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Help with refinish


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So I agreed to refinish a guitar I did a little while ago. an oil finish which I’m going to attempt to replace with lacquer because he uses it for gigging and has scratched it up significantly within 6 months. It is crimson guitars finishing oil to be precise over artist oil paints. 

Sanding I find seems to stain the wood under the finish, so I’m having better results taking the worst of it off with a scraper. But it seems like I have to go way way down to get to completely bare wood and I’m worried about altering the carve in doing so. Are there any tricks here or so I just need to keep going at it? 

Currently using a combo of scrapers and 80 grit paper, having to do the horns by hand but will use the orbital in the big easy areas.

P.s if anyone knows a good way to sand the pot recesses, I’m all ears!

Cheers, Ash

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I remember that build, with your experimental colouring techniques. Having to refinish her so soon must feel like skinning your baby. say whut?

I suppose scrapers are your best friends there, just sharpen them well and refine the edge with a burniser rather than just creating an edge with a file for the most even removal of material.

For the pot recesses I'd try a cylindrical flap sander on a Dremel. In the workshop there's a flapper with a somewhat  recessed shaft and a flathead bullet tip. It may be reshaped or just worn out that way but it has proved very handy in gaps.

A small hook & loop holder for your drill/dremel with a piece of non-woven (scotch brite) should work well too. Those are available in 1"/25 mm size and being plastic can be turned even smaller.

As I was looking for options I found this perfect looking option: https://www.cooksongold.com/Jewellery-Tools/Abrasive-Nylon-Buffing-Ball-Red----Coarse-22mm-prcode-999-DCN

 

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I sort of don’t mind too much, because I know that I can do so much better than this. I’m really amazed at how dull the oil finish has become. I’m looking at it as another opportunity to make a portfolio piece without having to actually make it, just finish it. 

The little crimson scrapers have really worked well actually, they take the colour off cleanly without smudging the colour into the wood below like sand paper does. Going to continue with scrapers for now. 

Thanks for the link, I’ve ordered one of those mini ball sanders, also ordered a couple of large versions (75mm) diameter from another site, ideally I could do with something between the two sizes, but I’m struggling to find anything. These will definitely help!

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They look like they might do but they’re on .com, I’m thinking about routing new recesses as these ones were done by hand with a gouge etc, router will do a neater job now that I have the knowhow. Need to think about logistics - need to go deeper and depth of the cap around the pots could be an issue.

Sanding is proving painful. There are some areas which are lightly stained blue/grey, no matter how much I take away with the scrapers, that colour remains. There are also areas where I can see flecks of blue in the grain, again no matter how much I sand or scrape, they just won’t die.

I’m tempted to spot stain an area and see how it looks 

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If you are going to dye and sand back anyway, just look at these areas as having a head start.

Odds are those are pores with dye in them and then sealed with whatever finish you used. You can use what ever solvent goes with the finish...but if it is polyurethane, odds are that is going to be paint stripper.

I'd just consider it a head start if it were me.

:)

SR

 

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Bleach is what came into my mind but it might as well change the colour of the actual wood and thus accentuate the blues. Scrap pieces for testing, again...

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7 hours ago, ScottR said:

If you are going to dye and sand back anyway, just look at these areas as having a head start.

Odds are those are pores with dye in them and then sealed with whatever finish you used. You can use what ever solvent goes with the finish...but if it is polyurethane, odds are that is going to be paint stripper.

I'd just consider it a head start if it were me.

:)

SR

 

I previously stained by rubbing in thinned oiled paints. Then after a couple of weeks I finished it with crimson finishing oil, this time I was planning to used water based stain, sealer then clear lacquer. So the waterbased dye definitely isn’t going to soak into any grain that contains oil paint. However I’m planning to finish it in blue again, so I’m wondering if I can get away with it. 

@Bizman62 I don’t think bleach could help, the issue isn’t that the grain is blue, the issue is that the grain is full. If I bleached it, I would have full grain that is pale but won’t accept stain. 

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So today was a particularly bad day in the world of Ash’s guitars. After my daughter helped me sand the top - she did a fantastic job 

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i had a go at rerouting the pot recesses and catastrophe struck. Massive irreparable tearout 

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i could in theory fix this with wood filler, but that will mean the area won’t take stain and a solid colour isn’t an option. 

So I jointed and glued a new top tonight, I haven’t decided whether to plane this top off the body or to remake the whole body with a view to reuse this one with a solid finish. 

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havent told the owner yet, im tempted to just see if he notices   

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Ouch! 😢 Just as you had found the solution for the grain filling paint and the sanding balls.

7 hours ago, ADFinlayson said:

im tempted to just see if he notices 

There's no butt cheek pattern on the new top. If he doesn't notice he's blind or he just doesn't appreciate the efforts you put into his guitar to look that close.

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4 hours ago, Bizman62 said:

Ouch! 😢 Just as you had found the solution for the grain filling paint and the sanding balls.

There's no butt cheek pattern on the new top. If he doesn't notice he's blind or he just doesn't appreciate the efforts you put into his guitar to look that close.

yeah I've told him now anyway. This top is much better though, quarter sawn I think, so no annoying growth rings all over it that don't take stain. Should be a lot stronger too. Also much nicer flame on this one. 

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14 hours ago, ADFinlayson said:

had a go at rerouting the pot recesses and catastrophe struck. Massive irreparable tearout

I've done that before and it's not irreparable....but it does take some effort. I cut a bigger scoop with hand gouges and cleaned up with sandpaper. Whilst I was doing that it was pointed out that the inside of those scoops go very dark and nearly opaque with dye, and therefore are really forgiving to repair efforts. Looking at your pictures, I see that you cannot see through the finish to the wood in your original finish job either.

On the other hand that is a nicer piece of wood you've got for a new top.

SR

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  • 2 weeks later...

So the new body is coming on quite nicely. Got myself a 115mm angle grinder and some 80 grit flap discs to save time. Amazed at just how much faster it is - although extremely noisey and sooo much dust, definitely an outside summer job. Note that he's asked for the toggle switch to be up on the horn - this aided my decision to remake the body.

I've come to the conclusion that the reason the router ate the last one, is because my triton router is knackered - I got myself a new, much better quality router bit and routed some test pieces and the exact same thing happened! The plunge feature doesn't work properly and the top screw has become "notchy" so turning it will do nothing, then all of a sudden it will jump a couple of mm in depth and eat wood, it's doing that even with a small bit. So I moved over to my big Ryobi router which has a silky smooth plunge. Annoyingly though, it doesn't go slow enough to prevent burn on my big round nose router bits. So I've got a lot of sanding to do in the recesses.

My triton router has failed in other ways now too, the speed adjustment wheel is now stuck on 2 and can't be adjusted and the depth stop is no longer trust worthy, not impressed for a 6 month old router that gets occasional use. So it's going back for a warranty repair.

Upon carving, I've decided this piece of wood is amazing, the rising dark spots from the base of the body, to me, look like rising flames, ash from a bonfire.

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So I'm trying to convince Luke that blue is not the correct colour for this guitar - A yellow/orange burst or a dragon burst would look much better. Something like this... Other suggestions welcome!

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If blue is what he wants, give him blue flames. You've certainly seen the blue, almost invisible flames on glowing ember, fading into deep dark blue.

Like this:

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  • Haha 1
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  • 3 weeks later...

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