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Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by JuneauMike, Sep 18, 2020.
I think it will turn out fine! Perfection is overrated...
I'm beginning to agree. Second coverage coat laid down flat and even so, sandpaper fixes a multitude of sins. That's the fun of DIY projects, dive in, make mistakes, fix the mistakes and keep moving to the finish line.
Yep, i'm glad I took the time to run out and get some Naptha. Worth the one less worry.
This is my second body, but first using nitro (did a lap steel previously). I sealed with #2 shellac and used a high pile compatable primer to level sand out. Didn't use grain filler as its alder and after several coats of shellac and a level sand I was satisfied with the body texture.
Really excited about the shellac since this is the first time I've used shellac flakes. They are very fun to work with and I don't worry as much about the mystery ingredients in the can like I do with store bought Zinzer sanding sealer (just dewaxed shellac). The denautred alcohol is another story, but you can only fret about so much, and then you gotta just get off the dime and make some wood chips, so to speak.
But if anyone loves shellac but has never tried the flakes, two thumbs up. And you can make whatever cut you need. It flows on nice, dries beautiful, is very forgiving of mistakes, can make small batches and is a joy to work with. I tinted the neck with #1 amber and it came out great. A little heavy in one spot and some denatured alcohol dabbed on it, and it cleaned up and melted right in. Fun stuff.
While my setup isn't ideal, I've tried my best to follow this advice. This guy did an awesome three-part series on shooting nitro from a can and I've watched it numerous times over the last month.
His directions are about as in-depth and clear as I've seen. But I had to watch several times and take notes aa his narrative is very concise and economical. Easy to miss a small but important point.
Wish me continued luck.
@JuneauMike very happy to hear about your mask! Best of luck.
if you mix your own lacquer you can ad Smoothie to combat fisheyes .............
Yeah well that was a big worry for me after not finding a mask at the first three places I wen't locally. Didn't want to buy one more thing from our evil overlords at Amazon if I could keep from it. Fourth time was a charm.
Four coats of color went on beautifully. Nitro is thin but it seems to grab onto the previous coat very well. I generally got a good wet coat (a couple passes each) on a side and held it in the flat axis for about 30 seconds or so before flipping it. With the butt end, if I was worried about a heavy coat I'd just keep spinning the body till it had time to set up a bit. You can see this stuff begin to dry as you go.
Don't want to risk more coats as the rain is supposed to show up in an hour or so. Will let it dry overnight and hit it with 6 coats of clear as soon as I'm able to. I can hold the temperature inside the paint tent at right at 70-72, so that's a relief.
Gonna try to get as many coats of clear on the back of the neck as the weather will allow. A decal goes on the headstock so it only gets one coat of clear for now.
You shouldn't be spraying wet coats at this point. Dry coats that look terrible at first will actually result in the harder, thinner finish in the end. You smooth them later as you let the wetness of each coat increase a bit.
Yep, that's what I did. You are reading "wet" maybe too literally. The first coat barely showed much blue, that was hard to do since I instinctivelly wanted to get good coverage right off. Coats got progressively heavier from there.
Actual conversation I had with someone from Valdez, AK:
Me: What do you do in the summer?
Her: Well...if it falls on a weekend, we take a picnic.
Yep, our summers are worse, but we don't get as much snow as they do. I think we only got 11 feet of snow all last winter. It practically shovels itself.
Ok, I think I'm on to something. Got four coats of clear on Sunday. Temperature inside the paint booth was 74 F and humidity in the garage was about 48 percent, if my little weather station is to be believed. Finish came out great, but not mirror flat yet. This stuff actually went on very well, but I can see the advantage of spraying your piece in the flat position. Very forgiving, I suspect.
I'm going to let the guitar dry for a couple of days, then lightly wet sand back with either 800 grit or 1000 grit using Naptha and a small acrylic sanding block and then apply three or four more coats. Then let it sit for a month.
(I have to concede, the shop vac works great. I didn't see any dust particles on my color or clear coats. I was very worried about it having the effect of pushing dust around inside the tent.)
I live on the north Oregon coast with very similar climate. I have had great success with rattle can finishes. I have found that temperature control is much more important than humidity.
In a nutshell, for winter spraying I heat the garage with a radiant heater to about 72-75 degrees, then move the heater to the adjacent bathroom & turn it on. Then I spray up to 3 coats and move the piece into the heated bathroom & hang it from the shower curtain bar with the exhaust fan on until dry. This helps keep fumes down in a closed up house. Repeat until you get all the paint you want, let sit for a couple of weeks, then sand. Repeat the process for clear coats after sanding the color coat. FWIW, I only go through the process once a day so it takes a while to get the final result, my most recent being about 5 weeks.
