Hand Tools Archive

Subject:
Anyone do a full french polish?

David Weaver
On a piece of furniture? By that, I mean the traditional process starting with pumice and ending burnishing the final finish with a pad, shellac and oil?

I've never considered it with a guitar, but the mahogany bodies that I have for the next four guitars would benefit from the process. I'm guessing if I want to spray lacquer, I can do the pore filling with pumice and dewaxed shellac.

I did the process on a couple of test pieces this weekend (shellac and pumice with shellac finish, no lacquer on top) and it works dandy and has an interesting hand-done look because of the thinness of the finish (it doesn't look faceted and perfectly level like a built finish that's leveled after a large build).

I wouldn't ever sell a guitar with only shellac on it, but I'm not selling anything that I make so it'll be plenty durable for me.

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