buffing out a satin finish to semi-gloss

Started by sublro, December 28, 2006, 01:01:39 AM

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Hey -

can somebody re-connect me to threads/instructions on how to buff/polish a satin finish guitar out to semi-gloss?  The satin finish on my new Tak is driving me crazy with the swish-swish...

I believe its a polyester satin finish.

thanks
Rob 

Larrivee OM-03R
Art & Lutherie Cedar/cherry Parlor (the best 200-dollar guitars in the world, made in Canada by real guitar craftspeople) :-)
Click to Read About Art & Lutherie Guitars
Peavey Generation EXP

Here's one.  Just do a search on  "buff"

http://www.larriveeforum.com/smf/index.php?topic=12808.0

Let us know how it goes if your do it.

2005 Larrivee L-03R "Elle"
2005 Seagull S6+ Spruce -"Doc"
2008 Gibson ES-339
Vox AD50VT Amp


Don't just practice -  practice  RIGHT!



Just a plus one on the above response.  There have been almost a dozen threads here about the topic.  You should have no problem connecting with the info you need.

what ever happened to that orsino fella who pretty much came up with the idea?  I dont see him here anymore.

You can find Orsino on the APM forum all the time.

He put the link back up on his site for his method of polishing.

http://www.tomyoungguitar.com/OrsinoizingPage.html
2006 Larrivee P-05
1971 Guild D-50
1972 Yamaha FG180

I am just curious, but chould you share your goal with buffing out the finish?
Do you want a shiny finish or a smoother finish?
I have noticed many of the satin  finishes are not smooth, the necks are rough.  On the other hand, my Breedlove Revival OM has a very smooth sating finish.
Also, the satin finishes actually have a small amount of material in them that makes the finish not as clear as a glossy finish.  This product is mixed in with the finish by the finish manufacturer to reduce the shine on the finish.  I am not certain you could actuall make a true glossy finish our ot a satin finish.

found the old threads on this topic. Used the Maguiers 2 step process and inside of 3 hours had a see-myself-clearly gloss finish on the whole thing. could not have been any easier. my main goal by the way was to get rid of the body noise - the "shhh, shhh" of my hands and clothes on the finish.  the incredible gloss was a surprise and a nice to have.
Rob 

Larrivee OM-03R
Art & Lutherie Cedar/cherry Parlor (the best 200-dollar guitars in the world, made in Canada by real guitar craftspeople) :-)
Click to Read About Art & Lutherie Guitars
Peavey Generation EXP

Quote from: sublro on January 27, 2007, 07:29:48 AM
my main goal by the way was to get rid of the body noise - the "shhh, shhh" of my hands and clothes on the finish.  the incredible gloss was a surprise and a nice to have.

I wanted to buff mine for that reason as well as after you've had the guitar a couple of years, shiny spots start to appear on their own, especially where you rest your right arm when playing.   Buffing it gets it to that point right away but on the whole body and not just a spot.

I've got the top of the all mahogany parlor all done now.  Have to do the back and sides next.  Sorry about the crappy photos.  I'll more when the back and sides are done.
What d'ya think?


first, what I think is what a sweet guitar! I'd love to get another Larrivee parlor someday. had one (spruce/koa) a long time ago. it's one of the ones I let go that I regret.

As to the gloss, looks great!  if you like it that's all that matters. For what it's worth, the process I used put a gloss, and I mean gloss like a factory-gloss, see-yourself in a mirror-type gloss finish on it. not what I expected,  especially for the level of effort I was willing to put out.

Rob 

Larrivee OM-03R
Art & Lutherie Cedar/cherry Parlor (the best 200-dollar guitars in the world, made in Canada by real guitar craftspeople) :-)
Click to Read About Art & Lutherie Guitars
Peavey Generation EXP

Quote from: Denis on January 27, 2007, 08:08:38 AMI've got the top of the all mahogany parlor all done now.  Have to do the back and sides next.  Sorry about the crappy photos.  I'll more when the back and sides are done.
What d'ya think?

Very nice  :drool:

Satin is starting to grow on me. Somehow it doesn't seem to be as much of a ding magnet as a gloss finish. I do not mean that it doesn't show dings; I mean that somehow I'm less likely to bump a satin finish at all. It has to be related to toast landing butter-side down, I think. There's just less cosmic attraction to a satin finish :)

Still, satin really mutes the beautifull illusion of depth in nice wood.


Hey Denis, that parlour of yours looks terrific!!  What process and/or products are you using to buff it that way? 

Both my Larrivees are satin (L-02, OM-03) and both are showing shiny spots on the treble side of lower bout from my 'strumming sleeve'... and I like the look that shiny spot has produced and would like to get the rest of the guitar (top, and B&S) the same.

Guy
2000 Larrivee L-02
2005 Larrivee OM-03R-SH (custom)
2002 Ibanez Artcore AG75
2005 Ibanez AEG10NE-NT
2002 Fender Telecaster Standard
1970 Fender Malibu
1988 Yamaha FG-350
2001 Yamaha AEX-500N
1970 Aria nylon (original owner)
1964 Stella (original owner)
... and a few more.

