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I was supposed to wait a month but I made it two and a half weeks. I wanted to have two guitars again so I could have a backup for gigs and honestly I had lost faith that this paint job was going to look good enough that a couple weeks of dry-time settling would make much of a difference. So I took off the hook and off I went wet-sanding:

I went from 320 grit sandpaper all the way up to 1000. It was looking pretty scuffy — which was the point — though I wasn’t sure if I had sanded the clear enough as there were still some semi-shiny spots. Eventually I managed to strip the paint off a couple of the edges. Now I’ve read that when this happens to paint the area and re-coat it with clear and wait a week or two and start again. But forget that noise, I’m finishing this bitch.

I went at it with the 3M Perfect-It Rubbing Compound and then 3M Swirl Remover:

Holy LORD is that shiny. Instantly the guitar starts looking like a professional job if you ignore all my screw-ups. I clean it off and bring it inside, take the masking tape out of it and put the neck on, partly out of fear that it wouldn’t fit anymore. I managed to get it into place and everything seems cool:

It’s looking fairly swank if I do say so myself. I then start to put everything back together. I decide not to put my new switch or pickups in yet, that I should try and put the guitar back together in its original state first as I’ve never done that before. It probably took me an hour and a half — but all the electronics worked first try! Woooo!!

Re-assembled, I hang it on my wall and take a cruddy picture in bad light:

I’ll try and take a nicer one tomorrow.

All in all, I’m pretty happy with it. There are many flaws if you look at it up close, but from even a slight distance it looks decent. There are lots of things I’d do differently if I had the chance, but I’m happy it’s done and the idea of re-doing it makes me feel tired and lonely.

Other parts in this series: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Posted on - August 1, 2006 [at] 10:26 pm by Brad
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9 Comments on this post

BMcC on Guitar painting: part 8 (done as hell)
August 1, 2006 at 11:02 pm

Looks rad, Brad!

JPL on Guitar painting: part 8 (done as hell)
August 2, 2006 at 8:14 am

Looking good Brad… when your done with the guitar, my windows need a touch-up.


JAC on Guitar painting: part 8 (done as hell)
August 3, 2006 at 8:15 pm

That is a rather mintoshini guitar you hav there!!!!!!!!

and lol-asaurus-rex!!

Abe on Guitar painting: part 8 (done as hell)
August 7, 2006 at 1:28 am

you kicked it’s ass. great job, i’ll let you know how mine turns out when it’s finished.

Scully on Guitar painting: part 8 (done as hell)
August 8, 2006 at 2:25 pm

Brad, Your guitar looks pretty hot to me! I’m about to paint my friends acoutic guitar, so I’m out to impress, no lumpy bits please! I’ve googled it loads but cannot find any tutorials on how to do it! Do you reccommend any? I was going to be a bit ambitous and do a funky design too, but judging by the months reccommended to you they might be getting it as an Easter Present rather than a Christmas one… Any suggesstions v welcome! Thanks.

Steve G on Guitar painting: part 8 (done as hell)
August 8, 2006 at 4:56 pm

Great website. I am a guitarist who did what you did, ripped my Epiphone Les Paul Standard down and rewired it just to see if I could do it. Well three wire jobs later it works great. It took a month of hell to figure it out. Kudos to you for sharing your information.

Just like you I got in my head that I want to make Eric Clapton’s “Crashocoaster”. It has several colors and seems very challenging. I went to the web site for Paintyourownguitar and wondered if it is worth the money to purchase his book. What do you think? I am debating about a paint can or airbrushing. Airbrushing does come with an expense but if it works out then great. Did you experiment with two or three colors and masking so that you get clean lines? Thanks sg

Brad on Guitar painting: part 8 (done as hell)
August 8, 2006 at 11:53 pm

Scully: isn’t painting an acoustic totally different? If you’re painting it like an electric (spray paint + clear coats) I’d just recommend you sand the sanding sealer coat better than I did. That’s my one regret.

Steve G: I got a lot of good information out of the Paint Your Own Guitar book and I’d say it’s worth the money. It didn’t even fully apply to what I was doing as I decided to only do one color. But if you’re doing a more elaborate design and if you’re new to it, I’d certainly recommend it.

Danny on Guitar painting: part 8 (done as hell)
August 30, 2006 at 5:01 am

You should start a site where everyone sends in pics of their custom guitar paint jobs? How cool would that be?

Vivian McAlexander on Guitar painting: part 8 (done as hell)
April 7, 2012 at 4:37 pm

NEWS FLASH! BRAD DOES NOT SUCK! I loved reading your tome about stripping and refinishing your guitar. I am building 2 BYOguitars, a Strat clone and a darn sexy bass. I am an artist and have carved a skull, roses, thorns, etc. into the Strat clone. I am not rushing these projects, cause rushing stuff tends to actually set one back, having to redo things. I think you experienced that a bit. But since this is the first time you so this, I have to praise you! You did a great job for just the first project. I learned some very helpful tips from you! Small tips for you, wait until the weather is above 75° and for the humidity to be dry. Humidity and cool can eggshell a nice surface. I have painted lots of model cars, and murals on choppers, cars, etc.
Anyway! Thanks for the excellent and funny reading! Another guitar lover out there, Viv AKA Gremlin P.S. I have loved gits since I was a little girl. Have you looked into building your own one of a kind custom guitar kits? I recommend BYOguitars. All USA made too! Have fun, Brad!

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