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So I'm Upgrading a 1995 Plywood Squier...(a story of rattle-can folly recalling the glow of HCEG's past)

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  • So I'm Upgrading a 1995 Plywood Squier...(a story of rattle-can folly recalling the glow of HCEG's past)

    I have another refinish/upgrade project I'm considering but though I've done oil and shellac finishes in the past I've never done a full spray refinish job, so I figured I would do a practice job first. I also recall with fondness the history of rattle-can finishes posted on HCEG over the years, so I thought I might also share my folly.

    The most favorable candidate was my 1995 Korean sunburst plywood Squier. I'll likely never let it go as it was my first electric and a gift from my school buddies. Add to that, it's really not a bad guitar. I love the neck and the cheap GFS pre-wired pickguard actually sounds pretty good. Really.



    I dissembled it and scuffed up the finish a bit with 1000 grit. I also filled a few scratches with cyanoacrylate, but as I wasn't going for a showroom finish I didn't do that much more. Instead of stripping it down totally I elected to spray over the current finish, much like old Fender resprays over sunburst.

    One note about a mistake I made; the tuner bushings. I removed them with sockets as I had seen in a TalkBass post and this left circular dents around a few of the tuners. Well, this is why I'm doing a practice run.

    I started by wiping it down with alcohol followed by a spray can of BIN primer - this stuff is great, really does seem like it goes on anything.



    Yup, I'm doing my first headstock also. After a few coats (frankly just 2, maybe 3 light coats), I started on the color. Which color am I going with? Duplicolor Honda Avignon Blue, it seems a not bad acrylic lacquer approximation of Ice Blue Metallic; I picked up the last 2 cans AutoZone had in stock.

    I put down a few light coats but soon confirmed my suspicions that I was not able to put down any more without a proper respirator. I was in a well ventilated area and didn't breathe while in the spray area, but while I didn't get a headache or light headed my stomach was starting to feel a little off, so I hung it up and ordered a 3M 7502 and organic vapor cartridges. In the meantime...



    So then it was waiting for the safety gear to come in...

  • #2
    Nice color choice, looking good!
    MIA Fender Strat / Gibson Les Paul Studio / Custom Telecaster / Washburn WI66 / Custom Stratocaster / Martin D15S / Guild D55 / Simon & Patrick Cedar / Martin HD16R LSH​

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    • #3
      The safety gear just came in and it looks great. I blew the dust off the body and headstock and set it down for more color. There we go, the respirator was fantastic; like fresh mountain air all day.

      Threw a few more coats of color on. Before spraying again I also removed the tape I had wadded up in the truss rod cavity as in the meantime I had seen some great headstocks where they just painted it and the truss rod cavity just sort of disappeared.

      After this I went straight to the clear as I had read repeatedly that you should not sand metallic coats as the flakes will lay down. I started spraying Valspar clear acrylic lacquer in very light coats. It looked pretty good. After I started the headstock, I realized the rosewood on the headstock side of the nut was still masked, so I stopped and removed the tape. This unearthed a bit of a problem.

      I forgot to take a picture, but the primer peeked out a bit from the color on the edge towards the nut. I tried scraping it away to no avail. I eventually just re-taped a little and sprayed a couple more localized passes of color. Bingo! got it.

      I went through one can of clear, and though most of it ended up on the floor, a storm front was moving in and I didn't want to mess with the humidity jump - so I hung it up and put everything away. This is pretty much where it stands right now...I should get better pictures but oh well...


      Last edited by Preacher; 03-03-2015, 09:04 PM.

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      • #4
        Smart man. One of the reason I completely stopped spraying nitro at home is how toxic (and explosive) it is. I now only spray solvent based finishes in my friend Jesse's (you remember Jesse and the skulls) full on paint booth with a full on respirator. I don't have too many brain cells left, I want to preserve them a little longer

        Looking good - refinishes are frankly harder that finishing from bare wood. I think this will turn out good.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by billybilly View Post
          Nice color choice, looking good!
          Thanks, Billy! The pickguard and knobs should be showing up any day now, I guess we'll see how it comes together...

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Freeman Keller View Post
            Smart man. One of the reason I completely stopped spraying nitro at home is how toxic (and explosive) it is. I now only spray solvent based finishes in my friend Jesse's (you remember Jesse and the skulls) full on paint booth with a full on respirator. I don't have too many brain cells left, I want to preserve them a little longer

            Looking good - refinishes are frankly harder that finishing from bare wood. I think this will turn out good.
            Howdy, Freeman, thanks for dropping in; your build threads are always incredible. I've read a bit on forums about different finishes, your work with water based stuff looks awesome.

            Oh, and also, while I sincerely appreciate your optimism, I really can mess things up in a hurry.
            Last edited by Preacher; 03-03-2015, 09:11 PM.

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            • #7
              That's looking really good already! It reminds me of the "The Strat" model that Fender brought out with the matching headstocks. Nostalgia.

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              • #8
                Okay, I'm home and I can see the pics. Looks good so far. Keep us posted.
                Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by koiwoi View Post
                  That's looking really good already! It reminds me of the "The Strat" model that Fender brought out with the matching headstocks. Nostalgia.
                  Thanks! Yeah, I'm a sucker for matching-headstock fenders, especially Fenders that aren't teles, and most-especially off-sets. I'm not really into the relic'ing thing myself but I also don't want this one to look too shiny and new, we'll see. And yeah, this one may have a touch of "throwback" in its eventual look.

                  Originally posted by DeepEnd View Post
                  Okay, I'm home and I can see the pics. Looks good so far. Keep us posted.
                  Thank you, I'll try.

                  Just a general note, I'm pretty busy with work and other stuff so this project isn't really going to be one of these 'knock it out in a weekend' deals. I suppose in a way it matches the current flow of HCEG a little more closely. I do apologize in advance for the slow progress, though.

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                  • #10
                    You are a master and I pay you homage.
                    _____________________________________________
                    Serious about playing but not much else.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Virgman View Post
                      You are a master and I pay you homage.
                      Not to be taken seriously most of the time.
                      Thank you, especially for the explanatory sig line.

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                      • #12
                        Nice!

                        That must've had some sort of veneer on the top since the sunburst didn't cover the forearm cutaway with black.
                        Mazi Bee Militia!
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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by GilmourD View Post
                          Nice!

                          That must've had some sort of veneer on the top since the sunburst didn't cover the forearm cutaway with black.
                          Interesting, I think you're right as the back apparently did not...(and apologies for the blurry picture...)

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                          • #14
                            The "Preacher of the Spray Can"...

                            _____________________________________________
                            Serious about playing but not much else.

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                            • #15

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