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Help! I Have A Masking Tape Ridge...how Do I Smooth It Down?


Brian Lahti
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I am in the middle of a project that needs some good assistance. I am refinishing a copy of a Gibson Custom L5-s. It has inlay edging that I wanted to preserve as I added a metallic blue coat on the outside. However, I just removed the tape and found that I had REALLY laid the paint on thick. I have no probelm with how thick it is, but what I do have a problem with is the ridge that I now have.

Anybody know what to do? I don't want to strip it and start over. Do I sand the edge down? Build up clear on the edge? Other suggestions? I will post some pics in a bit, to give you an idea of what I am dealing with.

Thanks! :D

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Thank you so much! I would rather fix than start over. Its going to take a lot of clear...any building tips? I got my paint from ReRanch in the aeresol cans. It has a really nice application.

Has anyone ever tried to knock the edge down a little to make it easier? Perhaps I am revealing my newbieness, but the idea of taking my Dremel tool with a buffing wheel and polishing compound and cleaning up the edge with it.

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A little trick I learned from a shipwright/boatbuilder/painter etc. When masking a surface, roll the edge of the tape up a little bit. It takes some practice to get a straight line exactly where you want it tho. I usually lay down a straight edge on top and then pull the tape up against the straight edge :D . You can also use a template that matches your curves in the same manner. When you spray the paint it feathers out to nothing rather than leaving that sharp edge. Believe me, its so much easier after dealing with those 2-part polyresin hi-gloss paints. I learned it the hard way. The stuff cures hard as rock and can be a real b*tch to sand down.

Edited by Southpa
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Doing anything to knock back the edge is very risky, you can cut through, or thin the colour coat, and depending on how transparent it is, that can look lousy. However, once you've got a good number of clear coats on, a *very* careful scuff can make the edge a bit smoother, and make the process quicker.

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Doing anything to knock back the edge is very risky, you can cut through, or thin the colour coat, and depending on how transparent it is, that can look lousy. However, once you've got a good number of clear coats on, a *very* careful scuff can make the edge a bit smoother, and make the process quicker.

I have been doing some knocking back, and have had success. This was necessary because I noticed there were a couple places that I did not tape as carefully as I though. I had a couple fjords and one peninsula. :D However, the only reason I can realy knock it back is due to the fact that the innermost color of my banded inlay edging is white, and really, really close to the color of white reranch aeresol primer. Way to go reranch, for matching their primer to my guitar! I realize that I lucked out there, and if such wasn't the case I would not be able to knock it back.

By the way, does anyone have a little elf that I could borrow? This fine detail work is killing me. Perhaps I will turn it into a country song... "My fingers left me for another guitar, just because it was finished/And now I am here wishing on this star, letting my toes take care of business..."

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