Buying an Epiphone to repaint - advice

valeparkvalepark Frets: 1
edited May 2019 in Making & Modding
Alright gents

I've been after an Epi Supernova for years but unfortunately, being left handed, it's really difficult to pick stuff like this up. Hard enough finding mass produced guitars in LH before going after the limited run gear. Epi only made 1000 and I'm pretty sure all of those were made RH - I understand they made two manufacturing runs, one in the nineties with a normal bridge and a darker, yellowed, faded paint finish and one in the last 10 or so years with a sharper bright paint finish and a  locktune Tune-o-matic, neither of which unfortunately for me were made left handed. 

These are some of the Supernova variants - 

The yellowed finish looks more distinguished but the brighter cleaner modern finish could look great too if done right with a dark enough maybe halfway between the two?

As far as I can tell LH hollowbody stuff has literally not been manufactured for years, so I'm toying with the idea of buying a second hand Sheraton off ebay/gumtree and then paying a Luthier to sand it down and repaint in the style above. I can live without the fancy bridge. Pickguard can come off and be replaced with a pearl tortoishell one off ebay or have one made up. I've found two, both for £500 which seems a bit optimistic to me but then again it is quite hard to find archtop stuff in LH, although I'm sure I could talk both sellers down to closer to £400. Below is a 1995 one.

Alternatively I've, with great difficulty, found a new cherry Gibson 339 that's obviously a lot more than £500 but is relatively reasonably priced and very, very nice...In case of that one I think I'd keep the cherry neck, sides and back and just have the top repainted. Not sure how I feel about Frankensteining a lovely 2019 Gibson though.

My quick research suggests £350+ for the work I need doing. Plus a few quid for a full set up and checkout if it does end up being a fairly old second hand guitar, it could well need the frets looking at.

Anyone got any experience of repainting/refinishing like this? Price range about right? Complications? Risks? I realise it's a process that takes months rather than days with the drying time and the multiple coats that have to go on, as well the paint work itself being intricate. 

Alternatively might it be easier, cheaper and quicker to buy a genuine old RH Supernova and just have the bridge and nut work done, taking the pickguard off, accepting the knobs will be in the wrong place and maybe locking them so my strumming arm doesn't accidentally keep moving them, and converting it to LH?

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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 48048
    edited May 2019
    I have no idea what the quality is like, but would it be easier to start with one of these, re-paint the headstock and replace any hardware as necessary?

    There's a reasonable chance that they come out of the same factory and the quality is actually fine...

    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone." - Walt Kowalski

    "Just because I don't care, doesn't mean I don't understand." - Homer Simpson

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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 6475
    Have you ever tried playing an example of the Supernova, flipped upside-down, just for a test? It might prove educational.

    Within the last five weeks, I have had my paws on an 2013 Epiphone Matt Heafy and a 2017 Gibson Studio. Both played nicely. Both showed signs of corner cutting to keep their prices down. There was never any doubting which one was American. 

    Unless you sincerely believe that the sun shines out of Noel Gallagher's rectum, look for a guitar in a mundane finish and just buy it a Union Flag pickguard.

    Be seeing you.
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  • sawyersawyer Frets: 568
    Could one of those company's that vinyl wrap cars and vans be able to do this?
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