Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

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PorkyPrimeCut
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Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:34 am

I keep coming back to this one from time to time.

I'd love to hear from those of your who've attempted bursts, of any kind really, but I'm more interested in 3-tone sunbursts. I'm starting to look into setting up some spraying space in our cellar. I'll be borrowing a large fan as I'm planning on buying the more hazardous nitrocellulose paints but I'm not planning on buying an airgun.

CrossGuitars, over on another thread, pointed out the pitfalls of using rattle-cans - splattery spray, lack of detailed control - and I can totally see where he's coming from. As I'm looking for more of a tobacco burst (with very faint, faded out red) I'm hoping, with the right prep & care, that I can come up with something decent, providing I get the black right.

What do you reckon?
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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by ohm-men » Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:08 am

Far from an expert on this (I only did 3 burst finishes so far)
But from my little expirience, spray cans are out of the question as they will not give you the desired results.
It will look really bad and even if you use masks, it will not represent a burst + if you are going for fading red, then you need something much more precise like a spray gun with a small nozzle and your own paint mix.
There is a youtube tutorial on how to do a SB with stewmac materials based on spraycans, but I personally think the result is not something I'd be happy with.

I have zero expirience with Nitro paints. I find them too expensive and I like working with laquer paints. (and I also worry I might have an alergic reaction to nitro based paints, especially the thinner for the stuff. A result of overexposing to thinner during my time in print factories...)
I make my own mixes from laquer paints I can get from local DIY stores. But this is a personal preference as I can get the results I want with these laquer based paints.

The black is not as tricky as it looks imho. Depending on how you build up you paints, the less opaque, the more the previous painted colour will bleed through (I'm sure this will also be the case with Nitro paints)
Although for tobacco burst, a more brownish tint is used, for regular 3 TSB, the black can either be some jet black or gray-ish black. (Which you pointed out to me in the first place ;) ) So a personal mix, trial and error will eventually get the desired result.

Bursts are time consuming and perhaps some expirience is needed. I don't use sprayguns simply because I don't have one at hand. But I do have a small collection of airbrushes which do a good job. I like really thin coats since they allow me to do a burst in one spraying session, followed by a liberal amount of clear from a spray cans a few days later.
I'd say start on a cheap body (preferbly one you don't need to strip of paint) Aliexpress is you friend here as they sell guitar bodies for not too much money that will make exellent lab rats...

Dust is your enemy...as you are aplying thin coats, all dust will eventually be visible. So a basement might be a good option as it is usually more fee of dust. Do not do any sanding or woodworking in the same room as you spray, even if you clean thouroughly, there will be still some wood dust left, espcially if you use power tools like a router.... (ask me how I know :D )

So far I have found with my last attempt, that a convincing 3 TSB can be achieved. By sheer luck the Jm body I did last turned out far better then I expected. It even looks a bit like an old Sunburst as the grain is showing through the paint, which I quiet like. Again a case of sheer luck, not planned...
I'm just an enthousiastic hobbyist that likes to experiment a bit with the tools I have at hand and do stuff that doesn't break the bank.
I'm sure far more expirienced formites will chime in with far better advice.
Last edited by ohm-men on Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:24 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:20 am

Thanks for that. All very interesting & I've taken on board the fact that maybe rattle-cans are a no-no after all.

The infuriating thing is I actually have an airbrush at my mum's place (in England!) bought when I was about 17 years old! It probably doesn't even work any more but it would've been a useful think to have around nonetheless. I just took a look at spray guns online & they're actually cheaper than I expected.
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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by ohm-men » Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:25 am

As for using spray cans, these might be of intrest to you.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SzuTe0cnbDc

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRqp2E3FT7o

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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by Horsefeather » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:07 am

I think the bursts in each of those videos illustrate how easy it is to come out with a crappy looking product. Spray cans seem like a very risky proposition. I would definitely favor an airbrush with a very light touch.

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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:12 am

Horsefeather wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:07 am
I think the bursts in each of those videos illustrate how easy it is to come out with a crappy looking product. Spray cans seem like a very risky proposition. I would definitely favor an airbrush with a very light touch.
Yeah, the end of that first video says it all really. I need a far finer spray to get the desired effect.

Spray gun it is!!
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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by Amon 7.L » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:18 am

I do agree with ohm-men on all accounts.

Unless you're a really skilled and experienced master in the art, spray cans are just no-go if you want to achieve any remotely acceptable burst.

I'm a not-expert who has done only one burst so far and this is my only experience with the airbrush.
Here's what I did back in 2013 with my scratch built Silverburst Jaguar:

1) Prepped the body with sealer and primer.
2) Acrylic rattle cans metallic silver base coat followed by acrylic clear lacquer to seal & protect the colour:
Image
Image

3) Air brushed the black nitro burst with very thin passes along the outline, basically dusty and opaque looking:
Image
Image
Image
Image

4) There was some tiny level of dusty overspray in the central area, but the clear coat between the silver and the burst allowed a clean sanding job without any damage to the metallic finish, so it was just a matter of a last air-brushed black band along the outline to feather the burst evenly.

