Touching-up a candy apple finish

Electric Guitar | Fender Stratocaster, Candy Apple
image of Fender Candy Apple
Before repair
image of Fender Candy Apple
After repair

Touching-up a damaged candy-apple finish is one of the most difficult repairs to do. An inexperienced craftsman could turn a small scratch into a nightmare.

In this case, I filled the gap first and then applied an undercoat. After the undercoat settled, I sprayed gold dust and then applied clear lacquer to cover the gold. Then I sprayed transparent red, and finally, clear lacquer. Sounds simple, but actually it isn’t, because each stage of the operation must be executed perfectly. A failure to demand perfection at every step produces an inferior final result. In this kind of repair, the most important tool to use is patience. I’ve seen many guitars that had to be completely refinished because of a small dent caused by the lack of skill or patience on the part of the craftsman. I usually avoid requests to repair such flaws of others’ work, especially for precious, high-value, vintage guitars like this one. But I’ll do it in some cases on special requests.

Unless you’ve experienced this kind of repair nightmare, it’s hard to understand the risk and effort involved in such a job. Ultimately, a perfect repair can escape notice, and may not convey any idea of the work required to achieve it. But a scratch left unrepaired screams out for attention.

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