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Stark White and Nitro
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Jib



Joined: 20 Dec 2016
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Tue Dec 27, 2016 10:59 am    Post subject: Stark White and Nitro Reply with quote

I want to do a guitar in stark white for someone. I've got a lot of questions, so here goes nothing:

Question 1: should I open a dialogue with the guy about nitro and yellowing, and tell him he should expect some yellowing and possibly checking with a nitro finish, and that he should get a catalyzed poly finish if he wants a permanent stark white finish? Or am I just being OCD here and a white nitro finish would be fine to do without any extensive explaining/dialogue with the guy?

Question 2: Would simply using white pigment in nitro -- and *not* using a clearcoat afterwards -- do the trick, and prevent yellowing?

I don't want to use acrylic lacquer as I haven't had good luck with it in the past. It seems to never get as hard as nitro. But could I use white acrylic lacquer as a primer that I can wet sand smooth as glass, and then use white pigmented nitro over that to get the really hard, glossy finish I want afterwards?

(I feel like white acrylic lacquer primer would help save me some nitro in the long run, instead of just using nitro for the whole thing, but I've read conflicting things about nitro's adhesion over acrylic lacquer and am not sure what to believe)

I know someone who does a lot of automotive work, has a shop, and can do catalyzed poly finishes, and has done many guitars like this before. I would much rather do this myself, but a part of me wondered: is the only way to have a perfectly white, permanent finish to go the catalyzed poly route?

I haven't done a stark white nitro finish before, though, so I don't have any experience to warrant my concerns, and am not really sure what to expect.

I've done transparent finishes with nitro, including clearcoats that have yellowed some, and some solid dark colors, but not white, and never any nitro finishes without a clearcoat, so I don't know what to expect.

Question 3: Is stripping the old finish mandatory? It's a new-ish guitar so guaranteed it has some kind of poly finish. My plan is to strip it off, prime it with some white lacquer and take it from there, but if stripping is not mandatory it would save me a lot of time.

The original finish is black and I figured stripping it and priming it white would give a more permanent base for the color, and since it's stark white, would give me some buffer against the original finish "bleeding through" during wetsanding and buffing.

Thanks guys!
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statorvane



Joined: 21 Aug 2003
Posts: 1949
Location: Upstate New York

PostPosted: Wed Dec 28, 2016 6:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the finish is some sort of polyester, or a catalyzed finish, I would simply rough up the existing surface w/400 grit sandpaper, fill any dents with spotting putty and start hitting it with primer.

I know a lot of people hate it, but I have found BINS primer/lacquer to really grab a hold of the body and finishing coats. You'll need two cans for a typical Fender body, and once it really starts to spit (about 1/2 can left) toss it out and go for the other can.

If you want a really white-white with no yellowing i recommend DupliColor's GM color BGM0387 Pure White (formerly DSGM387/T110 Linen White). It will polish out easily - no need for a color coat. Just apply an few extra coats of color since you will grind down the orange peel in the color.

I finished these in Duplicor Pure White. I applied a clear coat since I needed to seal the headstock decals and didn't want the headstock and body to age differently. Until I did that both bodies polished out fine.

http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u76/JKCavitt/Squier%20Tele%20Project/100_2810_zpsedb8d1c5.jpg

http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u76/JKCavitt/Strat%20Project/100_2800_zpsf1f5e4b2.jpg
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ggwatt



Joined: 10 May 2004
Posts: 166
Location: Royse City, Texas

PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2016 10:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used to hate Bins too. I'm getting ready to do an SG in Pelam Blue and decided to try it again. I shook it really well and spayed from a longer distance. Kind of like "fogging" in on like a metallic. I came out much better. A little 400 grit sanding and it looks great. I did wait 24 hours before sanding it.
It has a great stark white tone. I was tempted to clearcoat it.
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Jib



Joined: 20 Dec 2016
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2017 10:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the replies! I'm definitely overthinking this; once I make up my mind on what I'm going to use I'm just going to start spraying. Absolute worst case scenario I can always strip it down and try again.

I have some white lacquer pigment from Stewmac hanging around.

Did some research, and found two lacquers that look promising:

Sherwood CAB acrylic lacquer and Mohawk CAB acrylic topcoat. Not sure if the Stewmac stuff is soluble in them but I don't see why it wouldn't be.

So at this point, I might just use the Duplicolor, but a part of me wants to experiment with the non-yellowing acrylic lacquers. Which of course would also offer the advantage of being able to use my spraygun for better control.

Of course, I could also clear over the Duplicolor with the Sherwood or Mohawk lacquers and see how that goes.

Will the clearcoat help it buff out to a higher gloss or does it not really matter?

The Sherwood CAB acrylic lacquer has a lot of good reviews, and I've even read that it's a little more durable than Nitro.

Thanks for the heads up about the Duplicolor Pure White. I've used Duplicolor before but they have SO many options, it would've taken me forever to find that, if ever.

I just have to prep the body first. It's a J-Bass, and I routed out a space for a Music Man pickup between the bridge and the pickguard. I didn't realize my router bits cut slightly undersize; the blade on the bit is slightly in from the guide bearing.

