Wait...wasn't that a new guitar?  Wasn't it your pride and joy?  The answers are "yes" on both counts, but we quickly tired of the waterbased lacquer.  Was it that we couldn't apply it properly?  Was it that there was something wrong with the formulation?  We're not sure what the problem was, but we clearly could not let that great piece of alder languish under that really ugly, dull waterbased lacquer.  The solution?  A refin with real Lawrence-McFadden's nitro lacquer.

Here is a shot of the front of the guitar after stripping with Formby's stripper from Lowe's.  Check out the pretty grain on the top.

The Formby's stripper turned the waterbased lacquer into a foam that looked like fake snow.  Very disturbing and very strange.  It made us think about how the waterbased finish would look in a few years!



A photo of the back of the body prior to sealing with shellac.  The back has some really nice grain and some interesting spalt on the lower bout. 

Note:  We bought this body blank on eBay, and it had a rough seam on the back.  We took our time here and made sure we sealed the joint in the center of the guitar.

We used shellac to seal the wood around the seam.  Don't use much -- we wiped it on with a rag.  The purpose of this is to keep the epoxy from coloring or staining the alder.  Once the shellac was dry, we used 5-minute epoxy to seal the seam, and it seemed to do the trick.  Once the epoxy was cured over night, we sanded back to wood, and the results were pretty good.


Here is a photo of the resized and refinished headstock.  We can't say for sure, but we felt like the original headstock on this guitar was too big.  This headstock is generally the shape of our 3+3 headstock, and subsequent necks will have the 3+3 setup.

After the cuts we installed a new decal and sprayed with nitro.  The neck is curing in the storage room, ready for buffing.


Here is a shot of the body before buffing.  It has been sanded to 2000 grit, and is ready for final finishing.  After buffing we'll paint the cavities prior to reassembly.

The interesting thing about this photo is that the nitro-finished body is shinier before buffing than the water-based finished body was after buffing.

I think there is a future in water-based products, but I don't think we are quite there yet for guitars.

Note the incredible grain in this alder.  The nitro really brought out the curl and the spalt.


Click here to see what it looks like after buffing!

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