1959 Les Paul Build

preeb

Poster Extraordinaire
Vendor Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Posts
6,771
Age
55
Location
Sonoran Desert
Guitar is prepared and blown with lots of high pressure air to remove any tiny left over particles. GT is a tough one to get right because every minor scratch or overspray particle will damage it. No sanding no nothing... you'll have to remove the whole thing and start over... (-;

IMG_1706.jpg


The room is sprayed with water mist right before the gold is applied.
I shake the gun a little to get a good powder flow and spray 2 misty coats real quick.
The room is sprayed with water again and I repeat with two additional misty coats to get 100% coverage.
It's very important to do misty coats rather than wet. I also get a bit further away with the gun like you normally do any metallic color. This is the reason I prefer a cheap regular gun (as opposed to HVLP) to get better atomization with a higher air pressure. They didn't have HVLP's in 1956 as well (-;

IMG_1714x.jpg


That's basically it... it only takes a minute if you do it right... but if the surface is not prepared properly or there are contamination problems or the spraying technique is not correct it will take a few hours to sand it all off and start from scratch.

I inspect the gold closely to make sure it's perfect and that the particles are placed nicely. Note the grainy look that I got from that powder mix.

IMG_1710x.jpg


I lock the GT with a single misty lacquer coat and remove the masking tapes.

IMG_1709x.jpg


IMG_1719x.jpg


It looks different from every angle and lighting so it's hard to capture in my cellphone camera but you can get the idea...

IMG_1716x.jpg


IMG_1720x.jpg


I'll let it cure for a day and scrape the binding tomorrow.
Next are the clear coats. The first two will be done with the GT gun to get some gold particles in the clear and the final two will be amber tinted old lacquer top coats which will give it it's final warm gold color.

Lot's of finishing coats on a GT... that's why they crack like they do...
 
Last edited:

preeb

Poster Extraordinaire
Vendor Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Posts
6,771
Age
55
Location
Sonoran Desert
Chicken fat and car exhaust scrapings Gil......you never cease to amaze me. Your threads are always pure entertainment :)

LOL... I know it sounds bad... but I'm not at all like this (-;
I wish everything would be available off the shelf, like...
"Excuse me, where's the '1956 gold top painting kit' please?"
"Ahmm... Look in the Gibson department, finishing section at the second floor to the right, if you can't find it ask for Orville"
 

preeb

Poster Extraordinaire
Vendor Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Posts
6,771
Age
55
Location
Sonoran Desert
Just noticed that the photos of the GT after spraying came out so so... the actual color is the one shown in the scrap test and in the can. I'll take better shots later with good lighting.
 

neighbour

TDPRI Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2010
Posts
40
Location
Israel
LOL... I know it sounds bad... but I'm not at all like this (-;
I wish everything would be available off the shelf, like...
"Excuse me, where's the '1956 gold top painting kit' please?"
"Ahmm... Look in the Gibson department, finishing section at the second floor to the right, if you can't find it ask for Orville"

And you know that even if it was exactly like that, when you come and look for it it will be like in the military: "we just sold the last one" go scrap your car's tailpipe :lol:LOL
 

preeb

Poster Extraordinaire
Vendor Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Posts
6,771
Age
55
Location
Sonoran Desert
Just noticed that the photos of the GT after spraying came out so so... the actual color is the one shown in the scrap test and in the can. I'll take better shots later with good lighting.

I can now see that I have many double photos where one is darker and looks OK and the other is lighter and colorless... It has to do with my new iPhone camera I think. There's an HDR function that does that for some reason... anyway, I took the darker version and replaced the bad ones I posted earlier so the colors look closer to reality now.
 

preeb

Poster Extraordinaire
Vendor Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Posts
6,771
Age
55
Location
Sonoran Desert
And you know that even if it was exactly like that, when you come and look for it it will be like in the military: "we just sold the last one" go scrap your car's tailpipe :lol:LOL

Hey... we served in the same military!!! but who thought of GT's back then...
 

Engraver-60

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Jan 6, 2008
Posts
4,359
Age
69
Location
Brentwood, TN
So, tailpipe exhaust carbon is the missing ingredient. Grandma use the same trick in her Kreplach:)

And the bronze is the copper component that caused the sweat reaction of green oxidation. Very cool, indeed. I love your ability to reverse engineer. Are you sure you're not Japanese? Thanks, Gil.
 

Mojotron

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Posts
5,377
Location
Seattle
Ahhh - having owned a really old GT back in the 1970's (not sure of the year), I would say that close up of the practice spray takes me back. Amazing work Gil!! Thanks for the notes on how you did it.
 

preeb

Poster Extraordinaire
Vendor Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Posts
6,771
Age
55
Location
Sonoran Desert
So, tailpipe exhaust carbon is the missing ingredient. Grandma use the same trick in her Kreplach:)

And the bronze is the copper component that caused the sweat reaction of green oxidation. Very cool, indeed. I love your ability to reverse engineer. Are you sure you're not Japanese? Thanks, Gil.

The Kreplach part was great (-;
 

preeb

Poster Extraordinaire
Vendor Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Posts
6,771
Age
55
Location
Sonoran Desert
Here's an original 56 close-up against our build. Note the texture, color and grain size.

56_lespaul_9.jpg


IMG_1710x.jpg
 

MRJ.

Tele-Meister
Joined
Feb 24, 2010
Posts
153
Age
43
Location
West End, NC
What brand is the powder you're using? Do you know if there are any places on the internet that have it?
 

preeb

Poster Extraordinaire
Vendor Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Posts
6,771
Age
55
Location
Sonoran Desert
You are a very lucky man, you're getting the best there is! :lol:

BTW Gil, you know about this brand right? That picture of the Nescafe with Goldtop paint was very funny ;)
Nescafe-Gold-925602840-2164881-1.jpg

Ha... I never saw that gold Nescafe here in Israel. All we get is the red stuff.
How different is the Gold one?
BTW, those jars are great and their lid is air tight, making it perfect for lacquer and paint roof storage.
My constructor (who's currently building the new shop) didn't know that all those jars I put on the roof are not junk... don't ask... I had to dig through a pile of construction trash and open every sack but only managed to save about half of my aged Cherry and Clear nitro. I already knew some was lost because I could smell it down the street (-;
 

preeb

Poster Extraordinaire
Vendor Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Posts
6,771
Age
55
Location
Sonoran Desert
What brand is the powder you're using? Do you know if there are any places on the internet that have it?

There's no label on the can but I can ask the girl in the hobby shop and post it here if it helps (probably a local manufacturer though).
I'm sure you can find this stuff in many hobby stores or places that sell Feng Shui materials. Look for the cheap rough powders and not the fine expensive ones. The key is gold color (not copper) and larger grains .
 

MRJ.

Tele-Meister
Joined
Feb 24, 2010
Posts
153
Age
43
Location
West End, NC
There's no label on the can but I can ask the girl in the hobby shop and post it here if it helps (probably a local manufacturer though).
I'm sure you can find this stuff in many hobby stores or places that sell Feng Shui materials. Look for the cheap rough powders and not the fine expensive ones. The key is gold color (not copper) and larger grains .

You don't have to go to any trouble. I'll do some looking around and see if I come up with something. By the way, the guitar looks really great. As always. Can't wait to see the p90 builds.
 




Top