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PostPosted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:21 pm 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:15 pm
Posts: 8
First name: Kenneth
Last Name: O'Quinn
City: Elkhorn City
State: Kentucky
Zip/Postal Code: 41522
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Got this kit which is a dual bucker Tele. It has been sanded but needs some work before I would consider starting finishing/stain/paint work, which I hope to do some type of burst with the wood grain showing. All and any advice on how to bring the grain out please send my way.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:40 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
What kind of wood? Does it have flame or other figure? What finish do you plan to put over it? How do you plan to do the burst (stain, colored finish coats, combination)? Do you have a compressor and gun (and experience using it)?

A picture of the wood would help as would a better idea of what materials and effect you are trying to achieve.

(i'm kind of interested in seeing the guitar - I've frankly never seen a set neck tele with 'buckers.)


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:47 am 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:15 pm
Posts: 8
First name: Kenneth
Last Name: O'Quinn
City: Elkhorn City
State: Kentucky
Zip/Postal Code: 41522
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
http://www.guitarfetish.com/SPECIAL-PUR ... 21270.html

This will be the easiest way for you to see what I working with. I tried to take pics but they were to large


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 11:01 am 
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Koa
Koa
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Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 12:17 pm
Posts: 857
City: Escondido
State: CA
Zip/Postal Code: 92029
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Semi-pro
There doesn't seem to be much figure to work with there. But regardless, if you want a tutorial on low tech, low equipment finishes I would recommend you look up "BigDguitars" on YouTube. He has done literally dozens of videos mostly applying bursts with rags, but also other low tech approaches like scorching and bucket swirls. The subjects are almost always pawnshop finds, Chinese kits, or EBay rejects.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 1:20 pm 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
Posts: 1438
First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
KOinKY wrote:
http://www.guitarfetish.com/SPECIAL-PURCHASE-BOUND-Unfinished-Tele-Style-GLUED-IN-Setneck-2-Humbucker-Rosewood-FB_p_21270.html

This will be the easiest way for you to see what I working with. I tried to take pics but they were to large


OK, you didn't answer my question about materials, what effect you wanted or your experience but I'll make some assumptions.

First I'm going to recommend drilling the holes and mounting your bridge. Double check the geometry so you are sure that you will have enough adjustment in your saddles to get the action you want and make sure you can intonate it. This is also a good time to do your fretwork - Guitar Fetish specifically says their frets need work - believe them.

Second, I just want to make my boilerplate statement - home finishing a guitar is very very hard. We typically don't have the materials, equipment or experience to get a factory finish and many home builders accept this by doing what I call "furniture finishes" - tung oil, Tru-Oil, varnishes. These can be acceptable but are almost impossible to color or tint so a 'burst is out.

Third, a "sun burst" is by definition one color fading into another, possibly three colors. It doesn't matter if you want to do a Tobacco burst or an Ice Tea burst or a Clown burst - they all start with a base color, usually the lighter one like amber surrounded but one or more applications of contrasting color. The idea is to have the colors fade or blend into one another - there are two ways to do this.

Traditional Gibson finishes were stains applied directly to the wood, either by hand or sprayed. The wood absorbs the stain at different rates, highlighting some of the grain. Color is added to the out side edges and blended by rubbing, spray and/or some sanding. Here is a wiped stain three color burst being applied to a maple mandolin back

Image

Here it is finished with clear lacquer applied over the stain

Image

This gives a beautiful finish but is very tricky - until you apply the stain you don't know how the wood is going to react. If you screw up there is only a limited amount you can do.

The second way to do a burst is to tint the finish as you apply it. This can only be done by spraying and the normal product would be some sort of lacquer. In theory you can do this with rattle cans but my experience is that they are so difficult to control that you won't be happy with the results. Again, practice on scrap until you are sure.

