Swamp Ash for a Body?

Talk about modding or building your own guitar from scratch.
User avatar
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2018 1:02 pm

Re: Swamp Ash for a Body?

Post by Telemnemonics » Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:39 am

j mascis wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 4:52 pm
Telemnemonics wrote:
Sat Jan 19, 2019 10:38 am
The need to grain fill swamp ash or ash is correct in terms of finishing convention, but incorrect in terms of practical use where the OP wants a clear finish for the looks.
I've clear finished numerous swamp as bodies, never used a filler product, and they all look nice, even flat.
A solid color might show grain texture a little though, which either filler or more coats would mitigate.
In a way, swamp ash is easier to hobby finish than alder, because the uniformity of appearance of alder makes it need a more perfect finish, where the patterning of swamp ash looks nice more easily IME.

But for a solid color, yeah it's fair to say it needs grain filling.
I would not choose ash for a solid color, but I like nice looking wood to show.
Here the OP did say he wants a clear finish to show the grain, and IME that's a pretty easy home project to get professional looking results with.
Thanks for this.

If I'm making a Costello style JM with water based dyes that will show the grain, would I use the dye first to get the color I want, then go over it with the filler, and then put the final clear coat on? I'm having a hard time finding online at what stage to put the filler in. My instinct was to fill it first, but from what I read many people say dye doesn't take to the filler.
I would just skip using any filler at all since you want a clear finish, along with possible issues with the filler taking the dye differently from the wood.
Seems like the grain you want to pop deserves to not be covered with filler, right?

If you do go with filler because glass flat is a priority, I can't say how it should be done, and you'll likely have to do some samples on similar wood scraps before experimenting on the body.

User avatar
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 769
Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2017 3:55 pm

Re: Swamp Ash for a Body?

Post by Rgand » Sat Feb 09, 2019 9:59 am

When I made my Telerauder, I liked the grain to show so my finish doesn't completely fill the grain. It's sealed but still isn't glass smooth. That actually accentuates the grain. It's a nice look if you're not absolutely sold on total fill.

Post Reply