This is the place to ask Michael Messer and other forum members questions relating to National, Dobro and other resophonic musical instruments. Also questions and comments relating to National, Dobro, Supro, Valco amplifiers. No commercial advertising. To ask Mark Makin questions about anything in the Palm Trees, Senoritas & Rocket Ships thread, start a new thread in National Avenue
Speaking of decals I’ve never been able to find any replacements for a couple vintage Nationals I have that don’t have any decal at all . I guess any original partial decal should be left as is - but I have a nice old polychrome that could use one . Back in the eighties these guys came in our shop and photographed some up close headstock shots of old Martin Gibson and Fenders and came back with some excellent decals . Finally I think they got a cease and desist order . They were perfect . Doesn’t seem to be any vintage type National decals around and the NRP versions are larger I believe . Don’t think they offer them anyway .
I haven't done anything to the decal other than wet it on.
I don't know how to add lacquer without it looking too thick and obvious, or without getting it past the decal itself and make the headstock look like it has "overspray". It does look pretty good as it is.
Vintage decals are thicker - the gold actually looks painted on like a thicker layer. Maybe a layer of lacquer, just over the decal itself would make it appear thicker too ?
Hi Snakey, use the stromboli (whatever it's called) that we use to polish our guitars with. Couple of light sprays will seal it in, soften the new look and protect it. It will also blend with the headstock finish. Did mine no problem.
It's not a fake decal Michael, at least in the circumstances we're posting about. My 14 fret Duolian was as you know a wreck when I found it. Once I got it playing ok I did think long and hard about leaving it in its found condition, house paint and all. Part of its history. But as it was so complete apart from its truly dreadful paint finish I decided to restore it to its original condition as near as I could without altering any of the original parts. Nut was ok, tuners oiled up ok, lemon oil on fretboard ok,biscuit and bridge in really bad beat up condition. I refinished the biscuit finding its PAF under all the grunge and there was enough left of the bridge for me to level it off and cut new notches. Using Mark's book as inspiration I repainted in a gold Duco style finish. I now had a completely original Duolian except for the paint finish. It was missing its decal so using Mark's book again I made one appropriate for the model and year which I thought finished off the guitar perfectly. None of this was done to 'fake' the appearance. In my mind I had restored a neglected and abused guitar (still part of its history) to something that was an attractive but above all playable musical instrument. Glad its previous owner didn't throw it in a skip, which most civilians would have done! There!
Post by Michael Messer on Jun 20, 2020 17:01:10 GMT
Restoring a vintage guitar with a non original finish is a whole different thing completely. It is then absoutely part of its history. Whether it is Bonzo's Duolian, Bukka White's Duolian, or my blue fiddle edge Dobro, they are not trying to be exactly like the originals.
I've always thought that Guitars should have a "log book". I have an old Gibson where I know it's entire life history from 1937. I'm compiling a book to keep with the Guitar which will include it's history and any repairs I've had carried out.
It's actually a dramatic and interesting story. I'll provide a link to it when it's complete.
I also have a complete history with my Style 0 which is great but with a bit less drama.