Saturday, June 16, 2012

OK, Pobody's Nerfect

Well it's been a while.  Laura's guitar is finished and not finished..I'll explain:  Kevin diligently smoothed and filled all the pores in the wood and other little voids that show up when you're preparing a guitar for application of the finish.  The filler apparently either had something wrong with it or was the wrong filler to use.  Anyway, after a short time, the filler started to appear as a light colored, opaque blemish under the nitroclellulose finish.  If you look at the pictures in the previous blog, you's note a small white blemish on the top next to the bridge...this is the culprit.
I've done some investigation, including talking to the world's greatest guitar repair person, Frank Ford of Gryphon Stringed Instruments in Palo Alto, CA.  His assessment is that the filler did not adhere properly to the lacquer and when the two separated (at the molecular level), the result appeared white and opaque....nasty, nasty.  OK, what to do?  First, I would welcome any comments from my members or anyone else, who might understand what to do.  But, according to Frank, I must soften and remove the lacquer, scrape and sand the wood back to its finish ready state and start over.  Frank suggests that we use the appropriate filler from Luthiers Mercantile, apply a seal coat(s) of shellac and re-coat the guitar with the lacquer.  I could also just French Polish the top and apply lacquer only to the neck.  The cyprus back and sides did not suffer from this filler needed.  Sooooooo, back to the drawing board.

Meanwhile, I took the guitar to my friend and mentor Dick Wisner, who gave me some suggestions to improve the action and remove some string buzzes.  Unfortunately, it involved removing the frets, flattening the ebony fretboard and re-fretting.  I've fretted about all of this fretting and un-fretting and other fretwork on the fretboard for sometime.  Anyway, I did it and I'm glad, because now it plays like a dream and no fretful buzzes.  OK, enough already.

Meanwhile, back at the shop, work on C's guitar proceeds apace.  Here's a shot of the spanish heel that I worked on today and a little something I made for Cheryl so she can appreciate what the rosette looks like under finish.  She can put pics of her grandkids in it or whatever.  Father's Day off and then back to it hot and heavy.

Here are a couple of pictures of what's going on.

Spanish heel after B. Burns Plan

Inlaid rosette in some spare spruce..makes a nice little picture frame
Don'tcha think?  The insert to fill the gap is a piece of Braz. Rosewood
  Sorry about the glare.  If you look closely, you'll see that each little globe changes ever so slightly as you go around the circle.  Made in Russia..amazing!

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