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Remove lacquer topcoat only?

Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by stratisfied, Sep 23, 2020.

  1. stratisfied

    stratisfied Tele-Meister

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    I have an AVRI Strat in Mary Kaye white that has yellowed significantly and unevenly from indirect daylight exposure. It isn't a good look as the guitar still retains some white areas with significant yellowing around the edges resembling nicotine stains.

    Short of a complete refinish, do you think it is is it salvageable by sanding the lacquer topcoat off to expose the white semi-transparent finish and then recoating with lacquer?

    I'll probably try a sample area and see, but the prospect of wasting all that time sanding and winding up with patchy coloration could be dispensed with by wiping it down to bare wood with lacquer thinner and refinishing.

    What do you think?
     
  2. tubegeek

    tubegeek Friend of Leo's

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    Isn't the color coat lacquer also? In which case, how do you know you wouldn't wipe it off as well?
     
  3. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

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    Why would you want to do that? You'll just ruin any resale value. If you want a pristine white guitar it'd probably be less costly to buy a new body. Tasteful player wear adds to guitars.

    Here's a real 57.

    The white undercoat is poly and often locked into the surface of the wood. To get.it off you'd have to sand through it into the body

    1957-fender-strat-mary-kaye-body.jpg
     
  4. dickey

    dickey Friend of Leo's

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    Try some car polish, like Turtle wax, on a hidden area first. I have very good luck with it.
     
  5. Peegoo

    Peegoo Poster Extraordinaire

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    stratisfied, I am the loudest cheerleader for DIY-sorta people like you; however in this case it is ill advised to sand back discolored clearcoat.

    Here's the problem with your plan: color migrates from pigmented lacquer into the clearcoat, and vice versa. If you think it looks patchy now, sanding it will probably make it worse. It won't make it any better.
     
  6. Speedfish

    Speedfish Tele-Holic

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    Can you share some pics?
     
  7. Fender-guy

    Fender-guy Tele-Meister

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    Yes exactly! It will look really odd and you’ll probably be down to the ploy underneath pretty quickly. Most people like myself can’t wait for that cool faded, gross, thingy yellowing to happen.

    I don’t think you can make this new looking again without a refinish. Let’s see some pics.
     
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  8. Speedy454

    Speedy454 Tele-Holic

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    If you want colors that remain true forever, lacquer is a poor choice.
    Get a poly finished body in the color you want and save this one for when you want to sell it as an aged original.
     
  9. stratisfied

    stratisfied Tele-Meister

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    That was the point of my post. Sand off the clearcoat only or wipe all the finish off with lacquer thinner and redo the Mary Kaye white and topcoat..
     
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  10. stratisfied

    stratisfied Tele-Meister

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    If the Mary Kaye White color coat is poly, I could wipe the clearcoat off with lacquer thinner with affecting the color coat. I will have to do a test spot and see. I have every confidence that whatever finish I put on it would be indistinguishable from the original so I donl't thin resale is an issue.

    I just recently passed on a brand new Mary Kaye finished AllParts body for $269 as it had a dark streak on the back. I probably should have bought it.

    Here's some pics.

    IMG_3126.JPG IMG_3127.JPG IMG_3128.JPG IMG_3129.JPG
     
  11. tubegeek

    tubegeek Friend of Leo's

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    I misunderstood, as I guess you can tell. My bad.
     
  12. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    The best thing about it is the aging.
     
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  13. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Friend of Leo's

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    Pix.

    And, it won't work.

    Complete refin or leave it alone.
     
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  14. stratisfied

    stratisfied Tele-Meister

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    Looks like nicotine stained teeth to me. To each his own I guess. If it were even discolored, I could probably tolerate it.
     
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  15. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Afflicted

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    To my eyes it does look nice and has that natural aged vibe that is very charming.
    I would not consider doing anything to it if it were mine.
     
  16. Fender-guy

    Fender-guy Tele-Meister

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    I think it looks good but that’s just me. The nitro top coat on this is probably really thin and any type of sanding with just start to show the poly sealer.
     
  17. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Friend of Leo's

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    What do you mean "if" it's poly? It's an AVRI; it is definitely not poly.

    Even if it was, what you said doesn't make any sense. You can't just wipe off a layer of poly with a solvent.

    The guitar looks very mildly yellowed, and the inconsistency is not that bad.

    I'd be far more worried about that mother of toilet seat guard in the looks department.
     
  18. stratisfied

    stratisfied Tele-Meister

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    Look again. Back is half yellow, half white. That's hardly even.

    Top coat is lacquer but Fender has been known to topcoat in lacquer over production polyester finishes and call them lacquer. I'll try a test area and see what it actually is.

    As regards the pickguard, the original white just accentuated the yellowing. I threw on the aged pearl to downplay the discoloring. I like it and if the finish were still white, it would be a wearing a white pearloid.
     
  19. spurgie79

    spurgie79 Tele-Afflicted

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    Not that you care but my vote is to stick it in a window for a few weeks. Those things are beautiful when aged.
     
  20. scelestus

    scelestus Tele-Holic

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    Maybe get it a subscription at a tanning salon. Crazy, but I've seen LP guys do this to wash out a cherry sunburst.
     
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