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How Much Clear Coat Is Enough?


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I've sprayed my latest build with black nitro and on the weekend I went over that with clear coat. I sprayed outside on a sunny, Sydney weekend and I put a coat on every 30 minutes or so over the 2 days ... I'm guessing I ended up with 15 or so passes / coats. I would have used maybe a litre of 50/50 paint / thinners.

The headstock looks like it has a good build up on it and it should sand and buff well. The body should have something close to the same build up on it, but it's not quite as glossy at this stage.

My question is ... is there such a thing as too much clear coat? On a previous build using auto paint I think I under-did it slightly with the clear coat. So I'm tempted (weather permitting) to lay a few more coats on it this weeked. But I want to finish this build before Christmas which would mean spraying this weekend; and then leaving it a fortnight to harden before sanding, buffing, and assembling on the weekend before Christmas.

So ... do I lay down some more clear coat? Or do I stop obsessing over nothing, leave the clear coat as it is, and just sand and buff the weekend after next?


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A good way to tell the thickness of your finish is to put a few small pieces of tape inside the pickup cavites - take one out and measure the thickness with a micrometer - if you feel you need more, keep going.

It is possible you're thinner on the body than on the headstock, it wouldn't hurt to keep going.

I'm assuming you're using standard nitro for the clear coat as well - if so, you should wait a month or more to let it harden up before buffing out. Nitro stays soft and continues to outgas for weeks - if you try to level & buff out a day later, you'll be sorely disappointed at the result.

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Yep ... the clear coat is also standard nitro.

if you try to level & buff out a day later, you'll be sorely disappointed at the result.

I was aiming for a couple of weeks in between. After a couple of weeks the black seemed to be dry and wasn't giving off any thinner scent. I sanded a couple of small sections off the black with no dramas ... but I did go fairly gently.

So .... I think I'll be spraying clear coat again this weekend ... and I'll re-assess in a few weeks as to whether I get to do the final sand and buff before Christmas or whether I display a little patience and make it a new year project.



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