PRS Employee Spotlight - Trampas Ferree // Stain

Filed Under Electrics / Core Electrics
Trampas Ferree PRS



In 2003, Trampas Ferree interviewed for a position at PRS where he spent only a few short months as a guitar finish sander. He was then transitioned to the staining benches where he could finally show his true colors (ayy, get it? we'll see ourselves out).

Right off the bat, Trampas showed real skill in staining guitars and now, 14 years later, Trampas is still a treasured employee and staining each day. During his tenure, Trampas has had his hand in creating a number of PRS colors, most notably the popular PRS color “Trampas Green” which was of course named after him. He loves to eat sushi, watch live music, play guitar, write music, and play video games.



So, what PRS colors have you had you had a part in creating?


The most obvious would be Trampas Green since it has my name attached to it, but also a lot of our “fade” colors: Orange Fade, Blue Fade, Green Fade, Red Fade, Grey Black Fade. Beyond that, Aquabluex, River Blue, Black Slate, Emerald, Honey, Angry Larry, and probably a few more that I’m not remembering!

^ from L to R, Orange Fade, Blue Fade, Green Fade. Photos courtesy of our friends at

Tell us more about Trampas Green.

Around 2008, our sales team approached me about creating a few new colors, and I had the idea for this green for a while, the base stain came from charcoal, and then on top of that you put green. It looks great when it all comes together.

How long does the stain process take and how many guitars do you work through each day?

Between 15-20 guitars each day and the length of time will depend on which color it is. They all have different processes that we follow closely.

Most difficult color to stain? Easiest?

Most difficult to stain is Copperhead (everybody stop buying that, haha!) That process is a “double sand-out” which means we put a coat of stain on, let that dry, sand it out, put another coat of stain on, let it dry, and sand it out, and then we put on a final top coat of light stain. So in reality we stain it three times helping the grain to pop beautifully.

The easiest to stain are typically the yellows, McCarty Sunburst, McCarty Tobacco, simply because they just take a yellow base and we send it off topcoat where the bursts are sprayed.

Favorite PRS model and color? 

My favorite model is one we actually don’t make anymore but it is the 25th Anniversary McCarty Narrowfield, we only made it for one year, but it was cool. A maple top, narrowfield pickups in the bridge and neck, and it rocks. I have one in Charcoal finish, this was before Trampas Green was invented, haha!

My current favorite color to look at is Aquableux, another color that is a pain to stain, but it makes the grain in the maple look great. 

The color you would most likely see me playing on stage would be a more traditional color like Amber, Black Gold Burst, or McCarty Sunburst.

If you could travel somewhere for a month, where would you go?

Ooo, probably someplace with a hip music scene, like Chicago or New York City. I love music and try to get to shows as often as possible. If I didn’t have this job to wake up for (at 4am), I’d probably go to more shows!

Favorite band? 

I have so many favorites so I'll have to name a few: Zappa, a local Marylander by the name of Danny Gaton. He was actually on the cover of Guitar Player and the cover said “the greatest unknown guitar player.” I like David Bowie a lot too. And I need to get a soul band in here, so James Brown. 

What do you love most about working in the guitar business?

I love working with my hands and being in a shop where there are a lot of other people working with their hands. PRS is almost the “ideal” vision of a factory, we’re not in big suits working around automated machines all day, we’re walking around using our hands. Every stain job we’ve done is completely done by hand and I'm proud of that.

When I first interviewed for this job in 2003, I was a guitar player but was shocked at just how much detail went into guitar making. It's cool to be a part of it.


Check out the PRS Product Pages to see more of the great colors Trampas and our other finish employees work on each day!

Comments (11)

John Rasmussen November 28, 2017 - 11:18am
Hi, Trampas, It's great of PRS to do these posts so we can get an insight into the craftsman who build these awesome instruments. I would like to thank you for creating the beautiful orange fade color, as it is the shade of my favorite Custom 24.I purchased it in 2014 from MSL. It is a wood library artist grade with 57/08s and an incredible flame maple neck and fretboard. It is truly a joy to see, to play, and to hear. Thank you again for your craftsmanship. It is sincerely appreciated.
JOHN D LUKEHART November 27, 2017 - 4:36pm
I had a beautiful CE 24 custom Trampas Green it was easy to play had a great feeling neck on it just an all around great feeling/playing guitar but I couldn't get used to those 85/15 pickups just no oomph.
[email protected] November 20, 2017 - 2:17pm
Hey Paul, this page should shed some light on the process, just copy/paste it into a new browser window: [url=][/url]
Paul Mills November 17, 2017 - 6:44pm
How does one price and order a custom guitar?
Tim Mayer October 25, 2017 - 9:01am
You have an amazing gift to be able to pull shades out of a handful of colors. Thanks for taking PRS over the top.
Gary codner October 18, 2017 - 4:03pm
I’m trying to get hold of a rep or a builder about ordering a guitar if someone can shoot me an email or a contact number that would be great. All stores have basic PRS colors and models but I saw on your web something that caught my eye . Thank you.
Fred Baer October 15, 2017 - 7:58pm
Great information, thank you for sharing it! I completely agree with your choice of Danny Gatton, having known Danny and seeing him play many many times, he was incomparable. Keep up the amazing work! Love all my PRS's
Allan October 11, 2017 - 8:24am
Thank you for the information, l myself love to work with wood i.e. l carve full sized victorian rocking horse's. And the feeling one gets on completion a feeling of satisfactio. well done allan in the UK
Micah Benjamin Berlow October 07, 2017 - 6:16am
Lovely story and interview, I want to see ferree blue next :)
Eric Beck October 06, 2017 - 4:45pm
I have 5 PRS guitars. I would really like another one but the cost of it combined with heart problems will probably prevent me from getting it. I have a 594 double cut ten top in Trampas Green. I would love to have a Single Cut 594 Wood Library mega flametop in Cherry Charcoal with the 58/15 LT pickups in double white with the coils exposed. I think the double whites would really pop against the rich cherry color!
Joshua Wibert October 06, 2017 - 11:30am
I enjoyed this story.Thanks for sharing! Beautiful colors!

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