DIY Finishing question

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by trumpus, Oct 21, 2005.

  1. trumpus

    trumpus Supporting Member

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    Hey,

    Does anyone have any really good links (ie, fairly complete info) on finishing DIY pedals. I've done a few searches at DIYstompboxes, but i couldn't find a basic, beginner description....

    Brian
     
  2. trumpus

    trumpus Supporting Member

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  3. Barge Concepts

    Barge Concepts Member

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    What do you mean by "finishing"?

    Do you mean doing the cosmetics for the box, or actually building a pedal from start to finish?
     
  4. trumpus

    trumpus Supporting Member

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    Cosmetics.

    I've got the pedal built, the box drilled and everything works.

    I'm looking for info, ideas, suggestions for ways to finish the box. I'm interested in info on how to go about painting the box (i read somewhere something abiut self etching primer??), add decals (programs for designing/printing decals, paper?), or other ways to make it look nice?

    Brian
     
  5. jimmy54

    jimmy54 Member

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    I'b be interested in an answer to this question too, as I've just finished building an Orange Squeezer compressor.
    I've spray painted a couple of enclosures in the past using car spray paint but I didn't like the gloss finish it gives. What paint can you use that'll give you a matt finish? Ditto re use of decals.
     
  6. Barge Concepts

    Barge Concepts Member

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    Your options are more or less limitless.... Silkscreening, waterslide decals, adhesive vinyl, sharpie, spray paint, paint dipping, sandblasting...



    At Barge Concepts, we sand and grind the boxes for a shinier finish and then add a vinyl label. We use a waterproof, selfadhesive, inkjet-printable vinyl from Papilio. The graphics are designed using Adobe software, printed with Epson DuraBrite Inks, and then placed under a matte laminate.

    You might want to check out the DIYStompboxes and CommonSound forums, but here's a few links to get you started...

    http://www.commonsound.com/kits/doku.php?id=labelling
    http://www.commonsound.com/kits/doku.php?id=painting
    http://www.buildyourownclone.com/graphics.html
    http://www.buildyourownclone.com/painting.html
     
  7. jimmy54

    jimmy54 Member

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    Well I've just finished making a clean boost pedal. The finish worked really well.

    I've bought a few sheets of inkjet decal paper. I've read how to get the decal onto the pedal but I've not really got a clue how to do a picture or text on the PC before printing (i.e. is there a good piece of software people use)?

    I've tried hosting a photo but I think it only shows up in low resolution.

    http://uk.pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/billy_mill@btinternet.com/detail?.dir=/9339&.dnm=8db5.jpg&.src=ph

    Anyone fancy hosting a better quality one for me?

    Cheers.
     
  8. jimmy54

    jimmy54 Member

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  9. trucks

    trucks Member

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    Here is what I did:

    1. Self etching primer - important for aluminium enclosures as it fills in nicely.
    2. lacquer paint - 2 coats
    some people prefer enamel, but lacquer dries quickly.

    I use Auto Zone paint as recommended by others. Why? The paint nozzle pattern is excellent without too much pressure (so dust is less of a problem).

    3. wet sand

    4. Expert choice laser decal film with:
    Liquid decal film
    Micro sol
    Micro set

    Available direct at Bare-Metal

    5. lacquer clear coat - 2 coats (careful - it soften the decals).

    6. wet sand

    I learned all of this by doing searches at diystompboxes

    Here is my pedal. Sorry for the poor quality picture - the graphics are actually sharp.

    My last project, I just used a black powder coated Hammond enclosure. A lot easier and cost less than the supplies above. Check Mouser for them.
     
  10. 2x6L6

    2x6L6 Silver Supporting Member

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    Dang, those are nice, Trucks and jimmy54! jimmy54, what did you use for your paint?

    Barge, great info, thanks.

    I suppose folks have seen DonneR's boxes? Anyone know his methods? (I've been too intimidated to ask him - they are so beautiful!) He has most certainly hit upon the perfect formula, and/or he's a true box artist. I am about to start on my first of what I hope will be many successful projects and of course I want a super-cool looking box...
     
  11. Damon

    Damon Member

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    Here's my solution. Lettering stamps! Every time I see them at the antiques market I have to buy them, I'm up to 5 sets now, various sizes, with and without serifs. old lettering set

    It really takes some practice though, and you gotta have something solid behind the surface (like a block of steel), so the letter mashes nicely into the aluminum. It's difficult to do the sides of a Hammond 1590, 'cause it's tough to get anything in behind, and they will bend in if you hit too hard, causing the bottom plate not to fit.

    another example

    Lining the letters up is tough too, because they aren't always perfectly aligned/centered on the post. Then you gotta worry about the force of your hammer blow, if you use the same force on a W that you would for an I it will hardly make an impression. If you use the same force on a 1 as you would for an 8, it will be too deep.

    And, if you're gonna do this... WEAR EAR PROTECTION! WHAT?!?! :D

    I really like Hammond's black powder-coated boxes, like the 1590BBBK... for one of my next builds I'm gonna try stamping the letters on aluminum strips, then mounting those on the black background... like this

    How about rubber stamping with a robust ink/paint and then clearcoating, would that be durable enough?

