Waterslide Decal fitting
The design is on a very thin but durable film and is waterproof , UV resistant and you can overfinish with Nitro Lacquer or Poly or Acrylic to fully protect the decal
Please note you must use this on a headstock that has been previously lacquered NOT ON BARE WOOD !
To obtain the best adhesion I would advise lacquering the headstock face before you apply the decal and wait until completely dry. I often use cellulose on mine which dries really quickly and is in my opinion way better than acrylic. Acrylic or polyester is safer to use however as cellulose can react when spraying over some other lacquers .So you are not sure what type of finish you have on your neck ,try a tiny test amount first on an area that won’t be seen , like the heel of the neck .
1/ Once the surface of the headstock is prepared remove the protective tissue over the Decal and trim the Decal as required – there is picture showing trimming a logo below.
2/ Next place the Decal in a shallow bowl of Luke warm water (not hot - otherwise you end up with something resembling a sad curled up spider ). You might find it useful to put a VERY tiny amount washing up liquid into the water as this enables you to reposition the Decal easier until you get it exactly where you require it. I also use a water mister to spray a little extra water on to the headstock.
3/ After about 20-30 seconds the backing paper should be moveable relative to the decal .Place the Decal and backing on the headstock roughly where you intend it to go. Place a finger on one end of the Decal and side the backing paper out and away at the other end. At this stage the decal should still be movable. Now position exactly were you want it and now VERY gently dab with some tissue to absorb the excess water. Remove any bubbles by holding it securely at one end and VERY gently smooth away from where you are holding it with some tissue. Be careful not to rub too hard at this stage.
4/ It will be fairly well dried out in about an hour but wait at least 24 hours before lacquer finishing. I find 2 to 3 THIN coats are enough to seal the design leaving 1 hour or so in between then leave a further 24 hours before lacquering with more thin coats and then you can gradually increase the thickness of those coats – allow time in between for the lacquer to dry and harden .
5/ If you want a completely flat surface it will take a lot more work .Leave for a week or so and then you should be able to carefully rub down the high spot where the decal is with some 400 grit wet and dry paper wrapped around a rubbing block then re–lacquer again . Keep repeating this process allowing plenty of time for the lacquer to harden in between taking care not to rub into the decal of course . This does take a long time but the end results are worth it. Use very fine grit paper to smooth it down before the final coats to get a really great result !
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