•I would be leery of using something as hard as acrylic for the sanding block, too easy to sand through to your color coat in any areas that are slightly raised. I use a small oval shaped block with cork on it. On curved surfaces I use similar shaped pieces of 1/2" sleeping pad with the paper wrapped around it. If 1000 grit will get you to flat, you must have a really good surface already and will probably be fine.
•Be VERY careful on the radiused edges, definitely the easiest place to sand through. I imagine you already learned this in the primer stages. I go up one grit higher than what I'm using on the flats for edges and corners.
* Great system you came up with for dealing with the vagaries of shooting lacquer in your climate! When do we get pitures?
Excellent input, thanks. I think I'll hold off on the acrylic and rustle up some more forgiving substance to use as a sanding block. I have some cork and several other things that I could put together. My plan is to stay away from the edges completely until I've got more coats of clear on it, and even then just wisp then really lightly with a few passes. The roundovers on this guitar terrifies me.
Here's some pics. Sonic Blue is a very difficult color to capture with my lighting, unfortunately.
This is my stand. Built in about an hour or so after a run to Home Depot. PVC, into a shower drain turned upside down and screwed to a scrap of board. Glad I took the trouble to do this, I think it made the painting more forgiving. I was shooting clear on the inside horns and intended to shoot off to the side and walk the material onto the guitar, but I missed and blasted the inside horn with a heavy shot of clear. I swear I saw a big run about 1 1/2 inches wide or a sag. I spun the guitar 180 degrees, then again, and rotated it for a while and now I can't find that sag. Doubt that I'm actually that lucky, I may have just not seen it correctly.
Here's the infamous paint booth. The inlet for the shop vac is on the other side. Two heat lamps are hanging from the ceiling cross member. I put duct tape on the door sweep and taped a couple of heavy lag bolts to it to give it some weight so it won't be slapping around. It was something I gave no thought to that turned out to be one of the smarter things I did. When the shop vac was on, I could see the door suck in and seal itself.
This stupid thing was an impulse buy when I was at the hardware store. It snaps onto the top of the can and a tang controlled by the trigger activates the spray. I hate to admit, but it actually worked really well and seemed to give me more focused control on my technique (speed and distance being the most important). It's still got that Sham-Wow/As-Seen-On-TV kinda vibe to it, so I hate to say nice things about it.
The paint cans are soaking in warm water during the whole operation so of course the most important information on the label gets destroyed first. I have to write the color of the paint on the can with a sharpie pen otherwise it becomes a can of surprise for future generations. LOL.
Actually, those thick felt Danelectro coasters would make a good sanding block. I'd cut it into strips and glue the stack together and then glue some cork to the bottom of it. I think that may work just fine. Wish I had some flat leather though. That would be even better.
Here's a few shots of the body. As I said, Sonic Blue is really tough to shoot in my lighting environment.
Here's the finished color coat, and essentially what I started with during the clear coat phase.
It's not mirror flat, but I am getting good reflections off of it. It was a nice base coat.
Here's a couple shots of the finish clear coat. I think I'm in pretty good shape. As I said, this is four coats of clear. First coat was a dusting, next coats got progressively heavy. I read someone in another forum say you ought to shoot nitro heavy enough to worry about runs, but don't get any runs. I was doing a lighter pass initially with each subsequent coat, and a heavy finish so that it looked really wet and glassy, then I'd just keep the instrument in the flat plain for 30 seconds to a full minute, depending on my own judgement.
I suspect you are right, but its hard to know. As I think about it, I really built two low pressure systems inside a high pressure system (or maybe I have that backwards). The garage was heated to 71-73 and then the heat lamps inside the paint booth brought the temperature up to about 75 or so. Just outside the garage door it was about 48 and wet with humidity at about 80 percent and above.
I had this little weather station that I brought down and kept on my stereo, I wish I'd taken the time to hang it inside the paint booth for a bit (electrical chord didn't reach, and didn't want to run one more extension chord). The humidity in the garage was about 47-49 percent, but I sorta think the humidity in the paint booth was less than that. I'd think that the Visqueen and the radiant heat would push moisture out of that atmosphere to some extent and eventually evaporate whatever moisture was intent on hanging around. Beyond that, maybe humidity gets overplayed. The paint booth felt noticeably hot when I'd walk inside it.
I really tried my best to manipulate the variables that I could to make this work out well. It may have been overkill, but who knows. In the end, I got the outcome I was hoping for.
Looks good. Of course photos can hide a "multitude of sins" but it looks good from here. It looks like you won't have to do a lot of wet sanding, which is good.