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Remove Walnut Finish

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by tubatodd, Dec 13, 2013.

  1. tubatodd

    tubatodd Supporting Member

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    I have a walnut finish Sterling by Musicman SUB ray 5 string bass. While the finish is quite nice, I was thinking of making some big changes. I'd like to make the whole thing white...white body, pickguard and even white pickup cover.

    What I would like to do is remove the walnut stain, get it down to the bare wood (as best I can) and put a translucent white finish over the whole thing. My first thought is that the stain would seep into the wood and be hard to remove 100%. So I was thinking a distressed white washed look (like old distressed furniture) might be pretty nice.

    Other than sandpaper and a lot of elbow grease, what are my best options for this look? Do I have to give up all hope of a translucent finish?
  2. tubatodd

    tubatodd Supporting Member

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    Basically this is what I am after.

    [​IMG]
  3. dmac1961

    dmac1961 Supporting Member

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    Feb 7, 2012
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    That would be a Mary Kaye White finish that you're looking for. Typically it's done over an ash body. Would probably be difficult to pull off on a SUB due to the body wood it's made from. The transparent finish is achieved by mixing Olympic White with clear lacquer to "thin it out". This allows the grain of the ash to be pronounced through the finish. You'd likely have better success just finishing it in Oly white IMO.

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