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honza992

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honza992 last won the day on April 24

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  1. I'm designing my next build and thinking about what laminates to use for the neck. This page makes me laugh every time I visit. It's like a salad bar for choosing upper mids or crushing lows. I know I'm not supposed to knock the legendary builders, but this is utter rubbish. In my opinion of course😁 http://www.alembic.com/info/wood_neck.html
  2. My other half is Italian. But as happens to all Italians who have been here for more than a few years, the lack of sun has finally defeated her. She likes the UK, she even likes us, for God's sake, but she simply can't understand how any country can have such consistently dreary weather. She can't accept that it's possible to go through all of July and two thirds of August before you get a decent day of sunshine. I've tried to introduce her to the joy of a deserted, wind-swept Welsh beach, 15 degrees in summer and sand in your sandwiches, but I'm afraid she just doesn't get it. So long story short we're moving to Italy, most likely at the beginning of next year. So I was wondering if there are any Italian builders out there? We're probably going to be in Tuscany/Liguria, somewhere between Pisa and Genoa. Ciao for now!
  3. That's really worked out beautifully. There's quite a dramatic difference between the rough cut top and the final photo you've got. Did Jon spill any beans about whether he had dyed it, or what finish he used? That's going to look top shelf.
  4. Sorry for the derail, but @Jabba_the_gut was there are build thread for the sycamore/wenge/LED bass? That is outstanding!!
  5. Brilliant work, very elegantly done. Pro instruments, for pro players. Top man.
  6. Quick follow up if you don't mind. For grain fill I've been reading about microballons, do you use them, or just neat?
  7. OK, that's interesting that you say it's easier to sand. I'll give it a go. Just out of interest, do you use the 5 or 30 minute? And do you sand back to bare wood? Really appreciate the info!
  8. The back is one piece walnut.....
  9. All, thanks so much for your comments. This one took a long time to finish, especially the finish😬, so it means a great deal to me that you like it..👏👏 @Manton Customs Thanks for advice re grain fill. And yes, it's really annoying that something like Aquacoat is marketed in that way. I've tried it multiple times using different application techniques, and never get anything other than rubbish results. And it 'ain't cheap..... Thanks for the advice re Zpoxy. I've tried West Sytems (which I use a lot for gluing) in the past with varied results. I should probably give it another go. @Unknown_User Grain fill is one of the those things that sounds easy, but most people seem to find pretty difficult. As far as I understand it, the basic options are: 1. Sand and slurry with truoil or similar. This works pretty well in my experience, but is messy. Ideal if you are using truoil as a topcoat. I'm not sure how compatible it is with other finishes. I think @Andyjr1515 uses it under oil based varnish, and I use waterbased polyurethane over tru oil when I am burying my logos. 2. Paste filler like Stewmac's Colortone (waterbased) or Rustin's Grain filler (oil based). I've tried both and not had great luck with either. I never seem to be able to sand back to a smooth finish while keeping the gunk in the pores. But this is probably the most used grain fill technique. 3. Epoxy. I've tried West Systems in the past, and @Manton Customs uses zpoxy, I imagine they're very similar. I'll probably return to this next time. Epoxies are two part and you need to be careful that your ratios are correct otherwise curing can be a problem. West System I've never had a failure with, but I have with Araldite and another one (forgetten the name though), and I'm pretty careful to measure everything out as accurately as I can. Assuming you've got the ratios right, it also dries rock hard so you want to get as much off the surface of the wood otherwise sanding flat is a right pain. 4. Endless other options - egg whites, shellac, etc etc etc Like all of guitar building, you probably need to go through a few of these to see what works for you. I'm still searching for the easy and failsafe answer to grainfill. If I find it, I'll ket you know. And by next year I'll be a millionaire......
