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Emtech 6000 Peeling off
Guitar Hack

Total Topics: 19
Total Posts: 41
I finished my guitar with CA as a pore filler then put on 2 coats of shellac and sanded after each application. I then put on 8 coats of Emtech 6000 on the body and 12 on the neck. I let it burn in for over 110 hours. Today I started sanding with a random orbital sander and didn't have too many problems on the back and sides of the guitar. The Emtech peeled off in a couple places. When I went to sand the neck the Emtech 6000 completely peeled off the mahogany neck. It did not peel off of the rosewood headstock.

It looks like I might have to put another coat of shellac on it and go to nitrocellulose. I will try and put CA in the part of the infinsh on the body that peeled off and then another couple coats of Emtech 6000 and lightly sand.

Has anyone else had any problems with Emtech? Any advice on what to do now?

Sep 27, 09 | 9:34 am
Ken Cierp

Total Topics: 58
Total Posts: 2262
Yikes! I am very sorry you had this bad experience but it points out why it is best to stick to a complete manufactured/engineered finishing system. There is no doubt the adhesion is going to fail on the Rosewood too if you had peeling after 110 hours of cure time.

There is no telling what kind of "gas off" or resin oxidation occured with the CA, if shellac did not stick and provide a good barrier and sealer coat its not likely any product will do the job. It is my opinion that you have the right idea I'd strip back all the WB Emtech use a lacquer solvent based vinyl sealer (not shellac and top coat with nitro lacquer. $.02


Kenneth Michael Guitars .est 1978

Sep 27, 09 | 9:47 am
Guitar Hack

Total Topics: 19
Total Posts: 41
I have had very little peeling on the rosewood and Spruce and I think I'm going to put a little bit of shellac on those areas and put a couple more coats of Emtech on them and see if that works. The neck I'm just going to reshellac and spray with nitro. If the problem isn't resolved on the body after that I will strip and apply nitro.

Sep 27, 09 | 11:20 am
Guitar Hack

Total Topics: 19
Total Posts: 41
Well It's beginning to look like I was maybe a little too agressive with the finish. I started out with the Random Orbital Sander and was using it to get the high spots down and in so doing using just the front edge and that appears to have caused some burn through on the finish.

After looking around at what others do with their finishes it appears that I should put the Random orbital sander aside until all the high spots are brought down by hand.

Nothing like learning the hard way. I seem to learn the best that way.

Sep 28, 09 | 3:16 pm
Bill Cory

Total Topics: 158
Total Posts: 3584
We all do, darn it.

Sep 28, 09 | 4:22 pm
Guitar Hack

Total Topics: 19
Total Posts: 41
I want to apologize to Emtech 6000 as I do not want to besmirch there name. After doing a little more reading on the subject I have found Emtech 6000 eminently easy to work with. Just need to do most if not all the work by hand at least the early part.

I have since sanded my top smooth with 220 grit sandpaper then added 3 more coats and smooth sanding in between with 400 Grit Sandpaper and I now have the top where I want it. It looks good and I will next use 1500 grit sandpaper on it then 2000 grit abralon pad with a little alcohol and the random orbital sander.---unless someone with experience thinks I should do this by hand as well.

I had one little dip in the wood that a sanded a little too deeply when fixing a mistake and it filled in well with the Emtech and you can't tell there was ever a dip there.

I like working with this stuff. You just have to be patient and you will be rewarded.

Oct 02, 09 | 6:19 pm

Total Topics: 1
Total Posts: 6
I am new to this forum, and would like to offer my opinion. I have refinished all types of guitars with all types of finishes over the past twenty-five years for a couple of collectors here in town. I simply never used any type of power sander for finishing. I hand sand with maybe as course as 600, but I usually start with 1500. It really does not take that long. Enjoy this quality time with your "creation". Hand sanding rarely takes more than a couple of hours, which is small potatoes compared that 110 hours of drying time. Power sanders regardless of grit used build up heat on the surface. That combined with it's aggressive action subjects the finish to stresses beyond their limits. I have even had the heat from a power buffing pad soften a fully cured nitro finish enough that when I turned the guitar over, the towel I had it resting on created dimples in the finish from the nap. Talk about being upset. (Surface felt fine to the touch, so it can really fool you.) I take all phases of the finishing process slow, slow, slow.

Additionally, there is the sonic aspect. Less overall finish equals better vibration. Hand sanding, beginning with finer grits required less finish to work with. So over time a person can apply less finish in the first place, which when sanded and buffed prudently results in a thinner final finish. I suspect factory techniques error on the thick side to lessen reworks during production.

Sorry for the long post, hope this helps!!

Oct 09, 09 | 9:42 am

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