Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: First decal fail - wrong top coat?

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    85

    First decal fail - wrong top coat?

    Hi all,

    I've just had a go at applying a decal, and failed miserably. I don't know if I've got the process wrong, or whether I've used the wrong finish.

    I printed the decal in reverse on waterslide decal paper, then sprayed with a coat of Dulux gloss clear acrylic paint. Once dry, I soaked in water and applied "inkside down" to the headstock (which was finished with Tru Oil several weeks ago.) So far so good, though I did have a little smudging. Left over night, then sprayed several coats of the paint.

    Looking pretty good now, but then I went to tidy up around the edge of the headstock where I had masked it off, and basically the whole thing just peeled off, finish decal and all.

    So, is my process wrong, or have I just used the wrong finish? Should I just be using Tru Oil over the decal, given the headstock was finished in TO? Trouble is I've finished my bottle of TO, and don't really want to buy/open another one just for the decal. It means I'd have to buy another guitar to use the rest of the bottle ;-)

    Cheers,

    Jon

  2. #2
    Mentor fender3x's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Miami, FL, USA
    Posts
    1,258
    I am no expert, but I always put down a little finish first, so there is a glossy surface for the decal to adhere to. Also, I always do inside up.

    Sent from my ONEPLUS A3000 using Tapatalk

  3. #3
    Overlord of Music Sonic Mountain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    Toowoomba, Qld.
    Posts
    3,094
    Yes it needs to go on a sealed, flat surface, and there is no reason to do it reversed. Done the right way up the finish you spray on the decal paper seals it. Then you need to finish over the top of it with several coats otherwise it will just fall off and get easily damaged. It is not a permanent adhesive, it's just enough to hold it in place while you finish over it.
    Build 1 - Shoegazer MK1 JMA-1
    Build 2 - The Relliecaster TL-1
    Build 3 - The Black Cherry SG AG-1
    Build 4 - The Sonicaster TL-1ish
    Build 5 - The Steampunker Bass YB-4
    Build 6 - The Howling Gowing ST-1

    "What I lack in talent I make up for with enthusiasm"

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    85
    OK, thanks guys. I'll give it another go without reversing the decal, and just leave the paint to dry longer before tinkering with it.

  5. #5
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Reading, UK
    Posts
    7,689
    The only reason to reverse print the decal is if you are the going to use say gold or silver ink/paint to fill in the body colour e.g. if you were doing a F****r logo. Then you would apply it ink side down. But when Ive tried that, Id always rub some of the sticky side of the backing paper on the headstock first, as there wont be any glue on the top side of the decal, so you only get it held in place by the surface tension of the water. A straight black logo should always be done ink side up.

    And Id wait a day for the decal to dry and adhere properly. It can take several hours at best, so a whole day gives you a safety margin.

  6. #6
    Member JimC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    SE England
    Posts
    447
    So effectively you created a whole headstock sized waterside decal using the clear acrylic? And the acrylic adhered to the decal but not to the truoil? I don't think I'm surprised the acrylic didn't manage to get any kind of adhesion to the tru oil, they are such very different finishes. I fear another bottle of tru oil is the safe solution.
    Build #1, failed solid body 6 string using neck from a scrapped acoustic (45+ odd years ago as a teenager!)
    Build #2, ugly parlour semi with scratch built body and ex Peavey neck
    Build #3, Appalachian Dulcimer from EMS kit
    Build #4, pre-owned PB ESB-4
    Build #5, Lockdown Mandolin
    Build #6, Sixty six body for Squier

  7. #7
    Mentor fender3x's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Miami, FL, USA
    Posts
    1,258
    Quote Originally Posted by JimC View Post
    So effectively you created a whole headstock sized waterside decal using the clear acrylic? And the acrylic adhered to the decal but not to the truoil? I don't think I'm surprised the acrylic didn't manage to get any kind of adhesion to the tru oil, they are such very different finishes. I fear another bottle of tru oil is the safe solution.
    I basically agree with Jim. That said, acrylic clearcoat over TO might work *if* the TO is 100% cured--which takes 2-4 weeks. I have an acrylic clearcoat that the mfg told me would go over most oil finishes as long as they were completely cured. I have used it successfully with two different necks that had been finished with who-knows-what. Worked fine, but I always tested on something I did not care about first--such as the underside of the neck where it bolts on.

  8. #8
    Overlord of Music Andy40's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    3,892
    Yep, no need to reverse print. It will stick fine to the TO. ......but why are you putting acrylic over TO?

    Just put multiple coats of TO over the face of the headstock and decal, and build up the coats, then wet sand down, build up more coats till you get flush with the lip of the decal.
    Build #1 - ST-1 - Completed
    Build #2 - LP-1SS - Completed
    Build #3 - TLA-1R - Completed
    Build #4 - SGD-612 - Completed
    Build #5 - ES-1G - Completed
    Build #6 - STA-1HT | Completed
    Build #7 - ST1JR - Completed
    Current Build #8 - JBA-4
    Build #9 - Semi-scratch build Tele x 2 - Completed
    Current Build #10 - PRS-1H
    Current Build #11 - AGJR-1 - Completed
    Current Build #12 - ATL-1SB
    Current Build #13 - GST-1
    Current Build #14 - FBM-1

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    85
    OK, thanks again, all. I think I'm going to see if I can get a sheet of decals laser printed at my local library so I don't have to worry about sealing the ink, and order a bottle of TO.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
    Posts
    85
    Just an update on progress with this - I managed to get my decals printed onto my waterside decal paper at Officeworks. Unfortunately, when I was doing a test run, the ink disintegrated when it got wet. I gave the decals a couple of coats of TO and left them to dry overnight, and subsequently had much better success.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •