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Best place to find affordable Guitar clearcoat

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by nickmsmith, Jul 28, 2011.

  1. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I finish my own guitars, but I've been going to body shop people to get them clearcoated. It isn't terribly expensive but I'd like to be able to do it myself. Most options I have tried dinged pretty easily, and take forever to dry to a hard finish, if they ever do. Any suggestions?
     
  2. Outlier73

    Outlier73 Strat-O-Master

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    guitar re-ranch

    But define affordable. Re-ranch sells nitro paint and clear coat and it takes a bit of work to get a great finish. But put in the time and effort and the results are amazing. But you'll probably need to spray at least 2 cans of it and you need wet sand paper, rubbing compound, and polish as well as a rotory buffer pad for your drill. (at least that's what I used and had great results) It probably cost me more than $100 for all of the color paint,clear coat, and supplies I bought.

    Also the finishing process does take forever. If I remember correctly, you can do a few coats per day allowing the coat to "get tacky" for about 2 hours between coats. after a few days of spraying you can let it dry for a few weeks. At this point you should havea thick enough clear coat that you can wet sand it smooth without sanding through to your color coat. This is the hard part. But once you have a smooth clear coat you can polish it up to a mirror like finish.
     
  3. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Thank you!!! I have checked out their site before. I may just stick with paying my professional auto paint guy. He only charges me 30 for clearcoating it, and only 40 for base and clearcoat. He does outstanding work as well, (he works for the most respected auto shop in the area)

    Thanks for the input. I'm sure I'll get the itch to try it again. It takes patience, and that is my problem. When these guys can get it done, baked in the same day, it's hard to compete with that.
     
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  5. Outlier73

    Outlier73 Strat-O-Master

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    It sure is. I suggest checking out re-racnch again if you have an itch to finsh a guitar in all nitro, or if you feel like taking on a long project.

    I acutally enjoyed the process of refinishing my strat. But these days I don't have the time to take on that kind of project again.
     
  6. nadzab

    nadzab Senior Stratmaster Strat-Talk Supporter

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    If you can wet-sand and buff, Minwax spray poly will yield terrific results.
     
  7. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Senior Stratmaster

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    Ace Hardware, Watco Lacquer It's Nitro..... Lowes, Deft Lacquer, it's Nitro...

    Ron Kirn
     
  8. ghostwolf

    ghostwolf Super Moderator Staff Member

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    poly is prone to 'witness lines' if you sand thru a layer, since subsequent coats do not melt into the previous coats. there is a very picky window of time to recoat with poly, and if it's missed, you will get the witness lines. watco or deft lacquer will work much better, and won't break the bank, either.
     
  9. nadzab

    nadzab Senior Stratmaster Strat-Talk Supporter

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    True, but I've found there's no need to sand between coats if temp & humidity are correct, and the poly is warmed in the can before application.
     
  10. Jack FFR1846

    Jack FFR1846 Senior Stratmaster

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    Tru-Oil.

    I took this:

    [​IMG]

    Scraped off the vinyl overlay

    [​IMG]

    Sanded and then did 3 coats of tru-oil. I poured a small drop....which spread to the size of maybe a quarter and then rubbed it by hand into and around the wood. Waited a few hours and blocked it out with 600. Did a second coat...same. Third coat and then wet sanded with 600 and then 1000, polished with a polishing compound by hand and waxed with carnauba wax. Looks and plays great. A $5 bottle of the stuff has so far done 2 guitar necks and this guitar.....I could probably do 3 or 4 more.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Commodore 64

    Commodore 64 Senior Stratmaster

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    I'd like to piggyback on this thread, rather than start a whole new one.

    I have a older Samick that I want to refinish. I just want to paint it a solid color.

    1. Can I just sand the existing finish (poly), and prime over that with some BINS (tinted shellac)?

    2. Can I just use a rattle-can solid color from Slowes/Home Despot??

    3. And if I do the above, am I OK to use a lacquer clearcoat, like Ron suggested?
     
  12. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Yes, that works. Just scuff up the finish until it is no longer glossy. I wouldn't sand down to bare wood. Prime over that, lightly sand and repeat until it is perfectly smooth, then spraybomb a 3 or 4 light coats of basecoat on there. The magic is in the clearcoat, which I SUCK at, that's why I pay to get it done.

    I have used latex wall paint, color matched at Wal-Mart, cheapo Colorplace brand on a guitar, like ten dollars per gallon. It turned out just fine after getting professionally clearcoated. It looks great:

    After Base Coat:
    [​IMG]

    After Clear Coat:
    [​IMG]

    Final Product:
    [​IMG]


    Note: The color did not change, it's just the lighting makes it change from a bold green looking color to almost white. That's why I added the white covers and knobs, to contrast it, because on stage most light colors end up looking white under colored lights.
     
  13. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    After viewing all available options.. My advice is to find a good auto body painter, and be VERY nice to them. :)

    I have been very fortunate through friends and playing at bars to find two GREAT painters. One is a complete perfectionist, it will look flawless, and one is cheaper (guess who I use more) but still does a very good job. This green one was cleared by the perfectionist.
     
  14. Commodore 64

    Commodore 64 Senior Stratmaster

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    Forgive me for being dense. When you say "Spray Bomb" and Latex paint, do you mean mixing up latex paint in a cheap sprayer (like Harbor Freight) and shooting the body, or do you mean painting the body with a brush?

    BTW, that guitar does look great!
     
  15. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    By spray bomb, I mean just spraypaint it from the rattle-can.

    On the latex paint, you are right, I bought myself a 100 dollar compressor from Home Depot, and a spray gun from Harbor Freight for 15 dollars, and sprayed the latex paint on. Should have clarified.

    Most people would tell you it's a bad idea to brush paint on a guitar, it's just hard to get even, spraying is about the only way to go.

    But then again, almost everyone would also tell you that clearcoating latex paint would be a disaster.. and it turned out well. As far as I'm concerned, the base coat is just the well.. base. The beauty comes out from a well-done clear coat job.
     
  16. houseguitarshop

    houseguitarshop Strat-O-Master

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