Quote from: GuitarGuy on January 28, 2007, 07:09:36 AM
Hey Denis, that parlour of yours looks terrific!!  What process and/or products are you using to buff it that way? 

Both my Larrivees are satin (L-02, OM-03) and both are showing shiny spots on the treble side of lower bout from my 'strumming sleeve'... and I like the look that shiny spot has produced and would like to get the rest of the guitar (top, and B&S) the same.

Guy

Hey Guy,

I used some 0000 steel wool to start, very lightly.  Then I used Meguiars' Scratch X.  I made several applications, rubbing lightly in small circles.  Then, after a couple of applications, I took a damp cloth to wipe off any excess and then a clean dry cloth to buff a bit.  I'll do the same to the back and sides but after it's done, I plan of applying some Meguiars' Step 2 polish everywhere.  I'll probably do it to the back and sides as soon as I finish with the Scratch X but the top will get polished during the next string change.  I'll probably apply and buff 2-3 times depending on how much gloss I get out of it.  I'm sure it's gonna shine a lot more than right now. 

The parlor is used so I don't worry about any warranty issues but you should know that if you do it to a new, warrantied Larrivee, you basically void any warranty on the finish when you buff it out.  That being said...I'll probably still buff out the L-03 one day.  Some people use a polishing wheel...I don't have one so it's a lot more work doing it by hand and the L-03 is quite a bit bigger than the parlor. 

Denis, thanks for the directions.   Based on your comment re: potential warranty voiding, I will work on my L-02 first for which I do not have a warranty (purchased on Ebay second hand). 

I hope it turns out something similar to your hog parlour!

Cheers,
Guy
2000 Larrivee L-02
2005 Larrivee OM-03R-SH (custom)
2002 Ibanez Artcore AG75
2005 Ibanez AEG10NE-NT
2002 Fender Telecaster Standard
1970 Fender Malibu
1988 Yamaha FG-350
2001 Yamaha AEX-500N
1970 Aria nylon (original owner)
1964 Stella (original owner)
... and a few more.

Quote from: GuitarGuy on January 28, 2007, 10:45:29 AM
Denis, thanks for the directions.   Based on your comment re: potential warranty voiding, I will work on my L-02 first for which I do not have a warranty (purchased on Ebay second hand). 

I hope it turns out something similar to your hog parlour!

Cheers,
Guy

Yeah, that sounds like a prudent move.  This is the 4th guitar I've done this to but I think I'm doing more because I did only a bit of the steel wool, more Scratch X and then I still have to do the polish later on.  It's semi-gloss now but should be pretty close to full gloss when I'm done.  That mahogany really stands out when it's buffed.  Like sgarnett said, "satin really mutes the beautifull illusion of depth in nice wood".

I was blown away by how much difference the Meguiers Step 1 (after the Scratch-X) made. Very, very easy and quick and it brought the guitar within minutes from semi-gloss to full gloss....
Rob 

Larrivee OM-03R
Art & Lutherie Cedar/cherry Parlor (the best 200-dollar guitars in the world, made in Canada by real guitar craftspeople) :-)
Click to Read About Art & Lutherie Guitars
Peavey Generation EXP

I've been interested in doing this for the main reason that I like the reduced handling noise. I've noticed that the necks on both my L-03 and my Taylor 412k have developed a wonderful polish just from playing them. There's also a bit of the top, in a line from the upper bout to the bass-side corner of the bridge, that has polished out from my arm rubbing there. If I rub my hand across this polished area, the swishing becomes almost silent.

I don't notice any milkiness or lack of transparency in the polished areas, so I don't think that the suspension material in the satin finish would be an issue as along as it was buffed down first.

Incidentally, I have noticed that the Larrivee satin finish is a lot smoother and quieter than what is on my Taylor. I can actually feel little bumps and particles in the Taylor. Regardless, I want to see these woods in all their glory...reveal their chatoyance.

by the way, anyone who feels insecure about using steel wool. you don't need to use it! The Meguiers Scratch-X does just fine...
Rob 

Larrivee OM-03R
Art & Lutherie Cedar/cherry Parlor (the best 200-dollar guitars in the world, made in Canada by real guitar craftspeople) :-)
Click to Read About Art & Lutherie Guitars
Peavey Generation EXP

Quote from: sublro on January 29, 2007, 07:16:21 AM
by the way, anyone who feels insecure about using steel wool. you don't need to use it! The Meguiers Scratch-X does just fine...

Agreed.

I did the back and sides this weekend but didn't have good enough light to take any photos.  I'll try to get some up sometime this week.
I plan on putting on a coat or two of polish all over when I do the next string change. 


i just did the back and sides on my do3e as well, sucker looks like a million bucks....screw a stupid warranty this thing went from classy understated to damn look at that guitar :nana_guitar :nana_guitar :nana_guitar

Quote from: jtmiller02 on February 06, 2007, 04:57:49 PM
i just did the back and sides on my do3e as well, sucker looks like a million bucks....screw a stupid warranty this thing went from classy understated to damn look at that guitar :nana_guitar :nana_guitar :nana_guitar

Seems to me that any warranty issues that would be covered under the warranty would be the ones you would have noticed when you bought the guitar, right? 

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