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Thread: Build #3, MKA

  1. #1
    Member XP Rider's Avatar
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    Build #3, MKA

    Well, winter project #3 arrived a couple of weeks ago, and has had time to acclimate to this desert country. Everything looks good on initial inspection, but much sanding ahead. The neck pocket is too narrow, and there are some pretty rough spots on the sides of the body. Ash body, so sanding will be slow. But I moved away from basswood, as on my AG (winter project #2), since it is so soft you can almost ding it with a hard stare. I am not much for imaginative or creative, so it will be a pretty straight-forward PBG build, with some minor upgrades, maybe. Wish my ash body had the killer grain of Grooyman's strat body, but it's OK. Photo when I get the mock build. I plan on staining to show the grain. Dark red or dark blue? Any suggestions on staining strategy? Happy to be back on the forum.

  2. #2
    Overlord of Music McCreed's Avatar
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    Welcome back XP.
    Must be starting to get cool in those parts now. Hopefully you have somewhere warm to build your guitar!

    I'm sure you've read this here already, but if you want a smooth finish with ash, you'll need to grain fill. There are lots of different grain filling products available nowadays, so you may be spoiled for choice on your side of the planet. On the other hand, if you don't want a smooth glossy finish, you can forego the grain filler.

    Also the ash bodies tend to run on the heavy side, so if you're looking for some of weight relief, doing some body contours for forearm and belly cuts can help a little bit.

    Look forward to seeing your project get underway.
    Making the world a better place; one guitar at a time...

  3. #3
    Mentor Andyxlh's Avatar
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    Might be worth staining black, and then sand the black off before staining the colour, leaving the black in the grain

  4. #4
    Overlord of Music McCreed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andyxlh View Post
    Might be worth staining black, and then sand the black off before staining the colour, leaving the black in the grain
    Putting together what I said previously and what Andy said, you can use a dark coloured grain filler to contrast the grain from rest of the timber when you stain it.

    The ash Tele in my avatar is an example of ebony grain filler (Timbermate) with Colortone Cherry Red dye. It was clear coated with homebrew wipe-on polyurethane.

    edit to add pic:

    Here's a better view -
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by McCreed; 30-10-2021 at 03:48 PM.
    Making the world a better place; one guitar at a time...

  5. Liked by: Andyxlh

  6. #5
    Mentor Andyxlh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by McCreed View Post
    Putting together what I said previously and what Andy said, you can use a dark coloured grain filler to contrast the grain from rest of the timber when you stain it.

    The Tele in my avatar is an example of ebony grain filler (Timbermate) with Colortone Cherry Red dye. It was clear coated with homebrew wipe-on polyurethane.
    Now that’s a great idea!

  7. #6
    Mentor Trevor Davies's Avatar
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    Welcome back XP rider.
    I did a similar thing with my TLA-1 kit. Ebony timbermate to fill the grain, followed by a Jarrah alcohol stain. Then coated with tru-oil. I'm really happy with the result.

    Also trying a dark blue on a mahogany body . Timbermate grain fill, followed by a blue water based stain. Then coated with a wipe-on-poly. Really happy with the colour, but I should have coated the body with a couple of layers of grain fill.
    PitBull Builds: FVB-4, LP-1SS, FBM-1, AG-2, TB-4, SSCM-1, TLA-1, TL-1TB, STA-1HT.

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

  8. Liked by: Andyxlh

  9. #7
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
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    Welcome back.

    The 'clear' finish you plan to use may decide on your colour choice. Tru-Oil, (and other similar polymerising oils) is slightly yellow, and the more layers you add and the older the finish is, the more pronounced the yellow effect. So yellow and blue make green, so you can quickly get a green tinge to the finish if you Tru-Oil over a blue-stained guitar. Tru-Oil on red is generally fine, it just changes the tint a little bit towards the orange side of things.

    So I'd use just poly, acrylic or another fully clear lacquer for a blue finish.

  10. #8
    Member XP Rider's Avatar
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    Can't say enough about the support you guys provide. McCreed, you are always coming with good suggestions. And Simon, you are the master. Andy, I think you've nailed it. Ebony Timbermate, sand back, then blue or red stain (still on the fence). Finish with poly. Smooth and glossy, as last year's AG is textured by a little bit of rattle-can orange peel, but fairly subdued and evenly coated. I like it. The idea of attacking the ash body to cut the weight scares me a little. But maybe it's time for some adventure. Thanks for all the useful input. Now, sanding....
    Last edited by XP Rider; 31-10-2021 at 12:13 PM.

  11. #9
    Overlord of Music McCreed's Avatar
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    The idea of attacking the ash body to cut the weight scares me a little. But maybe it's time for some adventure.
    Slow and steady with a good coarse rasp, followed by working through sandpaper grits.
    Or you can go a little bit insane with a 4" angle grinder and a flap-disk! (like I have )
    Making the world a better place; one guitar at a time...

  12. Liked by: Andyxlh

  13. #10
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
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    It’s a Mosrite shape, so you could get away with a belly cut as that wouldn’t be visible when playing, but a Strat-style forearm contour would be. It all depends how close you want to stick to the Mosrite look. But that has changed over time. Looking at pictures of them on the web, you seem to have some with simple rounded edges like the kit, but some with a more arched-top look with a ‘German carve’ round the edge and some with bevelled edges with SG levels of bevel. The latter would be the easiest to achieve and would provide some weight relief.

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