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 Post subject: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2006 2:16 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 16
Location: Halifax, N.S. Canada
So my 72' 4001 is a yellowed mapleglo. A previous owner decided to srew a thumbrest above the pickguard, and try to put a strap bolt on the heel of the neck. Also, I want some binding replaced that was smashed off the top of the neck presumably when the bass was dropped.

I am looking to get these three holes plugged, and new binding added and then spot finished to matching color. I did some searchees and understand that A) 98% luthers don't know ric finishes, and B) conversion varnish is a bitch and most will try and talk you out of using it.

Well the place I brought it to was not familiar with conversion varnish.. but was honest about it. I then called a local finishing expert (Harland Suttis) and he said he was was very familiar with rics use of conversion varnish. He said that it was a form of nitrocellulose and that for spot finishing, nitro would probably be the best option.

What do the experts here think of that? Any advice to pass on to the person that I get to do this? How would nitro stained to match the curent conversion varnish change color over time?

thanks


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 Post subject: Re: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2006 5:55 am 
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Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 497
Location: South Side of the Sky
Hey check the restoration section threads and look for a gentleman who's user name is Jingle Jangle or anothe person is that is also on the restoration thread is Dale Fortune.
These would be the 2 best people to do this particular work, that is what they are experts at.
Remember look for Jingle Jangle or Dale Fortune.
FISH


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 Post subject: Re: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2006 6:08 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 16
Location: Halifax, N.S. Canada
yeah I have been browsing their posts.

The issue is that I don't want to send anything to the west coast of the US for a few small touchups. For a full refin it may be fine... but not for something this small.


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 Post subject: Re: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2006 7:16 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 1416
Location: SF CA
So, Harland is very familiar with Rick finishes, and told you that "conversion varnish is a form of nitrocellulose", huh?

Wrong on both counts, I'm afraid. Either you mis-heard him, or he's trying to do the old "I don't know CV, but nitro's just as good" routine.

Conversion varnish and nitro have very little in common. I've done a lot of both and, although both can be sprayed and will buff to a nice shine, CV will give much, much more protection than nitro and will guard against impacts in a way that nitro can't.

It also is highly toxic and tricky to apply, compared to nitro which is pretty foolproof.

Don't want to send it all the way to the West Coast for a little touch-up...

Well, it sounds like a bit more than "a little touch up" is required here; a good deal of refinish work is more complex than meets the eye, or the imagination of anyone who hasn't actually seen it done. It also sounds like you need at least some rebinding done. If the checkerboard is crushed, there is a chance the whole instrument would have to be rebound anyway; the new checkerboard stuff will not match the old--the white is much whiter--so you'd be able to see where it was patched in.

And, in most cases, a rebind means a refinish.

All that having been said, you could use nitro to touch up your bass, but keep in mind that it chips and dents rather easily.

_________________
Rickenbackers: I love to play them. I enjoy the challenge of working on them. I love the way they sound.


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 Post subject: Re: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2006 9:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2006 1:00 pm
Posts: 83
Location: VA
Paul,
I don't want to sound overly sappy (or as a friend of mine used to say, "Blow a bunch of sunshine up your skirt") but I felt compelled to offer my appreciation for the wisdom you provide on this and other RIC forums.
Even as a relatively new forum participant and RIC owner (been a fan a long time), it hasn't taken long to see how valuable your insights and experience are to those who read the threads posted here. Hope to meet you one day...perhaps at the 75th. All this to say thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Fri Jul 07, 2006 12:03 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 16
Location: Halifax, N.S. Canada
Thanks for the info Paul!

So the take home message I get here is that nitro will indeed work, but the ideal would CV... better yet a total CV refin.

Well the binding damage is a 1/2 inch chip of missing binding near the G side at the first fret. I plan to get a piece of binding spliced in.

In general, this is a well worn bass... well cared for but well played. It's a player... and I aim to keep it that way. I gig this baby all the time.

I could get the full meal deal and have it end up looking brand new... but 1500$ later I could also get another ric. Plus I am a student... so that is not an option. Plus, my view is to get what needs to be fixed done, but do it in a way that preserves as much of the original finish and character of the bass as possible. I like the look of a well used bass... but not of screw holes.

