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Prs Finish


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So, my guitar teacher went to a private factory tour of prs. While there he asked how the "grain pop" is achieved and described what I told him about the black dye and sanding and stuff; what I learned from this forum. They said they don't do that, but rather its the grain filler that they use that creates the finish.

Can anyone enlighten me on what they are talking about?

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Coloring wood by adding the (colorant) dye into the grain filler then applying the grain filler is as old as the hills, and it's mind-numbingly easy to do if you understand a few simple rules of application.

That application in and of itself is a no-brainer.

Having said that, you don't add grain filler to color a Maple top, so something is amiss there, but I have no clue where it went amiss in all that vague repartee back and forth between you, your teacher, and the PRS employees.

I also know that whatever PRS DOES do, who really cares in the end? I don't.

I've been doing transparent dying and tinting of all sorts on Maple and lots of other woods and veneers for 15 years in my own backyard, and honestly, I can probably do as good or even better than them on most days, I know I've done lots of tops that would blow a PRS clear out of the water, and my equipment is pretty basic really, and there are other builders here that can outshine them as well, so my 'take' on your question is, 'Why Worry about how PRS does it, you can do just as well not even knowing what it is they do.

And the information I use to do my finishes I bought in books and videos on the internet...15 years ago...it's all over the place out there on the 'net, it's really no big secret, and the 'Big Guys' don't have any secret formulas to color a stupid piece of wood except they buy some Very High Dollar stupid pieces of wood that certainly DO help the 'flavoring'.

But you know what? YOU can go out and buy JUST as NICE Maple if you want to hunt it down, it's out there.

So really, the playing field is quite level between you and PRS.

They may (and do indeed) have advanced FINISHES, but coloring wood is coloring wood, tinting is tinting, blue is blue, yellow is yellow, bursting is bursting, etc...don't be intimidated by a big name, you can easily do just as good as anything they do if you put your time into it.

So again, who really cares how PRS applies their finishes, the information you need to do transparent dying and tinting figured Maple is easily acquired out there...

...The Problem is that YOU have to Spend the Time to get good at it, lots and lots of time at it, learning all there is to know, and that you can't get from a factory tour, you have to read, watch, practice, and learn, trying over and over, and over time, it'll come to you. :D

Get yourself the Flexner book, (reading it helps :D ) buy an airbrush and a detail (pint) gun, some waterbased anilyne dyes, some glass babyfood jars, some pipettes, latex gloves, a compressor, then go buy some cheap-ass AA figured Maple and Just Have At It. Go For Broke. No Pressure. No Guitars. Just Wood. And Fun.

Don't even Worry about shooting a guitar for quite awhile, just have FUN with it, take the pressure off, just shoot some cheap poor-ass AA flame Maple boards for awhile, and just keep sanding them back and shooting them again and again and again...it'll come to you.

It's that simple. B)

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