how does poly age?n

dbw

Senior member
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We've all seen what happens to nitro finishes as they age... they fade, they check, and they wear through in spots.  But what happens to poly?  What will a Warmoth-applied tobacco burst like the one in my avatar look like in 20, 30, 100 years?
 

GoDrex

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it will probably look pretty good, but the clear will probably get scratched up. On my black guitar where the pickguard would go if it had one, it looks like there are like a billion tiny scratches. So that sort of makes it look more dull in that spot. I guess they could be buffed out. I think polly is pretty durable - hard to wear out unless something hard is rubbing on it a lot. Not sure though. I never had a guitar with a poly finish for a long time. The only guitar I had for a long long time was unfinished basswood. I've had it for 20 years and it hasn't changed much.
 

Orpheo

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GoDrex said:
it will probably look pretty good, but the clear will probably get scratched up. On my black guitar where the pickguard would go if it had one, it looks like there are like a billion tiny scratches. So that sort of makes it look more dull in that spot. I guess they could be buffed out. I think polly is pretty durable - hard to wear out unless something hard is rubbing on it a lot. Not sure though. I never had a guitar with a poly finish for a long time. The only guitar I had for a long long time was unfinished basswood. I've had it for 20 years and it hasn't changed much.
I tend to agree. poly has been 'designed' not to age, something which was very noticable with nitro. so, if you have a guitar which you want to see aging whilst in your posession, poly is not a good choice ;) but, warmoth sprays it so thin, it can be quite easily removed.
 

DocNrock

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I have chosen poly on all of my finishes because I prefer the "new" look.  Then again, I'm not a big vintage fan.
 

dmraco

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4,651
When we say nitro ages...are we talking years or decades?  If gibson uses nitro...their finishs look good for a LONG TIME!
 

Orpheo

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dmraco said:
When we say nitro ages...are we talking years or decades?  If gibson uses nitro...their finishs look good for a LONG TIME!

within a year you notice a difference. its not that the finish goes away, but the finish changes in color, and you sometimes get craquelle.
 

GoDrex

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doug07.jpg


it doesn't bother me that my gold top won't look like that
 

dmraco

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4,651
fyi...direct from GIBSON>>>

Your Gibson instrument is finished with several coats of a high-quality nitro-cellulose lacquer. This finish is hand-buffed to a high-gloss, mirror-like surface. Unlike other less expensive finishes, nitro-cellulose does not detract from the tone of the instrument and ages beautifully. This finish, much like skin, requires regular care and maintenance. For this reason, only Gibson Instrument Care Products should be used on ALL Gibson instruments, as Gibson Polishes are also made with a nitro-cellulose base. Using other types of polishes at best will clog the pores of the finish, and at worst, melt the finish.

Exposure to certain synthetic materials, leather straps, and cushions such as those found on some instrument stands could adversely effect the finish. To insure your finish maintains its beauty, please follow these steps:

Never cover or wipe your instrument with synthetic materials.
Always remove the strap from the instrument when not in use.
Cover or replace guitar stand cushions with cotton cloth.
Perspiration can also damage the guitar finish as well as the hardware finish. Always clean your instrument and hardware with a soft, non-synthetic cloth before storing it. To prolong the beauty and durability of the finishes we recommend the Gibson Family of Polishes:

Gibson Pump Polish – For the day-to-day care of your instruments
Gibson High Gloss Polish – For the regular maintenance of your instruments finish
Gibson Restorative Cream – For intense cleaning and conditioning of the instrument finish. Will remove years of neglect from instruments finish.
A rapid change in temperature or humidity can result in small cracks in the finish known as "finish checking". In most cases it happens when a chilled instrument is exposed to warm air. It occurs most frequently in the winter when a guitar case is opened in a warm room or studio after being outside. This is a result of the wood expanding faster than the lacquer. While this condition does not affect the tone it certainly does affect the appearance. To eliminate the possibility of this happening to your instrument we recommend you warm it slowly by opening the case slowly and fanning it to induce warm air to circulate over the top. If a bright bluish fog appears on the top, close the case immediately and let it warm up for a few minutes. Then lift the instrument a little bit from the case and allow the rest of it to warm to room temperature.

 
K

kreig

Guest
within a year you notice a difference. its not that the finish goes away, but the finish changes in color, and you sometimes get craquelle.

In Seattle it's spelled Crackle , craquelle is the french spelling ,non ?, mon ami !?  :laughing7:
 

Tonar8352

Senior member
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2,195
That Lester is killing me.  I am in heat for a Gold Top with P90's!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

dbw

Senior member
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4,531
Maybe my OP wasn't clear... I like the way nitro ages.  Is poly going to age "gracefully" like nitro or is it going to come off in big chips or something?
 

Orpheo

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kreig said:
within a year you notice a difference. its not that the finish goes away, but the finish changes in color, and you sometimes get craquelle.

In Seattle it's spelled Crackle , craquelle is the french spelling ,non ?, mon ami !?  :laughing7:

yeah I thought you english speaking blokes used that word aswell.

@dbw: nop, it wont, sorry. it will chunk away, but wont crackle the way you see nitro do. or discolor like nitro does.
 

dbw

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Sad day.  Oh well, in 20 years or so I'll get Namib refinished in nitro.  My other Warmoths are home-finished so I can restore them myself.

By the way, the term I've seen used most for "crackle" in nitro is "checking". 
 
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