Thanks for the info though, I will second that you are a valuable asset to this community. Who knows... when I finish my medical degree and pay off my debt (10 years maybe hahahah) you might find a 72' 4001 sitting in a UPS box at your doorstep asking for a fireglo refinish. ;P


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 Post subject: Re: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Fri Jul 07, 2006 1:37 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 146
Location: Shenandoah Valley, Va.
My .02:

Take it from someone who has A 1972 4001 that was in a very similar condition as the one we're talking about here on this thread: Mapleglo, enlarged tuner holes, multiple (read: extra) visible screw holes and fairly dinged-up all the way around...

A proper refinish with CV is something you WILL NOT regret. I was to the point of parting out my bass, thinking that I'll never get it the way I want it..well, I was wrong. It is now Burgundyglo, and looks/plays/sounds fantastic. Paul made it possible and the bass lives again.

If anyone wishes to see it and you're coming to the RIC celebration in August, I hope to bring it with me. It's my fave 4001 out of 4 that I own.


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 Post subject: Re: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Fri Jul 07, 2006 3:57 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 1416
Location: SF CA
Quote:
Who knows... when I finish my medical degree and pay off my debt (10 years maybe hahahah) you might find a 72' 4001 sitting in a UPS box at your doorstep asking for a fireglo refinish. ;P


Wouldn't be the first time! I think I've done a half-dozen this year, and more are in the pipeline.

A '72 4001 is only going to increase in value, so whatever you do, don't:

1. Let anyone talk you out of it, and

2. Don't do anything irreversible. It's a piece of history you've got there.

On a separate topic, I hope to see as many of my refins at the 75th as possible. I'd like to do a group shot of owners and their instruments.

_________________
Rickenbackers: I love to play them. I enjoy the challenge of working on them. I love the way they sound.


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 Post subject: Re: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Fri Jul 07, 2006 4:12 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 16
Location: Halifax, N.S. Canada
Quote:
1. (don't ) Let anyone talk you out of it


You couldn't pry it out of my cold dead hands.

Quote:
2. Don't do anything irreversible. It's a piece of history you've got there.


So would you advise against swapping in some P-bass pickups? I kid I kid... I am just doing what I can to get it back to stock (had a leucite thumbrest made, got a replacement pickup cover, still looking for a flat D grover tuner).



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 Post subject: Re: Spot-refinishing a mapleglo 72' 4001
 Post Posted: Thu Jul 27, 2006 7:43 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2005 1:00 pm
Posts: 16
Location: Halifax, N.S. Canada
aaaaaahhhhhhhh,

So I get my bass back tomorrow, but I got to see the work (pre-buffing) today. The screw holes were drilled out and plugged with matching maple (pretty good match... except that the plug for the hole in the back of the bass looks darker when viewed straight on... but the front plugs are pretty good). I should remind everyone that this is a mapleglo.

Spot finishing was done with nitro... and again the color match looks great compared to the old yellowed finish. You wouldn't know the difference. For the neck there was a part of the fingerboard that was chipped away (losing a bit of binding also). The wood was filled with a wood-dust/superglue mix and a piece of binding was spliced in.

All looked to be good... EXCEPT that in the finishing process the glue used took up finish and turned dark. The entire glue/dust filler in the neck thus went darker than the rest of the fingerboard after finishing and the plugs have a nice little glue halo to show everyone where the plugs are (and the sloppy work).

I'm a perfectionist and this killed me... why use this glue when you should know damn well that it will take up the finish? Glue used to join neck laminates doesn’t do this!!! Amateur move for a Luthier in the business for more than 30 years!!!

Maybe I am being unreasonable... I am a perfectionist (and thus the worst type of customer to get). I realize that this type of job will never be perfect... but any decient luthier should know better when it comes to the glue taking up the finish.

Rant over... feel free to say "I told you so." Hopefully things will look a little better tomorrow when buffing is finished. It just kills me that I just paid money to have someone make a problem worse. The words 'non-reversible' will haunt me as I sleep tonight. Sadly they don’t make 1972 4001’s any more…

Maybe I will be getting a refin sooner than anticipated... sigh... I just don't want a color that will hide the skunk.


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