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 Post subject: sunburst - aiming high
PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:56 pm 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Wed Jul 29, 2015 12:40 pm
Posts: 33
First name: Richard
Last Name: Bello
City: Weymouth
State: Ma
Zip/Postal Code: 02189
Country: Usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I am planning on attempting a "sunburst" and this is my goal. Not expecting to get there, or even close but I was hoping that someone with some experience could point me in the right direction. I have no spray equipment so it would be hand applied. If I use trans-tint or equivalent would I start with amber and then a brown of some kind on the edges - I've seen people start with a darker color everywhere initially to pop the grain on the maple and then sand it back but I can't tell if that was done here. Plenty of scrap to experiment on first but any help would be appreciated. Thanks.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 1:24 pm 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
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First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Richard, that is the traditional way Gibson did their bursts back in the '30's and Roger Siminoff has a pretty good description in his book on mandolin making (I also think on his website). I tried it on my first mandolin and wasn't totally happy with the results so I sanded back some of the stain and then shot it with a small gun and air brush.

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Since then I have been using the wiped stain to pop flame, but doing the actual burst with finish coats. Here is the stain directly on the wood and then a brown "ice tea" burst in the finish

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This is one place where you really do need to practice on scrap.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:32 pm 
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Contributing Member
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Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2013 4:58 pm
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First name: Ed
Last Name: Minch
City: Chestertown
State: MD
Zip/Postal Code: 21620
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Nice work Freeman

There is an active thread in the Mandilin section by Haans Brentrup. He recently gave up a career as a mandolin and guitar maker and his stuff is just beautiful. Most of the way down on this page:

http://www.luthiersforum.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10128&t=50074

he talks about his burst technique. I did a successful burst on a Nick Lucas using dyes in water as the solvent - easier to control compared to alcohol. They were all applied to the body and none in the finish. After the dyes, I sprayed several very light coats of (fresh) rattle can shellac over it before brushing a finish over that. You have to be REALLY careful when you level because if you go through the shellac it is near impossible to repair.

Here is my process

https://www.flickr.com/photos/ruby1638/9541192444/in/album-72157635130471994/

The photo is it next to a Circle Strings 13 fret Nick Lucas with a very dark finish and nice tiny burst (I think mine sounded better)

Ed


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 9:06 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:49 pm
Posts: 218
First name: Victor
Last Name: Seal
City: Osseo
State: MI
Zip/Postal Code: 49266
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Check out Andrew Mowry's gallery for some inspiration.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:31 am 
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Mahogany
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First name: Tony
Last Name: Thatcher
City: Bozeman
State: MT
Lots of good discussion out there.

This has always been a good thread for me:
http://www.mylespaul.com/threads/hand-rubbed-stained-wood-burst.123003/

Or search Google for Hand Rubbed Burst Finish:
[url]
https://www.google.com/search?q=hand+ru ... e&ie=UTF-8[/url]

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:41 am 
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Cocobolo
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Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 10:35 am
Posts: 165
Location: Hopkinton, MA
First name: Robert
Last Name: Ionta
City: Hopkinton
State: Massachusetts
Zip/Postal Code: 01748
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I want to learn that technique too. I've been holding onto an article in American Lutherie (Quarterly Journal of the Guild of American Luthiers), Spring 2016, Number 125, titled "The Hand Rubbed Sunburst" by James Condino. It is a pictorial exposition of his technique as he taught it in a workshop at the GAL Convention in 2011. It's about 14 pages long with lots of excellent photos.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:15 pm 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Wed Jul 29, 2015 12:40 pm
Posts: 33
First name: Richard
Last Name: Bello
City: Weymouth
State: Ma
Zip/Postal Code: 02189
Country: Usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Thanks all. +1 on Andrew Mowry. I've been staring at this Octave Mando for a while now. Darker than I want for this particular instrument but magnificent work - inspirational for sure.

http://themusicemporium.com/mandolins/m ... e-mandolin


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 9:01 pm 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
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First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Richard, just a few more random thoughts. Doing a stain type of 'burst might appeal to someone who can't spray but I really feel like a good 'burst requires a spray gun (or air brush if its small) and good technique. I like to see colors fading one into another - that is hard to do wiping stain onto the wood. You can spray stain and get a much better fade.

Second, when you wipe (or spray) directly onto the wood you are pretty committed. You can't say "oh, poop" and sand or strip it off. Usually your choice is to keep adding color, make it darker, make it wider. That isn't necessarily what I look for in a burst.

