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Removing dried lacquer from frets

Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by sleazy pot pie, Aug 26, 2016.

  1. sleazy pot pie

    sleazy pot pie Tele-Holic

    523
    May 31, 2014
    austin
    I sprayed a neck using ace hardware clear lacquer. It has been atound 45 days and i am now wet sanding. I should have removed the lacquer from the frets while it was still softer, but did not.
    What is the best way to remove it now that it is harder than a math teachers heart?
    Tape off the board and qtip lacquer thinner?
     
  2. Flakey

    Flakey Friend of Leo's

    0000 steel wool and tape the fret board before.
     
    xafinity likes this.
  3. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Friend of Leo's

    Feb 15, 2014
    Maine
    I use 0000 steel wool, with these fretboard protector thingys:

    apiuyxh59__14193.1383008963.1280.1280.jpg

    http://www.philadelphialuthiertools...s/fingerboard-protector-fret-guards-set-of-2/

    The most important thing about steel wool is to keep it away from your pickups!!!!! Take the neck off, or really cover the pickups well with masking tape!!!!!!! The steel wool fibers will stick to the pole pieces like dog mess on a shoe, and are nearly impossible to clean off.
     
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  5. ponticat

    ponticat Tele-Meister

    211
    Jan 11, 2008
    Alexandria, Virginia
    JayFreddy and songtalk like this.
  6. Wally

    Wally Telefied

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    +1 on the tape off...using pinstriping tape. There is no reason why one should have to back to the frets to remove any lacquer, ime.
    Since you are there, though.... IF you use steel wool, please tape off around and on top of the pickups to prevent steel wool from becoming part of the pickups. Then, use some fresh tape to gather the accumulated wool bits that will be magnetically attracted to those magnets before you pull the tape off of the pickups. I dislike 'make work'. (;^)
     
  7. Tony Done

    Tony Done Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    72
    Dec 3, 2014
    Toowoomba, Australia
    I would use a fret mask*, as shown above, and scrape it off with something just a bit softer than the fret itself, a copper coin or piece of shim brass, for example.

    * I make them from aluminium drink can, which can be cut with ordinary scissors.
     
    JayFreddy and dkmw like this.
  8. moosie

    moosie Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    60
    Jul 18, 2010
    Western Connecticut
    I would avoid the steel wool mess by wrapping a micromesh sheet around two fingers, and then rubbing them vigorously across the frets, the long way (bumpity bumpity bump). Tape the board first, of course. Scale the MM to go from something coarse enough to remove the lacquer, all the way to 6000-12000 for a fine polish.
     
  9. sleazy pot pie

    sleazy pot pie Tele-Holic

    523
    May 31, 2014
    austin
    Lots of great info. Thanks.
    This is the first time i have used the ace hardware lacquer. It is great so far. Really easy to sand, minimal orange peel. I buried a waterslide decal with it on a neck plate and left that out in the sun for a week and the neck plate looks like gold instead of chrome, so it will amber nicely over time or with direct sunlight. Plus its cheap too at 7 bucks a can.
     
  10. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Friend of Leo's

    Feb 15, 2014
    Maine
    Pictures, please.
     
    Castercrazy likes this.
  11. sleazy pot pie

    sleazy pot pie Tele-Holic

    523
    May 31, 2014
    austin
    I will post some later today when i get home. I cut an import paddle headstock into a snakehead shape. It turned out pretty good for not using a template. Its not perfect. The sides arent perfectly even to eachother, but unless you have a really sharp eye, you wouldn't notice. I am not totally happy with the color, it is a little too orange, but not chinese neck velveta orange.
     
  12. dkmw

    dkmw Tele-Holic

    Age:
    61
    695
    Mar 30, 2016
    Florida USA
    I'm glad I'm not the only one making fret protectors out of aluminum cans!
     
  13. sleazy pot pie

    sleazy pot pie Tele-Holic

    523
    May 31, 2014
    austin
    I like this idea. Do you just cut the can with scissors and then do the same for the opening for the frets? Do you need to sand the edges of the can to dull them?
     
  14. flyingbanana

    flyingbanana Poster Extraordinaire

    If the finish is fresh, score on either side of frets and peel off. Gotta be fresh though....like a fresh Georgia peach.
     
  15. sleazy pot pie

    sleazy pot pie Tele-Holic

    523
    May 31, 2014
    austin
    Yeah, we are way past that point.
     
  16. Tony Done

    Tony Done Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    72
    Dec 3, 2014
    Toowoomba, Australia
    I just cut them out to the size of the stewmac ones in the pics. I cut them with one end open, because it is much easier, then close the open end with a few thickness of tape. I flatten the pieces, but I've not found any reason to smooth off the edges. If I did, I would likely just put some tape on them rather than try using abrasives.
     
  17. dkmw

    dkmw Tele-Holic

    Age:
    61
    695
    Mar 30, 2016
    Florida USA
    I just cut two strips (one for each side of fret) and tape the ends together, that way I can determine the ''slot'' more precisely. Like Tony said, the edges are surprisingly benign but I feel better taping over the corners on the ends.
     
  18. sleazy pot pie

    sleazy pot pie Tele-Holic

    523
    May 31, 2014
    austin
    Sounds good. Going to give it a shot. Sounds like i need to stop for a tall boy on my way home.
     
  19. dkmw

    dkmw Tele-Holic

    Age:
    61
    695
    Mar 30, 2016
    Florida USA
    Like this....
    DSC_1075.JPG
     
  20. Tony Done

    Tony Done Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    72
    Dec 3, 2014
    Toowoomba, Australia
    Mine looks the same, except only one end has tape, and it would be a VB can.
     
    dkmw likes this.
  21. PinewoodRo

    PinewoodRo Tele-Afflicted

    That's great! It combines my two favourite activities...
     
    dkmw likes this.
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