Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build

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ACHiPo

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #60 on: 6 Dec 2016, 05:34 pm »
I used Crystalac and like it as well.  I'd also recommend picking up some Behlen's Wool Lube if you're going to build up any sort of finish with shellac and Crystalac.

Peter J

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Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #61 on: 6 Dec 2016, 06:04 pm »
I tried Crystalac on amp bases of last build...my second experience. I have no love of this stuff. While it might fill the grain, it seals the surface in such a way as to prevent penetration of anything applied on top. So if you're trying to pop grain, you're screwed after application.

I suppose I'm jaded, but after using solvent based finishes, water based and borne finishes just pose to many limitations and workarounds. They do nothing to enhance grain, chatoyance and figure.

And Ed, let me try and talk you out of polyurethane. I know people like it, but to my eye it has the visual effect of putting a plastic bag over your woodwork. Perhaps good on your kitchen cabs, but not so much for furniture.

Do you have spraying capability?

ebag4

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #62 on: 6 Dec 2016, 06:23 pm »
Thanks guys, a lot of good info here.

FB, if there is anything I can help you with on your SuperVs just ask, although I am not certain what it might be.

Peter, no spraying capabilities currently, what is the smallest compressor you would recommend for HVLP guns?  I have a pancake unit but I'm certain that is much too small.

Best,
Ed

Peter J

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Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #63 on: 6 Dec 2016, 06:44 pm »
The key to compressors isn't their HP,  which is almost always overstated. What you need to know is volume in CFM at xx pressure. The cheapo guns seem to use more air than their specs state, but HVLP typically run at 40psi. I would guess the HF guns consume maybe 6 or 7 cfm, but that's conjecture. The bigger the tank, the more reserve you have until you're running on the compressor directly.There are some good low cfm guns. I think Homestead has honest descriptions of their products.

It would open some doors for finishing. I like what I can do with diluted TransTint in the little harbor freight gun that came with the set I bought.

All that said, one can achieve a beautiful finish with hand applied stuff, the limitation being it protracts over time because finish film thickness building is slow multiple coats. My fav in this arena is Waterlox. Patience is definitely a virtue with it though.

fishboat

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Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #64 on: 6 Dec 2016, 09:02 pm »
I tried Crystalac on amp bases of last build...my second experience. I have no love of this stuff. While it might fill the grain, it seals the surface in such a way as to prevent penetration of anything applied on top. So if you're trying to pop grain, you're screwed after application.

I suppose I'm jaded, but after using solvent based finishes, water based and borne finishes just pose to many limitations and workarounds. They do nothing to enhance grain, chatoyance and figure.

And Ed, let me try and talk you out of polyurethane. I know people like it, but to my eye it has the visual effect of putting a plastic bag over your woodwork. Perhaps good on your kitchen cabs, but not so much for furniture.

Do you have spraying capability?

I'd agree..pretty much. 

The key with using Crystalac grain filler or waterbase topcoats is to use them at the right point in the finish schedule.  If one wants to pop grain & enhance chatoyance then you have to work on the raw wood itself.  Anything applied to the wood before one tries to pop grain with shellac or oil (boiled linseed or gunstock/Tru-Oil) is making an error.  If one wants to dye wood..then work on raw wood.  Dyes on raw wood followed by shellac or oil will pop the grain even more...blotching aside as that is a separate issue with it's own cures/approaches/finish schedules.   Applying dye/gel stain after some base coat (shellac..filler..etc..) has been applied will add some color, but not much..you're basically toning at this point and it may not yield predictable results.

Water based topcoats can work well, but they are just that..topcoats.  They offer protection.  If one wants to pop grain..then see above ^^.  Waterbase finishes offer advantages of quick drying/recoat and cleanup.    Quick dry also yields less dust pickup in the finish as compared to the longer dry times of an oil based.

