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Where did I go wrong on this mahogany body?

Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by trippercaster, Nov 8, 2018.

  1. trippercaster

    trippercaster Tele-Meister

    406
    Aug 13, 2012
    Roanoke, VA
    Its been a while since I've posted here, I took a long break from building guitars to do a few amps and cabs. Everything was going great with this tele until I sprayed lacquer. Here are some details:

    One piece double ABS bound mahogany body, sanded to 400 then rubbed on a light coat of tru-oil. Waited three days. Next spread some thin CA glue around to fill the grain. Waited one to two days. Scraped away excess with cabinet scraper and sanded to 400. Applied another really light coat of tru-oil. Waited 3 days. Light sand to 400. Sprayed Behlens Qualalacq mixed with a drop each of Transtint brown and amber. Instantly this spot appeared. I used a preval to spray. Its 57 degrees, 45% humidity. Body was room temp and lacquer was warmed a little by hot water.

    The tru-oil is old, dark, and thick. It was also applied to the neck before spraying and that has no issues. I've never used CA glue to grain fill, but it seemed to work great. The card scraper made removal very quick and easy. I usually use an HVLP system but my compressor is out of commission.

    I sprayed the maple neck and maple pickups at the same time with no issues at all. Thanks in advance for any insight.

    20181108_131300.jpg 20181108_131255.jpg 20181108_131311.jpg
     
  2. BB

    BB Poster Extraordinaire

    May 17, 2003
    Great Pacific NW
    Wow. I know nothing of the spot problem. Just want to say that is a beautiful body.
     
  3. old wrench

    old wrench Tele-Meister

    I don't have a sure answer, but I can contribute some speculation :).

    I wonder if the last coat of TruOil wasn't the culprit?

    If the body was truly sealed with the CA, the Tru-Oil would not have penetrated and might not have fully and completely dried.

    I've never tried spraying laquer directly over TO, but I have sprayed laquer over shellac over TO with out any problems.


    edit: Another possibility is if the laquer coat got too heavy in that area (could happen depending on body orientation while spraying) it can easily blush at marginal humidity levels.



    Best Regards,
    Geo.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2018
  4. trippercaster

    trippercaster Tele-Meister

    406
    Aug 13, 2012
    Roanoke, VA
    Thanks BB! I'm very pleased with it. I bought the board in 2015 right before I got slightly addicted to building amps so this is the first guitar to come of it. I have enough for four more guitars. The next will be an SG and I've already cut and shaped that body. This one has a bigsby, TOM bridge, 2.7 degree neck pocket, 2 handmade P90 type pickups with book-matched maple bobbins.

    Geo, I would suspect the Tru-oil too, but I applied Tru-oil to everything including the neck and there are no problems aside from the few areas in the pics. I sprayed pretty light passes and it showed up immediately, I mean the instant the lacquer hit the body. I'm no expert, but I've only seen what I thought was blush once and it was more of a blueish tint. I can't imagine how I could have contaminated the body in any way, much less a small area and not the entire thing. My lacquer is pretty old, I wonder now if it was somehow contaminated.

    I just started scraping the lacquer off. I'll have to do the entire back again to keep the tint even. Super frustrating. I just would like to know why things went wrong so I can avoid the issue in the future.
     
  5. trippercaster

    trippercaster Tele-Meister

    406
    Aug 13, 2012
    Roanoke, VA
    Here are the pickup bobbins and the top of the body before lacquer. It will have chrome knobs and a white three way toggle. Tele style controls. 20181104_223709.jpg 20181026_130301.jpg
     
    LPTyler and BB like this.
  6. trippercaster

    trippercaster Tele-Meister

    406
    Aug 13, 2012
    Roanoke, VA
    Read through more threads on the subject and I think the Tru-oil is the problem. Mine is so old that its more like gel than oil so it made it very difficult to spread it thin. It may have been thicker in those spots. I can't find any pictures of a failed attempt at applying lacquer over Tru-oil, but this is the only theory I have. I also didn't wait as long as most are suggesting on the body. The neck sat longer allowing the Tru-oil to cure a bit more. If anyone can confirm please do.
     
  7. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Friend of Leo's

    Sep 15, 2007
    Glen Head, NY
    Awesome wood selection and treatment of the grain pattern. but I have to chime in on the speculation that tru oil isn't appropriate after sealing. oil applied to bare wood, before a sealer or grain filler, will enhance the grain and bring out the chatoyance - as your work so beautifully demonstrates. But after that there's no real benefit to that product (sorry don't flame m those of you who have the patience to use it as a sole topcoat). Once you sealed with CA I wouldn't expect the oil to soak in and it may have created adhesion problems. The light spot looks foamy/bubbly in that area.
     
  8. Ripthorn

    Ripthorn Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    36
    Oct 22, 2009
    Austin, TX
    Based on the rest of the body not having the issue, I wonder if you got contamination there at any point.
     
  9. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Apr 2, 2014
    Phoenix, AZ
    I can't help with the problem but that is some awesome wood and design there!
     
    trippercaster likes this.
  10. trippercaster

    trippercaster Tele-Meister

    406
    Aug 13, 2012
    Roanoke, VA
    Definitely a possibility. I physically stripped all the lacquer, tru-oil, and most of the CA glue off the top and back with a card scraper and lightly re-sanded the body starting with 120, then 150, 180, 240, 320, and 400. Grain seemed to still be 90% filled. Then I hit it with naptha, then mineral spirits. Bought new tru-oil and applied a very thin coat and even wiped away the excess. Waiting for a break in the weather/humidity next week and I'll try to spray again. As you can see she's now sitting on my kitchen table staying warm and dry. 20181113_135848.jpg

    Underwhelming without that coat of gloss lacquer. The neck is still fine. Hoping to wind those pickups in the meantime.

    Thanks man! I know double bound mahogany has been done many times, but I felt like this piece is so nice it deserved center stage rather than add another curly maple top.
     
    BorderRadio likes this.
  11. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    41
    Aug 28, 2018
    Pittsburgh
    Tru oil never gets really really hard. It may have also not been done at 3 days (regardless of what the label says).

    On something like that, I always do a light coat of zinsser sanding sealer between the oil and the top coat (dewaxed shellac of any type, brand isn't important), just to help with adhesion. I don't know that that's 100% foolproof, but it sticks to less than perfect surfaces better than lacquer. I have had polyurethane lower coats (and decided not to stick with it) that have dried slowly and then gone with shellac even when they still had a tiny bit of tack (just hit them with a paper towel to get as much of the tack off as possible) and made a transition coat of dewaxed shellac and then sprayed lacquer to "get it over with".
     
  12. trippercaster

    trippercaster Tele-Meister

    406
    Aug 13, 2012
    Roanoke, VA
    Agree. I usually use dewaxed shellac, but mine had dried up into a solid block. I hadn't used it over 3 years because I took a long break from building guitars. Rather than try to salvage it, I tried to go with what I had on hand which was tru-oil. Just wanted something to enhance the grain pre-lacquer. I think it was just that I didn't wait long enough + thick layer of tru-oil + crappy ambient air conditions = adhesion problem. By now I should know better than to try to improvise the finishing steps, but noooooo, I needed to be taught that lesson yet again. Why can't I just find something that works and stick with it?
     
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