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Old February 13th, 2013, 10:14 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Is it wrong to stain an amp cabinet with an '82 Bordeaux??

OK, here's the story:

I just finished an amp build from Boothill, a little 5E3. It's awesome, and I love it. The guys on the shock bros. side were awesome. Unfortunately when it comes to the cab and finishing it, there hasn't been much insight.

In looking on google for custom cab ideas I came across a two tone cabinet finish that I really liked and decided I would put a darker strip in the middle on the top, sides, and bottom. In my line of work I have had the pleasure of doing business with Benedetto guitars and Miner wines. They do a project together every year called the "Vinodetto". You guessed it, a vintage cab stained Benedetto! I've actually had the opportunity and pleasure to play one of these at the Miner winery, amazing. Taking from their lead, I decided WTH, might as well give it a go on the darker stripe of the two tone...

The thread from my build is here: http://www.tdpri.com/forum/shock-bro...l-build-3.html

I'm also going to hit the rewind button for a moment and repost the last post detailing the wood, and my building plans. I ALWAYS welcome any input. I am a complete novice at wood working and finishing, so don't hold back!

Oh, and I'm serious about the '82 Bordeaux, pics to come.

Thanks in advance,
Adam

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Old February 13th, 2013, 10:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Here's the info on my plans from the last thread. One update is that I think I want to go with a poly finish for it's durability. What risks am I facing trying this in late winter in the NC mountains?

Well, I have finally found the wood I am going to build my combo cabinet out of. It's actually 3/4" plywood with a curly maple veneer. Really gorgeous wood. I decided to not mess around with trying to upholster the cab with tweed. I love how finished figured maple looks, so now to figure out how to do it. To solve the problems of the edges showing the multilayers of plywood, I also scored some long ripped pieces of solid curly maple that I will make caps out of on all of the edges.

I'm keeping the plans very simple, 90 and 45 degree angles only. I am going to skip the 7 degree baffle face. I don't have my own tools or shop, so simple, sharp, and quick is what it has to be at the moment. Maybe next build I will try to tackle that. I'm also planning to stick with the 'glue and screw' technique (eek!).

I am going to try one bit of 'flair'. I'm going to attempt a thinner strip down the middle of the sides, top, and bottom of darker stained wood. Otherwise, I am planning to just do a lightly tinted stain, with a clear gloss finish. My plan for the baffle is 1/4" birch with a wicker grill, a la old Legend amps.

What's my best low risk/high reward finish option? Seems that tru-oil or lacquer are the two favorites around here. I live in the high country of NC, and it's going to be 40 degrees and much colder at night for another 6 weeks or so. I know temperature can wreak havoc on applying finishes. I've never done any of this before, so I'm all ears. Point me in the right direction!

Thanks as always,
Adam
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Old February 13th, 2013, 10:20 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I think you should use a Cabernet instead.

(Rimshot!)

No, seriously, I think that is a cool idea. Won't be another like it, that's certain.
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Old February 13th, 2013, 10:21 PM   #4 (permalink)
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OK back to realtime, I got the wood cut at our shop at work. I also began testing some wine stains. The natural color strength of wine did very little to impart any color on the wood. So, I decided to reduce some wine down to see if I could improve the intensity of the color in the wood. It was fairly effective, but I think I will go a bit darker.
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Old February 13th, 2013, 10:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Fender did it a couple of years ago with the Presidential Select Strat.

http://www.hillfamilyestate.com/Wine...er-Custom-Shop
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Old February 13th, 2013, 10:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I've now reduced the bottle of the Bordeaux down by 2/3. The wine in the tupperware in the picture was a full bottle. I'm going to give it a quick test on another strip, and measure it against my first test. If I need to, I'll reduce it further to try and intensify the color.

On a side note of a super nerdy magnitude:
Let's face it, almost any wine that is 30 yrs old is completely unenjoyable as a beverage. Some collectors find great value in them, but only a select few wines fit this category. The particular '82 that I have is not one of these, and I picked it up very inexpensively. Incidentally, I did taste it just to be sure, but it too has turned to a quite rank flavor. I think this poses a very cool way to bring new life to a wine that, frankly, died a long time ago. It creates a great story, and I think it will look great. I can't think of a better scenario for this amp, and this wine.
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Old February 14th, 2013, 12:32 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I got most of the staining done tonight. I have some trim work to do, and I'm going to check it out after letting it absorb overnight. Based on the first take I am very happy with the results. The first picture is with the lighter tone against the Bordeaux test strip. The rest are of the actual wood with the darker wine stain on it. I set up a mock up of the two tone look I'm going for. Let me know what you think. Next I'll glue up the pieces, then it's onto spraying poly. Any objections?
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Old February 14th, 2013, 12:56 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Looks good.
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Old February 14th, 2013, 01:08 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Looks good! That's a better use for Bordeaux than a Woody Allen movie!
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Old February 14th, 2013, 07:33 AM   #10 (permalink)
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that looks fanatastic ! love the two-tone. but beer would be more my style. i wonder if guiness would work. it makes your spit brown, think it would stain wood ? red wine stains anything.
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Old February 14th, 2013, 08:53 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Hate to be the one but

The red will fade to a nasty brown in short time. I did a ash strat body for a client a few years ago that had the same idea and we ended up using regular tints to arrive at the same color the wine produced.
Good luck on your project,
Rob
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Old February 14th, 2013, 08:56 AM   #12 (permalink)
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This looks awesome. A couple of clarifying questions for a newbie...

