Now the fun part! Pull that tape off!!.CAREFUL. I know you are excited! But let's do this right before we peel off the entire white coat along with the tape.The trick to pulling off the tape is to use your razor and lightly score the edges of the tape. Even if you have taped things before and pulled the tape off no problem, JUST DO THIS! It's not that hard and doesn't take much time.
So, score the edge of the tape ensuring the paint is not attached to the tape and pull up the tape lightly and slowly. If at any point, the paint starts coming up, reach for your razor and score it again. If the paint does come up beyond repair.give it another coat of white. I know it sucks, but you've made it this far!Once you have the tape up, your guitar should look like this! Well not quite but it looks so amazing right?!Okay moving on.Next, reach for your tape again and let's lay out the next masking pattern. Check mine out and copy if you'd like. Keep in mind, wherever you want a BLACK line on the end result, be SURE to mask THAT BLACK LINE ON THIS STEP.
A brains lip here means no black line on the reveal. I made the mistake of masking just ABOVE the third black stripe on the horn and therefore, I painted right over it.
See the end result and you will know what I mean. Also notice on the bottom and side, I created a little wavy design. IT was easy to do and you can be creative.
And lastly, don't forget to put a stripe around the perimeter of the guitar as shown slightly on the second picture. You can see the end result in the next step to see what I mean. If you have made it this far, congratulations! You have a guitar with something other than primer!The next step will be a pretty simple one. The hardest part of this step will be deciding how you want your taping to look.
More on that in a minute.Now that you have a solid black guitar, we are going to use tape in order to mask off the parts of the guitar that will STAY BLACK. Keep in mind that there will be white coloring AND a red overcoat when the painting is done. I say this because you want to tape off everywhere you want a black stripe to SHOW. It sounds pretty obvious but when you go to tape off the white coat, you will see how a simple brain slip could leae you without any black coloring at the end of the project. Without further ado, take a look at my model. If you want to replicate this, go for it.
If you want to try your own spin, feel free to do that as well. There are many references online that show EVH's guitar that you can try to replicate. I felt like I did a pretty good job at the striping. But first things first!
Let's get that primer coat smooth!After the primer coat has had time to completely dry, you will want to get a piece of 1200 grit sand paper and LIGHTLY sand over the body to ensure that you have a smooth finish. I stress lightly because the paint will sand off easily, especially around the edges and corners. This is your last chance to make sure the body is smooth to ensure the rest of the coats go on smoothly. IF YOU HAVE ANY DOUBT THAT THE BODY ISN'T SMOOTH, TAKE THE TIME NOW TO EITHER SAND THE BODY FLAT OR BUILD UP A COUPLE MORE LAYERS OF PRIMER AND SAND AGAIN!
Don't be afraid or too impatient! You can buildup as many layers as you like and sand down until you get that perfect flatness.Once you are satisfied and any buildup layers of primer you may have added have had the time to dry, take a damp cloth and wipe over the entire surface to remove any and all dust and debris, especially focusing in areas such as the pockets and cavities.Let the guitar dry off for a few minutes, and ADD SOME PAINT, MAN! YEEAAHH!!This process will be exactly the same as the process for applying the primer coat. Start off the guitar and start your spray. Move the spray in an even motion towards the other edge of the guitar and continue off the edge to ensure you don't buildup a 'spot' of heavy paint.
Continue back and forth, up and down, alternating directions with each layer. Revert back to to see the painting process and tips. When you are finished with that, your guitar should look like this! STEP 4: FINALLY APPLYING SOME PAINT!At this point, your newly sanded guitar body is AS SMOOTH AS YOU CAN PHYSICALLY GET IT. Right guys??? Like I said before, the better of a job you do on this initial prep steps, the better your end product will be!What you will want to do now is one of the easier steps: apply the primer base coat.Not much to it but follow these tips to get the best result, especially when using spray cans. The end result of this step should look like the following:Front View.
Rear ViewNotice that I do have some slight bumps and uneven body finish. I took these pictures before my finished primer coat.
Because I failed to get a PERFECTLY smooth body, I had to buildup quite a bit of primer layers and sand smooth. Throughout the rest of the tutorial, you will see those dings start to fade. But this is a great example of what any dings in the body will look like once painted, which is why I STRESS, STRESS, and STRESS that you take your time in the beginning steps and foundation.1. Apply multiple, thin, light coast rather than one heavy coat.
