Official Luthiers Forum!

Solely owned and operated by Lance Kragenbrink
It is currently Mon Sep 16, 2019 7:37 am


All times are UTC - 5 hours





Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 21 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Yamaha AE1200S refinish
PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2019 2:12 pm 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
I have an 88 Yamaha AE1200S
It's a well built Archtop with a pressed solid spruce top and laminate birch sides and back.
The ads say the top is machine carved,,maybe it is?? but it is definitly solid spruce and not a laminate.
I bought it for a few hundred from Japan because a previous owner had decided to make a one pickup sort of jazz guitar out of it.
So the humbucker bridge pickup hole and some of the control knob holes were plugged with what looks like doorskin bondo and ugly stain
Then somebody did quite a nice job (despite the ghastly patches) of refinishing the top in nitro.

These guitars originally had a poly finish and especially the Taiwan made ones(like this one) tended to develop a cloudy blush in patches on the finish, which this one has on it sides and back.

So the guitar is cosmetically challenged already.

This guitar came with it's original pickups, electronics, tailpiece(broken sadly)

This is a really really nice playing and sounding instrument. I've tried it with several pickup combinations and they all sound good. As you can see it currently has strat pickups in it
Compared to my many 50s and 60s 'quality' laminate electric archtops I have it has a noticeably superior acoustic sound, which translates some to it's electric sound as well.

However I REALLY don't like sunburst finishes.
Something about me is quite shallow and I need a guitar to really excite me visually so that I want to pick it up and play it.

So I'd like to refinish it. My choices would be , blonde, opaque or stained red (like the chet workshop guitar or the 50s gretsch 6119s) or opaque black, like an old German archtop (like hopf or something similar)

The top nitro finish is quite thin and light, the back and sides (and neck) Poly finish is the usual bullet proof type..

Obviously for clear I would have to remove ALL the finish and I'm thinking for the sides and back sanding and scraping would be the way to go. However the birch sides and back aren't especially pretty. okay but not like a maple back and sides.
Any other paint removal suggestion appreciated.

But for opaque could I sand with 320 or 400 and then paint over top of the poly on the back and sides and then clearcoat? (obviously masking of the binding (or scraping clean afterwards)

I have successfully completely refinished and rebound a high end instrument before and I do have some formal luthier training. I am a hobbyist though and do not do it for a living.


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:39 am 
Offline
Brazilian Rosewood
Brazilian Rosewood
User avatar

Joined: Mon Dec 27, 2010 9:06 pm
Posts: 2520
Location: Magnolia DE
First name: Brian
Last Name: Howard
City: Magnolia
State: Delaware
Zip/Postal Code: 19962
Country: United States
Focus: Repair
Status: Professional
So the top was refinished in nitro?

For a solid opaque you can scuff and shoot over the existing if the new finish is compatible over the nitro and of course you do not mind the extra thickness of the finish. Prep will be the key to success and the poly and nitro will likely need prep sanded a bit differently to get best adhesion over both with what is available OTC these days.

_________________
Brian

You never know what you are capable of until you actually try.



http://www.brianhowardguitars.com
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Howard-G ... 3702413493
http://howardguitars.blogspot.com/


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2019 10:25 am 
Offline
Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
Posts: 1672
First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I use commercial chemical paint stripper to remove finish (typically under bridges and necks on acoustic guitars) and I have stripped two guitars that were finished in nitro. The stripper works fine on lacquer but doesn't touch some modern catalyzed finishes. It might dissolve or soften plastic binding, pearloid inlay and certainly would remove decals.

Some other concerns - the veneers of laminated backs and sides (and tops) are pretty thin and can be sanded thru if you are too aggressive. I'm not sure you will get the old finish off with 320 or 400 but you should work up to that before you shoot your finish. If the sunburst or back and side color was done with stains and absorbed into the wood it will be very difficult to sand out. You can get 1/4 inch masking tape from auto paint stores but plan on scraping the thin edge of your binding and the f-holes.

Good luck


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2019 2:19 am 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
I'm very adept at sanding having done more than my fair share. I prefer hand sanding unless I'm doing large areas.
The sunburst stain is definitely in the paint and not stained into the wood, both on the nitro top and the polyester sides and back. (I have chips on both in the dark areas, white wood underneath.) However the back and sides finish is uber bullet proof.
Top is definitely solid spruce (I've seen the edges of the pickup holes, and I have a few older Gretsch archtops guitars with faux spruce tops. I know what laminate vs solid tops look like.) Sides and back might be solid birch at least that's what the literature says.
I'll probably sand the back and sides finish a bit so when I add paint it won't be too much thicker. I'm thinking the back and sides finish is pretty thick. The top nitro looks a lot thinner.

