Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com

Is anyone here familiar with the lacquer used in Fender's "Lacquer" series guitars?

Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by Starshine, Sep 29, 2017.

  1. Starshine

    Starshine Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 20, 2011
    Baltimore, MD
    I'm thinking about refinishing my Classic 60s Lacquer Jazzmaster and debating stripping the body or just painting over the current finish. How similar is Fender's lacquer to, say, reranch? Anyone know if there would be any compatibility issues between the two?
     

  2. Dacious

    Dacious Friend of Leo's

    Mar 16, 2003
    Godzone
    It's hard to say - the definition of lacquer is any paint thinned by acetone. But the binders of really old paints were nitrocellulose (basically, organic plant matter) Or acrylic - which Fender used much than people realised.

    In theory you spray lacquer over lacquer you should be OK. But there's no guarantee because there's lacquer and lacquer. Reranch may be able to tell you but may not know the formulation of Fender paint

    What's it's colour and what do you want to change to? Be warned - you're devaluing the guitar - may matter to you, may not.
     

  3. Starshine

    Starshine Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 20, 2011
    Baltimore, MD
    I guess I'll ask Reranch, see if they can tell me. I have some leftover product from a previous refin, so maybe I'll spray a test spot under the pickguard too.

    I bought a maple neck from Warmoth that I'm going to swap in, since it's impossible to find a maple JM from Fender (and I'm not going to spend $1500 for the Pro series). Using the Classic 60s JM as a base is actually about the same money as building a partscaster, even with devaluation factored in. It's currently surf green, but I think I'm going to try for a candy apple orange finish with matching headstock. For colors like surf green and sonic blue, I think they look great in pictures, but in person I'm always underwhelmed.
     

  4. R. Stratenstein

    R. Stratenstein Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Aug 3, 2010
    Loganville, Ga.
    See if a tiny dab of lacquer thinner under the pickguard melts the existing finish. And still a good idea to ask Reranch.
     

  5. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Apr 2, 2014
    Phoenix, AZ
    I own a Classic 50s lacquer Tele and I repaired a tiny chip at the headstock with Watco lacquer with no issues, can't even see it. I also owned a 60s Jazzmaster lacquer briefly. It reeked when I opened the case, fresh lacquer smell. I know this isn't definitive, just some two cents worth.

    Email fender about it, they might give you some clues. They have helped me find paint codes before, they might volunteer a little more info.
     

  6. jklotz

    jklotz Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 10, 2012
    Atlanta, GA
    Imho, it might make more sense to just get an unfinished body (warmoth maybe?). If it wrre me, I'd just sell the fender and do a parts caster. Heck, you already have the neck. You can pick and choose the parts you want, and probably come out about even after you sell the fender.

    The Lollar JM pickups are steller, btw
     

  7. BadMojo

    BadMojo Tele-Meister

    209
    Sep 17, 2017
    Maryland
    Good luck. Most of the so called lacquered fenders are coated with polly and shot with just a tiny amount of lacquer.

    [​IMG]
     

  8. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Platinum Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Mar 2, 2003
    Lawndale CA
    Respectfully - that's not correct.

    There are water based lacquers NOT thinned by acetone. "lacquer" is any coating where one of the primary resins is a natural material such as a cellulose derivative. Solvent type isn't relevant and can vary quite a bit (I was in the industry for 3+ decades...so I cheat! :lol:)

    That being said, Fender primarily uses catalyzed lacquers - lacquer-type materials that partially cure due to a chemical reaction, usually "kicked" by exposure to oxygen.

    Because compatibility varies so much you should test a spot inside the control or pickup cavity to see if conventional lacquer "melts" into the original material. If it is compatible it will dissolve the surface of the current coating and create a single layer. If it doesn't and can be scraped off after a week or so lacquer coating would not be recommended.
     
    Telemaestro likes this.

  9. Starshine

    Starshine Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 20, 2011
    Baltimore, MD
    I had convinced myself last night to use the Fender body with the new neck to save some prep time and keep me from having to wire up the pickguard, but I think it does make more sense to just do the partscaster. I guess this question will remain unanswered for now.
     

  10. BadMojo

    BadMojo Tele-Meister

    209
    Sep 17, 2017
    Maryland

    All I know is... it's a b*tch to remove.
     

  11. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Platinum Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Mar 2, 2003
    Lawndale CA
    ?? Lacquer is easy. $10 heat gun, a couple scrapers and you can strip a lacquer-coated body in 30-45 minutes.
     

  12. Dacious

    Dacious Friend of Leo's

    Mar 16, 2003
    Godzone
    It's what I'd do. Also, if the Player version is Chinese or Asian it will have funkier hardware. My two MIJ Jazzmasters had rubbish switches, phase switches and pots. Soundwise OK but fall apart and cause intermittent contact.

    Someone will buy the surf green and more than pay for the bits. Refinishing an old guitar is always more fraught than painting a new body. You end up with old body finish issues you notice even if no-one else does.
     

  13. BadMojo

    BadMojo Tele-Meister

    209
    Sep 17, 2017
    Maryland
    You should come work for me lol
     

  14. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Platinum Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Mar 2, 2003
    Lawndale CA
    Nah! The job is easy - the cleanup is a pain!

    And stripping other coatings can be very aggravating - like some polyesters, or when some genius has coated a body with boat resin!!!
     

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