5) Ultimately, with a spray gun & compressor I went on sealing everything with several thin coats of nitro clear. Then let dry for a while, sanded, polished and buffed:
Image
Image
Image

It's not perfect by any means and pictures don't do justice to the final outcome as it is way more glossy and depth looking in person but, I promise you, it was much better than I was remotely expecting as a total beginner.
The air-brush is a much forgiving tool than both spray-cans and spray-gun.
Just practice a bit on scrap to get a grasp on how to handle the spraying process (angles, distance, fan etc..) and you'll be growing enough confidence to take a full stab at the real deal.

Worst scenario, as long as you've put the clear coat to protect the base colour, you'll just have to sand the burst off and start over without much set-back.

I hope it helps :)
Last edited by Amon 7.L on Tue Apr 06, 2021 7:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by Horsefeather » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:41 am

Wow, yeah. So Amon has settled it. Airbrush is the only way to fly! Really nice looking job there. I guess I'm going to need to get an airbrush myself 'cause I have a hankering for a target burst Jag.

I wonder how an airbrush would work for a burst using wood dyes...

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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by ohm-men » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:42 am

On a side note; if you decide to go with a spraygun/airbrush, you will need compressed air.
Nowadays compressors are pretty affordable. But make sure you get one with a moisture trap and a regulator to adjust the air pressure.
Depending on what you are spraying, you will need to adjust the airpressure to an acceptble Bar/PSI setting.

It's not rocket science, but these will make a huge differance.
Please avoid airpressure cans as sold in some hobby shops, they are notoriously unreliable might result in fustration.

And another side note from an HSE perspective;
- please use a mask when spraying paint. Especially with nitro paint. You do not want the stuff in your lugs. (I'd also would wear eye protection if you can't generate enough airflow, depending on the size of the room you are working in)
Keep in mind that the paint particles are smaller with a spraygun/airbrush and therefore much easier to inhale.
- Also wear protective gloves when handling paint thinners etc. and make sure there is no ignition point
- And make sure to ventilate the room you work in

Not trying to scare you, but I feel this is important information that one should take into account.
For some products that are catogorized as dangerous (see GHS guidelines) it's good to be notified about the dangers and risks for these.

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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by kdanie » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:48 am

Tobaco burst? Here's one done with spray cans.

Image

Image

Not that hard,

ken
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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by ohm-men » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:49 am

Horsefeather wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:41 am
Wow, yeah. So Amon has settled it. Airbrush is the only way to fly! Really nice looking job there. I guess I'm going to need to get an airbrush myself 'cause I have a hankering for a target burst Jag.

I wonder how an airbrush would work for a burst using wood dyes...
+ 1 on nailing the jag with the airbrush!

As for wood dyes, airbrush is a possibility as you can gradually build the dye up.
But, do not use any plastic type of airbrushes with nitro cellulose paints as they can reslove the airbrush (for instance Aztek airbrushes can not be used with nitro)
Badger is very sturdy and can handle about any paint/dye etc...

here are 2 examples of 3 TSB I did with an airbrush;

Image
Image

Image
Image

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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Tue Apr 06, 2021 7:01 am

kdanie wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:48 am
Tobaco burst? Here's one done with spray cans.

Image

Image

Not that hard,

ken
The links won't open to full size images but that looks great! I'd love to see larger versions, if there's any way you can get them to me. PM or uploaded to a different image host, perhaps.
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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by kdanie » Tue Apr 06, 2021 12:09 pm

Unfortunately I'm in the middle of moving and don't have much time to rehost them... I'll try.

ken
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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Tue Apr 06, 2021 12:28 pm

kdanie wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 12:09 pm
Unfortunately I'm in the middle of moving and don't have much time to rehost them... I'll try.

ken
There's no rush :) Good luck with the move!
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Re: Share your experiences doing DIY bursts with aerosols...

Post by powerdroid » Wed Apr 07, 2021 6:21 am

Here's my 1st attempt at 3-tone burst with spray paint. I'd been wanting to repaint my oldest and dearest partsmaster from 2009 for a while, just could not decide on a color. So when I found the Molotow Transparent sprays I thought I'd give it a go, and worst case scenario would be to then paint over it with a solid custom color. Was going for a 70's style with a very thin black band, I think it worked out better on the back... I managed to somehow melt the red and black in the front, but after already sanding it off a couple a times I gave up...

Stained the body with an amber tint I had, light clear coat, red and then black. It would need more clear and a proper buffing but I didn't have the patience for it.

Could probably do a better job, but for a 1st I was pretty happy with it. Now of course I'm feeling like doing it again :derp:

Image
Image

Having all that leftover paint I then made a JM body to have a holiday project, this time I wanted to go for a 59-style burst. 1st pic is before sanding and polishing. Again, not perfect, but I was more pleased with how this one turned out.

Image
Image

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