Hi, Steve. We'll be waiting for that tune. You do anything by Jerry Lee?
Afer you applied the Bondo or Minwax wood filler and got that sanded down to 150 grit, then the paste wood filler and rubbed that off with the burlap and lightly hand sanded that to 220 grit, you apply the ever popular spit coat. This is one part shellac to five parts denatured alcohol and you just slop it on with a foam brush. Shellac is time sensative so be sure that what you buy has a recent date. If not, go to another store. And you can usually buy the alcohol cheaper in a drugstore than the paint department but it's not worth chasing all over for. After the spit coat, hand sand again with 220, vacuum then tack rag and you are ready to shoot the lacquer. Shoot the first coat with the lacquer cut 50% with lacquer thinner, the second coat 75% and from there cut it just enough to shoot. Wet sand with 400 wet/dry after about 4 coats and again after 8 coats, then wet sand with 600 every 4 coats until you get up to 16. Shoot 2 coats of clear, wet sand with 600 wet and repeat. Hand rub on automotive polishing following label directions and then wax. Or just shoot it twice with 2 coats of pink Krylon if you want it to look like something John2000 would love. LOL
Steve, sandpaper gets fine with higher numbers. You can sand bare wood too smooth so there is nothing for the finish to stick to. Lacquer slightly dissolves the coat underneath so one coat sticks to the one under it. Don't jump grits when sanding (i.e. 50 to 150). When you change grits vacuum and tack rag before you start with the finer grit to be sure you get the coarser grit off.
Vaneer is a whole other subject. You can replace vaneer but there have been several "standard" thicknesses over the years. Be sure you get the right one. Yours was probably applied with hide glue and you can get that to stick back together with heat sometimes. You need to clamp when you are applying vaneer and this can sometimes be very tricky. Read all you can on the subject.
Good luck and I'll be waiting to hear Great Balls of Fire. Henry in MI