Nitro Checking on Neck?

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by Boy_Narf, May 26, 2020.

  1. Boy_Narf

    Boy_Narf TDPRI Member

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    Hello Everyone,

    I'm looking at a custom built guitar which has a lot of "patina/checking". The pics of the body and headstock checking are beautiful (it's only a 2005 so most likely caused by our -40C winters). My concern was raised when the seller mentioned it's also cracking on the back of the neck. I currently own 10 guitars/basses some as old as 20 years, a few which have finish cracks in the body, but none with cracks on the neck. I'm wondering if this is something to be worried bout down the line, or just embrace the beauty and rock out? :D

    ***Pic of the neck attached.

    $_59.jpg

    Thanks and remain joyful :)
     
  2. jayyj

    jayyj Tele-Afflicted

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    Seems perfectly normal to me. Most of mine are quite a bit older than this but my Gibsons are checked head to toe, neck included.

    Bear in mind not all nitro is the same when it comes to checking - how much and how quickly it checks is partly down to environmental factors but it's also a lot to do with exactly what formulation nitro was used and how it was applied. The stuff they used in the 50s and 60s often checked extensively really quickly, leading to changes to the formulations used by the big factories to try to reduce the likelihood of it checking. Having said that, since checking is now often considered desirable and since there's a viewpoint that the older lacquers contribute to guitars that sound better (let's not go there!) a lot of smaller makers still use old style nitros.
     
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  3. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Afflicted

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    Nothing to be worried about IMO, unless you are concerned about the cosmetic aspect of it.

    You can still ask the seller if the neck is smooth to the touch, or if you can really feel the checking under the palm. But even that would not bother me.
     
  4. Boy_Narf

    Boy_Narf TDPRI Member

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    Hey Jayyj,

    Thanks for the response. I emailed the builder earlier this am and he was kind enough to reply bout a 15 year old guitar. It was one of his first guitars and he didn't have much experience with Nitro. He mentioned it ended up a bit more "brittle" than he would have liked but that I have nothing to worry about.

    I'll have to give it a good test drive for sure. I don't mind wear, but can't stand if there are bumps/dings in the neck.

    Thanks!!!
     
    jayyj likes this.
  5. Boy_Narf

    Boy_Narf TDPRI Member

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    Hey,

    Once we started talking cash he sent me some more pics of the nitro flaking off the bottom of the neck. I decided it's not for me. Shame it's a killer guitar. If he dropped the price by around 50% I would consider a re-spray but not for the asking price.

    Thanks for the advice and have a joyful day.
     
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