I'd fully agree on the use of polyurethane...eck!  It's a plastic bag look that's ok for outdoor durability(boat brightwork) and surfaces needing lots of protection..gym floors, but for furniture..eck.   

Modified oils..as mentioned before Arm-r-Seal is a go to finish for me.  I still do grain popping and grain work before applying Arm-r-Seal, but it's an easy finish to apply, offers great protection, coats are very thin so you'll see/feel wood grain, and one-two coats (only) of satin can look like a fine-furniture oiled-wood finish.  Arm-r-Seal dries fast too. 

Ed..with a little practice and good technique you MAY be able to get by (?) with spray-can shellac.  It's blonde and dewaxed and you'll be topcoating it anyway so the shellac doesn't have to appear perfect..it just has to appear pretty good.

ebag4

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #65 on: 16 Dec 2016, 05:42 pm »
Thanks Peter/FB, much appreciated.

I have found the look I would like to mimic to the extent my tools and capabilities will allow.  I have the bright red trans tint. Looking at my veneer again, while it does have some texture it is not to the extent I feel I would have to use Cystalac, although that is still an option, I now have a tub of it at the house.  This is what I believe I would need to do to pull off something approaching the finish shown below (I have no illusions that it will come out like the pic below, but I would like to take a shot), comments/recommendations encouraged:
1) Mix bright red trans tint with alcohol and apply to veneer, follow with light sanding, reapply if needed(?)
2) Apply blonde shellac from spray can (does this need to be sanded and applied more than once?)
3)Apply Arm-R-Seal gloss, multiple coats, sanding with progressively finer sandpaper between coats

I realize these are likely very basic questions, however this is the first time I have tried to dye a veneer.  This is the finish I would like to attempt...no laughing :lol:

About the build, the veneer is Sapele Pomelle with a bright red tint, with about 40 coats of 2K Urethane on top and wet sanded/buffed to perfection.



mlundy57

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #66 on: 16 Dec 2016, 06:57 pm »
I doubt the red by itself will give you that color. You're probably going to need to mix some dark brown or black dye with the red to get the color you want.

This is going to be trial and error to find out how much of the darker color you need. If you don't have enough veneer to make all the test pieces you need you can use other hardwood scraps as test pieces until you get close then use the veneer scraps to dial it in.

When you start to get close, let the dye dry then wipe the piece with mineral spirits to get an idea what it will look like after the finish is applied.

ebag4

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #67 on: 16 Dec 2016, 07:41 pm »
I doubt the red by itself will give you that color. You're probably going to need to mix some dark brown or black dye with the red to get the color you want.

This is going to be trial and error to find out how much of the darker color you need. If you don't have enough veneer to make all the test pieces you need you can use other hardwood scraps as test pieces until you get close then use the veneer scraps to dial it in.

When you start to get close, let the dye dry then wipe the piece with mineral spirits to get an idea what it will look like after the finish is applied.
Thanks Mike.  Yes, the Sapele I have used in the past is typically a little darker and more brown than the plane Tree Burl I am using now so the bright red trans tint will have a different effect.  I am not stuck on that excat color but something in that vein is the direction I would like to end up.  Do you think this is best done as a red colored finish or do you think the wood itself was dyed and then a finish applied?  BTW, good idea trying to get close to the color using other stock, I have a few other veneer pieces laying around, thanks.

Best,
Ed

mlundy57

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #68 on: 16 Dec 2016, 09:23 pm »
Ed,

Those speakers look a lot redder on my computer monitor than they did on my phone. I'd still experiment a little with the color.

Dye will penetrate the wood while a tinted finish will sit on top of the wood, especially if you have a shellac wash coat underneath the finish.

Which is best dye, tinted topcoat or a combination of both, depends on the look you are going for. If you want both the red and the character of the wood to show, go with dye. Tinting the top coat will obscure some of the wood grain.

For example, when I want a really black plinth I dye the wood black, with the blackest dye I can find (India ink) then I add black TransTint to the topcoat material. I don't see much of the wood grain, enough to know it is wood and not MDF, but it sure is black.

