"Unstaining" a strat

If you have a string instrument of any kind that needs fixing, a mistake you made in building a new instrument that you need to "disappear," or a question about the ethics of altering an older instrument, ask here. Please note that it will be much easier for us to help you decide on the best repair method if you post some pictures of the problem.
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Mike Sayre
Posts: 15
Joined: Mon Oct 07, 2013 9:15 am

"Unstaining" a strat

Post by Mike Sayre »

I bought an ash strat body, stained a dark color, and then naturally decided it was too dark. Any hope for removing stain in a way that I can a)go natural b) stain a lighter color? Or am I going to be applying a nice opaque color?

Steve Senseney
Posts: 673
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2012 2:45 pm

Re: "Unstaining" a strat

Post by Steve Senseney »

Painting is a real option.

Sanding will lighten the color.

You can try a bleaching agent. This might help.

End grain will absorb more of the stain, and it will be hard to get out of the end grain in an even manner.

This might be a "burst" type of finish option.

Of course, practice on scrap first!

Clay Schaeffer
Posts: 1381
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:04 pm

Re: "Unstaining" a strat

Post by Clay Schaeffer »

A light sanding may remove most of the stain, as Steve mentioned. Using the solvent the stain was dissolved in and wiping with clean rags might remove a bit more, and even out what stain remains.

Michael Lewis
Posts: 1467
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 1:22 am
Location: Northern California USA

Re: "Unstaining" a strat

Post by Michael Lewis »

Lake Placid blue, arctic white, classic black, . . . . . . . . .

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