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Okay, so I Just joined this site because I'm in desparate need of assistance when it comes to refinishing my guitar.
I completely stripped my Epiphone black beauty 3 and now I have no idea what to put on it without being scared of using the wrong materials.
The wood is mahogony, and I can't take off the neck because it's glued (but that isn't one of my problems)

My questions consist of:
Should I use water based or oil based materials (what's the difference in outcome)
Stain or paint
Nitro or poly
spray or wipe on application
What do I use to fill the grain of my wood (Easiest and cheapest, i've heard that stained super glue works well)

And I also need a list of all of the supplies and processes listed in order from start to "Finish" Lol
Meaning that even with the variable items, what should I put on first - last etc.
I heard the order was:
Grain filler
clear protective coat

I want my guitar to look somewhat like this guitar featured on the guitar of the month from 2005 page.

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Calm down, Luis ;-)

Welcome to the board. All the information you need is spread amongst various build and tutorial threads around the forums however searching for each of the main points you listed will do you well.

If I am right in thinking, that is Setch's Les Paul. If you Google "Luthier Than Thou" you will find his blog posts on that build still live.

Detailing your equipment setup and experience will help us understand whether we are recommending you use potentially deadly materials that you can't handle.

Just kidding. ;-)

Knowing your level of experience will help very much though.

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I'd rather know someone's personal experience on what works.
This is my first time, so you could understand why I'd love to get first hand advice rather than interpret stuff from a new forum.

I can handle nitro, when it comes to safety, I bought about 200 dollars worth of masks, gloves, vents, and paint suits.
I just want my guitar to come out not looking like it's a piece of Soaked bench.

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Okay, well the body is entirely Mahogany (or something similar more than likely) so it will need grain filling. You won't get the same colour top as the guitar mentioned on the basis that it had a Maple cap. This isn't to mean you can't do the burst however you will not get the same light central part unless the "Mahogany" that Epi deigned to use was particularly light to start out with.

I would not go down the road of using superglue as a grain filler. Whilst it will do the job, it is a borderline dangerous job and adding dyes to it is asking for additional complications. Another member here recently posted how adding Aniline dyes caused the CA to act like it had an accelerator added....not the best of things to be considering.

There are many different approaches to grain filling from using egg whites (separate well, whip till thickening, strain overnight, rub into the grain with 240-320 paper till it slurries) to dyed drywall compound, Brummer rub-in filler, shellac/pumice, etc.

When you say you can handle nitro, what is your specific previous experience with it and the field of painting? It's great that you have safety gear however if this is all for one instrument you might have spent better on buying an aerosol sanding sealer, grain filler, etc. rather than considering things like CA as being an easy/cheap option. I presume that you are planning on doing other work beyond this one guitar?

It is somewhat difficult to give specific advice when what you already know or have done isn't clear....

The "order" is not always the case either. Some people shoot a couple of wash coats of nitro before grain filling and then adding more nitro on top. Some grain fill first.

Search around for SDShirtman's recent builds. He used nitro and I believe his schedule was described quite well.

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Thank you for the input, it was helpful.
I Plan on building kits beyond this, and I checked the specs for this particular guitar and it is pure mahogany. Almost pinkish when you get down to the base after the stain.
I think I figured out the order whilst browsing the internet last night, so that isn't my problem anymore haha.

Here's what I've done:
Sanded whole thing down to pure wood, filled huge gouges with stained wood puddy, bought Nitro in a can, behren's wood grain filler, have all of the hardware, and also purchased sanding sealer.
I guess the order doesn't matter, but what I'll do is
Grain filler
sanding sealer

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