I typically use both stains and tinted finish when I do a burst. I'll apply a weak amber stain directly to the wood, sand it back lightly to pop the grain and as a base color. Here is a les paul clone that has some pretty good figure to the top, I've applied a coat of amber stain by hand. First I experiment on a piece of scrap to see how the wood takes various stains

Image

then apply it to the top (wear gloves)

Image

This guitar is going to get an "ice tea" burst, kind of a medium brown around the edge fading to the amber. The back is mahogany and I want the brown to carry over to the sides and back. I pore fill the back and apply a medium brown stain to the mahogany (your wood will be different and you may want to do something else with the back)

Image

Now I put the guitar flat on its back on a stool so I can walk around it and start by shooting a vinyl sealer coat to seal the stain. Then a couple of coats of lacquer with a few drops of the same amber aniline dye. Then I add a drop of brown and shoot a coat that covers about 6 inches from the side

Image

Then a little more brown and another coat

Image

and again

Image

You can skip the steps and just shoot your boarder color, letting the overspray from the gun do the fading (which is how Fender does it) - I wanted a more gradual fade.

Once you get the burst the way you want it, shoot ten or fifteen or so coats of clear, let it cure for 30 days, color sand and buff.

I'll add a couple more tips. Your guitar has a very thin veneer top - don't sand thru it. Assuming it doesn't have any big flaws or scratches I would start with 180 or so and work up thru the grits to 320 before starting the finish. You can sand lightly after applying your stain to the wood (maybe 320 or 400), very lightly after the sealer, then no sanding while you apply the burst. Once you have 3 or 4 coats of clear on you can start level sanding every three coats.

Your guitar has plastic binding. Depending on what you plan to do with the back and sides you may want to mask the side of the binding with 1/4 inch pin striping tape. After you have applied your color score the edge of the tape with a box cutter blade before pulling the tape - that will help prevent finish being pulled off the wood. Don't try to mask the binding on the top - the stain and finish will not go into the plastic so you can scrape the edge of the binding with a box cutter blade. Here is a different guitar being scraped - you can see that the back binding got some color sprayed onto it - that will scrape back

Image

You will scrape the binding after the color has been applied but before the clear coats. Be very careful when you start sanding the clear coats - you will have a little edge at the binding and can easily sand thru.

You will have to decide what you want to do with the neck. On set neck guitars I just finish it along with the back - you can see on the mandolin and the Les Paul that I've just carried the back theme onto the neck. Mask the fretboard carefully - if you get any finish under the tape onto the f/b you can scrape that off when you do the final fret work.

Those are the basic steps for any sunburst - good luck and lets see some pictures when you are finished


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 1:31 pm 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
Posts: 1438
First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I'm also going to suggest two books. This one is a must for anyone building their first electric guitar. Along with the chapters on materials, tools, and geometry he has a good brief description of different finishes (including a sunburst on a bound maple topped tele). The chapters on setup and wiring are worth it alone

Image

This is the bible on guitar finishing. If you want to try to duplicate a Fender two or three tone sunburst go to chapter 10 and just follow the recipies

Image


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:31 pm 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:15 pm
Posts: 8
First name: Kenneth
Last Name: O'Quinn
City: Elkhorn City
State: Kentucky
Zip/Postal Code: 41522
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Wow thanks for the input. The neck is maple and body is pauwlonia which is a light wood. It shows grain nothing like maple but grain. I really like the mandolin finish however I also saw a finish on an Ibanez hollowbody that really highlights the wood. I’ll try to get a pic of that finish up.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 6:30 pm 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:15 pm
Posts: 8
First name: Kenneth
Last Name: O'Quinn
City: Elkhorn City
State: Kentucky
Zip/Postal Code: 41522
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I like this look


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 6:31 pm 
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Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:15 pm
Posts: 8
First name: Kenneth
Last Name: O'Quinn
City: Elkhorn City
State: Kentucky
Zip/Postal Code: 41522
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Working on getting pics of my guitar small enough to post be up soon. Thanks for all the help.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2017 10:29 pm 
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Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
Posts: 1438
First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
KOinKY wrote:
Wow thanks for the input. The neck is maple and body is pauwlonia which is a light wood. It shows grain nothing like maple but grain. I really like the mandolin finish however I also saw a finish on an Ibanez hollowbody that really highlights the wood. I’ll try to get a pic of that finish up.


When you take your pictures, wipe the top with denatured alcohol and take one while its damp. That will highlight the grain in the top and give us a good idea of what we are working with.


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