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How to get weather checking on my '11 R8 ???

kingsxman

Member
Joined
May 19, 2005
Messages
316
It easier to " age " or distress the metal parts and all that is reversible. by obtaining new parts. I find it fun to tinker with that. Vinegar fumes Diluted enchant solution, Muriatic acid will distress nickel plating but not chrome. Go real slow and easy and don't over do it. Vintage guitars still have some shine. Pay attention to where you hands rest while you play. Plastics can be stained, Again only in small amounts and tastefully. Use existing examples of the real vintage ones. You will eventually find what your after, and then realize that playing it extensively will do most of it.

I have not heard of the vinegar method. Just standard vinegar? How long do you let them hang in the fumes? I have used muriatic acid in the past with good success. Its been awhile now and I dont remember how long I let the parts (usually tunes and bridges from Fenders) hang in the fumes. I think a couple hours. Then take them out and let them sit for a day. You'll see some aging.
 

Sct13

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Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
569
I have not heard of the vinegar method. Just standard vinegar? How long do you let them hang in the fumes? I have used muriatic acid in the past with good success. Its been awhile now and I dont remember how long I let the parts (usually tunes and bridges from Fenders) hang in the fumes. I think a couple hours. Then take them out and let them sit for a day. You'll see some aging.

yes standard household vinegar AKA, Acetic Acid. The regular kitchen stuff is 5% and is for human consumption. The 10% is for Herbicides. The 10% works faster for obvious reasons. Either does not work well in the cold. Tight lid. Allow occasional exposure to air. I am doing a set of tuners and the 5% is taking a long time. The Muriatic Acid is difficult to get because of its connection to some new home drug manufacture. So I am not putting my name on a list.
 
Y

yeti

Guest
My opinion is why all the love for checking?? I'm with Uncle Gary on this, to damage the finish of a guitar for what??? What is gained by damaging the finish? What Mojo or desirable effect is gained by ruining the finish? I won't buy pants with holes in them either. Tinting plastics and sun fading finishes, knocking the shine of metal ect.. I can see, it isn't destructive or compromises the integrity of the guitar, mostly a cosmetic thing. But to purposely damage a guitar for pretend age or ..... I don't know what???

Jeez, Al you're starting to creep me out because you say exactly what I'm about to post. Is there something akin to an internet restraining order? You're cramping my style.:bigal :bigal :bigal :laugh2: :laugh2: :laugh2:
 

Big Al

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Apr 24, 2002
Messages
14,379
I wondered the same thing a few years ago when I saw Fender with the "Roadworn" series. I had no idea it was a "thing" When I got into LP again after a 10 year hiatus from Gibson all together, I reintroduced myself to the burst and all of its nuances. Then went to a few guitar shows and saw some true vintage guitars. Then I saw their price tags. Unreachable, untouchable, ONLY for the Affluent and well to do (which I am NOT) Do I want to spend $2000
on a LP Jr that is checked and vintage? Sure. But its not a burst. So how do I get a burst? Do what fender did.....Make one. Therein lies your answer. I do not have 150,000 to blow on a burst but I can scrounge and save for a historic and tinker until I have a reasonable facsimile of a burst. That will satisfy me for the time being. I was a model tank airplane builder as a kid. This kind of detail work is sort of therapy for my troubles. I doesn't make sense to some. Your guitar is probably a tool to produce and make music for a living, That's the dream for me. at my age its difficult to form a band. Think of it as aging a craftsman 5/8 boxend wrench as a hobby, an auto mechanic would laugh his ass off because he has five that are already aged......:rofl

Anyway I'll never own a Bonafide Burst. I do have my old fenders that are significantly road worn by me, from gigging, but those days are over. And if I wanted to "Properly age" my historics it will be from my living room or basement chairs playing them with headphones on, and not much sweating going on there. :biggrin:

Are you kiddin' me? :rofl

Wait a minute so I can digest this, you can't afford a vintage 59 Les Paul so you figure you can buy a replica or reissue. I can get behind that, done the same thing, myself. But this is where I get confused.:nut I get that you cannot afford a real 59 Les Paul, damn few of us can. So you want to fool yourself into thinking you got one anyway, or fool someone, or pretend to, and 'cause you would never be able to afford a MINT 1959, cloning a beat to shit abused one is more reasonable, or at least represents a better use of imaginary funds.

