138
I’ve done it… on this 76 Tele Custom that came to me with a rattle can Teal green paint job. I could see Olympic peeking out through a few hacks in the paint and thought I’d investigate.
Pretty happy with the result, even though the finish underneath is heavily worn.

Tele-Custom.jpg
 

HondoGuy

Member
Messages
70
If you want the best, then Neely guitars in LA. They did the refin on the infamous Lazarus Joe Bonamassa guitar.

If you want inexpensive, then that's another story.
 




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