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Do we have any musical people on DC?

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@theGleep: No worries on the time it took to get those loaded. I'll get on my desktop in the morning for a better look, but from my iPhone with the pics maxed out, it looks like it is probably alder, at least that's my guess. Alder's grain is usually rather plain, without dramatic color differences between the dark and light lines. That's not to say you can't get good looking grain, but the darker your stain, the more blended together it will be.

The strat build I posted pics of is an alder body. When I was sealing the wood with shellac, I noticed it had a nice flame pattern wanting to peek out, so rather than considering what color to paint it, I finished it in a satin French polish, and showed photos to the buyer, who liked it as it was. I wanted to put a high gloss on it, but he shot that down. It turned out very nice, especially under stage lighting. Before that build, I had always gone with a rather popular opinion that alder is no good for anything but paint.

If you want really dramatic woodgrain, and you have a woodworker's store like Rockler in your area (where they sell veneer), you can usually find a hobbyist willing to put a book matched veneer on the front for little to no cost other than supplies. That said, I think you will find alder has a bad rap as a paint only wood, but I've found that to be misguided.

I hope you don't forget to post pics here when it's done--I can't wait to see it!

@tjbray:  I'm actually fully prepared for this to not look as super-awesome-cool as it might if someone else did it - I'm gonna be proud of it because *I* did it :)

But I am hoping that the "character" the torch/heat gun added will help it look better. :)

Thanks and thanks in advance for all of your advice!  I will *definitely* post pictures.

So - I have stain prep, stain and shellac.  (Don't *have* the shelac, yet - gonna buy it just before I put it on).

I have a wire hanger I plan to hang it (through the holes that mount the neck to the body) with - should I hang it through the *whole* finishing process?  If I take it down to sand it (can't imagine *not* doing so), would it be okay if I'm wearing jeans, or should I buy a tyvek suit?

So far, I've been sanding "bare handed".  I have a box of neoprene gloves - should I re-sand with the gloves on before I stain prep?

Then, should I do the ((alcohol + sand) * 3) bit before the stain prep, or after, or both?

Would everclear (95% grain alcohol) work in place of denatured alcohol?

When it's time to stain, I should do the ((alcohol + sand) * 3) thing before I apply the stain?  Or should this be *after* staining, but before shellacing?

When it's time to shellac, I do a lot of as-thin-as-I-can coats, right? 

Thanks again for the advice!

I think you will find alder has a bad rap as a paint only wood, but I've found that to be misguided.
-tjbray (December 06, 2014, 02:52 AM)
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It is the most popular choice of wood for sunbursts however. But those often range from translucent to transparent so I don't know if that would be considered the same thing as a painted finish.

Would everclear (95% grain alcohol) work in place of denatured alcohol?
-theGleep (December 07, 2014, 04:40 PM)
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Yup! For shellac it does. IMMO it's preferable (far less toxic). Also a good excuse to hit the package store. ;)

This just showed up on Guitar World's newsletter under the heading: WTF Video: Street Musicians Play Handmade Broom Guitar and Shovel Bass — and it Sounds Good! — Yes? No?

I guess they never took a look at some of the videos posted on  :P

Here's the video:

Here's more proof it's not what you have, it's how you play it.

Guerilla music performance! Love it! :Thmbsup:


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