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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 11:18 AM Thread Starter
 
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Refinishing Question(s)

Some of you may have seen this guitar elsewhere. As a project, I have an Apex II that I'd like to do this to:



I have no experience with something like this... but it looks pretty rustic so I'm confident I can't screw it up too badly. However, I wanted to get people's thoughts on the best method to remove the paint. Torch? Chemicals? Sanding?

Also looking for suggestions on what kind of sealer, oil, stain, etc. would achieve this effect. I might also like to go a little darker... or at the extreme, go really dark like the M8M.

FYI, I have no tools, or supplies, so I'll have to rent and/or buy whatever is needed.

And in the photo below, I'm curious about the aftermarket logo. Is there possibly a clear coat over it that I'm just not seeing? Otherwise, seems like it would eventually start peeling off.



Thanks in advance!
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 11:32 AM
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

Stew Mac (stewart mcdonald) is a good resource for projects like this.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 11:40 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

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Originally Posted by 63Blazer View Post
Stew Mac (stewart mcdonald) is a good resource for projects like this.
Right, I buy most of my general repair/maintenance items there. I just need to know what to buy, best method, etc. Are you saying I should call and ask their advice, or...?
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 11:59 AM
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

They've got tons of tutorials, look through here and you'll probably find what you're looking for: http://www.stewmac.com/freeinfo.html
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 12:03 PM
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

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Originally Posted by webmaestro View Post
Right, I buy most of my general repair/maintenance items there. I just need to know what to buy, best method, etc. Are you saying I should call and ask their advice, or...?
I still consider myself a beginner and trial and error is what I did.

First I went to you tube and saw projects and would hear of different methods like nitro finish, lacquer, poly, French polish, and removal methods like sanding, heat, or chemical, and methods for spraying and drying. There are a few methods that may get you there.

Secondly, I then go to hardware store and see what's there, and if not (like getting frets, nuts, or very specific finish, there's the Stew Mac site. Also Allparts and retroparts are nice, and considering non-guitar sites also helps.

I did a French polish violin finish from violin site I came across and also talked to a professional cabinet maker about nitro finishes versus water based poly finishes, both of which he liked.

Thirdly, what do I say?

1) Sand original finish, however long that takes and spread it out over several days
2) seal with French polish several coats, go water based poly several coats, then finish with French polish (I did this but got maybe a semi-gloss/matte that may be too shiny for your project)
3) But if you are brave, make spray tent (consult online) and go with nitro but keep safety in mind. Use very careful sanding regimen to make any glossiness go away to get that nice matte finish. This isn't easy and Gibson often flubs up their own matte nitro finishes, but probably more due to extreme demand for high production

Above all, patience is key and don't expect to get the first project perfect. It just doesn't happen that way and if it does, you may have a career.

Realize nitro or French polish don't hold up well but do get a rustic look as it ages and acquires small scratches. If you decide to go nitro, know that it can be dangerous and find a person who knows this process really well. The Ibanez project looks simple from the photograph but you will find that without a dedicated spray room and heavy sanding equipment, it's a slow process.

I love that fretboard. I don't know if he removed 12th fret and inlaid different color wood or if he somehow bleached or refinished it. Of course that would take removing two frets if he inlaid wood just on that fret. If I had the skill, I would love to throw down a maple board on a LP or SG type guitar (blanks are sold for this).

Last edited by 63Blazer; 03-28-2013 at 12:11 PM.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 01:14 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

Good info, thanks.

Definitely a lot of tuts out there, but I think I was specifically hoping to achieve THIS finish. Very rustic and, honeslty, kind looks like a beginner did it So, shouldn't be too easy to screw up.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 02:07 PM
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

Let me say this - if you have no tools and are going to rent / buy them - and this is a one time project for you - you would be better off paying someone to do it. You'll spend the same if not more in the proper tools vs. someone who is setup to do this.

Now if buying these tools is worthwhile for other projects - go for it. It wouldn't be that complicated...
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 02:08 PM
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

It really depends on what kind of timber finish you find underneath . If you get lucky and find a nice finish you could finish it with Danish (will give you a mat type rustic finish) or Tru oil which are dead easy to use if you make sure to apply it thinly.
Sanding is my preferred way of removing paint as you have more control .

Looking forward to seeing this.

Al
Edit , just realized its a Mahogany body so looks like an easy one

Last edited by Zoot; 03-28-2013 at 02:20 PM. Reason: ?
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 02:19 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rodzo View Post
Let me say this - if you have no tools and are going to rent / buy them - and this is a one time project for you - you would be better off paying someone to do it. You'll spend the same if not more in the proper tools vs. someone who is setup to do this.
Definitely on my list of options--I've already contacted a luthier here for a time/price estimate. If it's not terribly expensive, I'd prefer someone else do it. I love doing guitar maintenance and minor repairs, but a full-on refinish like this isn't something that gets me excited... especially considering I live in an apartment (but have a good-sized balcony).
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 05:26 PM
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

Quote:
Originally Posted by webmaestro View Post
Definitely on my list of options--I've already contacted a luthier here for a time/price estimate. If it's not terribly expensive, I'd prefer someone else do it. I love doing guitar maintenance and minor repairs, but a full-on refinish like this isn't something that gets me excited... especially considering I live in an apartment (but have a good-sized balcony).
You aren't refinishing a George Benson so even if you flub up it's not the end of the world.

This is a perfect DIY project and of the type that has launched many a tech and/or luthier. I say go for it.

Now if this was first project and you wanted to refret or do a fancy swirl then I would think twice and get the pro. My first project was simply to do binding on old guitar and it was pretty involved and I botched it because I underestimated and rushed it. But if you take your time, you can get close to first post photograph.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-28-2013, 06:05 PM
 
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Re: Refinishing Question(s)

I did something simillar but went with more of a distressed purple look







See thread for details..

http://www.jemsite.com/forums/f21/ng...al-110704.html
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