I know, I know, you put all this work into prepping your body and you just want to put some damn paint on already! But again, trust me. There is nothing worse than having to put all that work of taking paint OFF just to spray on thick and have to remove THAT layer as well. So, spray on one light coat.
Frankenstrat Tape Template
Your guitar will probably look half gray, half wood at this point. Wait about 15 minutes to dry. Return and spray on another coat about the same density. Spray on another coat. Rinse and repeat this process until you get a good coverage over your entire body.
You don't need a thick layer but be advised you will be sanding this coat lightly. So be sure to get enough primer base to ensure you won't sand to the wood.2. Let the paint dry and put light coats on!3. When you spray the first coat, start with a horizontal spray from left to right, right to left, in a snake pattern down the guitar body.4.
When spraying each row, start your spray off the edge of the guitar and move your arm (and inherently, the spray) onto the body of the guitar. This will ensure that you don't end up with a 'starter' blob of paint that will drip.5. End each row by releasing the trigger off the other edge of the guitar. Start the next horizontal row but repeating the above. Do not continue to hold the spray trigger as you move row to row down the body of the guitar. Doing so will give the guitar uneven coverage and make it more likely to end up with paint dripping.6. On the second layer, repeat the above spray technique.
However, instead of going in a horizontal pattern, use a vertical pattern. Some paint sprayers have a nozzle that can turn to adjust the flat side of the spray. If so, utilize this. If not, it may be easier for you to turn the guitar sideways (rotate 90 degrees).When you finish with applying a good, evenly covered coat, let the guitar dry and cure for AT LEAST 48 hours! Paint, especially from a can, will tend to do some shifting while drying and curing. Now normally this is not a big deal and usually isn't noticeable on other project you may use spray paint on.
However, due to the multiple layers of paints and lacquers we will be using, we want to do our best to ensure that everything on the base layers is good and ready for other layer to go on top.So with that being said, go find a bag of Doritos, a couple good movies, and WAIT for your baby to dry!Of course you guitar players could be practicing also. But don't worry. Nobody is watching.:)After that,!Step Links.
Your next step in the process will be to fill any holes and dings you may have from the body of the guitar. I used some Bondo (the stuff used on cars) to fill any existing screw holes or dents in the guitar. Once I filled the holes and let the Bondo harden, I took some light sandpaper (maybe 400 grit or higher) and sanded the body to a smooth finish all the way around. Again, as this being the prep work, the better of a job and more time you take doing these first steps the better your finish will be in the end. Take your time and do it correctly! Anyway, you want the smoothest, nicest finish you can get in this step. Future of forestry discography torrent. Sand all the dings out.
And look everywhere! Look in the cavities, on the back, on the sides, in the horn pockets.The trick on this step is to apply the Bondo to the point where it is a little bit higher than the surface of the rest of the guitar. That way when the Bondo dries, you can sand down the high points to make the surface flat. If you apply the Bondo at surface level, you may see some low spots when the Bondo dries and will be forced to apply a second layer of Bondo, which means you will have to.
Do I dare say it??? AHHHHH!But get that body flat, flat, flat! Once you have your 'precious' flat and smooth go on to, the primer base coat!Step Links.
First, start out by choosing one side of the body to work on (I started with the front). You will stay on this side until it is complete. When you have chosen which side you will be working on first, pour a liberal amount of paint stripper onto the center of the body. Take your paintbrush and spread the stripper around the body working in small areas at a time. I divided my body into quarters to give you a good idea of how big of an area to work with.
Let the stripper soak into the paint for about 10 minutes. Then, take your plastic (not metal) scraper and scrape off the stripper. More likely than not, you will not be able to get all of the paint off in the first try. You will have to repeat the process a couple of times especially on some guitars which use a higher quality clear coat. Here is a (blurry,sorry) picture of what my guitar looked like before and after my 1st coat of stripper. Continue this process until the paint is completely off the side you are working on.
Use a screwdriver with an old t-shirt or towel wrapped around it to get into the pockets and hard to reach areas. Patience is the key in this step. Do your best to remove all of the paint.
NOTE: When working close to the edge of the guitar, allow the paint stripper to run off the sides a bit. It will make it easier when you finish both faces and have to move on to the edge of the guitar. Be sure to keep your area clean throughout the process as this will make it much easier to work. When you are done with the side you are working on, clean your area and get it ready for the next side.