    Etch & fill would be uber-cool, tough to DIY though
     
  12. jimmy54

    jimmy54 Member

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    Thanks for the info Trucks.

    2x6L6, I used a blue auto paint (Ford Electric/Monza Blue), followed by a clear lacquer.

    I must say that this pedal building lark is a bit addictive. I've done an Orange Squeezer compressor (now one of my favourite pedals), a clean boost (that is every bit as good as my catalinbread super chili picoso) and a rangemaster clone.

    I'm going to do a maestro fuzz next.
     
  13. b_rad

    b_rad Member

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    That's a great idea! I like the look.
     
  14. Don Rusk

    Don Rusk Biggus Bearfootus Vendor

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    Wow, thanks man... no need to be intimidated - its one of my creative outlets, and I do it mostly for that reason, which is why I dont usually do more than a few of any design I come up with, once it gets to be just production I lose interest:D I like doing small batches with personality....... and sometimes when people want something simple Ill just tell them how to do it, as they could by the paints for the cost of shipping the box back and forth...... art should be fun
     
  15. jimmy54

    jimmy54 Member

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    What about when you want to print in white (onto a black/dark coloured pedal)? Wouldn't the printer just not print the white (as it normally just leaves paper blank when you print anything with white in it)?
     
  16. 2x6L6

    2x6L6 Silver Supporting Member

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    Ah, then you are a gentleman as well! Here's a question - do you sell your art boxes for DIY pedal people, or just boutique builders or ...??? I think the goldtop and any of the '3D' lookin' boxes, like the halo, swirly, quilted, tubes, etc effects are just wicked cool... Course the metallics are cool as well. Oh, yeah and the flags. For sure the bursts. And the woodies. Oh and.... well, you get the picture! :D
     
  17. Don Rusk

    Don Rusk Biggus Bearfootus Vendor

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    Glad you like them, thats the point.....yeah Ive done a number of BYOC individual project boxes lately as well as small batches for big builders, Im getting ready to pack it in for the winter - I only paint outside and once it gets below 40-50 regularly its just too rare to get a warm enough day, and I dont want to keep people waiting, so Im going to unplug it this winter and do R and D til spring, I have a few new tecniques I need to work on.... :cool:


    I would highly encourage anyone to try some new things,,, many of the tecniques I have come up with were refined accidents over the last 5 years , and attempts to solve other problems that took a left turn......

    But you will end up with lots of slightly used supplies ( I have a couple boxes of 'nope but almost' cans of paint and other things).......

    Usually the paintjobs I charge for are the ones I developed that most people couldnt get right the first time even if they had detailed instructions, so if they just want a covering done right the first time its worth it just in non wasted supplies from failed experimentation...........if its something you want to do on an ongoing basis then follow your muse and come up with something thats 'you'.
     
  18. 2x6L6

    2x6L6 Silver Supporting Member

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    Very cool info - answers some burning questions that have been on my mind since discovering tonesafari a few months ago - thanks!

    Final (maybe!) question - what is your paint of choice, or does it vary by technique/design?

    Seems like some type of automotive paint is the choice for most folks. I am a turquoise freak - love the color in all its variants- pastel, matte, deep hue, metallic - all of 'em. My preliminary web surfing looks like there are some very nice turquoises in the auto realm...

    And of course so many of our favorite guitar colors were borne of the auto industry lo those many years ago... (Off-topic - I have a scale model Ertl '68 Olds 442 in Ocean Turquoise that is just delectable!)

    Your designs are really inspirational - thanks for sharing 'em!
     
  19. Don Rusk

    Don Rusk Biggus Bearfootus Vendor

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    Glad to help.....

    and Im also lucky to live near some good supply stores:

    Home Depot has lots of good basic stuff...learn the basics of painting first - surface prep - priming - layering - sanding - top coats - temp and humidity considerations....


    Hobby shops - RC airplane and model guys will talk dirty about experimental painting all day ..... (I use/misuse alot of Model Masters paints)


    Crafts stores ( youd be amazed at what you can learn from middle aged women just by standing in front of a paint rack scratching your head and looking a little confused )


    also when designing, consider the pedal in the context of using it - it will likely be at your feet surrounded by less visually interesting things, so however it looks in a close up or in your hand in front of our face has little bearing on how it will be seen usually........

    early on I was really into crazy knobs too, but if t he knobs are too attractive the paintjob wont be as eye catching, so usually a black knob is best as it lets the eye focus on the Art, or blend the knob in to the art...


    if your trying something new try the INSIDE of the bottom (or even the top) of the box first , especially if its a drilled box you have to get right the first time.....


    always at least read the directions on the can/box first - but dont always go buy them ;)

    before the Hurricane auctions hit I was starting to work on some how-to stuff, myabe some videos,,, I hope to get back to those soon....:cool:
     
  20. 2x6L6

    2x6L6 Silver Supporting Member

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    So I visited their web site after reading DonneR's last post, and emailed 'em about their paint. They sent me a lovely full-color catalog with ALL their finsihing products (lotsa stuff! Wicked cool colors!), replete with color samples, also finishing instructions, tips and tricks and all sorts of relevant info. Very cool! Now all I hafta do is build the dang pedal. :p
     

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