I think I'm leaning towards an opaque finish despite the nice grained spruce top. The birch grain is okay but nothing to write home about.
This will save me endless hours of tedious finish removing sanding which would be extra fun in cutaways etc.
So some sort of solid colour lacquer and then probably clear-coated with Behlen instrument lacquer
Mask of the binding and touch it up with a razor/scraper afterwards. I have a little unit I used for my 64 country club rebind and refinish that worked well as well as some tiny scrapers.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2019 11:34 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Thu Oct 27, 2011 11:28 am
Posts: 178
First name: Leonard
Last Name: Duke
City: Kalamazoo
State: MI
Zip/Postal Code: 49001
Country: USA
Focus: Repair
Status: Amateur
I tend towards the lazy side of things, but have you considered spraying the top only with some red toner?

Google "Gibson George Goble images" to see a bunch of transparent red non-sunburst archtops. I've always thought this model looked pretty good. Making your guitar look like one of those seems like it would be pretty easy. You could still see the nice grain.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 2:55 am 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
That is a really Nice red on that Gibson George Goble guitar .
Thanks for the idea
I wonder though how easy it would be to just spray the inside of the sunburst?
I'd be using rattle cans
I had good luck with it on my last refinish and various other small jobs I've done.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2019 11:29 pm 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
Well I finally started to dig into this last week
MUCH sanding with a little tiny hand sander starting at 80 and then when wood started to show a bit 120 and then 220. Much time also spent with little scrappers and sanding blocks. While I'm not a fan of the grunt work, I quite enjoy the fine detail work. Still lots of little stuff to go, end of fretboard extension, cleaning up of said extension, finish headstock(sides and back mostly) Go over top back and sides to get last bits of pain t(edges and blotches) and then a light hand-sanding cleanup with 220 and 320. Discovered that the top wasn't entirely refinished, only about half the original finish was removed (probably till the 'blush' was gone) and then it was clear-coated with amber nitro over the original sunburst. I found this positive because it meant that my sanding down to the wood wouldn't be the 2nd time.

Here it is so far, getting quite close. And to the doubting Thomas's I have a close up of the top edge grain by the bridge pickup cavity. The top prior to sanding was close to 5.5mm thick It might've lost .025 of a mm or less.Tight grain and some nice bear claw. Birch back and sides maple neck. Grain nothing spectacular but nothing hideous either.So far so good
Only oops so far was a tiny chick of the bottom edge of the heel that could conceivably be sanded out without being too obvious. As it's my guitar I can live with that.
An interesting construction note:
There 2 little ladder braces between the parallel braces between the two pickups, likely to strengthen the top at that obvious potential sag point, and a small thin brace under the bridge location. As well as a small brace on either side going from the parallel braces to the waist just on the neck side of the F-holes. Interesting.

I'm contemplating leaving the faceplate of the headstock alone. It has some blush but it's subtler and it's kind of archival.

I have a rattle can of Behlens musical instrument lacquer and a can of their 'natural pine' toner. these are ;eft over from my gretsch 64 country club refinish. I was thinking of using the same stuff as it seemed to go well. However I'd like to get some amber colour as I've seen these guitars factory blonde and they tops tend to be a bit 'pink-ish' . I used the behlens over top of cadillac green paint before. Has anyone used it to get an aged amber finish and what toner did they use?


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun May 26, 2019 8:41 pm 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
Bump!
What do people use to get a warm amber vintage blonde lacquer finish?

I also remembered I have a full can Mohawk EZ vinyl sealer which is meant to go over wood(as pore filler), and or other finishes to allow the nitro to bond.
It is very clear


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2019 2:21 am 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
Okay some full frontal nudity, naked backsides, F-holes and gaping pickup cavities. It's a shapely beast even if it doesn't have stunning flame maple. All sanded down to 220. Some uber fine detailing still to be done. Then 320. Any advice on a good product to achieve a pleasing aged amber colour from what I can purchase in Canada would be much appreciated.