A more affordable version of the guitar you can't afford. I take it you really can't imagine scoring a nice clean one, which for me would be the dream, or is it that you have realistic expectations and would only elect to imagine to score a well used one? Pretend $ or imaginary dough is limitless. Come on, set yourself free and splurge, get the high ticket mint one, it was under the bed for decades and only played on sundays!:spabout

Look I get the tinker, artisan thing where antiquing a guitar could be fun. And I absolutely understand the Replica Renderings of famous Burst that capture with exacting detail every scratch and ding as well as simulated breaks.

I still say it is more fun and rewarding to do it with lots of playing time, at home, in the bedroom, on stage or in front of the bathroom mirror. Just my opinion but I find it more gratifying. However all kidding aside, the notion that was expressed about subjecting a Les Paul to prolonged sub zero temps and rapidly heating it is the most careless thing I have read. In order to produce the finish checks some old guitars have for whatever reason is not a good enough reason to risk damaging a guitar permanently. Imagine the stress that puts on the neck under string tension, and imagine what happens to the neck without string tension!!!! This can be very dangerous to do.

Bottom line it's your guitar do what you will, but I find it questionable, to be charitable, at best to intentionally damage a guitar for some kind of fake cosmetic crap. Damage is damage no matter how artfully applied and checking, real or fake is damage and always a detrimental thing. WTF!WTF!!WTF!!! When did this become a sought after commodity? What is so great about it? Makes my head hurt.
 

Sct13

Member
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
569
Are you kiddin' me? :rofl

Wait a minute so I can digest this, you can't afford a vintage 59 Les Paul so you figure you can buy a replica or reissue. I can get behind that, done the same thing, myself. But this is where I get confused.:nut I get that you cannot afford a real 59 Les Paul, damn few of us can. So you want to fool yourself into thinking you got one anyway, or fool someone, or pretend to, and 'cause you would never be able to afford a MINT 1959, cloning a beat to shit abused one is more reasonable, or at least represents a better use of imaginary funds.

A more affordable version of the guitar you can't afford. I take it you really can't imagine scoring a nice clean one, which for me would be the dream, or is it that you have realistic expectations and would only elect to imagine to score a well used one? Pretend $ or imaginary dough is limitless. Come on, set yourself free and splurge, get the high ticket mint one, it was under the bed for decades and only played on sundays!:spabout

Look I get the tinker, artisan thing where antiquing a guitar could be fun. And I absolutely understand the Replica Renderings of famous Burst that capture with exacting detail every scratch and ding as well as simulated breaks.

I still say it is more fun and rewarding to do it with lots of playing time, at home, in the bedroom, on stage or in front of the bathroom mirror. Just my opinion but I find it more gratifying. However all kidding aside, the notion that was expressed about subjecting a Les Paul to prolonged sub zero temps and rapidly heating it is the most careless thing I have read. In order to produce the finish checks some old guitars have for whatever reason is not a good enough reason to risk damaging a guitar permanently. Imagine the stress that puts on the neck under string tension, and imagine what happens to the neck without string tension!!!! This can be very dangerous to do.

Bottom line it's your guitar do what you will, but I find it questionable, to be charitable, at best to intentionally damage a guitar for some kind of fake cosmetic crap. Damage is damage no matter how artfully applied and checking, real or fake is damage and always a detrimental thing. WTF!WTF!!WTF!!! When did this become a sought after commodity? What is so great about it? Makes my head hurt.


