How do I achieve binding like this?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by NoahL, Jan 29, 2008.


  1. NoahL

    NoahL Member

    Messages:
    1,423
    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2007
    I love this guitar but God knows I can't afford it. I do have a Tele project in the works, though, and I might want to replicate the binding effect. I know that G&L does this binding by masking off the edge after the amber stain has been applied and painting the rest of the body, leaving a faux binding. Looks good to me. But I'm wondering how you mask it off so perfectly. I can't imagine getting masking tape to look so straight and not have places where the paint seeps under, especially on top. Is there a trick? or do they have some kind of template that they lay on top of the guitar that's perfectly shaped, to do the top edge, and then just be painstaking on the bottom edge of the binding with masking tape?

    http://cgi.ebay.com/G-L-ASAT-CLASSI...oryZ2384QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
     
  2. in a little row

    in a little row Member

    Messages:
    379
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2007
    Location:
    Memphis, crime capital of the South
    If that is in fact how GnL makes that binding (no paint), Id think it most likely that the top is 3/4cm thick, and that only the top is finished in paint, so the masking if the sides is less an issue since no surface area of the wood 'binding' has paint directed toward it...higher quality masking material certainly would help...also, the paint finish likely is several thin coats over time, where the paint buildup would never be enough to pool and seep under the mask...


    j
     
  3. Big White Tele

    Big White Tele Member

    Messages:
    2,609
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2005
    Location:
    Rocky Mountains
    Tom Anderson told me that he just sands the paint off to make the binding. I had a Hollow T Classic like that. I assume he has a tool that has the correct depth and just runs around the edge, like a router.
     
  4. r9player

    r9player Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    6,593
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2005
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    Sometimes they just scrape the paint off. they call it scraped binding.
     
  5. blueguitar

    blueguitar Member

    Messages:
    224
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2006
    Location:
    Midwest
    Pictures always look better because you can't get real close. As you noted, many builders use this faux binding technique. I have looked closely at a number of these and can often see a hint of overspray stain or bleed thru that was missed during cleanup.

    As far as the technique I have used, I bind the edge using pinstripping tape which is very flexible, lays nice and does not draw paint like paper tapes. After stain/paint a nice sharp razor blade cleans off any overspray or bleeding. Always thought it looked as good as anybody else's.
     
  6. David Collins

    David Collins Member

    Messages:
    2,253
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Location:
    Ann Arbor, MI
    Just scrape it after painting. It takes so much less time than masking, and gives a nice clean edge. I'm not sure how difficult it would seem if you've never done it before, but if you've done it even a few times it should take less than a minute to do on a simple body shape.

    Look more closely at some other guitars with color some time. This is why Gibsons for example have always had a ledge you can feel in the finish at the binding, and it's rarely scraped to the full depth. You'll usually see some binding still covered with color on translucent finishes.
     
  7. Mike9

    Mike9 Supporting Member

    Messages:
    10,132
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Location:
    Ghent, NY
    If you aren't comfortable scraping the paint away you can get 3M stripping tape at an auto paint store. It comes in 1/8", 1/4", . . . etc. widths and is very pliable and leaves a pretty clean edge. They use it for masking off flames, accent stripes, two tone contours, etc.
     
  8. daddyo

    daddyo Guest

    Messages:
    11,809
    Joined:
    May 19, 2003
    PRS started the faux binding thing, n'est pas?
     
  9. Bob V

    Bob V Member

    Messages:
    1,191
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2007
    Location:
    Glen Head, New York
    Another vote for the 3M Fine Line masking tape (it's an auto paint finishing product). Still have to scrape, and a utility knife blade without a handle can work for this. Topcoating everything with clear will start to minimize the "shelf" that's created at the edge of the color coat.
     
  10. David Collins

    David Collins Member

    Messages:
    2,253
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Location:
    Ann Arbor, MI
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3Ptx86R7zc

    An example at about 1:45.

    On a guitar like that G&L it would take me about 30 seconds to scrape the binding with an Xacto or razor blade pinched with my fingers as a depth stop.
     
  11. NoahL

    NoahL Member

    Messages:
    1,423
    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2007
    I had lost track of this thread of mine; great answers, guys. Even a Youtube vid to add spice. Thx.
     
  12. Mike9

    Mike9 Supporting Member

    Messages:
    10,132
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Location:
    Ghent, NY
    I am refinishing a Les Paul Studio that I stripped from black. It needed a headstock repair so I figured what the hey - After it was stripped and sanded as far as I felt comfortable with I put a tummy cut in it then made blocks for the pickup holes so I could insert them after the top spray setup some and flip it over. After taping off the sides and shooting amber on the top I proceeded to shoot a burst going from amber to cherry to mahogany. After I shot clear over all that I removed the side tape and scraped the edge at an angle to achieve the "binding" look.

    At this point I'm happy with the top, the sides and the back. The headstock overlay suffered so I epoxied a flame maple veneer on the top, trimmed, sanded, shot it in amber and made a template to match the burst pattern of the body and shot the cherry/mahogany around the edges. Then I sanded back the edges to reveal maple and started my clear coats.

    Tomorrow I'll apply my MoTone decal to the headstock - (Hey - I brought this guitar back from the grave - I deserve some credit) and bury that in clear coat. When it's all buffed out it's going to be bitchin' and with a set of Sheptone Tributes it's going to be a rockin' :dude
     

Share This Page