There she be! In all her glory the “Epiphone Les Paul Junior Custom Tiger”. Next up a cheapo Samick Strat© copy. I had ordered a new pick guard for that one but, stupid cheapo manufacturers… They decided to make theirs sub-standard so I have to use the old one that’s already on there that has been hacked at to retro-fit some “custom” parts one too many times.
Back from the clearcoat guy! 50 dollars well spent… There are a bunch of things I would have done differently in hindsight, but I am getting nothing but positive reactions so I am just going to pretend I am awesone! Well I am awesone of course, but… My baby is now in the guitar shop, she is waiting for the final set up. Yup I could have done that myself (although I am not super-dooper good at it) but after all the time I wasted on getting this thing painted I think it is well worth it having a pro do the final string up, check the intonation, action and other misc. stuff. So the next picture you will see, this guitar will actually have strings!
Another nice thing about bringing this guitar to a shop… The “pro” that is working on my guitar is none other than Ernie from ET Guitars who seriously asked me if I could paint a body for one of his guitars! Wow!
A few lessons I learned doing this project:
While I made sure to tape of the neck pocket so no paint could get in, I didn’t sand the neck down enough. So after applying paint to the neck, it still didn’t fit right and I had to sand it back down.
Auto Air paint works much differently than Createx. While the former has superior adhesion, the latter levels out better. If you want to understand what that means (and why it matters), come talk to me.
Restarting the same paint project 3 times leads to massive paint build up. As such the hardware was hard to re-fit. The pickup is substantially raised from where it used to sit. The bushings that hold the bolts to hold the wrap around stop-tail bridge were hard to get back in. As were the bushings for the tuners.
While the 50 dollars spent on the clear were worth it, it still isn’t thick enough to level the paint edges.
Live and learn!
Here is something that has me pondering for the afternoon. When does posting stuff on Facebook become a legal problem? I would really like the input of some lawyers to hear their take on what happened to me this arvo. Here it is in all its glory. Pay attention as this gets confusing really quickly… Or as they say “quick smart”.
A while ago the missus and yours truly bought a car. Lets just say it was under less than ideal circumstances and we feel treated less than appropriately by the seller of the car. Ok, I will come right out and say it. We were (so we feel) tricked into paying far more than we should have. We have since returned the car to the finance company. We tried to make the dealer buy it back, but they didn’t want it (yeah…). My wife placed a message on Facebook how disgusted she was with the whole deal. She tagged me in that message. That’s put the status update in front of some 300+ people, even with our very strict privacy settings on Facebook. I didn’t think anything of that until the message was being responded to by the person that sold us the car. read more…
Well, nothing I can do now but wait. The body of the guitar that started out life as an Epiphone Les Paul Junior is at the auto-body shop. The paint I use requires a 2K clear and that shit is just too nasty to spray yourself. Not to mention it requires some tools more expensive than I have… In case you were wondering, 2K clear is an epoxy-based, 2 part (meaning it has a chemical hardener in it) laquer. It’s hard as nails (used on cars normally) and doesn’t really promote the natural sound of the wood. But hey, we are talking about a 200 dollar guitar here…
Now it’s time to finish-coat the neck. I am doing that myself! Playability rears its head here and I am very particular in what I like in a guitar neck. It needs to be buttery smooth, and that is something no automotive shop will accomplish. I use Minwax rub-on poly-urethane in a semigloss finish for that. It goes on with a rag… That makes life SO SO SO much easier…
I looked up the serial number for my axe HERE. According to that resource, it was manufactured in 2011, in April to be exact. In a factory unknown to mankind (likely China). It was number18988. Holy shit! That’s a lot of guitars. No you get why I painted it right? Even with the crappy job I did, I probably doubled it’s value!
I started sanding down a Samick Stratocaster® copy for my next project…
I can’t believe the amount of mishappery involved in this project, anything that could possibly go wrong, Murphy’s law! While I had to endure, paint runs, over spray incorrect masking, paint lifting under tape, heavy-handedness by yours truly… and a whole heap more (try cutting tape and cutting into the paint instead, for starters) you get to see the progress photos without all the crap. Read: I edited out all the funk and made myself look like a pro!