Right!

OK I did buy a very nice R9 that has all kinds of play time (someone elses) its an 03 with nicely aged (real play wear ) covers and other nickel hardware. I put on different tuners (Uncle Lou's) and aside from different pots and caps that was it. It the only guitar I attempted to check in the cold. And like I stated earlier I don't think I would put it through that again for the very reasons you stated. It was new to me and I was new to the whole aging thing. Still a great player, looks great on the guitar stand next to me. I was probably playing it as you wrote. The others I am tinkering with are Without the finish "bashing" shall we say. Look at it like this. Car buffs and hotrod builders do the same thing. Aftermarket stuff like stickers chrome parts and you name it go on cars to "trick them out" Its like that. :jim

Its fun. The real fun anyways is playing them and swapping out different pickups, its the sound more than the look anyway, in case your wondering the Joe Bonamassa's by SD are incredible. :applaude
 

Big Al

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 24, 2002
Messages
14,379
Right!

Its fun. The real fun anyways is playing them and swapping out different pickups, its the sound more than the look anyway, in case your wondering the Joe Bonamassa's by SD are incredible. :applaude

Oh you nailed it there. It is fun. How long have you had you 03. I bought my first and favorite R9 in May 2000, the day the store received it. I've had it all this time and still love it to death. Besides being what I consider to be an exceptional guitar, after 12 years it has become a part of me. I have swapped so many parts and pickups. I loved all of it and learned something every time. I was wondering about the Bonomassa pickups. I am a friend and fan of Seymour and I love his pickups. These Bonamassas seem to be just what I might need on a guitar or two. Can you elaborate on your impressions of the tone?
 

DanD

Active member
Joined
Apr 8, 2007
Messages
2,366
The other day I left my 2002 R4 Black Beauty outside for ten hours when the temperature was -20 Celsius. Then I brought it into the house and used a hair dryer to warm it up. No checking whatsoever. This tells about the amount of plasticisers used in the modern lacquer.

+1 I've never tried temp extremes to check an instrument but I don't ever case my guitars in the house. My experience leads me to believe that the finish plasticizers will off gas more quickly with the guitar outside the case.

From my experiences the finish ages gracefully when constantly exposed to the light and air. It also looses that new guitar "stickiness" much faster when allowed to breath.

Even my poly Fernandes Tele Thinline copy has aged in this manner. The natural ash finish was as white as a new Fender 70s RI when I purchased it 4 years ago. It's now a nice butterscotch color. That guitar never had a case and spent twenty plus years uncased in the back of a dark closet before I got it. This leads me to believe that exposure to UV is more important than just being outside the case. That said, the guitar in question was not purposely "sun bathed" it simply stays in the music room exposed to the natural light in a multiple guitar case style stand. :2zone
 

jrr

New member
Joined
Aug 31, 2001
Messages
351
cool story: i was all of 20yrs old when i was asked to reherse with a ...wait for it...An Elvis Tribute band!:2cool .The Lead guitar player was a long haul trucker with a 54 goldtop,that was checked like crazy.He apologetically explained that he was on one haul in the midwest once with his GT in the cab when his rig broke down in the middle of a blizzard.Temp dropped as he was stuck overnight.The goldtop subsequently became"checked"...he remembers it as a life threatening experience and that axe had cool mojo because of the story...real life stuff. The lead singer in that audition was full of himself,he felt he was elvis re-incarnated!:dude: ...he was a good singer to boot.All his gigs were huge parties!
On another point,i'm quite surprised how easily my 2010 finish chips if it takes a hit.Much different than my late eighties lesters.She IS brittle.
 

JTele

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Joined
May 14, 2011
Messages
60
wait for the temperatures to drop even deeper, let it freeze outside for a few hours and then put her beside a fireplace. That will work. If you will like the result? I really don't know.