  10. I'm not sure whether anyone is interested, but I've just finished a guitar with a brushed nitrocellulose lacquer finish. I always swore that I'd never use nitro - too poisenous both for me and the planet. However, a friend asked me to make them a Tele using a beautiful piece of flamed spalted maple, and nitro was the only finish that worked. Polyurethane, oil and CA glue turned the test pieces into a dull splodgy brown mess, not exactly the look I was going for. Nitro though brought out all the beautiful colours and let the flame really sing. Here's the piece of wood before I started.... Although I do spray waterbased polyurethane, there's no way I can spray nitro so I thought I'd try brushing it on. The internet though had almost no information about whether it was possible to brush it on, how to do it, or what the results would look like. So, hopefully this thread will help you decide if you want to do it. It is definitely not an easy option, but.....let me get up some finished pics, and you could decide whether it was worth it. This is what I used: This is Rothko & Frost's standard gloss nitro that they sell neat, ie not in aerosol. This was a 250ml bottle and I used the whole thing plus a bit more on the body. I brushed it on with an artist's brush, a trick I stole from @Andyjr1515. You need to make sure that it's a brush for oil paints, with natural bristles, otherwise the solvents can melt them. I used a Daler Rowney Bristlewhite hog hair fan brush, size 4 (though a size 6 might have made life a bit easier). They are comically long so I cut mine to a more manageable length. Schedule was something like this: 1. Sand to 220 2. Grain fill with Aqua Coat 3. Ignore the fact that the grain fill was pretty poor and crack on with finishing (john, john, john, will you never learn?🙄) 4. Brush on R&K Nitro, thinned with 30% R&K cellulose thinners, probaly about 10 coats. 5. Curse myself repeatedly for failing to grain fill properly. I've made enough guitars to know that preparation is everything, and if you want a smooth finish grain fill is critical. Impatience though sometimes clouds my already pretty poor judgement 5. Wet sand with Wet/Dry paper (water with a drop of Murphy's oil soap) with 600 grit. 6. Another unknown number of coats. It felt like hundreds, but was probably another 5 or so. 7. Wet sand 1000 grit 8. 'wet' sand with Gerlitz Carnauba wax on a piece of Mirka Abralon 1000 grit. This left exactly the satin sheen I was after. I found the key was to brush the nitro on in one stroke, never go back over somewhere you've just painted. Because the nitro dissolves the layer before, I found the brush would start 'sticking' as it got caught in the previous layer. My approach was to do lots and lots of layers, knowing that I would have to go back and wet sand quite a lot of it off to get it completely flat. In reality, because my grain fill was....well, shite.....I had to do many many more layers than I otherwise would have had to have done. If I ever do this again, I'm hoping that 10 layers in total would be enough, assuming a flat surface to begin with. I lay the guitar flat on a 'lazy susan' turntable, did the top and the sides at the start of the day then turned it over and did the back and sides. Would I do it again? Ummm....yes, and no. Yes, if the wood was crying out for nitro, as this piece was. I'd be a bit reluctant to do it again on an entire guitar body though. Even though it was brushed rather than sprayed, the fumes were still pretty bad, and I wore a proper mask with organic filters at all times. On a guitar with a binding like this one, next time I'd probably brush the top with nitro, as above, but do the rest of the body with something else, tru oil probably. The binding would provide a natural break between the two finishes, so the two finishes wouldn't ever touch. And on a flat surface like a guitar top (rather than the fiddly curved inner horns) you could whizz through the process in no time. It's worth mentioning that the Rothko & Frost nitro specifically says it is not suitable for brushing, though I'm not quite sure why, as far as I could tell it went on perfectly nicely. The process also used much less nitro than you would get through if spraying (I think). With a proper grain fill I'm pretty sure I could do a whole body with one 250ml bottle. An aerosol contains about 150ml of nitro, so I used probably the equivalent of two aerosols worth. I've never finished a guitar with rattlecans, but I'm pretty sure it would be many more than that. So all in all I'm pleased with the result (but the next one is going to be Danish Oil, which I can do on the kitchen table😂😁). And some photos.....
