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What the point of lacquer over poly finishes?!

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by sbpark, Jun 5, 2013.

  1. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

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    perhaps some of y'all "tone sucker" guys can share, exactly how does anything suck tone out of a guitar...

    If ya put something on a guitar and it reduces the volume, couldn't ya just turn up the amp...

    and if whatever is doing the sucking isn't reducing the volume equally across the spectrum, but just diminishing SOME frequencies.... could it not be viewed as not reducing some, but leaving them as they are, but increasing all the other frequencies?

    Anyone that used the phrase "tone sucking", or any variant, may as well have tattooed on their forehead, "I don't know a gawddammm thing about sound. I am a sonic moron". :eek:

    Ron Kirn
     
  2. richinva

    richinva Tele-Meister

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    Poly soft, lacquer hard. Just sayin'.............
     
  3. Jack FFR1846

    Jack FFR1846 Tele-Afflicted

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    The market has created a demand for nitro coated guitars. If we were to start a rumor that green metallic guitars have superior tone and said it over and over and put up videos with awesome tone generated from metallic green guitars and mud tone generated from non-metallic other color guitars, the tin foil hatters would demand that Fender make metallic green guitars available.

    Again, look at the high end audio market. Here's a place where consumers seem to be dieing for more imaginary problems to solve with expensive hardware.

    By the way......I just repainted one of my mims with metallic green (Sherwood Green) with a nitro finish. Be prepared for awesomest tone once I build it up.
     
  4. LKB3rd

    LKB3rd Friend of Leo's

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    As has been said, it's marketing. People want/like nitro. Fender doesn't like nitro because it chips and wears quickly, and I think it is pretty toxic for the workers spraying it. So they found a compromise.
     
  5. fenson

    fenson ---------------------------------

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    I do agree but,
    OMG such print , you can get banned for this type of thing. I know!!!!!!!!!, been there and done that.
     
  6. christhebrit

    christhebrit Tele-Holic

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    Most people who play Fender guitars do so because our guitar heros play Fenders. They often play pre-cbs fenders and therefore we convince ourselves that if we could buy a similar guitar we can sound like them despite knowing that if I buy a 63 strat, I'll sound nothing like John Frusciante.
    I might know that, but it doesn't stop me wanting one, same as I'd love Springsteen's esquire etc.
    Most of us can't afford pre-cbs so we buy a replica which is an AV. We want them to be as close as possible to the original and Fender tell us that if we pick up a 57 reissue strat, it's exactly the same guitar as Buddy Holly picked up back then etc.
    That means a nitro finish. Who knows if it sounds better or not, but our heroes had their guitars sprayed with car paint, so we want the same
     
  7. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

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    well, yeah, a bit harsh... but ya cannot cure an intellectual “flesh eating bacteria” with a blast of “Neuro-Bactine”... sometimes it takes a “chainsaw” to excise the problem.

    Thought processes such as “tone sucking” are part of the perpetual circle of recurring myths that can make life miserable for guys like me...

    Y’all deal with such nonsense with a “give or take” approach... you have the option of ignoring it..

    But those of us that are making guitars have to deal with such almost daily . . a call... goes something like this. . .

    I wanna guitar... what’s the lightest most resonant wood ya have... but hard so it won’t ding.... and it has to breathe, so I want super thin Nitro, but super glossy,. none of the grain in the gloss... OH... it’s gotta have the most totally awesome sustain.... with a sweet tone... like Albert Collins... but... I wanna be able to switch and get Malmsteens sound.... Or SRV’s.. I want the neck to be super skinny, thinner than a Wizard...
    OH.. I want active EMG’s and switch to LR Baggs Piezo system... and on and on. . . OH yeah, can we keep it under 1500. Oh I wanna be able to do Wes Montgomery too... Hey... do ya charge extra fro Stainless Dunlop 6000’s and scalloping??? :eek:

    For those drooling.... that guitar is an impossible study in contrasting concepts... If someone says they can build it... and fill all the requested specifications... run away....

    So for those of y’all that wanna discuss any of the prevailing myths.... do your homework first.... start with basic science.... Newton’s laws of Physics nips most in the bud.... Acoustic science kills those remaining....

    Just plain common sense and practice will get you everything you ever wanted out of your guitar...

    ron kirn
     
  8. sbpark

    sbpark Friend of Leo's

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    Not true. '76 is nitro over poly, EXCEPT for the face of the headstock, which is just poly.
     
  9. sbpark

    sbpark Friend of Leo's

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    So true, I think the best thing to prevent 'tone sucking' from ANY guitar and to get the guitar to sound better is to just practice! THat's the best 'mod' or 'upgrade' any of us can do for our instruments!

    Funny thing though, NOBODY had even addressed my original question about putting nitro OVER poly. Everyone has chimed in about poly and 'tone sucking' and how nitro lets the wood 'breathe' and how they prefer thinner finishes, but nobody has really given an explanation about why they would, and have for DECADES covered a guitar in BOTH finishes.

    From what I have seen on my 52AVRI the nitro finish is SUPER thin. and I mean SUPER thin, while the poly is pretty thick, like a thick candy shell. And the nitro just almost rubs off, kind of like a coat of wax on a car. If the nitro is so thin and fragile, and is an additional layer of stuff on there, and it comes off so easily, and the poly underneath is super hard and wont wear through like a guitar finished in just nitro, why even bother with the nitro top coat? Sounds like pure marketing fodder to me, unless someone has a better answer.
     
  10. blimpo

    blimpo Tele-Meister

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    I don't think anyone would want that.

    Poly is a durable finish for those that want a new looking guitar.

    Nitro isn't as durable and ages.

    Putting the two together seems stupid to me. Maybe they think they are satisfying both desires....they aren't.
     
  11. mimmo

    mimmo Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    The difference?

