Quick question: finishes to instruments

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Crazykiwi
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Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by Crazykiwi » Mon Mar 15, 2010 4:59 pm

Where do luthiers and repairmen get their finishes done usually in NZ? Do they go to somewhere that specialises in fine furniture finishes or have they managed to find car shops that do a good enough standard?
Stuff: Shuker Headless MIDI 6, Spector NS5CRFM, Self-built 5 string semi hollow headless, Status Series 1 5 string, Pedulla Pentabuzz, Alembic Series 1 graphite, '78 Musicman Stingray, Genz Benz Shuttles, Trace Hexavalve and fEARless F112 cabs

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john
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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by john » Mon Mar 15, 2010 11:02 pm

This is a very good question, I too would be keen to hear the answer to.
I have a bass that could do with a nice finish.
I didn't think of furniture makers/finishers, and i worry that car panel shops would have a hard time with "runs" around the curves of the horns...
I was thinking maybe an artist who is good with air brushing, but i don't have a clue really

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Crazykiwi
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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by Crazykiwi » Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:12 am

I'd imagine a custom paint shop would do a high enough standard of paint finish but whether they use paints that are flexible enough for wood once dried is something I'd like to confirm. Also, the mirror gloss requires a lot of going over with 2400 grit wet and dry. Not something that car painters tend to spend much time on.
Stuff: Shuker Headless MIDI 6, Spector NS5CRFM, Self-built 5 string semi hollow headless, Status Series 1 5 string, Pedulla Pentabuzz, Alembic Series 1 graphite, '78 Musicman Stingray, Genz Benz Shuttles, Trace Hexavalve and fEARless F112 cabs

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by joppo » Tue Mar 16, 2010 7:05 am

I have a friend in the US who decided to start buliding guitars from scratch a couple of years ago (I think he is up to serial number 8). He sprays the finish himself, and he said that the layers are so thin that you can only just see that the wood has got wet. I assume you are looking for someone to do it rather than having a crack at it yourself Steve, but I can email him to get details if you like. The other option is speak to Steve Barkman at Twang Town. I think he is still working there two days a week. He builds and repairs so if he can't do it, he'll tell you who does his finishing.

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Crazykiwi
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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by Crazykiwi » Tue Mar 16, 2010 8:03 am

joppo wrote:I have a friend in the US who decided to start buliding guitars from scratch a couple of years ago (I think he is up to serial number 8). He sprays the finish himself, and he said that the layers are so thin that you can only just see that the wood has got wet. I assume you are looking for someone to do it rather than having a crack at it yourself Steve, but I can email him to get details if you like. The other option is speak to Steve Barkman at Twang Town. I think he is still working there two days a week. He builds and repairs so if he can't do it, he'll tell you who does his finishing.
Hi Joppo, I know Steve well. He's doing a Klein guitar body for me but he doesn't like finishing. :)

With the finishing, it requires a good 4 layers and sanding of coats in between to even out imperfections. The final coat needs sanding back with 800, 1200 and 2400 grit wet and dry, then going over with T-cut.

I can do it but I don't have the spray equipment to ensure a smooth and even coat. Also, the automotive paints are made for metal so they'll expand with heat but I've been told they have problems with accommodating the expansion of wood in humid conditions.

I'm basically wanting to get a white base coat laid down on my sunburst Spector and then a flourescent splatter effect a lot like this:
Image

The idea being that it glows under UV light. It will have a thick clear coat on top to protect it.
Stuff: Shuker Headless MIDI 6, Spector NS5CRFM, Self-built 5 string semi hollow headless, Status Series 1 5 string, Pedulla Pentabuzz, Alembic Series 1 graphite, '78 Musicman Stingray, Genz Benz Shuttles, Trace Hexavalve and fEARless F112 cabs

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by joppo » Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:21 pm

Crazykiwi wrote:I know Steve well. He's doing a Klein guitar body for me but he doesn't like finishing. :)
Ha ha... I had a feeling you would have got to know Steve by now. The splatter idea looks great. Would love to see it when it done!

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by Crazykiwi » Tue Mar 16, 2010 7:45 pm

He and I really like wild looking wood, especially native wood. Plus he's literally in the next bay over from me on the peninsula. I traded him a piece of perfectly quarter sawn quilted redwood which he was salivating over in exchange for that guitar body too. He'll make it out of native beech - silver for the body and quilted red for the top.

Looking at that spray, I might be able to get away with not having a white base coat after all if I spray it with a base coat of blue, pink and purple...
Stuff: Shuker Headless MIDI 6, Spector NS5CRFM, Self-built 5 string semi hollow headless, Status Series 1 5 string, Pedulla Pentabuzz, Alembic Series 1 graphite, '78 Musicman Stingray, Genz Benz Shuttles, Trace Hexavalve and fEARless F112 cabs

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by Jazzbass » Wed Mar 17, 2010 7:29 pm

I had mine sprayed by car painters several times and every time was a good finish (never a run). However the best finish for me has been by Adrian from Ash Customworks in jafaland who refinned my P in nitro and made a brilliant job and surprised me totally by opening out the sound. I guess the car paint had stifled the poor old beast more than I knew.

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by Crazykiwi » Wed Mar 17, 2010 7:51 pm

Jazzbass wrote:I had mine sprayed by car painters several times and every time was a good finish (never a run). However the best finish for me has been by Adrian from Ash Customworks in jafaland who refinned my P in nitro and made a brilliant job and surprised me totally by opening out the sound. I guess the car paint had stifled the poor old beast more than I knew.
Thick finishes tend to choke the sound. Maybe Adrian put on fewer layers than he took off. :)
Stuff: Shuker Headless MIDI 6, Spector NS5CRFM, Self-built 5 string semi hollow headless, Status Series 1 5 string, Pedulla Pentabuzz, Alembic Series 1 graphite, '78 Musicman Stingray, Genz Benz Shuttles, Trace Hexavalve and fEARless F112 cabs

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by Jazzbass » Sat Mar 20, 2010 3:42 pm

Yes, he stripped it back to the wood and started again - the way it should be done, of course. Until he did that, I just didn't believe all the hype about finishes making a significant difference to the sound. Now I do.

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by ash » Sat Mar 20, 2010 9:02 pm

Yeah, thin coats of the right kind of lacquer is one factor, but taking out the massive chunks of bog packed into the chiseled cavities probably helped a lot, too! ;)

I do the spraying for all my stuff (Ash Customworks and Radian) and for custom jobs and for a few other luthiers.

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by Jazzbass » Sun Mar 21, 2010 8:27 am

LOL, I haven't checked under the hood yet. Did'ya block the holes out with wood?
I took it to a jam during the week and everyone loved it, so you sure did it right, me old mate! :D

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by Crazykiwi » Sun Mar 21, 2010 8:45 am

Image
Image

What kind of paint was used for the illustrations? Was it enamel modellers paint?
Stuff: Shuker Headless MIDI 6, Spector NS5CRFM, Self-built 5 string semi hollow headless, Status Series 1 5 string, Pedulla Pentabuzz, Alembic Series 1 graphite, '78 Musicman Stingray, Genz Benz Shuttles, Trace Hexavalve and fEARless F112 cabs

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Re: Quick question: finishes to instruments

Post by ash » Mon Mar 22, 2010 7:50 pm

I think it was waterbased artist's acrylic and ink. I didn't do the art on those, just the clearcoats. Misery is the artist.

It worked fine, but I'm not sure the artist's acrylic is the answer to long life graphics.

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