  11. Thanks everyone, really appreciate your positive comments! It really does make the heartache and frustration worthwhile..... @Andyjr1515 Andy give me a shout if you want to talk turbines....If I had my time again I wouldn't have what I have now.....
  12. Finally, my work here is done. It was the normal story for me, woodwork went more (or less) smoothly, finishing was a nightmare. Anyway, at third attempt I am very, very, very happy with how it's turned out. I really like the 33" scale - with careful positioning of the bridge the overall reach is probably 2 inches less than a standard Fender 34". The weight is just under 8 lbs, so very light for a jazz, but the balance is absolutely perfect - it sits naturally about 30 degrees above horizontal. The finish is like double cream, silky smooth, really incredibly smooth, but matte at the same time. It really makes you want to touch it....or even...no enough. Get on with the specs....... Scale: 33" Shape: Slightly undersized Jazz Body wood: Alder (no weight relief) Neck wood: Maple, flatsawn Fretboard: Rosewood Pickups: House of Tone '62 PJ set, installed with the P pickup reversed Electronics: Passive, 500k pots Tuners: Ultralites Bridge: Wilkinson Other: Mother of Pearl Blocks, white plastic binding Weight: 7lb 14oz (3.65kg) Balance: Absolutely spot on Colour: Vintage White (1:2 General Finshes Snow White & Antique White) Finish: General Finishes High Performance clear coat, sprayed with HVLP Strings: D'Addario XL Nickel wound 45-105 Other than for the purposes of set up, I haven't really had the chance to play it yet. I like to get proper photos does immediately (before I drop it), then I just haven't had the chance. First impressions though are very very positive, particularly of the P pickup, which sounds massive! More dets to follow. Anyway, here are some studio shots..... And a few I took at home....
  13. Finally, I'm able to do a quick update for this one. I managed to sand through so had to heat gun and scrape back to bare wood to start again. Then I resprayed colour and clear coat then managed to sand through again. So I had to heat gun and scrape back to bare wood. Again. So I resprayed colour and clear coat then managed to sand though ag.... only joking, twice was enough. So, the body is now finished and looks more or less like an enormous Mr Whippy. It's super super smooth and creamy. It's lickalicious.... It may, just may be finished tomorrow. Assuming I don't drop it.......
  14. This is as good as it gets. Until you've tried to do it, beautifully smooth creamy end grain like this may look easy. It really isn't. Jabba, I have a folder of photos of your sanding, just to remind me of what I should be aiming for. Edit: Jabba, can I ask what the string retainers are that you use? They look as though they work really well.
  15. I use an HVLP turbine and spray water based polyurethane - General Finishes High Performance and their Milk paints for colours. Would I recommend it? Ummm....I'm only a few in and for me it's certainly no easy option, or at least I don't find it easy. Extraction, face masks, lighting, endless coats, sanding dust, sand-throughs.....I'm just finishing a cream P/J (and will update the long dormant thread) and until this afternoon I swore I would only use Shellac, wipe-on poly, or Tru Oil from now on. I hate spraying, but.....oh my, it's ended up lovely. Smooth, silky, beautiful.... If you want to spray nitro then it has advantages over water based poly. The layers melt in to each other so the process is all a bit easier. However, unless you have excellent explosion-proof extraction you can only use aerosol cans outside. And even then the fumes are pretty awful while spraying, and the body gives off lots of fumes while drying. It is possible to brush on nitro (and in fact I'm just finishing one now that was mostly brushed, thread awaits) but I'm not sure I would recommend it. So, largely, I would say I hate spraying. But YMMV, obviously. There's a great waterbased thread on Talkbass which is the gospel if you want to go that route. Though the finishes they use there are impossible to find here. Lots of them use cheap HVLP systems that painters use. If you're doing more than two or three guitars then it would work out cheaper than aerosols, and I think the results would probably be similar. So my advice, is wipe-on poly or tru-oil applied with a rag! But if you are in the Nottingham area and want to pop in to the workshop to talk through what I do, you'd be very welcome.
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