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Question for Scott P on micromeshing necks

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by Kip, Oct 23, 2004.

  1. Kip

    Kip Member

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    Quick question for Scott (or anyone else who may know the answer):

    I remember you did something to your PRS necks with micromesh (?) that got the gloss sticky feeling off. Can you let me know how to do it? Thanks!
     
  2. Clorenzo

    Clorenzo Member

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    I have used this white 3M stuff that looks like a scourer and is supposed to be equivalent to 0000 steel wool. I actually used it on a Warmoth neck with what they call a satin finish but to me is matt, and I wanted it really satin (it was too rough feeling). It feels perfect now. I'm sure it works too for dulling a too glossy finish. There isn't much to it, just work it in circles up and down the back of the neck till you've got it all covered.
     
  3. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

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    Yes, MicroMesh is the stuff, I buy the entire kit from Stew-Mac.

    Simple to use - I just get the neck clean, wet the micromesh (starts at 1500 grit) and work the neck, using light pressure and keeping it even. I have a few towels nearby to clean off the film that develops. By the time you get up to 8000 grit, you'll see the shine coming back. After 12000 grit and then a good polish, it'll shine like mad - MUCH deeper than before. But will be smooth as satin to touch.

    Easiest to do to nitro necks; it works like crazy on lacquer, but it takes longer on the higher grades to get the shine back, but it *will* come back by 8000 and once you finish, you'll do every guitar you own.

    Also, a note - clean the micromesh after every use; my first set is over 8 years old and I can still use it. I bought my second set just this year and keep the first set around as insurance.

    This is a remarkable thing too; once you do it you'll go nuts and do all your guitars. Takes about 10-15 minutes of elbow grease.
     
  4. Steve Rigby

    Steve Rigby Member

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    Micromesh also works beautifully on pickguards. It removes the scratches and restores the shine. I had a P-Bass with a tortoise guard that was badly scratched when I bought it. After about 15 minutes, it was like a mirror. This stuff is amazing!!
     
  5. -CM-

    -CM- Something Clever Here Silver Supporting Member

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    How do you handle the transition between the newly satinized section and the still glossy part? Do you pick a point, and tape it off? Or does it not matter, because it shines back up when you use the MicroMesh?

    This is what I did with one of my guitars (taped where the satin ends). I just used steel wool, though, so the part I sanded is visually dull, and very distinct. It's fairly crappy looking, but feels very nice indeed. I'd like to clean it up, and do my other guitars. But I'm not about to attempt anything on my PRSs until I'm sure of what the results will be.
     
  6. -CM-

    -CM- Something Clever Here Silver Supporting Member

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    I got my MicroMesh kit from StewMac the other day, and am hoping someone will answer the above question.

    [holding gritty cloth to guitar's neck with great drama]

    I'm going to do it, I swear. Somebody better give me some instructions, or this neck is toast!

    [/holding gritty cloth to guitar's neck]
    [/great drama]
     
    Blackmoreguitar likes this.
  7. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

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    A few things to know about using Micromesh:

    - Use *LIGHT* pressure and no sanding block on necks. In essence you are going to do, though faster, what you would be doing if you played the guitar for 10-15 years inside 10-15 minutes. You are NOT "sanding" the neck in a traditional sense; you are not removing tons of finish. You ARE treating the surface.

    - I wrap the micromesh fabric around my index/middle/ring fingers and work back and forth from the headstock to the body. I flip the guitar up to hit the edges of the fretboard near the body (and mask off the body as detailed below).

    - If you want DEEP glossy, wet the micro mesh fabric. Not soggy or dripping; just wet.

    - You'll know you're done with each grade of grit once you feel no "drag" on the sanding as you work. That is your cue to move to the next grip.

    - Wipe off the neck in-between each different grit with a clean dry cloth.

    - If you just want to roll the edges of your fingerboard, you can easily use the micro mesh dry and again lightly work it. Don't "Grind" it into the edges, just work it lightly and evenly across the entire edge of the fingerboard.

