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StratsRdivine last won the day on June 30

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About StratsRdivine

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    Dr Dichro

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  1. 24 Magnum

    Thats precisely why I mount round conduit to my neck pockets that then fit into holders that allow me to spin the body right after spraying to kill sags before they happen. Not new, of course as the pros have the same spinny things, but the conduit / metal pipe idea was quick and easy. Crazy sweet spray job Chris!!! It is a pleasure to wet sand flat, well flowed-out finishes to begin with. Pic below only shows one of the two pipe rests in the lower left corner, but you get the idea. Spinning it while spraying is the best part, but spinning after done every few minutes kills any sag / run potential.
  2. Help dyeing Gibson LPJ

    Good response, Mr. Natural. If you removed enough hardware, you can random orbit sand quicker to get past the white. Don't use a belt sander - takes extreme skill to not get dig pits. But you do need to remove the surface til white is gone. Then it should be easy from there to fine sand, then re-stain. The stain should take pretty evenly, even if some stain is still present. If you intend to gun spray, then you can mix slight amounts of transtint into your clear to help with even darkening, but that is advanced, requiring perfect lay down of even coating mils in order to not get runs or sags, which are near impossible to even out later. If you do spay a tint coat (which can look better than dye stain direct on wood), then thin the lacquer twice as much as normal for topcoats.
  3. Alright - just sprayed the new CF fiddleback that I cast this week with better "onlays". Mold was a real pain to hit the 9.5" radius, but got it, however, it cast with a twist, so had to grind off quite a bit in the opposite two corners prior to coating. PRS uses Dichrolam in their bird inlays, and it is elegant, but I had to show them how its done. Everything went exactly as I outlined in my July 13th post above so far, except that I just ordered two diamond blades with .023" kerfs, so fretting might be easier.
  4. Finished pics! Ultra-modern bass build

    Wow - it took the last day til now to catch up on your progress. If there was an award for most outside-the-box design, I think you nailed it, and with grace. Fine work - lots of times I thought "millenium falcon-esque"
  5. Traq Guitars 2015: a crazy ex-strat

    Waayy cool man! Especially the graceful transition into natural wood in the neck. Reminds me of "Terminator: Judgement Day" when the T-1000's arm slowly transitioned from human arm into a sword. A little tip on rattle can vs 2K - rattle cans are cut with solvent at least 2 times more than 2K urethane at gun viscosity, so they will spray out the tiny orifice. Cans give you maybe 20% solids, while 2K is close to 50% solids. Therefore two wet heavy coats from can might yield 2 mils dry, while two wet coats 2K gunned on will give over 12 wet, then dry to 6 mils, reducing sand through chance. Of course, the greatest tip on leveling out orange peel is to flat sand well away from any edges, then when done, I do one or maybe two passes over rounded edges with 1000 or finer. Same with buffing - never buff edges til last, and then only lightly.
  6. Over-bowed braced top and back...how to fix??

    I guess the other question would be what glue did you use for the bracing - titebond or hide glue? Either will move a little with heat, (hide obviously more, and possible for full delam is hot enough). So consider the heat part with glues. If it were at perfect radii when glued, then adjusting humidy back down should be fine, but I am concerned about micro shear / creeping of the glue joint at the braces, considering there is a lot of shear stress on them right now.
  7. Over-bowed braced top and back...how to fix??