With that beautiful burl I wouldn't tint the topcoat.

Mike

ebag4

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #69 on: 17 Dec 2016, 02:01 am »
Thanks for that Mike.   :thumb:

Best,
Ed

fishboat

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Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #70 on: 17 Dec 2016, 03:12 pm »
Ed..Good to have a reference pic for color, as you've posted above.

I have a number of comments on your proposed finish schedule, but I have a few things on my plate today..the first being the clearing of a fresh dump of snow.

In general the schedule looks very reasonable..one comment..ok..maybe two..

>Be very careful of the bright red transtint..unless they've changed it in recent years, I think you'll find it closer to stop sign red than what you're looking for.  The Homestead site (http://homesteadfinishingproducts.com/transtint-liquid-dyes/) has sample images, but I remember it MUCH redder than the image they show.  You might consider #6010 red mahogany or #6003 reddish brown.

>another thought..if you went with a (one) shellac based coat on wood (pops grain and seals it) and then follow with General Finishes Georgian Cherry gel stain, then wipe off nearly dry, then shellac & topcoat.  I can post some pics when I find them.  The GF gel stains may use dyes for color..by the look of them..very clean colors like dyes. The georgian cherry is one of my favs, though it may be too winey-red for what you're looking for..but they have other colors.  Here's some sample colors

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/b3/51/03/b35103704ec300fb043ffa3e6d9a777f.jpg

Easy to work with on top of shellac and forgiving in application.

I'll be back..stuff to do..

ebag4

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #71 on: 19 Dec 2016, 12:35 am »
Thanks FB, interested in the remainder of your comments.  Meanwhile, I have been experimenting with a few samples.  Here are a few pics, I like mixing the Transtint with the denatured alcohol better than the water.  The first and second pics are a scrap I used the Transtint/water mix, followed by spray shellac, and a couple of coats of arm-r-seal gloss.  The last pic is of a piece of Sapele and a piece of the plane tree Burl wiped with the Transtint mixed with denatured alcohol.  I have done several Pommele Sapele projects, I never considered dying it, but it appears to take the tint very well.







Best,
Ed

ebag4

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #72 on: 19 Dec 2016, 02:24 am »
A little more progress made, front, back and short wings left.  I really like the bright red on the Sapele, not as much on the plane tree Burl, I made need to order another color of Transtint, maybe the mahogany.

A couple of pics for your amusement:





Best,
Ed

jseipp

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Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #73 on: 19 Dec 2016, 02:33 am »
Those look amazing, Ed.  I wish that I had the kind of sage input others here have offered, but I can only admire your work while learning from both you and from them. 

I know that you will end up with true treasures, made by your own hands.  It is a privilege to see their development. 

fishboat

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Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #74 on: 19 Dec 2016, 02:09 pm »
Ed..good progress.  Testing is a big deal.  I've spent an entire week+ futzing with samples before I get to where I want to go. 

I agree with your comments on the last sample pic.  A rich red can look gorgeous..pinky in color..not so much.  Using alcohol as the dye carrier..also a good choice as long as it doesn't bother the veneer adhesive.  The dye-carrier often comes down to personal preference as the dye application is forgiving in any case.  With veneer being touchy to much sanding(due to it being very thin), and water often raising grain &  requiring sanding, alcohol avoids those issues.  Also..also..great practice to do the full potential finish schedule on a sample from wood to dye to shellac to topcoats.  This reduces any surprises.

Regarding your finish schedule:

1) Mix bright red trans tint with alcohol and apply to veneer, follow with light sanding, reapply if needed(?)

Comment: Bright red or whatever you end up with.  Alcohol is fine and sanding may not be needed.

2) Apply blonde shellac from spray can (does this need to be sanded and applied more than once?)