So after I routed it using the template I made, the pickup didn't fit. Too tight. I had to freehand it with a dremel tool and the Stewmac precision router bass. It looks pretty good but I got it a little uneven in a couple areas, so before I spray it I've been filling with superglue and re-shaping with the dremel tool.

So I'll have to strip the body down and make sure everything is sanded flush after filling and re-shaping. Witness lines from the superglue drop fills would be the last thing I need to see, lol.

Never heard of BINS. Is this it?

https://www.rustoleum.com/product-catalog/consumer-brands/zinsser/primer-sealers/b-i-n-shellac-base-primer

Would that be superior to simply using Duplicolor or acrylic lacquer itself as a primer?

If so, my game plan could be filling the rout to perfection, sanding everything down flush, using the shellac-based sealer, sanding it down again, and then shooting the finish.

Why would people hate BINS? What would be the major advantage of using it compared to just using lacquer the whole way through?
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statorvane



Joined: 21 Aug 2003
Posts: 1949
Location: Upstate New York

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2017 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, that is the product. I didn't know Rustoleum bought them out.

People hate BINS since it starts to spot blobs. You really have to keep the tip clean w/lacquer thinner. It leaves the finish rougher than say Duplicolor primer, but it sands down pretty easily, and really grabs the surface and subsequent top coat, better than the Duplicolor primer IMO.

I use two cans for a body and after about 1/2 can switch to the other. Coverage is pretty good.

I polished out the Duplicolor color coat to a high gloss; really white. I only clear coated with nitro since my guitars have painted headstocks - same color - white with decals - and I wanted to seal the decals. Doing so meant the headstock would yellow compared to the body (strat) and I wanted them to age the same. I really didn't see an improvement in the gloss or depth, etc.

I tried Dulpicolor clear, but it isn't very good. It didn't stand up to the mineral spirits I use for wet sanding, and dried tacky no matter how I applied it. So I used nitro clear.

Hope this helps.
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Jib



Joined: 20 Dec 2016
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 11:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've found the same from Duplicolor clear -- failed the fingernail test even after months. Not good.

I tried to get some CAB acrylic lacquer from Sherwin Williams today but was denied. Apparently they will only sell it (and probably all their other lacquers) to people running commercial businesses that have federally regulated spray booths. Which I thought was a bit over the top for spraying a guitar, lol. I was pretty pissed, but what're you gonna do.

Apparently it's the same for Mohawk if you want to order online, so that's off the table too. Really took the wind out of my sails today.

I might just use the Duplicolor in that case and not clear. If I were to clear coat it, I have no idea what I'd use now, since the Duplicolor is off the table, and I've heard equally bad things about the Rustoleum acrylic clear lacquer. I'm comfortable with nitro but it's off the table for this one as ANY degree of yellowing over time will send the guy I'm doing it for over the edge. He made it very clear he doesn't want the finish to age at all and wants it to remain permanently white, like modern factory finishes.

I'll keep you guys posted with this, and definitely share pictures once this thing is finally done.
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Jib



Joined: 20 Dec 2016
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 8:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey guys!

Stripped the body down by sanding it. The original finish was crazy thin, so it wasn't too bad.

I got a quart of the Zinsser BIN primer today. Did some reading and saw that you can thin it with denatured alcohol, which I had on hand.

I used my HVLP gun and filled it with some of the primer and some denatured alcohol, and it sprayed beautifully.

I haven't ordered the Duplicolor yet, but thanks again for the advice. I'm going to try that color once the primer is done and everything's flat.

But I'm really impressed with this Zinsser stuff. I don't know how it is out of an aerosol, but thinning it with denatured alcohol and spraying it in a gun worked awesome.

I initially sprayed it without thinning it, which did work, but thinning it made it spray a lot easier.

Fast drying time. Very quick to sand it and spray again, rinse and repeat until the primer coat is perfect. And the cleanup with denatured alcohol is super easy.

I'm also glad I got one of those Freehand Holder things from Stewmac. It's been a huge help. I have it mounted in my Workmate.



I also removed the string ferrules and filled the holes with dowels. The Zinsser seems to have covered it perfectly and isn't sinking at all (I did brush over the dowels with CA glue after).

Thanks again for all the advice, looking forward to getting this thing done.
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statorvane



Joined: 21 Aug 2003
Posts: 1949
Location: Upstate New York

PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 2:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you think the BINS is white, wait until you hit it with the DupliColor White. Makes the BINS look like cream.

I was originally going to refinish the white Tele in black. But it looked so cool after applying the BINS primer. I thought the same as you - just rub out the BINS. Glad I bought the DupliColor. It is super white.

Keep us posted.
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Lon



Joined: 30 Dec 2003
Posts: 6085
Location: Stephenville, TX

PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 7:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

After you have the color coats done, I would shoot SprayMax 2K clear coats. It does not yellow, easy to spray, wet sands and polishes great. Can be ready to wet sand after 24 hour cure. For fast jobs, that's my "go to" clear coat.
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omapunk



Joined: 02 Oct 2012
Posts: 106

PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 8:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I knew a guy that painted a Mustang he ran in the grand prix series of the SCCA with the white mix base. It was the whitest and brightest I've ever seen.
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Southwest Bob



Joined: 07 Jun 2009
Posts: 1059
Location: LA to Tucson

PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 8:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was successful in creating an Oly white strat using ReRanch nitro paint. This was an approach that John Suhr suggested to me and it worked.