I think the modern RIs do not check like the originals did due to laquer components and thickness. The modern laquers are much more flexible, the old ones were quite britle and the surface broke easily

I played with a guy back in the 70s who had left his Tele in his car during subzero temps (WI) for a couple days prior to rehearsal. To warm it up, he placed the guitar next to the wood-burning heater, and bingo: instant checking! The humorous thing was that we could actually hear the finish cracking for a few minutes while in the process.......sort of a "snap, crackle & pop" kind of thing.....LOL.
 

Sct13

Member
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
569
Oh you nailed it there. It is fun. How long have you had you 03. I bought my first and favorite R9 in May 2000, the day the store received it. I've had it all this time and still love it to death. Besides being what I consider to be an exceptional guitar, after 12 years it has become a part of me. I have swapped so many parts and pickups. I loved all of it and learned something every time. I was wondering about the Bonomassa pickups. I am a friend and fan of Seymour and I love his pickups. These Bonamassas seem to be just what I might need on a guitar or two. Can you elaborate on your impressions of the tone?


The joe B's in two words. "Complex Harmonies"

Without going in to a slew of sound descriptors the best way is to say that all the harmonics are balanced you can hear them all, and that makes it complex. Wonderful sounding pickups.
 

Big Al

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Joined
Apr 24, 2002
Messages
14,379
Freezing wood and then rapid warming destroys the cellular integrity of the wood. I cannot think of any advantage to doing this to a guitar. The checking is a visual clue to the damage that is occurring and has always been in my experience something to be avoided.

Sometimes it can't be helped and gentle finish cracks often appear on older guitars with brittle finishes. But if caused by frozen wood or rapidly heated wood, woo boy, it is a sign of potential trouble. Freezing causes more than just contraction of the wood fibers, it also crystalizes the glue joints, which are stressed by the movement(contraction and expansion) of the wood in the extreme temp swings. It is probably much worse with hide glue. I have seen Archtop guitars completely dismantled by this process. In Reno Nevada I had a guy who wanted to sell me a Blonde 1959 Switchmaster, which he had in the trunck of his guitar. He had driven down from Idaho and kept the guitar in the trunk, in it's case, to keep it safe, when he would stop to eat or rest.
When he opened the trunk and we opened the case, the guitar was in pieces. It had stated to separate at the glue joints and the string tension added more stress and Ka Boom. It just came apart when we opened the case. You should have seen our faces. I was disappointed but he was devastated.

If you gotta have the checks, do the razor or canned method, as both would be kinder to the wood. But again I gotta ask, What is the desirability of finish checking? Why risk a great guitar for a cosmetic representation of MISSUSE?? I know some have seen vintage Les Pauls and want to have one that looks like one, but why this insistence on checks? Not all vintage Les Pauls have finish checks and I would want the cleanest example I could find. I never noticed finish checks as a spec on Les Pauls. What just flabbergasts me is why is it so wanted?

But, I guess I'm out of step with the majority who now want facsimile vintage guitars that mimic years of use and hard traveling. OK, I have been in the minority in many things and being out of step seems to be a way of life now for me. I don't get it and probably never will, but they are your guitars and you can certainly do whatever you want to them if it makes you happy. The only thing I would strongly caution you on is the freezing of the guitar and the rapidly warming of a frozen one. Please indulge your old Uncle Big Al and do not do this!!!!
At least realize the potential dangers involved.
 

Big Al

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Joined
Apr 24, 2002
Messages
14,379
The joe B's in two words. "Complex Harmonies"

Without going in to a slew of sound descriptors the best way is to say that all the harmonics are balanced you can hear them all, and that makes it complex. Wonderful sounding pickups.

That sounds like I have to get a pair.
 

Triburst

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Feb 12, 2006
Messages
4,347
Overheard in a "random" office at Gibson....

(unknown Gibson employee): Henry! Henry! They're talking about the finish on our reissues on the Les Paul Forum!

(other Gibson employee): Really? What are they saying?

