Noel Induni's

Vega" Artist Special" Plectrum
2003

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto
And it's arrival, Not without incident
 

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

 Damage to shipping box, about a 3" gouge
No damage to case at all
The pieces were all the way to the top of the case.
 

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto
 

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Good News

I can fix it

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Im floating in some thin cyano,right at the edge to work my way across.

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Pressing the first area and I'll hit it with the accelerator

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

First piece down

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Add in two back pieces at once

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Fill the void with Thick cyano then
grind it smooth with a small burr.

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Insert the last two binding pieces

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Grind the inside smooth

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Smooth and stain the binding

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Same for the inside

Vega Artist Plectrum Resto

Whew! , I feel better!
Now back to the rest of the story.


Disassembly

Vega Artist Plectrum resto

Vega Artist Plectrum resto

Vega Artist Plectrum resto

Now she will go off to the Plating Service and I will look into the rest of the resto.


Fret leveling

Vega Artist Plectrum resto
Crowning
Vega Artist Plectrum resto

Fixing what appears to be fractures from the last refretting

Vega Artist Plectrum resto
Cleaning Noel's ol' "Iguana skin" from around frets with naptha.

Vega Artist Plectrum resto
Sanding the repair area

Vega Artist Plectrum resto

Blackened inlays to refill gravings
 

Vega Artist Plectrum resto

Polishing frets while that dries

Vega Artist Plectrum resto

Rim Scraping and ReLacquer

Vega Artist resto

Vega Artist resto

Vega Artist resto

Removing the Star for proper fitting

Vega Artist resto
The Star was lifting in several place so I chose to remove it to get the routings cleaned of all intrusive materials.
I used light heat to soften the pyralin just a bit and began a slow gentle prising that took over an hour to perform.
In a hurry?? Dont try this!

Vega Artist resto

As I attempt to scrape off this urethane finish,I would like to state for the record that I do not like to work this hard to remove a finish.
Its great for reasons that Lacquer is not,but Lacquer is great for reasons that urethane isn't.
That's all I have to say about that,except it will be refinished in traditional Lacquer!
Also some of the adhesive that was squirted under the star to try and seal it was silicone.
Way bad choice, for future refinishs.You can see it as I peel it out.
 

Vega Artist resto

Fully sanded

Vega Artist resto

One coat of sanding sealer

Vega Artist resto

O.K. Noel, Here we go
I have deepened the relieved area to compensate for the wood removal from the prior refinish
This star is .020 taller than the old cutout and is also concave on two legs of the star so i will heat it to 100 degrees and gently bend it with my fingers until it cools.

Vega Artist Plectrum resto

Then I laid in a thick cyanoacrylate for the bonding as i am still apprehensive about silicone release from the last attempted repair even though i am 90 percent sure I have it evacuated.
Then, I taped it from the tip to the waist squeezing the excess in front of it.
I did this one leg at a time gluing, then taping.
100 degree heat was again applied to quicken the now sealed periphery.

Vega Artist Plectrum resto

Now,the bonding is complete and appears to be a success so I will trim the little bit of "flashing" that is part pyralin, part cyano.
It really went in well.

Vega Artist Plectrum resto
 

Then a coat of golden oak to fade in the colors.
Observe, the light spots in the lower left arm.
That is where either a belt buckle wore thru ,or the previous sanding of this resonator before I started it.
All of you "Artist" owners should take note that this is a "veneer", not a solid sheet of flamed maple..

Vega Artist Plectrum resto

It is much better than before and with a dark walnut fade on the outside to come and then 8 coats of clear we should have a nice "save"  on this piece.

As you can see the yellow is done,and now the star area must be cleared of all color and any high spots will show, and must be scraped.

Vega Artist resto

All cleared and leveled

Vega Artist resto

Vega Artist resto

Now this is the color scheme I want to use.
I have the contrast high, to show the colors which will be faded in by light sanding and will have an "airbrush look" about it.

Vega Artist resto

Reassembly
Now that plating has returned, I shall get cracking again,so the "boss" can have this baby back home in Vermont!
I have all of the lacquer on it and the rim assembly together with new plating and gold hooksets.
 

Vega Artist resto

Vega Artist resto

Vega Artist resto

Final polishing on the resonator

Artist resto

 
Artist resto

 
Artist resto

Well,the one thing I forgot was the filing of the old holes where the old Grovers were.
They had already been replaced, but the holes remained.
I forgot that they had been changed so I removed the finish on the back of the peghead and filled them with a black epoxy.
Now I've sanded them  smooth and will re apply the finish.
Just a minor set back!



Initial setup
Now that its all back together (finally!)

Artist resto

She has very good downforce on a 5/8 bridge with a medium high action.
I will ask the boss what type of action he prefers and set it accordingly.
I think a 9/16 3 footed Farquhar or Emerson Bridge would be the ticket  but not being plectrum "Savvy" I will do the best I can and let Noel "tweak" it from there.
To me, it has alot of power and is quite "crisp" in tone but it's the ears of the player that will determine  the final word .

Artist resto

Artist resto

Artist resto