Paint, Or Not To Paint

macrofor

Macro
Messages
395
Most of my guitars have been Limba for the last few years. I have a lot of experience finishing it.
This is how you do it. Since you've already grain filled your way its too late to tell you that's not the way to do it but whatever, keep going anyway. I would have used an oil based grain filler that dries in a couple days. Linseed oil never really dries enough to put a hard finish over it. I would have waited at least two weeks before finishing over it or not used it at all. Its too late now but down the road you might have delimitation.
Anyway, stop sanding in between coats, you don't need to do that. The only reason to sand in between coats is if you have some crap in there you need to get out. Don't wet sand it either. Get some dry sand 400 or 600 and use that. Plow the lacquer on there, don't be shy. Don't get all worried about a thin finish, especially on Korina. By time you sand it flat and buff it out it'll be plenty thin. Get enough lacquer on there so you can sand the finish perfectly flat with no shiny spots anywhere. If you sand through that finish you'll sand through the shellac and the oil. You will see it, it'll never have the same color even after you spray over it. If you think its getting close to sanding through go back and plow another 4 to 6 coats on it. Again, dont be shy, get it on there WET. I spray it right out of the can without even thinning it. You wanna get it on there. It needs more than you think it does. Start levelling under the pick guard so if you go through you can cover it up. That way you'll know how thin the finish is on the rest of the guitar. If you have to spray more to avoid sanding through do it. Again, don't be shy with it, lay it on WET. Once you get it perfectly level with 400 or 600. Honestly, I start with 220, spray a couple coats then level again with 800. Its faster but you might sand through without experience.
Then thin your lacquer out last least half and half and spray enough coats to cover the scratches from the sand paper. I use almost all thinner and just enough lacquer to fill in the sanding scratches. Let it sit for a least 2 weeks. Now is the time to wet sand. If you've done it right you can start at 1500 to level it out. Then buff it and hope you don't rub through the finish.
This is not an easy thing to do, even after 25 years of doing it I still sand through. Rarely does a finish go off without a hitch. It still gives me fits.

If you need some help send me a private message and Ill send you my phone number. You can call and I'll walk you through it.
 

Jecht

Member
Messages
860
Don't feel bad. I made lots of mistakes painting my parts guitar. The finish didn't fully harden in several areas on the body where the paint has become tacky and started coming off. I'm considering stripping it down to wood and sending it to a pro too.
 
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ucsteve

Member
Messages
84
Don't feel bad. I made lots of mistakes painting my parts guitar. The finish didn't fully harden in several areas on the body where the paint has become tacky and started coming off. I'm considering stripping it down to wood and sending it to a pro too.
oh i learned all kinds of things doing this mess. my screw ups only seemed to get more interesting as i went tho. This one took a good couple days to really harden up. The one im doing now is taking a couple weeks ha. But hey, i aint got much goin on these days. Pretty much most things can be fixed, or stripped down to start all over so what the hell. Its not like im working on gibsons or fenders.
 

Attachments

Messages
23,799
What’s your opinions on Tru oil?
I like it. I like Minwax Tung Oil Finish better.

But listen. You need some Grain Filler on that Korina. Applied correctly it will reduce your need for sealer, to less than one can. You could go straight from the grain filler, if done right in multiple applications, to the Tru Oil or Minwax wipe on wipe off. You can tint the grain filler and tone the appearance of the wood darker, just by that means alone.
 

Jecht

Member
Messages
860
oh i learned all kinds of things doing this mess. my screw ups only seemed to get more interesting as i went tho. This one took a good couple days to really harden up. The one im doing now is taking a couple weeks ha. But hey, i aint got much goin on these days. Pretty much most things can be fixed, or stripped down to start all over so what the hell. Its not like im working on gibsons or fenders.
Yeah, it was definitely a learning experience. I would like to do it again, but practice on a cheap guitar this time. My part guitar was made with all really good components and plays and sounds great. It just needs a finish that does it justice. Stripping shouldn't be too much of a problem with a heat gun but I'm not sure how to remove the paint from the pickup and trem cavities.

Yours looks great in the picture you attached and better than my guitar. This was my amateur attempt:

G.jpg
 

ucsteve

Member
Messages
84
thanks, altho great and better are def subject to varying opinion ha. I love it tho, warts, summer teeth, and all. I will admit next time, I have to account for the pick up rings when inventing glop finishes on the fly. Maybe one day Ill fix the teeth up, but Ill prob just leave The Dali in all its fugly glory. And in the interest of full disclosure, heres the 339 i was bored with right before I got the Dali. Needless to say my plans went awry there too, but I dig it anyway. Gave me a greater love for it now. Theres a million 2018 MIC 339s out there in VS...but theres only one that looks like that now bah Fuglio ES - Dali LP.jpg
 

Jecht

Member
Messages
860
thanks, altho great and better are def subject to varying opinion ha. I love it tho, warts, summer teeth, and all. I will admit next time, I have to account for the pick up rings when inventing glop finishes on the fly. Maybe one day Ill fix the teeth up, but Ill prob just leave The Dali in all its fugly glory. And in the interest of full disclosure, heres the 339 i was bored with right before I got the Dali. Needless to say my plans went awry there too, but I dig it anyway. Gave me a greater love for it now. Theres a million 2018 MIC 339s out there in VS...but theres only one that looks like that now bah View attachment 266257
Yours look way more legitimate than mine does. Mine was inspired by the Suhr drip finish, Phil Collens splatter PC-1 and the EVH stripes. A pro would have pulled it off, but mine looks like a high school art project.
 

DonP

Member
Messages
2,165
Well... I failed miserably. I'm sanding it down and taking it to a pro.
Please explain why. From the pictures I thought it was looking good. I just nitro'd a few Fender style necks with decals and didn't have a problem.

I've had an unpainted ESP since the 1990 NAMM and this thread was inspiring me to get off my @$$ and paint it. Feeling let down now.
 

brentrocks

Guitar Hack/Player
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,236
All is well, that ends well....

I picked up the husk from Dave last night. He did an AMAZING JOB!!! All nitro...and I didn't know this, but he used all the same materials in the finishing process that the Gibson Custom Shop uses (filler, lacquer, tint) Best $500 I ever spent on a guitar project!

So I got it home and started to prep the body for assembly. All the holes were gummed up with filler and lacquer. Reamed out and cleaned out all the tuner holes and body cavity holes and started to assemble.

These are the parts I used on this guitar....

Kluson repro vintage style tuners
Bennett Music Labs aluminum string trees
CTS 500k pots
Switchcraft toggle and jack
.022 400v NOS Russian PIO capacitor
Tonepros locking bridge and tailpiece
Mad Hatter PAFs
Custom pickguard made by Precision Guitar in Phoenix, AZ
The husk was built by Ron Luczak in Flint MI

The biggest problem I had was that the neck pickup lead was too short and I had to extend it. I know, the back plate looks like dog poop...I made that cover when i was attempting to finish it myself.

Everything lined up and fit great. The intonation is spot on, the neck sets up perfect, the fretwork is perfect! The action is great too! This guitar is so light and resonant.

The tone plugged in is out of this world!!! I'm so very happy with the finished product!!! Oh and it fits in the case I found too...that's a big plus!!!


IMG_3976 by brent HENDERSON, on Flickr

IMG_3977 by brent HENDERSON, on Flickr

IMG_3978 by brent HENDERSON, on Flickr

IMG_3979 by brent HENDERSON, on Flickr

IMG_3982 by brent HENDERSON, on Flickr


IMG_3970 by brent HENDERSON, on Flickr

IMG_3971 by brent HENDERSON, on Flickr
 
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