Comment: As I mentioned earlier, with good technique(start spraying before you pass over the surface and stop after you're past the surface-edge..using more cans is better than taking the chance on messing up) you may be in good shape with spray can shellac.  Your overall surfaces you'll be spraying are right-sized for a spray can.  Doing a larger table (flat surface) with a spray can..won't work as it'll be too tough to get a uniform appearance.  One good coat of shellac will probably be ok to seal the surface.  "Good" meaning a continuous thin coat of shellac without it getting too thick or too thin..making it discontinuous.  Subjective I know..it's a "know it when you see it" thing.  You might practice a little on cardboard with good lighting to examine what you're doing while it's wet. You'll see what "right" looks like.  Shellac dries fast and offers little opportunity for 'fixing' things. If you try to fix it, it'll just get worse.  Shellac can be removed with a wet rag (alcohol), but this may impact the dye underneath.  It's a slippery slope..it's best to just not mess up.   Again..one coat should be fine and a little very light sanding (300-400 grit) will smooth it out.  Use a sanding block to keep an even pressure overall, and be very careful on the edges. 

3)Apply Arm-R-Seal gloss, multiple coats, sanding with progressively finer sandpaper between coats

Comment:  Sure.  A practice run with applying AR-Seal on a wider surface with multiple coats may be time well spent.  Good technique matters here too to get an even appearance. Maybe you have a piece of cheap maple-veneered plywood laying around?  Do the full desired-finish schedule on it.  Don't worry so much about what the dye looks like (maple blotches badly)..focus on the topcoat appearance-development-technique.  Typically..2-3ish coats of AR-Seal is plenty for a natural look and great protection.  More than that will start to build up. It depends on what you're after.  I've not done more than 4 coats with AR-Seal.  You might try the blue, lint-free, pattern-free, paper-like rolls of shop towels (home depot?) as the applicator.  Avoid any in-towel embossed patterns as that pattern will end up in your finish at some point. I often burn the finish soaked towels right away..fast-safe way to get rid of them. Oily rags are hazardous..

_____________

More off the top of my head thoughts..

Your burl vs sapele image tells the tale to some extent.  The chatoyance available in the sapele offers many opportunities to finish light, dark, or in between and the contrast/depth will still be there.  The burl-grain looks to have more of a flat-monotone appearance in that it accepts dye in a more uniform manner(little contrast).  When the grain has a flat (no chatoyance) appearance..I've never been able to wake it up and get chatoyance/contrast from it, no matter what I've tried...with one, sort of exception.  I've worked on quarter-sawn sycamore that has the flat appearance of your burl..beautiful grain, but no glow.  On wood like this you (I) just make the most of what you see in the wood. I would be careful with going too dark in dye-color as you'll start to lose the detail in the wood you have..it'll get dark and all look somewhat the same.  Of course, the 40-coat high gloss finish on the goal-pics you posted can make "dark-low-contrast" look spectacular.   

One option you might consider.  I worked out a path to a "Michaels Cherry" mission finish on q-sawn white oak that I like a lot and I've used color variations on that path a number of times with good results. I sand the wood, then apply Transtint #6001 Honey Amber.  The result is a piece of furniture that is canary-yellow..it's un-nerving the first time you do it. Then comes a coat of shellac to seal it in. Then (for Michaels Cherry look..reddish medium brown) wipe on the General Finishes Georgian Cherry gel stain, wipe dry at 90 degrees to grain(keeps dark gel in grain crevasses), let dry, optionally hit it with shellac to seal it, then topcoat.   I've used the 6001>shellac>different color gel stain route too..looks nice.   You end up with an appearance of the yellow highlights under the first coat of shellac toned by the overall color of the gel stain.  In general some "wood-level highlights" are added where none existed.  This path might be worth a shot in a sample...  Below is a pic of this path on mahogany..not a great pic, but it's better than nothing(on left 6001 yellow dye covered with shellac, on right the gel stain added on top of yellow/shellac):


 
Another lousy pic of a bath vanity, q-sawn white oak>6001 yellow dye>shellac>brown gel stain>shellac>acrylic topcoat:



As you know..there's an infinite number of options/combinations..I just use my gut and go with it..

ebag4

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #75 on: 20 Dec 2016, 02:59 am »
Thanks John, I hope that I can get this finish to look decent, still a way to go.

