Monday, September 16, 2013

UV Finish Training

This month I headed down to the Taylor factory for a couple of days to get trained in using the Taylor UV cured finish for repairs.  If you know anything about guitar finish, you know that there are a number of styles used.  From the old school nitrocellulose lacquer to the quickly cured UV finishes and everything in between.  Taylor has always been known for not being afraid of using new technology and this is a great example.  I had been wanting to get training for this for so long and this year all of the stars finally aligned.
I made my third trip down to the factory in early September and was lucky to get one-on-one training with one of Taylor's finest- Mr. Rob Magargal.  You may recognize him from online Taylor videos from their website.  Rob has worn so many hats over the years with Taylor including overseeing production quality and being the head of the repair department there.  He is currently heading up the Taylor Service Centers worldwide.
Rob brought me up to speed on how the Taylor finish works and how to properly repair it.  Over the last several months I had been buying what I needed piece by piece for my shop, including a compact spray booth, UV curing light, and spray equipment.  Rob walked me through the steps that are used at the factory to repair their finish and how I can implement that technology in my shop.  It was an absolutely thrilling experience as always.  After spending a day watching how it was done, the next day entailed Rob watching me doing multiple finish repairs on a guitar body.  I was able to walk around the factory and share the spray booth, buffing room and other areas alongside the great folks in production making new Taylor guitars.  The factory is a constant buzz of people putting their best effort forward to bring you a great quality guitar.
The folks down at Taylor are always ready to share information, tips and industry secrets to people like me who are representing them out in the field.
In the very near future, Guitar Repair Shack will be offering finish repairs out of our main location, so watch for our announcement at


James Fry

Here is a shot that Rob took of me holding a guitar body under the UV curing light at the factory.  The visor protects my eyes from the UV light.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Inside Taylor Guitar Repair

Here is where we did most of our training, inside the Taylor Repair Department. Here are some pics of the guitars from production waiting in pieces for us to assemble and set up.

Inside R Taylor

The R Taylor shop

Monday, September 28, 2009

Taylor Trip 2009

This September Guitarworks sent me down to Taylor where I was able to spend a whole week in El Cajon, California participating in a Repair Summit. Taylor had invited down their warranty service technicians who cover Canada, as well as two other guitar techs from Canada who will do in-house warranty work at the music stores they are employed with. A guitar tech from Sweetwater Sound in Ft. Wayne, Indiana also joined us. Myself out West, and Al Clegg out East have been doing Taylor warranty work for over a decade now. I started doing warranty work for Taylor when I worked for Front Porch Music outside of Chicago.

It's always nice to be able to visit and get updated in person on the most recent repair and service techniques that a guitar manufacturer is doing. Last time I was down, Taylor had not yet introduced their T5, T3, or any electric guitar, so there was some catching up to do.

Day one started with an extensive factory tour including many behind-the-scenes areas that are not part of the regular tour. We also toured Taylor's new Repair Department area which is now accepting all brands of guitars for repairs. We toured the R Taylor shop and saw some very nice guitars. R Taylor operates in a small, two room shop. One side is for building and the other for final set up. If you haven't experienced an R Taylor yet, you should really play one.

Day two started in the Taylor Repair Department with Rob Magargal, Taylor's Production and Repair Training Manager. He brought in loads of acoustic bodies and necks fresh from production. After a training walk-through with Rob, we installed new ES pickup systems into the guitars, installed the necks with the correct shims, and set them up to Taylor factory specs with new strings. Over the next couple of days we moved from the acoustics to the electrics, installing pickups, hardware, necks and doing final set up.

The last two days of the week consisted of training on repairing and finishing with the UV finish that Taylor uses. We were able to participate in repairing damaged wood and finish on a demo body using the Taylor Repair Shop's tools, spray booths, and UV equipment. We also finished bare wood panels starting with filling the pores, shooting finish, UV curing and final buffing. For those of you who have had any experience in finish work, it's usually a long and tedious job. Not with the UV cured finish. It was almost magical how quickly and well it worked, and it looked good.

What a great trip! I was infused with so much great training, tips and information. Thanks to everyone at Taylor Guitars for inviting me down and being such a great group of folks.

Here are some pics of my trip for you to enjoy.


Thursday, August 28, 2008

Taylor Guitars

Welcome to my Taylor Guitars blog!

This blog serves as an extension to my James Fry Guitars Blog. It is dedicated to sharing my trip to Taylor Guitars. I currently provide warranty service for Taylor Guitars to Western Canada. I've been doing Taylor warranty work now for over ten years, and I was able to spend part of a week in El Cajon, California a few years ago at the Taylor factory training with their Repair Department Manager, Rob Magargal. Everyone at Taylor was great to work with and while I was there I snapped lots of photos. Here is a pictoral documentary of my trip. Enjoy!

-James Fry