Steve's "swirl" paint job.

Discuss Steve's guitars, set-up and equipment here. This forum is not for discussing general guitar topics.
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Posts: 192
Joined: Mon May 26, 2003 4:26 pm

I was wanting to do a swirl paint job on a guitar project I'm putting together. Does anyone know how to go about doing this, and what kind of paint to use? Thanks!
Posts: 4520
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2003 10:51 am

There are many different techniques - and doing a swirl job takes a lot of time and practise.

I'd begin by checking out JEMSITE. Do a search of their forum for swirls and read comments and tips from people who have travelled down the road you're about to :)

You'll also be able to find reputable vendors there who can do it for you.

Good luck! ;)

Posts: 31
Joined: Mon May 05, 2003 12:33 am

Some of that was some of Steves blood :shock: (from what I have heard) I heard somwhere they did itby dipping the guitar into some paint. :twisted:
LGM Guitars
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2003 4:47 pm

As someone who does guitar work for a living, and someone who knows how to swirl, I will give the same advice as I give all my customers regarding swirls. Darren is the man, he did all the Ibanez guitars, and one off's for Steve. The prices appear high, but what you'll find in doing them yourself, is it really isn't all that high once you pay for materials, and all the time involved.

If you do want to attempt it yourself, that is fine, what I will warn you about, is make certain that EVERYTHING on your guitar is sealed off completely, bodies do crack :)
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Jul 10, 2003 9:03 am

What you do is take a large container (big enough to fit the body of you guitar in it) dissasemble the ENTIRE guitar.. neck, bridge, trem claw, pickguard, all of the hardware, everything. Then determine what colors your going to use and paint a base coat onto the guitar if you want, otherwise some of the wood might show. Now the swirl part. You take the container, fill it with water at least as high as the body is wide, put the body in the water, and spray the paint on top of the water (quickly!) and swirl it around the way you want. Then just pull the body out of the water and let it dry. TADAA. I'm sure this isn't the same technique that Mr. Vai has performed on his guitars but it certainly works.

~My first post here.
the third eye
Posts: 29
Joined: Tue Apr 22, 2003 6:42 pm

a small point not yet mentioned is it must be oil based paint for it to float on the water
and you're better off putting the paint in, then dipping the body, remove the paint from the surface, then pull body out
this way you don't have a layer of water between the body and the paint (better adhesion :wink: )

also i wouldn't try spraying the paint on as it would mix too much
just pour it in then mix the colours round with something

check out the swirl tutorial on too :wink:
Posts: 75
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2003 6:13 pm

Swirls look sick.
But it wouldnt look any good on my les paul.
maybe if i had a strat shape...
jonnyboy mills
Posts: 65
Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2005 1:54 pm

holy thread resurrection bat man!!!! LOL. I do guitar swirl finishes. Check my site" onclick=";return false;
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:40 pm

I believe one of the keys that is being forgotten here is that you must ad Borax to the water in order to help the paint float on top of the water and to better adhere to the guitar. It keeps the pain from dispersing and allows it to stick together when you are dipping the guitar. Every article I have read on this method says that using borax is VERY important to having a professional looking result.

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