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Colored oil finish

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by SRSiegel, Apr 17, 2003.


  1. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    I'm planning on making my first attempt at building a bass this summer. I'm going to use a Swamp ash body, with a maple neck through, ebony fingerboard. Id like to have a satin finish like that on my tung oiled carvin, but heres the kicker, I want it colored, preferably black. I would prefer to be able to see and feel the grain of the wood through the finish, moreso just looking for color and protection. Have any of you done this before? If so do you have any tips or brands to reccomend? Thanks!
     
  2. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    I'm no luthier, but I've had good luck with Colorburst tung oil finishes - I get them at Rockler.
     
  3. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    Thanks for the reply, HD. I searched at rockler.com and couldnt find a colorburst brand, is this what you meant?

    http://www.rockler.com/ecom7/findprod.cfm?&DID=6&sku=5348

    Would it require an overcoat of some sort or is that all I would need? Remember those satin dyed finishes that some warwick basses come in? Thats the look I'm going for, with a nice natural feel.

    thanks again for any help!
     
  4. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Yep, that's the stuff - the manufacturer has a webpage with color samples, too. I'm partial to the "Bing Cherry".

    Here's a link to the company page: http://www.woodburst.com/

    One coat gives me a very nice finish similar to a colored Warwick finish, all ready for wax. It's nice stuff - it's tung oil based.

    I *highly* suggest you practice on a few scraps of wood first!

    PS re: your sig - I'm thinking about selling off my current power amp and rack tuner to raise bucks for a new head. Any interest in a Carvin DCM1000, an ETA power conditioner and a Korg DTR-2?
     
  5. beefhaus2000

    beefhaus2000

    Sep 25, 2002
    New Jersey
    Here is some swamp ash finished in woodburst "bing cherry"
    [​IMG]

    I recceomend you do the "sand paper" apply for the first few coats...to fill the grain
     
  6. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Nice! I love that color!
     
  7. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    Thanks for all your help guys!

    Wow after seeing what that cherry finish looks like on ash I think I'll hafta look at some other possibilities besides black. My only concern is that black might not show off the contours of the body, or the grain very well. I suppose I could always use a lighter coat?

    I will, of course, practice on scraps first cut from extra body wood that will be removed in making the shape.

    HD, you mentioned putting wax on the bass after one coat. Is this necessary? You also mentioned that the stain is tung oil based. My current carvin has a tung oil only finish, and I would like to emulate the feel of that bass as close as possible (I'll be using one of their necks as well)

    Just to get an idea, heres the current state of evolution the design is in:
    [​IMG]

    I'm going for a darker look on this one, these colors have caught my attention:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    If any of you guys have experience with these specefic colors I'd appreciate any kind of insight you can give me, you guys rock!

    HD-I might be interested in the setup for the right price, email me if you decide to sell any of it, thanks!
     
  8. beefhaus2000

    beefhaus2000

    Sep 25, 2002
    New Jersey
    I think the blue will look awesome on swamp ash...
     
  9. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    No, it's not a must - I just happen to like the look and feel of a waxed finish. If you use only Tung, you may need to add several more coats of plain oil to get the sheen and finish you want.

    I sent you a PM...
     
  10. JP Basses

    JP Basses

    Mar 22, 2002
    Paris FRANCE
    hey SRSeigel,

    Another suggestion here.

    You could also use a dyed through ash body blank ;)

    Larry from gallery hardwoods came up with a coll process. I've had a dyes burl maple top from him but i'm sure he could work out something stunning with an ash block...:D

    Be sure to drop him a mail!!

    Peace, JP
     
  11. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Maryland
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    I got the impression from Larry that he was only doing this with maple. Seems like more porous woods should be possible, though. I'm patiently waiting for Larry to produce another batch so I can get one for myself.