I used a can of Mary Kaye white as my clear over Olympic White. In over five years, there has been absolutely no yellowing. Mary Kaye is the same shade of white as in Olympic white but there is less of it in relation to the lacquer. This somehow avoids yellowing.

Bill assured me that the white pigment in Oly and Mary Kaye are identical.

There are vintage Fender Oly white guitars still out there today that did not yellow. Fender was still using nitro but did not lay clear coat over the Oly white pigment paint. It is the clear coat that causes the yellowing.



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Jib



Joined: 20 Dec 2016
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lon wrote:
After you have the color coats done, I would shoot SprayMax 2K clear coats. It does not yellow, easy to spray, wet sands and polishes great. Can be ready to wet sand after 24 hour cure. For fast jobs, that's my "go to" clear coat.


The only concern I have is how toxic it is. Is this concern warranted?

I have a friend that does automotive refinishing. He uses 2K poly like I assume all car manufacturers use today, because of its strength, durability, and super fast cure time because it's a cross-linked finish, and not evaporative like lacquer.

I've been very tempted to do this myself, and use a 2K clear coat. I do have a basic respirator (vapor filter cartridges), but have heard as much as needing a supplied air respirator because the risk from inhaling the 2K fumes is so high.

If it weren't for so many bad reviews, I would've been willing to try the KTM-9 water based lacquer from LMI, or something like Safecoat Acrylacq.

I've just heard some horror stories with waterborne finishes, enough to deter me, especially on a job I'm doing for someone else where I need to know it will come out perfect and stay perfect.

I will definitely be ordering the Duplicolor BGM0387, and thanks again for recommending that. I've gotten Duplicolor at the auto shop before but they have so many versions of white I'd never know which one to pick for the purest white, so that was a huge help.

I'll see what to do about the clearcoat afterwards....I've heard plenty of great things about the 2K finish, and I feel like that will perform the best for a non-aging, stark white finish clearcoat....only concern is safety.

Anyway, I did some sanding last night and I'm gonna hit the body with more Zinsser today. This stuff is awesome and I'm very happy I bought it.
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Jib



Joined: 20 Dec 2016
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Southwest Bob wrote:
I was successful in creating an Oly white strat using ReRanch nitro paint. This was an approach that John Suhr suggested to me and it worked.

I used a can of Mary Kaye white as my clear over Olympic White. In over five years, there has been absolutely no yellowing. Mary Kaye is the same shade of white as in Olympic white but there is less of it in relation to the lacquer. This somehow avoids yellowing.

Bill assured me that the white pigment in Oly and Mary Kaye are identical.

There are vintage Fender Oly white guitars still out there today that did not yellow. Fender was still using nitro but did not lay clear coat over the Oly white pigment paint. It is the clear coat that causes the yellowing.


That looks awesome!

I was thinking of mixing pure white pigment in nitro and spraying it, then waiting and buffing it out without doing a clearcoat. I wonder if that would work?

For the time being I'm just going to go ahead with the Zinsser, then the Duplicolor, and then most likely do a 2K clearcoat, whether I apply it myself or have my friend do it. If this wasn't such a critical job and I was just experimenting for myself I might even try some waterborne finishes as a clearcoat to see what happens.

I wonder if I shot myself in the foot with this guy by warning him about potential yellowing with nitro, when I might've been able to simply shoot white nitro without a clearcoat and it would've been fine. Oh well. Everything's a learning experience, and I've been learning a lot with this one.

And as long as I can be safe about it, learning to shoot the 2K poly would probably be a huge advantage, just to have it as an option.

But that's interesting about the nitro not yellowing without a clearcoat. I heard Fender deliberately didn't clearcoat some of their white guitars for that very reason.

I wouldn't be anywhere near as obsessive with this if I were doing it for myself and not someone else, but I guess I wouldn't also have the fire lit under me to motivate me to learn so much either!
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C5000



Joined: 08 Dec 2010
Posts: 337
Location: Chicago

PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are a lot of guys using 2k paint with respirator masks...I don't recall anyone having a supplied-air system here. I wouldn't spray it in my home though. I work in my garage and vent it with a fan, and always put my respirator on in the house and leave it on when I'm working. I also wear long sleeves and a hoodie when I'm clearing.

I painted a white tele for a friend a couple years ago...it's still very white. I used a Toyota color from the auto paint shop in 2k, they said it's the color used to paint delivery vehicles white. No worries about 2k yellowing yet.

If you have a gun and a compressor, 2k might be worth looking into.
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Southwest Bob



Joined: 07 Jun 2009
Posts: 1059
Location: LA to Tucson

PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anytime you use ReRanch nitro you need to weara mask and cover up you arms. And I use the same plastic gloves that are used by food preps in restaurants. You do not want to get it on you. Cover your legs and everything. I once had some get on my skin and I felt the effects soon thereafter.
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