Finishing a Warmoth Swamp Ash Thinline Telecaster body


Hi guys
I just bought a thinline Swamp Ash Telecaster body. A Sreamin Deal one. As far as I can tell it is not finnished. It does look and feel very very smooth though.
I do not want to spray it. I am thinking about doing a simple color (pigment, alcohol and shellac) and then applying a number of amber shellac coats with a pad (and some vegetable oil).
I don't care if it damges fairly quick and it does not need to be high mirror gloss. Going for a bit of a vintage feel.
Any advsie on the order of things? grain filling? Sanding sealer? I will do some tests on some scrap pieces of ash.
I have some ochre and red pigment. Maybe mix in a bit of red in the ochre to get in the general direction of butterscotch/amber?
Greets from the Netherlands
"Very smooth" and "unfinished ash" are not things that I would put in the same sentence while declaring it definitely not finished. Can you send a screen shot of the order options from your order history?

If you happened to order the "DIY finish option" then it has a sealer coat which means that stains or dyes with an oil finish is not possible. You would need to spray with a transparent color over the sealer.
Whenever I've finished swamp ash, I've used a neutral color grain filler from home depot, then finished with wipe on poly or tru-oil. With the home depot stuff it takes a lot of time, a lot of coats, of filler to get it smooth, so there might be a better material for filling. I was able to get all the pores filled, but I couldn't get the surface mirror smooth, but I just accepted it as the character of swamp ash. Pores were filled though.

Swamp ash has plenty of character for a clear or transparent finish.

I've never used vegetable oil as part of the finishing process. I've used it on my wife's cutting boards when there's no mineral oil, but it's only temporary when used alone. I don't think it's great because it's biological, rather then mineral based, as a cutting board moisturizer. I've never heard of it being used with shellac.

Take lot's of pics, I'll be watching this one!
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Hi Rick
The oil is just needed to smooth the application of the shellac. It is a lubricant as it were.
Yeah. Loads of videos on shellac and French pollishing. Drop of olive oil to lubricate the cotton or linnen aplicator. Suprised me as well.
Dog hair finish means a dark color coat, then white or other contrasting grain filler. Evidently it looks like a dog's hair shedding on your clothes?

Well, boiled linseed is a polymerizing oil. It takes a while, but it happens. It behaves quite differently from light food oils or mineral oil.

Don't worry about the food oils going rancid. If you're doing a traditional french polish, the wee bit that remains on the guitar when you're done finishing is stuck to the guitar (combined with the shellac, perhaps penetrating the wood some) in a manner that inhibits spoilage. Several hundred years of instrument makers using almond or walnut oil or similar products bear this out.

Or use mineral oil.
If you are doing a French polish type finish on ash, I would suggest exploring the usage of pumice as a grain filler. If you do a Google search for "pumice for grain filler", you will find some information.

Ash, even if it may feel smooth, has many open pores and without a filler, you will struggle to get a good finish.

Komt u uit Nederland?
Yeah i saw that a lot. Good indight that it feeks smooth but is not. I have a woodfiller from Rustins.
Ja Den Haag. Geen U hoor, Groet Steven
Rustins Grain filler is a good choice.

Ik ben Engels, maar ik heb in Amsterdam gewoond en woon nu in België. Mijn overleden vrouw was Nederlandse.