Refinish of Yamaha P-32D
August 17, 2014 at 3:29 pm #2976
Looks really good Alan. Looking forward to find out how durable the finish isAugust 24, 2014 at 7:37 pm #3017August 24, 2014 at 8:21 pm #3018
Wow much better look, nice work Alan.August 25, 2014 at 4:49 pm #3020
I venture to guess that you will find yourself playing differently too.
Now if you could just get those pics to the higher-ups at Yamaha, so they
can see what they could be producing.August 25, 2014 at 5:24 pm #3021
Strangely enough, Kevin, it seems to play differently. This has to be just psychological, but it seems to indicate that the color may have some impact on the player. Same I suppose for fit and finish, etc. It does seem odd that melodica manufacturers wouldn’t try to give some of their better models a more conservative look.August 25, 2014 at 9:31 pm #3022
great job! big thumbs up!August 26, 2014 at 5:01 am #3028
I have to agree Alan, the way an instrument looks has a huge effect on how the sound is perceived by both player and audience.September 12, 2014 at 3:36 pm #3100
Refinish Follow-up: I’ve been playing the P-32D quite a bit and have noticed that smudges from where the thumb and fingers of my left hand sit began to show up pretty quickly. They are not noticeable unless you look for them, and the situation doesn’t appear to be getting any worse. The finish stands up well to washing with dish soap and water, but that doesn’t remove the finger and thumb prints. It might be less (or more) of an issue with another kind or color of finish. Also, though, when I carefully inspect the original finishes of the other melodicas I play regularly, there are other kinds of scratches and marks that I hadn’t noticed before. My general assessment so far is that the refinishing is successful. It meets with the approval of everyone I’ve shown it to. It also gives the melodica a bit more of a grip. Eventually I’ll post some more photos.April 30, 2015 at 2:08 am #4898
Thanks for the link to your refinishing project, Alan. I like how yours turned out.
And yes, if there is not room on my Christmas tree for AT LEAST one more melodica, I will just get 2 trees! (3 melodicas back I swore “No More!” but don’t have a Suzuki 37, or hohner pro36 …..)December 3, 2015 at 2:55 pm #6502
Has the paint stood the test of time?
LowboyJuly 29, 2016 at 4:23 pm #7433
Time for an UPDATE:
Next month it will have been two years since I refinished my Yamaha P-32D in black. In answer to Lowboy’s question, the paint job has not stood the test of time, as these photos will show. It is only very recently that I began to notice the original blue showing through in strategic locations, namely where my left hand grips and slides along the melodica and by the mouthpiece hole. I play this particular P-32 regularly and almost never with a mouthpiece. The large spot below and to the right of the mouthpiece entry is where the end rests on my typically unshaven chin; the smaller patch is typically in contact with my upper lip.
These photos make the situation look worse than it actually is, as the melodica still has its nice black look to the eyes of the player and from a distance. I could happily continue playing it as is for a few months, but I have decided to sand and refinish. This time I will sand enough to prep for a primer (which I did not use last time), and I will use a few more coats of the Krylon Satin paint and of clear gloss, with special attention to the places where the blue is now showing through.
Meanwhile, I have designated a P-25E (predecessor, made in Japan rather than Indonesia, of the current P-25F) for refinishing in a different color. Rust-Oleum American Accents colonial red gloss, I’m thinking, or Rust-Oleum Ultra Cover Satin walnut or espresso. The prospect of refinishing again after two years doesn’t bother me at all, but I’m open to suggestions for how to get a harder, more durable and relatively permanent finish. I know it can be done, and I’m looking at what some do with guitars.August 2, 2016 at 11:39 am #7447
Thanks for the update Alan. This is really valuable info!
Here’s the colours you’re currently thinking about:
Rust-Oleum Colonial Red
Maybe you could borrow the pickguard idea from guitars, and have a protective section in the places most likely to have prolonged contact with the player? This could even be a fancy wood veneer.
I’d love to see a melodica finished in faux wood. Its a technique you can learn quite quickly apparently. You apply a base coat, and streak the grain on afterwards with a comb. Finish with strong varnishAugust 2, 2016 at 11:40 am #7448
That Colonial red is uncannily similar to the Yamaha P37D!!August 3, 2016 at 5:05 pm #7456
Yes, the red is close. One of my earlier ideas was to mimic the P-37D color in the P-25. But here’s what I’m doing?
P-25E: Rust-Oleum black primer covered with multiple coats of Rust-Oleum Satin Espresso. The Espresso is not as dark as what’s shown in samples and the can top.
P-32D: Same primer covered by multiple coats of Rust-Oleum Satin Dark Walnut. The Walnut is quite dark.
By multiple coats I mean repeated mistings. So the primer plus paint is much thicker than on my earlier refinish, and a weight increase is noticeable.
I will now let both of these cure for two weeks, after which I will clear coat with gloss, wet sand and then polish. I’ve been finding lots of information on guitar, model plane and car, automobile, and rocketry sites where people seem to know what they’re talking about — except the advice is wildly inconsistent! But I have decided to let these melodicas cure for at least an additional month before using them.
I have an additional P-32D shell and end pieces, which I’ve just finished in Krylon gold gloss and gloss clear coat. I’ll let that cure for a week and then decide what to do. It’s impressive looking.
I think, based on the earlier refinish, that a glossy coat that can be polished and wiped off easily is needed. And curing for a month or two is important to get a hard and durable finish.
I’ll have to check out the faux wood option.August 9, 2016 at 5:17 pm #7464
Here are photos of the gold P-32D, cured for two weeks after being painted (over a steel wooled orignial blue finish) with glossy gold Krylon and coated after a short drying period with glossy Krylon clear. At first, the finish was glossy, even in color, and less grainy, more “golden” as it were. Sorry I didn’t get photos of gradual changes, but this is what has occurred. After a couple of days, in some places a milky darker color appeared. You can see one in the third photo below and to the right of the model identification. I’m guessing this could have been avoided by a longer drying period between paint and clear gloss. But I kind of like it. You’ll also see some unevenness of color, but those spots have disappeared. In any case, this refinish has not yet stabilized, which confirms what some say, that the full curing process takes a month or more. So I’ll have it under observation for at least a couple of weeks. There are some other imperfections that could probably be eliminated by wet sanding followed by another coat of clear gloss. I have mixed feelings about striving for perfection in this. What I want is a durable finish that pleases my eye.
The end piece photo significantly exaggerates the graininess of this finish and makes it look glittery. This gold is not a glitter paint.
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