Posted on January 12, 2010March 3, 2022 by Dale Phillips Review: Guitar Finishing Step-by-Step by Dan Erlewine and Don MacRostie Review: Guitar Finishing Step-by-Step by Dan Erlewine and Don MacRostie Reviewed by John Calkin Originally published in American Lutherie #61, 2000 and Big Red Book of American Lutherie Volume Six, 2013 Guitar Finishing Step-by-Step Dan Erlewine and Don MacRostie Stewart-MacDonald, 1998 ISBN 978-0964475236 The death of lacquer as an available finish was pronounced at least ten years ago. Because lacquer was so environmentally hazardous, the various levels of government were supposed to restrict its use to the point that manufacturers would find no profit in producing the stuff. Well, folks, it hasn’t happened, and lacquer remains the premier finish for most string instruments. If you’ve yet to have your first heady whiff of lacquer fumes, you should study Guitar Finishing Step-By-Step before you dive in. If your plans include the re-creation of the many factory guitar finishes, you should have this book regardless of your experience level. The book has a strange flow to it, though. There are only three stages of finish work — wood prep, finish application, and rubout. However, the plethora of tools and materials available today leave too naïve an approach open to confusion and failure. To avoid this, Erlewine and MacRostie rely on detailed description, technical information, and a degree of repetition to cover all the bases thoroughly. For instance, a description of power sanders is followed twenty pages later by a description of power sanding. Both sections include important and overlapping information. Readers who skip about in order to get on with their finish work will find themselves handicapped. Become A Member to Continue Reading This Article This article is part of our premium web content offered to Guild members. To view this and other web articles, join the Guild of American Luthiers. Members also receive 4 annual issues of American Lutherie and get discounts on products. For details, visit the membership page. If you are already a member, login for access or contact us to setup your account.