In theory (and according to the ads) you should be able to do a burst with rattle cans. I've never tried it, but my control over a rattle can doesn't give me any confidence that I could do it. When I am spraying a burst I take extra care that my gun is clean, the nozzle and pressure and mixture are all set perfectly, my water filter is clean and I shoot a bunch of practice stuff on paper or scrap to make sure the gun is perfect.

So, bottom line, I have done wiped stains and think I have a vague idea of what is going to happen when I do it, but everything I'm doing now comes out of a spray gun.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:47 am 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo
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Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2009 1:36 pm
Posts: 190
First name: Wes
Last Name: Young
City: Ithaca
State: Ny
Zip/Postal Code: 14850
Country: UNITED STATES
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I sprayed a light burst on one a few years ago just to darken the edges of a walnut back and sides guitar. It was more of an after thought. I sprayed it in the lacquer, it was suprising how easy it was.
Now I’m about to do just the spruce top on one and it has had me nervous. As far as spray guns go I spray dye directly to wood all the time and have great results, much better than application by hand.
I use water base dye turn the pressure up to 60 and close the fluid needle almost all the way. Cheap jam guns from Home Depot work just fine in my opinion. Could be worth it.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 09, 2018 11:54 am 
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Contributing Member
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Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2011 10:17 am
Posts: 275
First name: Linus
City: Brooklyn
State: NY
Zip/Postal Code: 11215
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I’ve had good luck shooting bursts with ReRanch nitro rattle cans. I’ll post some picks when I get a chance.

That being said, I’m trying to get away from shooting nitro because I have no booth. I shoot in the basement late at night with an organic solvent filter on a 3M respirator mask. That way in the morning the stink is no longer in the hallway. But it’s nasty stuff.
It also requires a month of cure time before I think it’s ready for sanding/buffing.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2018 6:54 pm 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2005 4:02 am
Posts: 1755
Location: United States
It's risking your health to be filling up your house with nitro fumes, especially at night when you are sleeping. Can't you put a fan in a basement window?


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:40 pm 
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Brazilian Rosewood
Brazilian Rosewood

Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2009 9:34 am
Posts: 2673
Barry Daniels wrote:
It's risking your health to be filling up your house with nitro fumes, especially at night when you are sleeping. Can't you put a fan in a basement window?


Barry is right and I am (still) living proof of what can happen to you. I had a beautiful spray booth, all the fancy masks, guns, everything and still after years of off-gasssing guitars and mandolins, not to mention cabinets when I worked in shops, it did me in. If you can smell anything, it's killing you slowly.
Do not think that a dry finish on the outside of the instrument solves your problem either. Off-gassing happens mostly through the inside of the guitar and that smell you have in the sound hole takes months to dissipate. Imagine that while you are sleeping, you are killing yourself.
Rattle cans and no ventilation will put you out of commission in a hurry. That you mention the "stink" is out of the hallway by morning is telling us all that all night long you have been breathing it.
Don't forget that your NY heated rooms circulate that smell through the house from the basement.

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http://www.brentrup.com


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 11:40 pm 
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Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:43 am
Posts: 232
So... is there a safe way to use nitro?
Offgas at a remote location?
Shoot in a highly ventilated area?


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:23 am 
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Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2006 2:35 pm
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Location: United States
First name: Joe
Last Name: Beaver
City: Lake Forest
State: California
Focus: Build
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Either a properly ventilated booth and protection equipment or if you are like me, do it outdoors, dry conditions, some air movement but not a windy day, use a proper ventilator and googles, long sleeve shirt, and hang it out doors between coats and after the last coat for the day, until the majority of the off gassing happens. Oh, and spray down wind.

The down side is you'll need that warm, dry day to do it.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:58 am 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
Posts: 1008
First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Plus one to everything Joe said. Remember that it is highly explosive and any source of ignition can be deadly - that includes a furnace or hot water heater, even electric ones have contactors that spark when they operate. Light switches, light fixtures them selves - the National Electrical Code has a large section on explosion proof wiring and paint booths fit that definition.

I have become sensitized to solvents over the years so I use a full NIOSH respirator.

One problem with shooting outdoors is that you will get more dust, bugs, leaves and other stray stuff in your finish. However nitro kicks off pretty fast so in general you can hang outside to cure.

I love nitro and I think I get really good results with it. However all the above makes waterborn finishes like KTM-9 very attractive.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:12 pm 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Fri Aug 19, 2005 4:02 am
Posts: 1755
Location: United States
Lacquer cures for several weeks so I place a low volume exhaust fan on my spray booth to keep pulling the vapors away during this long period.


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