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This LP had the worst water damage, Maple cap joint release and even began to let go of the mahogany. One more will receive the same treatment. Oxalic acid to bleach out stains. If the bleaching is unsuccessful then i have some interesting paint options i will run with.  Since i will lose the correct spacing for Hardware mounting screws I will use some complementary pieces of wood for a center strip and then use that same wood for the binding on the body and the FB.  

oh and who knows what the number 5 on the neck joint means? 


Tags: Les, Nashville, flood, pauls, reconstruction, survivors

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#2 Less water damage, Much heavier, shim for side to side alignment found. Soooo tomorrow i will start wood bleaching process and while they dry out i will move onto the shim work on the remaining two LP's and there is also an SG that simply needs refinishing which i am excited for that as well...this mahogany...resilient stuff.

For the center strips and replacement binding scheme for these two I believe i will make one padauk and one purple heart or a complementary contrasting maple.

I am curious about those large circles that look like inlays at the first fret on one, and the second fret on the other? 

Please keep posting the pictures of your progress. Tom.

What up Tom!

Those are just stickers brudah, And they both have the letter C written on the First inlay. I have no idea about the stickers or the C...but i will be able to find out for you. It may take a bit but i will get back about it. 

No problem i'll keep em coming. 

Robbie! Eric!

Thank you both so much for sharing! I had heard that performing the bleaching procedure while in UV/sunlight has the ability to help. I am very curious about why exactly that does improve results....?

I was aware that i would need to do a bit of sanding and i will have to be diligent about observing ANY of the changes that may occur in the process to insure an accurate and lovely setup during end phase. 

Would either of you like to direct me in the direction where i can learn more about the Two part Sodium concoction that you have worked with...I hope that it is not required but in case it does become required ( and just because my curiosity gotta wiff) I would like to hip me to the process and details.

A welding torch!?! WHOA! i wanna see this process! How does that come into play?

Sorry for your buddies Camaro seats! Haha! That's crazy!

I cannot thank you both enough for your insight and input! Super cool.

Get back at me! 

UV breaks down the bonds of the chemicals that color wood. The famous '59 Les Paul faded bursts, for example, used a red dye that was very susceptible to UV and they faded creating honeybursts, lemonbursts, etc. Newer dyes are made to be colorfast.

Hmmm....Gnarly...I assumed it was the Lacquer that the UV was effecting..not the wood itself....Sweet! thanks again Robbie!!

Whether a naturally occurring dye or a man-made one the process is the same. Photons excite electrons in the color chemical molecules. Atoms bond into molecules by sharing electrons. The UV photons gives electrons additional energy, they jump to a higher quantum state, and voila - the molecule comes apart, and the electrons become free or are "emitted." This is the "photoelectric effect" for which Einstein won the Nobel Prize.

UV causes lacquer to darken, can make it brittle, etc. I don't know as much about the effect of UV on lacquer as I should. Maybe someone else can chime in.

The beam distressing process went like this; first the beams faces and edges were rough hewn with a chainsaw and axe, then the welding torch was used to "wear down" the roughness, then the ash and soot were removed by wire brushing, and finally the bleaching process. The end result, after sanding and staining, were timbers that look 300 years old. The sodium and oxidizer are applied separately, sodium first with time to penetrate, then the oxidizer draws the salt back out, creating lots of those free electrons Robbie mentioned.

Bob...I've bleached a lot of wood restoring old houses. Different types of stains require different products. I once mis-ordered some replacement molding that was to be stained and got some very lively poplar with green and black streaks instead of clear pine. Took oxalic acid to remove the black, then chlorine bleach, and finally a two part sodium hydroxide/hydrogen peroxide product to make it look like clear pine. Took a lot of sanding because of the raised grain.

Robbie, Used to do lot of timber framing using massive wood beams, which we distressed using a four step process that involved burning them with a welding torch. The last step was to bleach them using the two part salt and oxidizer product you mentioned in your post. Unbelievable product but it is some caustic stuff. Completely devoured the rear seat and carpet in my friends Camaro over time. One tip I learned though, is that sunlight' or I'd think UV, exposure greatly enhances the products effectiveness. We were working with Douglas Fir, and those beams were white when we were done. Really opens up the pores as well, so lots of sanding required.

Cool...I always wanted to timber frame a house. Probably something I'll never get around to...like building a sailboat.  Yeah, I used some pretty serious PVC coated gloves and did all my work outside in full sunlight. On the poplar, I used a homemade walnut dye, an oil stain, then a gel stain before applying spar urethane. Lots of depth.

Well gents, in spite of my best efforts using oxalic acid these two tops will be unsuitable for being visible ( to my standards) regardless of the wood looking much better after bleaching treatment and drying, the stubborn water stains reappear when i wipe a bit of naptha on them. Which suggests to me that they would reappear if i were to shoot them with some clear coat...i considered getting "creative" with some dyes and paint options to mask the stains but i feel that the stains would still be obvious...So for these two i will go with some radical paint jobs that will completely cover the grain. I know it's a sad story. But at least I have some others that will be able to come through without such a dramatic change/coverup. Still i am having a good time and can't wait to get these puppies up and runnin again.

 I will get back to you once rejoining, recapping, neck gluing, Binding installation, touch up/ finish sanding,  re frets and color options are in order and ready to hit the booth. I am also working on some of my personal builds which i am equally excited to get feedback on. 

Pictures and processes will be listed. Sorry about the time but we can't rush perfection...(or even the attempt)...Right? 

Have a awesome day! 

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