Cleaning and polishing for nitro finishes

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Richie Cunningham, Jul 5, 2020.

  1. Richie Cunningham

    Richie Cunningham Tele-Meister

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    I now have a 2020 American Original ‘50s Telecaster and a 2017 Gibson Explorer T that have nitrocellulose lacquer finishes. What should I use to clean and polish them?
     
  2. tubegeek

    tubegeek Friend of Leo's

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    The ideal choice is a recently-removed negligée.

    Oh, and they're going to want pics in this thread, too.
     
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  3. LOSTVENTURE

    LOSTVENTURE Tele-Afflicted

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    Of the guitar or the negligee ?
     
  4. tubegeek

    tubegeek Friend of Leo's

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    :rolleyes:
     
  5. Richie Cunningham

    Richie Cunningham Tele-Meister

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    A negligee might have skin oils and dead cells in it. Never mind that it’s probably polyester.
     
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  6. tubegeek

    tubegeek Friend of Leo's

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    Well, silk of course! This is a Telecaster we're talking about!
     
  7. Richie Cunningham

    Richie Cunningham Tele-Meister

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    So is silk even a material you’d want to use for that?
     
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  8. tubegeek

    tubegeek Friend of Leo's

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    For a negligée or for a guitar rag?

    Sorry, I'll stop. I just have a dirty mind.

    I think it'd be good for polishing but not cleaning.

    The recommendation I always see for buffing cloths is much-laundered T-shirts but where's the fun in THAT?
     
  9. Richie Cunningham

    Richie Cunningham Tele-Meister

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    I have a bunch of white 100% cotton flannel that I bought a few years ago.
     
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  10. Pointmonger

    Pointmonger Tele-Afflicted

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    Stale beer and nicotine. That's how they did it back in the day.
     
  11. tamer_of_banthas

    tamer_of_banthas Tele-Holic

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    people used to recommend Meguiar's. i can't remember if it is nitro safe or not though
     
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  12. Fender-guy

    Fender-guy Tele-Meister

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    You can use lighter fluid or something with naphtha in it to clean any oils or gunk on surface. With a nice soft rag of course. Not sure what to use as a polish as pretty much every reacts to nitro.
     
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  13. backporchmusic

    backporchmusic Friend of Leo's

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  14. FrontPU

    FrontPU Tele-Holic

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  15. dlew919

    dlew919 Doctor of Teleocity

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    The best way to clean is, in order

    Hot breath and microfibre rag.

    Shellite (in Australia) or Naptha with a microfibre rag.

    About once a year guitar polish applied with a microfibre rag. Don't use furniture polish. Use guitar polish.

    Test on a hidden part before applying.

    Soft rags - microfibre is best. Buy from a supermarket or hardware shop. Don't get a 'specialist' guitar one - they're just normal ones with 'guitar' written on them and cost about 3 times the price.

    How often?

    Breath - after every use or once or twice a week (if after every use is impractical)

    Naptha (shellite) - every month or two

    polish - about once a year.

    You may, depending on your use, need more than this.

    And yes, pictures!!
     
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  16. Fretting out

    Fretting out Poster Extraordinaire

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    Personally I wouldn’t clean them unless it’s absolutely! necessary (sweat/grime and such)

    I have an A.O 60’s in sunburst that I would wipe down with a cotton or microfiber cloth after every use, it ended up with more “swirls” on it that way than if I would have just left it alone

    Finally I stopped wiping er except for the back of the neck

    If and when necessary I’d just use a soft cotton cloth

    I’d be careful about microfiber clothes some of them end up being like a very fine sandpaper
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2020
  17. AndrewG

    AndrewG Friend of Leo's

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    An old T-shirt and a huff of breath is all you need and that's what I occasionally use on my guitars, including my AO 50s. The finish is already polished so I wouldn't waste money on a product which doesn't do much more than smell nice.
     
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  18. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

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    Any guitar cleaner or polish that doesn’t contain silicone is fine. I no longer use polish, just a cleaner.
    Before cleaning I use a non-aerosolized air to gently remove dust that accumulate under the strings, near the bridge and the headstock. This is used for keyboards and electronics.
    7BE9BCF7-B420-4B32-8885-3B726722835F.jpeg
    I also use a makeup blush brush to gently remove dust.
    Like a poster before I have some white cotton flannel purchased from a fabric store.
    The cleaner is just used to remove the smudges and whatever residue from sweat, body oils etc has accumulated.
     
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  19. Fretting out

    Fretting out Poster Extraordinaire

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    Isn’t that a female hygiene tool? ;)
     
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  20. rangercaster

    rangercaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    Martin Guitar polish is my go to .

    .. not cheap ...

    But a bottle will last for decades..


    The negligee will work well also ...


    Don't use flammable stuff while smoking cigars or cigarettes .

    ... don't ask how I know this ...
     
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