Thanks FB, testing is the only way I will know what it will look like.  I am making some headway, I was not using a high enough concentratiion of dye, it's looking better now.  I have also tried the dye on top of a coat of shellac, that looked good although this seems like the wrong way to apply it since the shellac is somewhat sealing the wood and keeping the dye from penetrating.







Thanks also for the oily rag note, good call.

Best,
Ed

mlundy57

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #76 on: 20 Dec 2016, 05:11 am »
Ed,

The second to the last sample is looking nice. You are losing the little dark to light brown contrast but the harder grain between the figure is being highlighted. This sets off the swirly pattern of the burl nicely.

If you do end up with the spray shellac uneven you can pad it out. You want a 3/4 or even 1/2 pound cut for this. That means getting some dewaxed blonde shellac in a can and thinning it with alcohol or mixing up some from flakes. You want the pad to be on the dry side and you start out using very light strokes. Go back and forth over the surface until the pad dries out. As it dries out you apply more pressure.

You start each stroke like a plane landing at one end of the piece and end the stroke like a plane taking off at the other end of the piece. Keep the pad moving at all times. This will remelt the shellac and smooth it out.

Mike   

yardbird

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Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #77 on: 20 Dec 2016, 12:19 pm »
I've had good luck with this kind of process as well. i use primarily water borne dyes but they will raise the grain. I typically add the shellac by wiping with a cotton rag- very easy and i prefer this over spraying. Make sure you use shellac without wax. The Zinser Sealcoat works fine and is much cheaper than mixing your own. I like the cherry and oak craftsman gels sold by Rockler (made by General). Sealing with a wipe on has worked well for me (General Arm R All is great). I typically do a satin finish. PITA but nice looking.

fishboat

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Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #78 on: 20 Dec 2016, 06:43 pm »
Ed..your samples are looking great..very rich appearance.  You'll want the dye to go directly on the wood as it'll accent the grain much more than applying it on top of a shellac coat.  Shellac is very much a sealer.   As you're seeing..the dye on the wood, once dry, looks like mud..but once you hit it with shellac it really lights up.  Dye + shellac is a great combo.  Oil can pop grain, but it looks darker...shellac seems to capture light better.

I trust you're keeping very good records of how you're mixing up testing solutions so you can repeat the dye-concentration once you decide it's "show time" to do the speakers.  I use a 0.00 gram scale.  Once you do the speakers you'll either need to be real sure you have plenty of dye-alcohol made up to complete both speakers or an accurate pathway (scale is the easiest/most accurate) to make up more if you run out.

Looks/sounds like you're on your way..looking forward to seeing them when you're done.


ebag4

Re: Veneer Question/ NX Ottica MTM-H Frame Servo Bass Build
« Reply #79 on: 27 Dec 2016, 12:45 am »
Thanks guys, making slow progress .  I like the second sample but I want to go a little lighter, I know how I got to that one so I will back it off a bit.

I was able to work on them a bit today, pics below.  I am down to two sheets of veneer so I decided to lay out what remains to be done, it's close, can't have many mistakes.

I had to do a few small seams today.  I know some have had issues with seams when using heatlock so I have included a couple pics of the seams below.  I used this method on an insert I did on my V1 crossover covers a few years ago, I did the same today and the seams came out tight.  I simply cut the piece to insert an 1/8" longer than needed, when ironing I butt the edge of the iron tight to the edge of the lower veneer and the on top of the edge.  I then sand off the top veneer until the overlap is gone, I use 220 to take it off slowly so I don't overs sand, I'm happy with the outcome.









Best,
Ed