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Chip Repair

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Right on the very edge of the back of one of my guitars is a teeny tiny little chip all the way down to the wood. It's probably 1/8 - 1/4 the size of a US dime. anybody have any good ideas as to how to fix such a chip? (mostly the filling in of the vally) I'm about to do a graphic on top of the original paint, so I'll be re-clearing the whole instrument when I'm finished.

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If it's in an area that won't be seen, there are a few things that will work.

1) Green Label Hot Stuff (superglue) green label is very thick and is used for gap filling.

2) 5-minute 2-part epoxy you can find at Home Depot in the 2 connected tubes/syringe setup.

3) Bondo body putty. Dries hard, dries fast, no shrink-back, great adhesion, easy application, and is pretty easy to sand back to flat, easier than the other 2 ways.

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  • 1 year later...
3) Bondo body putty. Dries hard, dries fast, no shrink-back, great adhesion, easy application, and is pretty easy to sand back to flat, easier than the other 2 ways.

Stupid question... Is it safe to use Bondo over primer? Let's just say I'm refinishing an axe, and when I was filling dings and chips, I kinda missed a few, and the primer isn't quite filling them as I'd hoped.

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  • 1 month later...

Here are some tips/pics from my first-ever MASSIVE chip repair (down to the wood!).

First off, I have to say that I've only done minor finish work- simple ding/dent/scratch repair. A drop of CA (superglue), and some quick super-fine sanding in a very small area, then polish and buff. I've only had to do it a couple of times, so I'm definitely no expert at it.

While searching around here and elsewhere online, I came across this site with some great information on chip repair:


He's also got a link to ProjectGuitar.com, so he might be a member here. :-) If so, THANKS!

All of his tips in there are fantastic, esp. the one about going slow and being patient. The other good one is about trying your skills on a POS body first. Get your techniques down, figure out solutions to problems, and THEN you can get into the real repair. This helped me immensely.


The suggestions on the site are great, but I wanted to add some things.

I was at the grocery store and saw a nail buffing kit. Hmmm...interesting. I picked up a couple different 'sets' of nail files. These ranged from fine to super-fine to "does it even do anything?". One of the sets had a nice thick foam core, very helpful when trying to get stuff level. I suppose the checkout lady thought I might be over-primping for a date, but.....

I picked up a set of buffing wheels (cloth, spiral sewn) from Home Depot for about $7. Two wheels- Medium and Fine- for bringing out a mirror finish.

At the auto parts store, I purchased a tube of Meguiar's "X-Scratch" polish/scratch remover. The directions say to rub it on, let it dry, then wipe off. Well, sometimes the directions suck. LOL In the case of the guitar I was working on, WET X-Scratch worked 100x better than dry.

If you're fixing a chip that's really deep, I highly recommend the CA accelerator. While CA bonds skin instantly, it doesn't *dry* instantly, and can take several hours. If you're building up CA, get the accelerator (hobby stores have it). This stuff is VERY, VERY, VERY caustic, so don't lick your fingers after spraying it on. It's nasty, nasty stuff, but does a good job drying CA.


If you're building up CA and using the accelerator, watch for 'white out'. I'm not sure what else to call it. When the accelerator hits the CA, it causes a chemical reaction- you can see little poofs of "smoke" come off the CA. Sometimes the CA bubbles and turns white. If this happens, remove ALL the white, even if it means re-building the CA more. I didn't do this on one little spot, now it's buried so deep...ugh.

Sanding blocks are your friend, but there are other means as well. The super-fine emery boards I got were thick enough that they layed very flat, and gave me a nice flat finish, but flexed enough to get around the radius of the edge. I used my tiny (1" x 1") sanding block to find the high/low spots and built up my CA with that.

The rest of the sanding was done with 1000 grit (wet and dry) and then 2000 grit (wet) sand paper, then the ultra-fine emery board, then polishing compound, then the Meguiar's.

So, here we go:





I didn't get the radius along the edge perfect, but it's damn close. If the guitar didn't have to be built tonight, I'd go back in and build up that edge and get it dead-on.

Also I *did* get a super-close match to the original finish, but I think the CA or accelerator yellowed it a bit, and thus the slight hue change. It's really hard to see from a foot away (but I know it's there....and that drives me nuts. LMAO).

Here are some other After shots from different angles:




All in all, not bad for my first down-to-the-wood chip repair. :D

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