    The humidity has been a curse this spring for me too, and June was the worst. I have a ceiling mount shop heater that I built a shelf under for curing coatings, speeding epoxy cure etc. and the gentle heat coupled with your AC would really do it, if you had a low temp heater hanging over the top. Lower humidity will work too, but just take longer, but it will work. Its hard to believe that it can go back, but it will, once dried. I'm sure the humidity up in Toronto has been as bad as here.
  8. In all my years, I never thought of that as a planing jig to hold irregular shapes. Need to make one now - my round brass dogs are barely ever in the right position. Such a wealth of info in your pic - I never applied sandpaper to the bottom of my plane either, just struggled holding paper over a block of wood for flat sanding. My two 3M stickit blocks are great though - holds the rolls and you tear off old, and pull new, but the felt bottoms aren't good for flattening, so the plane is better with the built in handles.
  9. Yep, That fingerboard was just the first hand cast test. Perfect to see if the diamond blade cuts through without delaminating the resin and / or gumming up the blade. It just dusts right through perfectly. Making a new dedicated mold today with the 9.5" RAD for casting bottom up, which will eliminate bubbles entirely. I'm actually fine sanding the new CF fingerboard right now in prep for the inlays prior to casting (the jig above radiused the Wenge substrate perfectly). The new one will have a narrow border of my Black Sea Dichrolam (blue/violet color) around each Red Burl delta. After casting, I will radius sand it, then airbrush the "vapor trails" like the last guitar (white wisps behind each gold burl inlay) but use the red candy tint, (to match the Red Candy CF Quilt body) then topcoat with 2K urethane, then cut and buff, then cut the fret slots and epoxy the frets in. So far it all works in my head. Reality is often a different story, but I have rehearsed this many times and can't see a problem yet. If you do, I am all ears.
  10. That is exactly what I meant about logging a lifetime of images and motifs into your brain's image library, so you can tap into it when designing. Kindof. Then there is the "just feels right part". Don't you just love that? I think that's the most addicting part.
  11. Well, the new diamond blade fret slot cutter / fingerboard radiusing jig works great for my figured carbon fiber fingerboards. Two major purposes: cutting radii in fingerboard wood when the dado blade is in the mini 4" saw, and then cutting the .035" wide fret slots in the finished CF fingerboard with the diamond blade. Yes, its the thinnest blade I could find, and yes its too wide for frets. However, I plan to epoxy the frets in anyway, so it should work fine. My clamping caul will center the frets with thousanth inch precision. Very little runout in the the blade for virtually zero wobble since I refaced the flanges like I do with all my tools (carbide reface while spinning). Then the swing bed is solid as a stone - very little racking at all due to the large acrylic faces (oiled) at the hinge bolts. Adjustable height bed, and adjustable radii. My laser marks the fret slots (dead on), and its very easy to climb cut the slot right between the two laser lines.
  12. All I could afford was an oversized electric trolling motor, as opposed to small 4 stroke, plus the simplicity of it. Turns out that was a good decision, as my wife and I love the quiet drive and reliability. I upgraded it to the largest ever made - a 112 lb thrust 36V Riptide, in which I added a higher pitch prop, so it hits hull speed at 75% power, which is fine for all out boating (three AGM batts give me 6 hr run time). I am glad the boat is in this discussion, because apart from my latest guitar being the 2nd most fulfilling project I have done (boat being #1 by a long shot), boat design is very similar to guitar design, at least for me, from an aesthetic perspective. You can make a very valid argument that highly flowing, aesthetic curvilinear design simply comes from the gifted talent level of the designer (sometimes a well curved line just comes out of nowhere), but much can be learned just from studying flow patterns in natural things like dunescapes, plant and wood growth, water flow, etc. It takes a full life of logging great imagery into your brain so you can tap that image library when designing (trust me, I consciously do). So you learn how curves highlight each other based on proximity and scale, so you need to practice drawing a LOT, like how great guitar players have practiced since childhood. One great example is how the curved line of the top of a Strat pickguard does not follow the curve of the top of the body, but is rather scaled down and shifted, which ends up being "perfect" in my book. Here is a recent guitar design I am doing next, which relies heavily on the inter-related flow of curves, and from studying the flow of barchan dunescapes from photos of Mars from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft (public pictures on the HiRise website). Quite fun to use QCAD to adjust curves slightly, which make a huge difference. Then, one must consider conditioned aesthetic, meaning to use a basis of design which is based on existing aesthetic shapes, and you can augment from there with your own design signature. Conditioned, means that people are used to certain shapes in a guitar, boat, etc, and to deviate too much can be ugly, like headless guitars look like decapitated torsos, ergo guitars are too imbalanced, etc.
  13. Want to make first custom guitar