In the midst of rumors about Kodak planning to file for bankruptcy, the other photography once-giant Polaroid just announced a new product, dubbed the smart camera. It’s a camera, as you would expect from Polaroid, that packs an interesting punch. It’s powered by Android, which means it can do all the fun things you can do with… wait for it… A phone!
Camera makers have found themselves skating on very thing ice for a while. Every new phone (and a lot that can be had for “free” with a mobile contract) comes equipped with a camera that in many cases works just as well or better than what is available as a stand-alone camera at the same price point. Camera sales are slowing down or flat and most of that lost business goes to phone manufacturers.
Maybe not an entirely fair comparison, but as an example of how quickly things change… In late 2003 Canon announced the Digital Rebel (D300), a digital SLR with a list price of 899 USD (without a lens). The camera is capable of shooting 6.3 megapixels photos. In late 2011 Apple introduced the iPhone 4S. It features an 8 megapixel camera and in most parts of the world is free with a 24-month phone contract.
Something that has increasingly irked me as of late is the censorship that several web companies think they have to impose on the world. Who the hell died and made these people God, I don’t know, but it seems that every time I turn around my cozy little world is robbed of more of its freedom.
If you use Instagram (or anything on the net really) you are probably familiar with hash-tags. By inserting a # (that’s a pound sign in the US) in front of a word you let the web service you are using know that you want what you just wrote, recorded, photographed to be easily found by people who are searching the internet (or a part thereof) for the word immediately following the #. It’s an indexing mechanism of sorts. Very rudimentary, but it works. That is untill you want to share a photograph on Instagram and index it on the word “ass”. By the way did I mention this article is not safe for work? Oops! Too late…
While Instagram lets you type in #ass and gives you no grief about it, try to find a picture tagged with #ass. According to Instagram there aren’t any! I know that to be bogus because I tagged my photos (not all of them) with #ass. read more…
I promise, the next article I write will be about something else. Having said that, there are 2 iPhones in my household and both recently got upgraded to the shiny new iOS5. So here are some of my thoughts.
The upgrade process: After using 2 Android phones for the past 3 years before switching to the iPhone, I have to say this is the worst upgrade experience I ever had. I am used to over the air, in place upgrades that, at the most, take 20 minutes. This one had my phone connected to my computer for over an hour. I got lucky! The spouse had to restart the upgrade 3 times making it a several hour ordeal (that somehow deleted all the music from the phone).
And unless the upgrade drastically changed the phone’s file-system, there should absolutely be no need to have to re-download all my apps from iTunes to the iPhone. Speaking of which, even after a full sync and backup my phone could not remember the folder structure I had created so it just started randomly throwing apps at my home screen where previously it was perfectly organized. Bad Apple!
Shiny new toy: Not quite! I love the new iOS, but mostly because it finally does things in a way that make sense to us old-school Android users. What do you know? A status bar that you can pull down to see your latest notifications (which calls you missed, who messaged you on Facebook) actually makes sense! Android users knew that years ago. If like me, you recently switched from an Android phone, iOS5 is a must-have for the “new” notification system alone.
The new camera features are pretty sweet. Finally you can use a real button (the volume up in this case) to snap a picture. The number of times I have been carefully framing a photograph only to find out that the way I am holding the phone doesn’t allow me to reach the on-screen shutter button makes this a really welcome addition. You can finally lock the exposure. Hurray! Unfortunately the iPhone’s native camera app insists on combining this with the focus point. Hello! Earth to Cupertino! It’s back to Camera+ for me, but I guess a lot of folks will find locking the focus more important than the exposure.
The improved weather widget FINALLY shows the weather based on current location rather than making me select a city. Cool! No really it is, I just checked the local weather and it’s quite chilly! The new “Reminders” app is all but pointless. Putting an actual sticky note on your Retina display works better.
And what is with not being able to throw the “News Stand” app in a folder? With not a single subscription I’d want to read, I don’t want this thing on my home screen any time soon. Problem is, I can’t get rid of it.
Fix that Apple! Meanwhile, now that the iPhone finally does stuff the way I am used to from my HTC Hero, I am happy as a clam (that ended up in chowder).