When you say reduce the wine down, are you using that like a cooking term?

Also, are you just wiping this stain on?

Love the idea and the results are looking incredible.
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Old February 14th, 2013, 09:19 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I wonder if Bennedetto would have any ideas on how to protect the finish and keep that beautiful "vino" color.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhomco Guitars View Post
The red will fade to a nasty brown in short time. I did a ash strat body for a client a few years ago that had the same idea and we ended up using regular tints to arrive at the same color the wine produced.
Good luck on your project,
Rob
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Old February 14th, 2013, 09:39 AM   #14 (permalink)
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I don't see what the big deal is. I stain things with red wine all the time. But it's usually by accident...
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Old February 14th, 2013, 09:42 AM   #15 (permalink)
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You can easily remove the wine label by placing the bottle in a bucket of diluted Pine-Sol (or other ammonia based cleaner). The label should fall off overnight. Carefully lift the label out of the solution and place it on a towel to dry.

You may now re-apply the label on the inside of the cabinet using diluted Elmers.
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Old February 14th, 2013, 11:19 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I agree that wine will naturally brown. It's a function of oxidation, or just contact with air. I am going to call the Benedetto guys and see what they say. My general plan is to apply another coat of wine stain, then as soon as it seems safe, go ahead with the finish to minimize air exposure. I am happy to report that after about 12the hours on the wood it's still a nice reddish pink. 12 hours should provide enough time with some planning to let the stain dry and get a first coat of finish on.

If it doesn't stay vibrant, oh well. The natural process of the wine oxidizing will still be cool to me. What's wrong with brown wood? ; )

As far as the label goes, I am planning to go at it with a cappuccino steamer and mount it on the inside of the cab.
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Old February 14th, 2013, 03:00 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Do you have the ability to cut rabbets on the corner cleats? if so you could "screw" from inside. If you have the capability of cutting a miter on the edge of a wide board, you should be able to tackle some other joinery techniques (such as a rabbet) that would allow you to assemble the casework from that beautiful ply veneer without screws showing. Otherwise butt-joints, even with screws, just wont' make a secure enough box for a speaker cabinet.
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Old February 14th, 2013, 03:11 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bendeane View Post
This looks awesome. A couple of clarifying questions for a newbie...

When you say reduce the wine down, are you using that like a cooking term?

Also, are you just wiping this stain on?

Love the idea and the results are looking incredible.
Well, as a complete newbie myself, I'll tell you I am mostly winging this. If it comes out great, that's awesome. If it needs some work, then that's what first times out are for. The business end of the amp sounds great, the rest is cosmetic. As far as reducing, yep just boiled it down over medium heat. I used a stain cloth/pad type deal from Blue Hawk that I bought at Lowe's for $2 for a two pack.
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Old February 14th, 2013, 03:17 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vizcaster View Post
Do you have the ability to cut rabbets on the corner cleats? if so you could "screw" from inside. If you have the capability of cutting a miter on the edge of a wide board, you should be able to tackle some other joinery techniques (such as a rabbet) that would allow you to assemble the casework from that beautiful ply veneer without screws showing. Otherwise butt-joints, even with screws, just wont' make a secure enough box for a speaker cabinet.
Hey Viz, thanks for the critical questions. These are things I need to hear. I honestly do not have a clue what a rabbet is. I'll google it shortly. I have a general plan to put caps on the exposed plywood edges. I was able to score some 3/4 squared ripped pieces of solidwood curly maple that I will stain and glue on as well. I think that will solve (or be one solution anyhow) the exposed layers of wood problem. For the structural integrity of the cab I am hand tools only from here on out, of which I have very few. My thought as a solution was once I have the 'box' glued and clamped I would install some rigid metal right angle braces from the inside on the cab to provide sturdiness. I think this would also eliminate having screw holes through the front of the veneer to deal with at this point in my rookie project.

Thoughts?
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Old February 15th, 2013, 01:10 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I got the baffle frame cut and stained tonight. Going to go two tone on that as well. The curly maple plywood will be the primary portion of the frame and it will be stained with the wine. Then I'm going to put a 3/4" strip of solid wood curly maple on the edge so the layers of plywood are not exposed. That strip will be regular stain. I've decided I need to go back to the guys at the shop and see if they will route the edges of the 3/4" strip I have so that I have rounded edges on my cab. Otherwise it's either sand like crazy forever, or have square edges. I think if I'm going to go through all of this trouble, may as well round the edges and make it right.
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