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2019 11:12 am 
Offline
Koa
Koa

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 534
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
I'm in Canada and bought a quart of nitro clear from Richelieu. It just involved setting up an account with them online. Then you could tint that with some amber dye. Color FX from wood essence in Saskatoon, is what I've been using. Having said all that, I don't have a lot of experience and haven't used the nitro yet, I've just used the dye in water based lacquer, and in some oil.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2019 6:35 pm 
Offline
Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
Posts: 1672
First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Toxophilite wrote:
Bump!
What do people use to get a warm amber vintage blonde lacquer finish?

I also remembered I have a full can Mohawk EZ vinyl sealer which is meant to go over wood(as pore filler), and or other finishes to allow the nitro to bond.
It is very clear


My experience with Behlens vinyl sealer is that it goes on clear. I don't think of vinyl sealer as a pore filler, I use it over pore fillers and/or stains to seal them from bleeding into top coats. However maple and birch don't need pore filling.

I don't know if this is what you want but its just some Colortone amber in plain old nitro

Attachment:
IMG_3574.JPG


Attachment:
IMG_3582.JPG


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2019 8:58 pm 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
Nice! Is that one of your own creations, or repairs/refinishes? (in the cutaway by the neck?) Nice flame in the maple, especially effective in the binding.
That might be a bit deeper of a colour than I was aiming for but certainly not far off. Have the guitar all sanded in 320. Have to clean up the inside of the F-holes(I forgot about that, tricky!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2019 9:34 pm 
Offline
Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm
Posts: 1672
First name: Freeman
Last Name: Keller
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Thanks, that is one of mine. Its spruce over maple, which all the figity bits in rosewood, maple binding on everything. You can vary the intensity of the amber by how much you add to the lacquer - I just dribbled it in and kept shooting until I was happy. Don't look too closely at the cut to neck transition or you will see the router bobble (now your eye will be drawn right towards it)

Attachment:
IMG_3577.JPG


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2019 1:21 am 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
You must be proud of it! Great job.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri May 31, 2019 10:22 pm 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
In the DIY spray booth (which actually works REALLY well to contain the smell etc. Two coats of vinyl sealer on. I have two decisions to make. I think now is when I'd normally hit the guitar with a coat of amber to give it a bit of an older finish look, also I want to paint a stinger on the back of the headstock. I've found that nitro over the black sometimes makes it bleed so If I was to do the stinger I think I'd want to get another coat of vinyl sealer on the headstock before painting the whole guitar with clear and or amber. Any opinions?


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri May 31, 2019 11:35 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Mon Feb 13, 2012 8:49 pm
Posts: 304
First name: peter
Last Name: havriluk
City: granby
State: ct
Zip/Postal Code: 06035
Country: usa
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
I think it would be a good idea to experiment with finishes on something other than the guitar itself. It certainly will take time and effort, but the guitar won't see anything that goes wrong.

_________________
Peter Havriluk


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 1:15 am 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
Done! and in various incarnations.
The last with my own version of P-90s with alnico rod magnets(not a new idea just made my own hum cancelling ones that rival the Seymour Duncan Staple pickups I tried in sound quality) Eventually I found the amber tint on te binding too much so I've been 'relic-ing' it I guess to match the binding on my 65 Tennessean which is largely white as the finish has worn off. It looks better, More striking.

ImageImageImageImageImageImage


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2019 1:22 pm 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
Looks good!, that must've taken you countless hours.
I think I prefer the francsh pickup guild look with the cream P-90 s even though the black ones are more traditional Gibson
Any reason you plugged too of the control positions?


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2019 1:28 pm 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
Thanks a lot. It was a lot of hard work, especially doing all the final wet sanding and buffing by hand, but I've done a fair bit of that before so I knew what I was getting into. I plugged the control positions because I generally never use the controls on guitars, maybe a master volume so I went with one set figuring it would be easy to drill out and add another set if I wanted. On the existing controls only the volume control works the tone pot is a dummy.
Over all I was pleased with the results, If I was to do it again, I would just tint the particlulary pale pinkish bland maple of the neck and even there I would've ,asked the binding for the tinting.. next life.
Not a lot going on around here!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2019 1:30 pm 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
Sure isn't!

Yes tinting a blonde guitar is always a tough call, generally better to err on the side of caution rather than to go overboard.

anyway good job, you must be enjoying the results.
How does it sound?


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2019 1:31 pm 
Offline
Mahogany
Mahogany

Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 7:31 pm
Posts: 70
Sounds very good acoustically. I like these pickups I made but I might get some Jazzmaster pickups and shave down the bobbins to fit in P-90 covers. I'd have to get some new undrilled covers though.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 21 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group
phpBB customization services by 2by2host.com