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Thread: TLA-1 Build

  1. #1
    Member c0ffinspire89's Avatar
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    TLA-1 Build

    Hello all,

    Despite working on 3 projects already, I purchased a TLA-1 build several moons ago. I decided to finally get moving on this one as I need to take a break from another build lol. This will be my first attempt using an ash body, so I want to do it as properly as possible. Below is my plan, if do-able, and would love some feedback as you're all much more experienced than myself!

    -Grain fill first. I am hoping to use white grain filler to have lighter lines in the grain, and then use either phthalo blue or royal blue. Would that just turn the applied white grain filler blue? Or could I stain first and then grain fill?
    -Stain next
    -Sanding sealer
    -Finish

    Mahogany is the most grained wood I have used so far, and I have typically left them open grained, but want a nice glassy finish for this build.

    Thank you to everyone in advance for any assistance! I forgot to take pictures last night, but will update once I have some ready to go!
    "We were supposed to have a quote?"

  2. #2
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
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    All the grain fillers I know of take up stain, so I don't think the grain lines will stay white. And if you stained the body first, I'm not sure how you'd sand flat the grain filler without sanding off some of the stain from the body in patches.

    If it were me, I'd probably go with the 'TV yellow' method. First sand the body as flat as possible, so there are no ripples or dips in the surface (apart from the grain lines). Then spray the body with several coats of a clear blue lacquer. Then use the white grain filler (being careful not to overdo the sanding back) Then clear finish over the top of that.

    Hopefully others will have some different suggestions.

  3. #3
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    So if I got you correctly: You want the grain to be as light as possible. Then stain the guitar blue, without it affecting the grain filler too much?

    Maybe I am just going to say crazy stuff now, and I have never tried this and I would try it on an off-cut first. But what if you could make the white grain filler saturated with a neutral/repelling substance like acrylic clear-coat, -mix, -apply, -sand back, -stain? Maybe this would abstain the filler from taking on too much of the stain.

    Good luck!

  4. #4
    Member c0ffinspire89's Avatar
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    Sorry for taking so long to thank you both for the helpful answers! I've been re-upholstering a chair and removing the 3 trillion staples holding it together has my hand a little sore, so guitars took a back seat for the week.

    RocknRolf, your idea definitely seems like it has some merit! Like you said, it needs to be tested on an off-cut piece first, but definitely worth an attempt.

    Simon, your idea also seems like a really solid one too, the only issue is lack of area to paint. The set-up of my apartment really limits that ability, but the blue lacquer sprays I saw looked really cool, so once I have an area to do something like that, it's on the checklist!

    I'll be working on some test pieces to see how I can make this work, but I may change the idea a little bit also to get this project moving. Simon's mention of the "TV Yellow" made me think that this body could look great with ebony grain filler and a yellow stain on top. That would solve the issue of the light grain filler with a darker stain and not having to worry about the color bleeding through. Still debating though, we'll see what the tests bring!
    "We were supposed to have a quote?"

  5. #5
    Overlord of Music McCreed's Avatar
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    I'm bit late to the party here, but there is a technique known as "Ceruse" or Cerusing (aka liming, I think).
    IIRC, there have been a couple PBG builds here that were finished this way.

    HERE is a link to one thread I found, and the first time I learnt of the process. Maybe it could get you where you want to go with your original plan...

    Edit: Do a web search for "Ceruse" and you'll find heaps of other links.
    Last edited by McCreed; 20-11-2021 at 08:31 AM.
    Making the world a better place; one guitar at a time...

  6. #6
    Mentor Trevor Davies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by McCreed View Post
    I'm bit late to the party here, but there is a technique known as "Ceruse" or Cerusing (aka liming, I think).
    IIRC, there have been a couple PBG builds here that were finished this way.

    HERE is a link to one thread I found, and the first time I learnt of the process. Maybe it could get you where you want to go with your original plan...

    Edit: Do a web search for "Ceruse" and you'll find heaps of other links.
    +1 for ceruse.
    PitBull Builds: FVB-4, LP-1SS, FBM-1, AG-2 (Runner up GOTM May 2021), TB-4, SSCM-1, TLA-1, TL-1TB (current).

    Scratch Builds: Pine Explorer, Axe Bass, Mr Scary (current), Scratchy Thinline (current),

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