TB'ers that paint their own basses

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by mattattack187, Feb 22, 2024.

  1. mattattack187

    mattattack187 Bass Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Feb 2, 2012
    Ellsworth, ME
    I have a bass body I'm looking to get repainted. Is there anyone here that does that sort of thing?
    Matt Kustom likes this.
  2. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown

    Feb 16, 2011
    Are you seeking advice or a painter?
    BazzaBass and Grinderman like this.
  3. If you're looking for advice there are lots of threads on TB where people talk about finishes from "pro's" to rattlecan, different how to's. Sorry no link to the threads because there's alot.

    I can tell you I've done it and if you want to undertake it be ready for disappointment and practice ALOT before thinking you'll get a good look the first time.
    Rabidhamster, RJC1811, nixdad and 6 others like this.
  4. friskinator

    friskinator Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    I got super lucky with my first - it's still the best one I've done! But I used premium Reranch products and took my time while following all the steps.
  5. That's awesome, my road to getting one done was not that smooth. But I got a couple good ones in the end.
    fhm555 and DJ Bebop like this.
  6. That seems to be my lot in life :(

    neil|lien, Shepsdad, fhm555 and 3 others like this.
  7. micguy


    May 17, 2011

    I don't do paint jobs for other folks, but I do my own - always satin - much easier to get a decent finish than gloss, and I hate fingerprints.
    Katoosie, neil|lien, RJC1811 and 12 others like this.
  8. TheReceder


    Jul 12, 2010
    Bid on the wrong item in an auction and got an affinty bass. Figured I'd play with it this weekend. Used nothing but rattle cans. The Pickups were shot, so that'll be another upgrade. I figure if I'm going to screw something up, this is a good bass to do it on. All of the paint was picked up at the local hardware hank.
    orignal scuffed up
    Affinity 1.jpg
    Affinity 2.jpg
    Gold basecoat
    Affinity 3.jpg
    Glitter coat
    Affinity 4.jpg
    Clear coat. I've yet to do any wetsanding or polishing. Letting everything cure for a while.
    Affinity 5.jpg
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2024
  9. friskinator

    friskinator Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    So true. If I were starting over, I would have attempted a solid color with matte clear for my first one.
  10. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    The thing that makes good finishes (paint jobs, stained, or just clear) is time - rushing anything is never a good idea. If the can says 3 days, wait 5. or 6.
  11. This is my recommendation, too. When I repainted my bike the can said, "wait an hour between coats," that paint was wet for a week. I also used a LOT of coats, so that probably didn't help, and left it in my car to bake and harden in the sun (I don't recommend this for a guitar body that can warp, though).

    Also surface prep - 90% of your quality is surface prep. About %99 of your time, too. Don't skimp on it - any flaws that exist under your paint are going to be there after the paint dries. Any dipstick can spray a body with krylon, the difference between okay and great is measured in hours.
  12. VoodooJazz


    Jun 8, 2014
    Northern California
    <your name here>
    If I wanted a bass painted, I’d want that TBer’s daughter who painted his basses to do it.
  13. This 100%. Having done professional auto body work for many years, I spilled it over to painting basses and on one occasion a keytar I had. Filler is your friend. Primer is a must. Fine grit sanding between light coats will know down particles that would otherwise accumulate with each coat. Wipe it down with a tack rag and then wax and grease remover before each coat. And keep it away from silicone products to avoid orange peel and other weird interactions with your paint. And take your time on the clear coat. All those pretty old cars with the fabulous paint jobs didn't come out of spray can and the took a lot of time. If this were a one off, consider taking it to a custom auto paint house and see if they have something coming up with a cool color and see if they would consider spraying your body at the same time, while you do the prep work and sanding. Just a thought.
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  14. That's a great option, unfortunately I like my basses glossy and shiny.

    I think enough people have pointed out here, patience and time are the most important. That was the main thing I didn't grasp completely when I first tried this. @TheReceder above has some great progress and apparently understands this.
    JRA likes this.
  15. If you can find an auto body shop that's willing to do it, it's a great option. Even if you just want them to do a good clear coat which is how I used one.
    HardNHeavy, fhm555, JRA and 1 other person like this.
  16. mattattack187

    mattattack187 Bass Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Feb 2, 2012
    Ellsworth, ME
    A painter.
  17. Good to hear I'm not wrong, I was thinking of adding, "and just to clarify, but I'm any old dipstick" to my post.
    covermego, fhm555 and WI Short Scaler like this.
  18. What type and brand of finishing product was that?

    For finishing wood instruments, not necessarily. It depends on the style (e.g. no primer for semi-transparent--blonde--and sunbursts) and type of finish (e.g. no primer needed for lacquer regardless of whether it's opaque color or transparent).

    Edit to add/forgot to include: wood bodies should be sealed, not the same as priming metal auto bodies.
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2024
    fhm555 likes this.
  19. Tremclad.

    Again, in their defence - I laid on a LOT of coats, it ended up being pretty thick in the end.
  20. A legacy of opaque color automotive finishes used since the '50s by guitar makers/companies including Fender and Gibson is that it's been misconstrued by many DIYers that wood instruments when finished in solid opaque colors--the typical mode of DIYers and superficially exemplified by Fender's "Custom Colors"--were or should be painted exactly like automobiles.

    You can do it that way though you may be less satisfied with the outcome depending on expectations. It'll likely take longer and that added superfluous complexity will increase more potential to screw it up.
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2024
    fhm555 likes this.