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Finishing Procedures


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Just wondering froma ll ya'll experts out here...

Do you finish your fretboards first, say with a fretboard finishing oil, before spraying the guitar and doing the fret leveling and dressing? Just curious.

Also, hows this sound....

for the body)

1 Grain fill and sand

2 one coat (or two) lacquer

3 sanding sealer

4 lacquer coats

5 sealer, etc etc

6 wet sand and buff to finish

Should I sand (lightly?) the lacquer b/w coats, or just keep piling it on?

In depth question here, any help much appreciated!


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What wood are you using?

That's a little different from my process, which I'll share with you. There are a few items I'd add - and some I'd skip:

It may be obvious, but your first step should be to finish sand the wood to 220. Then apply some water to raise the grain. Once dry, sand with the 220 again. Be sure to use a tack rag and compressed air to completly clean the grain before applying any filler/finish.

1 Grain fill and sand (good)

2 one coat (or two) lacquer (skip this step, shoot the SS)

3 sanding sealer

4 lacquer coats

5 sealer, etc etc (once you start with lacquer - stay with lacquer - no need to go back to the sealer)

6 wet sand and buff to finish (correct - after it cures for ~4 weeks)

You should be lighly sanding between lacquer coats. After the SS coat, you should flat sand the guitar. This will give you a very smooth surface to shoot the lacquer on to and save you time/energy trying to level sand the nitro.

Hope this helps!

oh, and what type of fretboard are you using?

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One more question here

I did a coupla coats of Grain Filler, and it has left the guitar somewhat darker than it previously was. Should I sand all the way down to the dull color of the wood, or leave it at this state for applying the sanding sealer? Just curious.

Also, what would ya'll suspect is the best way to spray a neck through guitar. Should I suspend it in the air with ropes through the pegholes? Or lay it flat and do each coat in stages, like fron, back, sides, etc... thanks!


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Hi Rones,

I won't comment on the grain filler. It is one of the things that I continually fight.

As for what to do with the guitar while spraying. Hang the bad boy. I would probably use one of the tuner holes. Makes the most sense to me. You will want to spray all four sides while spraying. (Front, back, top, bottom. Remember those last two?) That will give you even coverage, but beware of runs. Use lots of thin coats, with about 3-5 mins between coats. And don't forget to tape off the fretboard, unless it is maple, which you will want to spray.

Guitar Ed

Experience is the result of bad decisions. Bad decisions are the result of a lack of experience.

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