    I second the reference to PWP - great products. Study the "In Progress" part of this forum too. Unless you plan to build you own necks and bodies, Warmoth gets good reviews of their bodies and necks. Then pups should be less than 100 bucks each. A lot of the cost is buying minimum orders on paint just for one guitar, so look into having it sprayed by a pro, which will cost more than the raw material minimums, but worth it. You can wet sand and buff the final coat. This purple / magenta color-changing borosilicate is my favorite color, so I can really picture what you are after.
  14. John Blazy here from Dichrolam, LLC / John Blazy Designs (might be Blazy Guitars someday) My first guitar after six months of cramming for this test. My wife and I love seeing a local cover band, and became friends with the members especially Steve Raz their lead guitarist, so I realized he might like a guitar made with my material, and I could use it for PR. Since Dichrolam laminates are used by PRS, Fender CS, Jens Ritter, etc (via Tom Schotland's inlay version using my dichroic cores), coupled with needing to promote my new "faux figure" laminates, I Decided to mod a Squier Strat in January this year. Steve loved it, and I got the bug so bad, I decided to look into full custom guitar building as a platform to market my products. Then really discovered lots of uncharted design territory in the current state of the guitar design art, mostly aesthetically. Studied hard, especially here (Thanks PG!), and hired a local luthier (Attila Custom Guitars) to make unfinished necks and body blanks to my design and specifications, and I would complete them with shaping, inlays, full face overlays, final finishing, cut and buff, then send them back to Attila for fretwork, wiring and setup. Mentioning this so you all know that I am not a true luthier like everyone here - I have not personally made a neck yet, which requires such precision jigs, and I decided not to re-invent the wheel here, (although I could). You should also know that I am a professional furniture designer / builder turned chemist, turned composites mfr with 35 years experience in the highest of high end commercial projects, so that too, is cheating a little here, so keep that in mind. Specs on the Silver/Gold Quilt guitar (might name it "Mr.T", because all the gold and bling isn't feminine here, rather more B.A.): Chambered Basswood body based on the perfectly designed Stratocaster, but I stretched, trimmed and 'sexified' the lines and added larger horns (size does matter here) making it over 1-1/2" longer than a Strat Body face "veneer" is 1/4" acrylic formed from molds I made to look like 5A quilt figure. Back coated with silver and gold borosilicate (real glass) metallic pigments in a "strafe coated" procedure that causes the quilt billows to change from silver to gold based on viewing angle. Body cross section is a longitudinal 30 inch radius "arctop", not archtop - 2" thick in middle, tapering to less than 1" at edges to counter weight of acrylic, while "raising" the bridge for playability, and eliminating the need for a forearm bevel. 25.5" Scale Flame maple neck with bookmatched flame maple fingerboard (vectored for directionality) with Evo Jumbo gold frets and gold Sperzel locking tuners Inlays and body accent deltas are "Gold Burl" Dichrolam, which has no metal, but looks metallic, and changes color according to viewing angle (epoxy version in inlays, and acrylic version in body deltas and knob covers). Hand wound humbuckers by local winder Turnbull Pickups (cutty and crispy) Schaller hardtail bridge 2K urethane with gold borosilicate metallic, cut and buffed (I know that not being nitro lists my address as a "finish offender" causing luthier school children to cross on other side of my street, but I didn't lay down 50 mils - only about ten total after cut and buff) See build thread here on PG: Hear it and see it here - go to 1:07:30 mark to hear Steve scream out some serious Neal Schon on "Stormy Nights": Escape - best Journey tribute band featuring Steve Raz on John Blazy's Silver Quilt guitar
  15. 24 Magnum

    Wowwwwww!!! From raw to finished guitar in ten minutes of scrolling. Reminds me of your last thread - I remember well the details saying to myself "so thats how you do that". This time, I am saying "I want that plane". So sorry to hear about your deep loss. I had to wrestle alot when my wife was diagnosed with Cancer, and found a tremendous compassion for those with true losses. Two things - Its OK that you may never be OK, so don't try too hard to numb things away. Second is that building is soooo therapeutic as you know, so keep it up.