(unknown Gibson employee): Well... They're talking about leaving their guitars outside in freezing weather, then bringing them back inside and hitting them with a blow-dryer.

(other Gibson employee): No kidding? What happened?

(unknown Gibson employee): That's just it -- NOTHING happened. The finish still looks like new!

(other Gibson employee): HA! Well how about that! I'll bet they're impressed with the improvements in our finishes chemistry!

(unknown Gibson employee): No, Henry -- they're PISSED!

:pop
 

Sct13

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Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
569
Overheard in a "random" office at Gibson....

(unknown Gibson employee): Henry! Henry! They're talking about the finish on our reissues on the Les Paul Forum!

(other Gibson employee): Really? What are they saying?

(unknown Gibson employee): Well... They're talking about leaving their guitars outside in freezing weather, then bringing them back inside and hitting them with a blow-dryer.

(other Gibson employee): No kidding? What happened?

(unknown Gibson employee): That's just it -- NOTHING happened. The finish still looks like new!

(other Gibson employee): HA! Well how about that! I'll bet they're impressed with the improvements in our finishes chemistry!

(unknown Gibson employee): No, Henry -- they're PISSED!

:pop


:rofl
 

woody-89

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Joined
Sep 16, 2007
Messages
855
Al, in my opinion, finish checking and the like is all in the 'cosmetics' category. As we all know, how a guitar looks is a major factor in our enjoyment of it (for much the same reason that many here will pay a premium for an R9 over an R7, or why one may never consider buying a Les Paul in say, Gecko burst, no matter how good it sounded or played).

In terms of Fenders, the look of a well worn and checked Strat is what looks 'right' to me. Whilst I am completely a fan of letting nature take its course and those wear marks happening with time, I never play a Strat enough to put those kind of miles on it. Neither do I live in a climate that sees many extremes of temperature, so natural finish checking is something that would quite possibly never happen. However, those marks, dinks and checks fit my view of what I would want a strat to look like, and as they are unlikely to happen naturally I would be all too happy to buy a relic version. For my Gibsons, they are the guitars that I gig with, and I like the fact that in 30 years time they will have their own well earned wear, and I will also be proud to think of the years I spent playing them, putting the wear there. This is with me being in the situation of being in my early twenties and in a regularly gigging band, giving me the opportunity to put them through their paces often. Who knows, if I were not in that situation I may feel the same way about them as I do about aged Fenders.

Whilst I am alarmed about your tale of the 59 Switchmaster, it is certainly the first time I've heard of this happening, and haven't heard any tales of any modern guitars falling apart having been given the Deep-Freeze treatment. In fact, I don't believe I've seen stories about any modern guitars suffering any kind of irreversible warping or fatiguing of the wood as a consequence of it. Assuming that is the case, I do not see deliberately checking the finish using heat to be any different to any other sort of ageing, whether it be taking the shine off hardware (that is also irreversible), or Tom Murphy plonking a giant belt buckle and a set of keys on the back of a guitar to simulate years of wear and tear.

FWIW, I do feel that using razors to 'check' the finish IS damaging a guitar, more so than the above examples. It is a technique that at best can only ever be semi realistic (IMO), and it does not give the same feel to the finish as using the heat technique.


As goes the old saying, 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder', and if adding checking and ageing to a guitar makes it fit your vision of how it should be, then why the hell not!
 

59Vampire

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Feb 1, 2005
Messages
4,223
I have experimented with light aging, muriaticnacidnfumes, enchant and what not. But the best way to age the tuner tips is a sun lamp. I did some fading with a tanning bed and my uncle lountips and got a very natural look.
 

Sct13

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Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
569
I have experimented with light aging, muriaticnacidnfumes, enchant and what not. But the best way to age the tuner tips is a sun lamp. I did some fading with a tanning bed and my uncle lountips and got a very natural look.


So I was right about the UV lighting!
 
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