    - I use 3M's painters masking tape (it is often blue) to mask off the body of the guitar.

    - The gloss finish you will end up with on the neck and fretboard edge is actually a truer and deeper sheen than even the PRS "dipped in glass" finish they are known for. This is NOT your "I rubbed out my neck with 0000 steel wool so it feels nice, but looks like poo" type of thing. :D Honest.

    - The end result is a *soft* feel with incredible deep sheen that does not get tacky =ever= and rolls the fretboard edges and treats the ends of your frets in a manner that playing the guitar for 15 years would naturally do anyway.

    - Wash off the micro mesh when you are done with warm water (no soap!) and let them air dry. They last a LONG time. 8 years so far on my first set.
     
    jaime136 likes this.
  8. vai777

    vai777 Member

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    I am assuming that these micromesh sanders are only to be used on the neck.

    Not to, lets say remove pick scratches from a finish on a guitar.

    if im wrong please let me know. also is there any product that will remove pick scratches from the finish.
    thanks
     
  9. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

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    Nope - the micromesh would do wonders on the body too. It was originally designed to remove scratches from plexiglass windows on airplanes.

    I have not used it in this way before though.
     
  10. A440

    A440 Silver Supporting Member

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    I'll have to give this a try. I'm finding my CE22 neck to be sticky and it's hard to move around on the neck sometimes. I tried using a little powder, but only helped temporarily.
     
  11. -CM-

    -CM- Something Clever Here Silver Supporting Member

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    Thanks for the tips, Scott. I redid the neck I had previously done with steel wool, and it looks much better. Still some work to do, but it's OK. I'm going to try one of my acoustics next.
     
  12. Kip

    Kip Member

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    Just did mine -- worked great! I didn't get to read Scott's post first so I used the block but seemed to work okay.
     
  13. A440

    A440 Silver Supporting Member

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    just checked out stewmac for more info.

    you're using the sandpaper kit (not the finishing pads).
    correct ?
     
  14. -CM-

    -CM- Something Clever Here Silver Supporting Member

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    I think you want the whole kit, which includes 9 different grits (2 of each one).
     
  15. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

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    :AOK
     
  16. BKRMON

    BKRMON Member

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    There's one for the archives.
     
  17. tede3

    tede3 Guest

    Got the mocromesh...........WOW
    Thanks Scott and everyone for the information about this product.
    It really works great for a '57 Reissue neck and any type of pickguards. I'm sure it will work for guitar bodies too.
    Thanks to "redlizard" for Buying information.
     
  18. tede3

    tede3 Guest

    Sorry, I can't spell........micromesh.......
     
  19. Lex Luthier

    Lex Luthier Member

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    I've been getting Micromesh at Rocklers woodworking stores because it's cheaper than Stew Mac.

    PS: MM also works great for polishing frets but it does wear out the sheets sooner since you are polishing metal. Mask the frets, work side to side (not up and down the neck) 1800>3200>4000, don't really need to go higher than that, they will look like chrome after 4000.
    Get a sheet of the three grits and just use them for frets.
     
  20. 85db

    85db Member

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    Hello Scott and All,

    I'm wondering whether starting from 1500 and finishing at 12000 is the right procedure in all cases.

    My EJ Strat has a thick layer of nitro lacquer. It's totally all right with me, I just don't want it to be so sticky. My goal is to keep as much lacquer as possible while removing the stickiness. My 1983 Squier '57 reissue is exactly what I'd want this EJ to be: feels like it's got a thick and hard coat of lacquer, yet it's smooth and polished. When playing this Squier's neck I sometimes forget the fretboard is maple and not rosewood... Love it!

    So would you guys still recommend that I start with 1500?

    Some more questions about the application:
    1. Did you remove the neck and the tuners in order to make it even all over?
    2. How did you polish the fretboard in between the frets? In all directions or parallel to the frets? Did you try to stay away from the frets in order to not polish them unevenly?
    Thanks.
     

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