    Cool against modern.
    Simply.
     
  12. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

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    why Nitro over poly.?

    Perhaps this will help..

    In a production environment, the single most expensive factor is the human element.... Employees cost far more than any other consideration... thus efficiency is paramount... i. e. reproducing the maximum number of units per man-hour...


    Nitro as well as any other solvent based finish are the most “labor intensive” a manufacturer can use... thus, “short-cuts are constantly being sought...

    Normally to finish in Nitro you fill the grain, apply sealer, sand, apply sealer again, sand... if needed, repeat... then begin the nitro... apply a few coats let it harden for a day or so, sand... and continue... once completed, the body HAS to cure for about 3 weeks. It just depends on the climate...

    So... what’s a production oriented factory to do... sit around waiting for paint to dry?? Not hardly.... You look for ways to cit the processes’ time...

    If you can element the filling sanding sealing sanding, sealing, sanding, by dunking the body into a vat of something that will chemically harden in 10 minutes.... something that will fill the same function as filling and sealing... it’s a no-brainer for a production manager.... One who’s azz is constantly being ripped for not speeding thing up.

    that brings to the nitro.... the “real stuff” even that formulated to accommodate the EPA’s dictates still takes a few weeks to harden.... now what ya gonna do.... You approach the chemical coatings manufacturers to formulate SOMETHING that can be referred to as Nitrocellulose lacquer.... but can be catalytically hardened... no waiting for paint to dry...

    The only down side... trying to convince all your customers that those sticky necks are really, really coated with the same exact stuff Leo used... heheheh...

    Now for youze guys that are just repainting the thing... the existing poly makes an excellent, if not the best undercoating.... just sand with something like 240 before spraying it...

    Ron Kirn
     
  13. fenson

    fenson ---------------------------------

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    that last line sums it up quite nicely
    Cheers Ron
     
  14. sbpark

    sbpark Friend of Leo's

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    thanks for the explanation!
     
  15. fenson

    fenson ---------------------------------

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    If you reread the post as well as your own you will find the ? has been answered.

    Lacquer was the finsh of choice for many things back in the day . Poly and the other stuff used from time to time by whoever was/is a good base for the nitro . From some time in 69 (?) on, Fender did go with all polyester for the body.Then latter all poly neck and body. More Fender guitars are all poly than not and don't forget some where acylic in the day as well.
    They use all poly for most of their products polyester and urathane .
    If you did not want nitro over poly why did you buy a AVRI !!

    People wanted some models made like they where ,thats what they got/get!
     
  16. sbpark

    sbpark Friend of Leo's

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    I'm sorry sir, but you are not 100% correct. Fender did not go will all poly for the body from '69 on. Like I mentioned before, my '76 P bass is nitro over poly, except for the neck, which is also nitro over poly EXCEPT for the face of the headstock, which is just nitro. Why it's that combination I have no idea, but that's the way it is. See post #2 of this thread: http://www.talkbass.com/forum/f8/what-year-did-fender-start-using-poly-finishes-basses-381818/

    As far as complaining about not wanting nitro over poly and why I got a 52AVRI, I don't recall complaining about not wanting it anywhere in this thread. I never once made any statement about not liking nitro over poly, complaining about tone or any of the other ridiculous claims people make about wood 'breathing' and 'tone sucking', etc. I love my AVRI. I simply started the thread as a curiosity and just wanted to know the rationale behind putting two different finishes on a guitar when so many people complain about finishes 'sucking tone' and what not.

    It would seem that if your going to put nitro over poly, you might as well just ditch the nitro top coat and just make it poly since that would be less crap on your guitar.

    I can tell you it ain't going to be the fault of the guitar's finish if it sounds like crap, it's going to be the the lack of talent on the end of the person playing it (me) who is going to be responsible for 'sucking tone', not the finish. This is probably the case with the majority of players who are cork, er, lacquer sniffers, and still can't rip on their instruments!

    If you suck on a guitar finished in poly, you're going to suck on a guitar finished in nitro, regardless of if the wood can 'breathe' or not. Ha!
     
  17. xtrajerry

    xtrajerry Doctor of Teleocity

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    Thought it was pretty obvious I was being sarcastic.. Everyone else seemed to have caught on..
     
  18. xtrajerry

    xtrajerry Doctor of Teleocity

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    Wow.. Again I thought it was obvious I was being sarcastic when I used the phrase tone sucking.. Nitro was put over the poly so the finish would age.. That's what people wanted.. Poly was there to keep it from aging to much.. After years of bullet proof poly bodies there was concern that all nitro would get a negative rap.. All nitro in response to those who claimed the poly under coat was 'sucking tone'.. no longer worried about finishes aging quickly.. Fender just responding to what the market wanted at a given period. Sure the guitar manufacturers encouraged this thinking as its a great way to drum up the market..

    I'm inclined to say you're mistaken about the poly on your 76 but don't know for sure.. Do know that fender went all poly in 1968, had thought that nitro was not used again until after CBS gave up the ship in the early 80's..

    Will do some more fact checking about the use of nitro, so far everything I've seen says fender went all poly in '68..
     
  19. xtrajerry

    xtrajerry Doctor of Teleocity

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    +1 for a moment I thought I was reading a different thread.. Next time I'm being sarcastic i'll use the emocons to help convey the true meaning of my post.
     
  20. sbpark

    sbpark Friend of Leo's

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    Fender actually experimented with a lot of different techniques in the 60's from my understanding, but settled on the nitro over poly in the late 60's into the 70's. This is the exact reason why you'll see a lot of Fender basses from the 70's have the back of the neck that is a much lighter shade than the front of the headstock. They finished the backs of the necks with nitro over poly, while the front of the headstock is darker, because it's just poly and obviously ages different than the nitro over poly section over time.
     
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