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Hollowbody Finishing Schedule

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The below picture is what I'm going for for finish.


I've used natural maple binding, If I get stain on it, it will not come out easily. I've been thinking about it, and have a solution, I want to run it by the group and make sure I'm not missing something.

With a rag. Not Sprayed..

1. Mask the F-Hole Binding

2. Put the yellow on the middle, not all the way to the edge binding.

3. Sand back the curly maple parts to highlight.

4. Apply yellow for the finished color and depth again not all the way to the edge binding.

5. Apply the transition color, which is the light brown/red fade, not all the way to the binding.

6. Mask off the ebony part of the fingerboard

7. Spray a light coat of Nitro for a sealer on the whole guitar including the binding.

8. Let sit for a few days so I can mask over the lacquer.

9. Mask the binding.

10. Mask the center of the guitar with a egg shapped paper, just to catch drips.

11. Add my dark walnut/black to nitro and spray the edges (Toner/Shader)

12. Remove the binding mask and clean up any binding problems (Sealed up, it should clean up at this point).

13. Spray the rest of the nitro coats, let dry a while, level sand, buff, etc.

This should keep my edge binding crisp, and if there are problems it should allow me to fix them without having stain on maple binding.

The only tedious part will be the F-Holes. I was thinking I could take an artists brush and some masking and give them a vey light coat of nitro to seal them up. That may help a little with the bleed through.

This should give me a highlighted, hand stained look in the middle, fade to dark, and the dark is opaque shader suspended in the lacquer.

Any further suggestions?

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I'll be honest with you.

It ~sounds~ to me like you've maybe never done a burst before, because I see several steps/things in there that are really questionable/things I wouldn't be doing.


The best advice I could possibly give you is to do a cheap Maple topped mockup and practice on that sucker SEVERAL times before getting anywhere near the real guitar with your methods.

I mean something as simple as a 4" square cutoff from your maple and glue a 4" piece of binding to it, it doesn't have to be lifesize to work.

If you do that, the errors in your step routine will become apparent to you w/o anyone having to tell you, you will experience it for yourself and understand where the problems are by practicing on a scrapper first.

If someone gives you advice on changing your steps/protocol, you still won't really comprehend WHY they're changing your routine.

When YOU do it, you'll 'GET IT' yourself, and that experience will be WELL WORTH the time you spent working on a mockup if your real guitar means a lot to you. :D

Practice your steps on scrap FIRST, and the story will unfold before your very eyes, the answers will become obvious to you, and you will enjoy the learning experience.

PS, just for ONE example, it's a waste of time to apply yellow/wipe or sand back/and apply more yellow, that's totally fruitless and won't get you anywhere or what you want.

You will want to add around 1 drop of red and 1 drop of brown to your first yellow, very very lighthanded with it, sand that back, then do your final yellow.

But if you don't understand amounts, and what I mean when I say very lighthanded, you'll probably get the ratio wrong and blow it.

Practicing on scrap will make that obvious to you what the proper amounts should be.

That was just one example. :D

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