July 26th, 2012, 06:08 AM
I'm so sick of trying one brand of clear after another only to have my necks take on the appearance of a really bad New Jersey spray-on orange tan.
I've used just about every acrylic lacquer and enamel lacquer commercially available--feh. Feh, I say!
Frankly, I'd stand at the crossroads in the dark-ass night and give ol' Pazuzu a handjob for a non-ambering clear. More simply than that I cannot put it.
About the only thing I've used that doesn't amber are water-based polys, but you can't seem to get that factory-new mirror-like finish with that stuff, no matter how much you wet-sand and buff it. (Well, at least I can't get that nice, glossy sheen with it.)
Any suggestions on a clear that maintains the natural hue of a maple neck while providing a nice, protective, relatively long-lasting glossy finish?
July 26th, 2012, 08:24 AM
I've used MinWax Lacquer from WalMart/Home Depot in gloss and satin with sucess, they stay clear are cheap and easy to get. I have to add in some Stew Mac Vintage Amber to tint it if I want it to look somewhat aged. I haven't noticed any further changes in coloration other than where my hand heats up the neck on the back generally, it'll make it just ever so slightly darker over time. I also use MinWax's clear Poly and it stays clear I have to assume forever because I have a 20 year old guitar I made in the 90's and it has not yellowed a bit
July 26th, 2012, 08:57 AM
Roger, judging from your Guitar Builds in your Picasa Web Album (https://picasaweb.google.com/117577769813388841589/GuitarBuilds?authuser=0&feat=directlink#)--and a lot of unique beauties there are, each with its own individual flair far beyond a typical Fenderish or Gibsonish appearance, even though each is based on either a Fender or Gibson model (e.g. Strats, Teles, Les Pauls, Flying Vs, etc.)--it would appear that you get a nice, even sheen on your maple neck finishes.
What is your step-by-step process of sanding/polishing your clears? Does your process vary, depending on whether it's lacquer or clear poly?
I just can't get that Minwax Polycrylic to come to life...it makes my necks look dull--kind of a semi-hazy appearance. Just plasticky and lifeless. When I try to buff it, I end up putting swirls on the finish, which does nothing but dull it even more. It's as if that first virgin coat on bare wood with Minwax Polycrylic (I use the Gloss in the aerosol can), if it lays down smoothly with little or no orange peel or contaminations, is perfect--as far as giving you a nice, crystal clear gloss--until you work through the grits to level it, then polish it...then you're in Downtown Dullsville. At least that's my problem with it.
Again, a beautiful cavalcade of guitars you have there, Roger. ;^j
"Strat-O-Tele" hybrid gem:
Very, VERY cool Strat-type synth guitar:
July 26th, 2012, 11:27 AM
Any finish is going to darken the maple a little. However, I have tried the Krylon crystal clear for necks and like it very well on maple, especially figured maple. Additionally, have you tried super blonde or platinum shellac? You have to buy it in flake form and it is a little more expensive, but very nice. I also frequently use the Target Coatings Emtech EM-1000 sealer and EM-6000 clear coat and get very good results with it, though it will leave a very slight blue hue over really dark colors (I just did a trans black mahogany LP DC and it gave it the slightest bluish cast).
July 26th, 2012, 12:28 PM
To sign over that kingdom!:razz:
This will do it. Designed for auto wheels. Sprays nice, stays clear and cures fast and hard. I have used it over enamels too on my "swirl" finishes. Get at auto paint stores.
July 26th, 2012, 12:42 PM
Use Saran Wrap over the color coat?
About the only thing I've used that doesn't amber are water-based polys
Unfortunately, they do to if you look at the accelerated weather tests. Any time a rep would try to sell me an "absolutely non-yellowing finish" I'd ask for the 50-year test results from the accelerated weathering chamber (a 10' long, sort of triangulated, peak-top tunnel used to simulate long-term moisture/dry cycles and/or sunlight...or fluorescent, or incandscesant, halogen, etc...) and get the deer-in-the-headlights look - followed by a stammering "well, realistically, most surface coatings are only in use for...errr...5-...uhhh...10 years or so, and you won't *notice* any yellowing unless you put a freshly coated piece right next to it.".
Having worked with and examined thousands of clear coatings over the years, the only liquids I've seen that are non-yellowing when dry are water (because it's gone) and glass (which is defined by many scientific circles as an extremely viscous liquid. There are records of thousand-year old churches with glass windows thicker at the bottom than top from the slow flow.)
July 28th, 2012, 09:26 AM
Overall I'd agree that any polymerized finish will tend to yellow given enough time.
With furniture pieces I've had decent results from General Finishes Polyacrylic on lighter woods (spruce, maple, white pine, etc.)
But the OPs problem is immediate yellowing. Which sounds like a different problem.
My question would be how much does the coloration of the cured finish differ from the appearance of the wood when simply dampened with water?
Because every finish is going to yellow maple to some degree. If you are trying to stay as close to the color of raw wood then you are actually going to have to add a hint of blue tinting (not blue stain) to whatever you are applying to counteract some of this change.
July 29th, 2012, 01:49 PM
automotive Urthane clears do not change colors,after 24 hr.you can also wet sand with 2000 grit wet and buff with compound to put a mirror finish.will last forever.
July 30th, 2012, 02:18 PM
Have you tried http://oem.sherwin-williams.com/us/eng/oem/products/sherwood_cabacrylic_lacquer/?referringCategory=categories/wood/finishes_topcoats/