I messed up: Tweed case finishing

Nathan

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Mar 17, 2003
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Hey all, bought a new Tweed case from musician's friend and started to lacquer it as we do with amp cabinets. I have done this before with very good results btw. I used 2 old chairs outdoors to support it while I sprayed and flipped her over.

I got 2 full cans of clear nitro on it and this morning began with amber shellac cut 1:1 with ethanol for the aged look.

Things were going well, I used foam brushes and was approaching the color I want, but it was hard to get it uniform.

Like a Failarmy episode, I started wiping the darker spots with alcohol on paper towel. It did work but softened the shellac making it more sticky. As the paper towel started falling apart leaving fibers stuck on the surface, one chair fell over and I had to catch the gummed up case with my bare hands and I calmly gave up since steam was now blowing out my ears which might ruin the finish even more.

When I cool off, do you think there's anything I can do to save it? The top layer will probably be dry and I doubt if alcohol will help (even with lint free rag)?
 

Timbresmith1

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Pictures, please…
Leave it alone until it’s dry. Maybe a Scotchbrite pad (dry,no solvents!) will help clean up the schmooey fuzz.
I’d get some aerosol toner to get the color. Brushing shellac over lacquer seems like a nightmare to me.
 

Engine Swap

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I feel your pain.

In my teens, I spray painted a bike frame. I used a bent coat hanger to support the frame.

It turned out perfect, but as I was moving the frame to the porch, the wet frame slipped off the hanger and landed in the grass. Had to start over and didn’t turn out as well as the first try.
 

Bobbyoso

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Don't know how to undo this issue, but I finished my 5e3 with Zinszer (sp?) amber bullseye shellac cut 50/50 with denatured alcohol, applied with a clean rag.

Worked perfectly, and you can vary the number of coats and/or base-coating with clear (untinted) shellac to get whatever shade you like. Topped off with Minwax to seal it. I believe these were the instrux I got from Mission Amps when I built it in 2003, and it still looks beautiful.
 

Nathan

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Mar 17, 2003
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Ok here are some pics. It's dry now. Really just the top is affected. The back and sides are fine.

I was also thinking scotchbrite pad but hesitant because I tried sanding Tweed between coats once and I did not like the look. It made it harder to get an even color. Guess I can always go darker!
 

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Milspec

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i would just own it, slap some tour stickers or destination stickers on it and tell people it was just really old or that you meant for it to look like that.

My first partscaster tele went sideways as well. I spent the better part of a week getting the red sunburst finish just right, but made the dumb mistake of wrapping it in bubble wrap a few days after it was dry. When I unwrapped it, the finish was covered in shallow bubbles....I woke the dead with my yelling.

I didn't want to strip it down and start over, so I just polished it up and owned it. When my tech got his hands on it, he asked me how I created the cool champagne effect? To this day, that guitar gets more compliments than most of instruments that I own because of the unique finish. The bubble effect is faint enough that you have view the guitar at an angle to see, but under the right conditions, it really stands out.

The mistake became an asset....although I would do that again. Own the case and let it become it's own thing.
 

bluesholyman

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Ok here are some pics. It's dry now. Really just the top is affected. The back and sides are fine.

Kinda looks like it was in a flood, or something else bad. I think its kinda cool, old looking. perhaps work on mismatching the rest of the case with it...sometimes perfect is too perfect....
 

Axis29

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Alcohol will work on hardened shellac.

BUT....

You will have to be uber careful at blotting up the excess shellac. I'd use something like a cloth diaper, or old t-shirt, something as close to lint free as you can. Then, keep the cloth moist with alcohol. Set it on the amp and gently press it against the surface... Try not to abrade the surface too much. But, try to let the alcohol do it's work.

Also, you'll need to be careful to not overwork it, and mess up the lacquer underneath.

If you muster up some extra patience, you can probably make it a little better. But, textured surfaces are a PITA when things like this happen (wanna ask how I know? LOL)
 

kuch

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Ok here are some pics. It's dry now. Really just the top is affected. The back and sides are fine.

I was also thinking scotchbrite pad but hesitant because I tried sanding Tweed between coats once and I did not like the look. It made it harder to get an even color. Guess I can always go darker!
nice relic job....
 




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