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Copper finishes

Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by Little Ricky, Oct 29, 2015.

  1. Little Ricky

    Little Ricky Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I'm trying to recreate the vintage Danelectro copper finish.
    Most people recommend putting copper on a white primer, and if you look at worn copper Dano's you can see the white layer around the worn edges, but they seem to have a darker color than most coppers. Maybe it's the wear on the paint (sweat, oils, etc).

    Has anyone experimented with black as a primer? I've heard of silver as well.

    I would love to see any side by side comparisons, or maybe I'll just need to make and post my own.

    Thanks.
     
  2. MM73

    MM73 Tele-Afflicted

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    I've got nothing to offer here, but would be very interested in seeing what you come up with for a copper finish!
     
  3. AlterEgo

    AlterEgo Tele-Meister

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    Would be a little easier to point you in the the direction if we knew what product you will be using and how it will be applied.
     
  4. TuffyKohler

    TuffyKohler TDPRI Member

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    Copper top ? Why not real copper?

    [​IMG]
     
  5. AlterEgo

    AlterEgo Tele-Meister

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    Very slick Tuffy! If you'd be so kind to give a little info on the copper top I'd love to hear more. The patina on the looks like it was done strategically, VERY sharp
     
  6. TuffyKohler

    TuffyKohler TDPRI Member

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    it's just a veneer... there are several different finishes of copper available.

    I've been getting vacuum supplies and veneers from this place for awhile, and figured I would try out the copper out of curiosity more than anything.

    Link to - copper veneer
     
  7. nofrets

    nofrets Tele-Meister

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    You might also try copper foil. It's super thin (think gold foil weight, not aluminum foil), and lays out into an almost seamless finish. That's probably not very close to the original Dano finish, but it might be a cool alternative.

    P
     
  8. Cat MacKinnon

    Cat MacKinnon Friend of Leo's

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    If the Dano copper tends to look "different" than a lot of coppers, I'd almost be willing to bet money that it's just oxidation over time. Old Gibson gold tops actually used a bronze powder, and they'd often turn a greenish color over the years. Pelham blue used the same type of powder, and a lot of old Pelham blue guitars are now very green due to the oxidation.

    With that said, I know that primer color can affect the way metallic color coats look to some extent. It tends to change the "warmth" of the color a hair. You might want to grab a can each of black, grey and white DupliColor Sandable Primers, then a can of one of their copper colors (they seem to live in a universe where only metallic colors exist, so I'm sure they've got at least a couple copper colors to choose from :lol:.) Spray a few test pieces and see how they look, and if the primer color makes a difference.
     
  9. jvin248

    jvin248 Doctor of Teleocity

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    .

    A gray primer may work better than white and many use it. Don't use black primer as it will kill your color.
     
  10. Little Ricky

    Little Ricky Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Test Results

    The results are in!

    I painted a small plywood scrap in three segments - one black, one silver, and one white. I put two or three coats of each color on.
    I used cheap-o white and black ($0.99 per can) and Rustoleum silver.

    The white took an extra coat or two to get good coverage - I guess because it's so cheap, but also because the plywood was not at all prepped and it looked like some parts weren't exactly absorbing. The black went right on despite being the cheap stuff - I think black just covers stuff better, whereas white lets things show through. The silver covered quickly with one coat.

    Then I painted over them with Rustoleum Rose Gold, which is their copper color. It is metallic, which means it has a sparkle to it, but it doesn't actually have 'sparkles', which is another type of paint they offer, mostly in pinks, purples, neons, etc. At least two coats, maybe three of the copper.

    Well, except for some crazing on the silver part (probably due to not letting the more expensive paint dry thoroughly), they all look the same :rolleyes:

    I think I will use the silver just because I will likely have little use for that elsewhere, but the black and white might be useful around the house.

    I'm putting this on an alder 72' RI body, and will put a coat of spray lacquer over that. The clear coat is recommened by Reranch to keep the metallic coat from 'flattening out' and also to give it a deeper look, making it 'pop'.

    I hope this info is useful, thanks for the comments.
     
  11. hellopike

    hellopike Tele-Afflicted

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    Some of those copper veneers would look great as pickguards.
     
  12. Mike Simpson

    Mike Simpson Doctor of Teleocity

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    I guess I am lucky no one told me that black primer kills the color...

    black primer
    [​IMG]

    Sherwood green over black primer
    [​IMG]

    Amber clear over sherwood green
    [​IMG]
     
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