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How can I get this finish?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by vinny, Aug 16, 2007.

  1. vinny


    Apr 3, 2006
    Las Vegas, NV.
    I'm building this:
    And would like to finish it like this:
    So, can anyone with experience in these things tell me how to go about it? For instance, do I apply something to enhance the grain first, if so, what? What do I use for the blue, & where can I get it? Finally, what about a glossy finish overall to deepen & enrich the look. I've done some custom finishing on plastics & metals before, but not wood. Any help you all could give me will be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Vin.
  2. Musiclogic

    Musiclogic Commercial User

    Aug 6, 2005
    Southwest Michigan
    Owner/Builder: HJC Customs USA, The Cool Lute, C G O
    That's just blue dyed lacquer airbrushed around the perimeter of the body, much like a standard burst. If you have an airbrush, and any experience with it, this would be quite easy to accomplish, as it is clear and blue. There is no grain enhancement, just straight curly maple
  3. vinny


    Apr 3, 2006
    Las Vegas, NV.
    Thanks, any suggestions as to what I should use to clear over it?
  4. Musiclogic

    Musiclogic Commercial User

    Aug 6, 2005
    Southwest Michigan
    Owner/Builder: HJC Customs USA, The Cool Lute, C G O
    I prefer Lacquers, nitro, acrylic, or waterborne, but poly urethanes are quite popular these days also. If you are on a budget, Minwax makes very good Spray Urethanes and Lacquer, both are very clear, and very durable.

    If you have spray equipment, I would suggest Target Coatings USL lacquer, or Poly Urethane. Both are waterborne, and produce great results if you take your time.

    Good luck
  5. vinny


    Apr 3, 2006
    Las Vegas, NV.
    You da' man, thanks.
  6. T2W


    Feb 24, 2007
    Montreal, Canada.
    I just recently bought a small can (to do tests with) of Varathane oil based Polyurethane. I think its actually a varnish. I usually use Oil but I dont quite like it, it doesnt offer much protection, if any. Any of you familiar with Varathane? would it be best to use water based Varnish? I heard Oil based will turn yellow with time. but water based doesnt protect as much... and what about Lacquer? can I go by just putting Lacquer? as you can tell, I dont know much about these finishes... any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks guys!!
  7. SDB Guitars

    SDB Guitars Commercial User

    Jul 2, 2007
    Coeur d'Alene, ID
    Shawn Ball - Owner, SDB Guitars
    Varithane is hard as a freakin' rock... I started finishing my first guitar in it, and I didn't like the way I got a witness line if I sanded through one layer into the next (no burn in, my first finishing attempt). Trying to remove it nearly killed me. I tried sanding it off using 80 grit discs, it was taking FOREVER with very little results... the I tried using paint stripper, and it did little to it. I eventually got all that stripped off, and used nitro lacquer instead...

    Varithane makes a pretty durable finish, though. It's often used for hardwood floors, designed to take high traffic without wearing too quickly. Know a couple of guys that use it as a bar top finish, too, as it will take a lot of punishment. I hear the water based version is not *quite* as hard as the oil based version.
  8. manbass


    May 20, 2004
    Tampa Bay
    As for the Burst part...having done a couple spray can burst jobs, (as I have no airbrush talent/equipment)...there is the "old School" Fender burst method.

    Cut a cardboard template of the body outline, 1/2" inside the edge perimeter in size, set it flat on the bench on the body sitting about an inch above the body top surface using 4d nails, and spray the edge about a foot away with constant motion. The cardboard creates the feathering of color used as an "airstop" but held away from the body, it allows for the graduation of particles applied.

    WARNING...do a few tests on meaningless surfaces first.

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