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Hoping some of you guys know about nitro? What kind of finish damage is this?

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  • Hoping some of you guys know about nitro? What kind of finish damage is this?

    Hi Ladies and Gents.

    I came into a guitar from my local dealer who seems to have thought that this was factory relic'ing. I think it is some other form of trauma that affected the entire guitar. Even the pickup cavities have checking that all goes with the grain. I am not a relic'ing fan, but I always thought that standard natural checking happens cross grain. Am I wrong?

    So I didn't include a neck pic because I didn't think of it at the time, but around the curves of the neck/headstock area, just opposite the nut, the finish seems to actually lifted a bit from the paint... so there are visible cracks in the finish where it is white, as if the finish is pulling away from the paint... I will include a photo of that as soon as I get one.

    Although the cracks and "checking" seems crazy, you can't feel them...

    I wonder if this is some sort of long term moisture exposure? The guitar seems to play fine, the intonation and string height is bang on the money, neck is straight, I set the relief to 0.15mm (about .005 inch) but I did have to tighten the truss rod to the point that it is starting to show thread to get it to that point... initially it was way too much relief.... but I also have a brand new Les Paul R6 with some thread showing out of the truss nut.

    Additionally, many of the electronics, particularly the nuts under the volume knobs, are insanely corroded. I had to change one pot and I had to literally cut the nut off with a Dremel.

    Any thoughts on this? Thank you!!!



    Attached Files
    "'He who first proclaims to have golden ears is the only one in the argument who can truly have golden ears.' The opponent, therefore, must, by the rules, have tin ears, since there can only be one golden-eared person per argument." - Randall Aiken

  • #2
    Here is the neck at the headstock...

    Attached Files
    "'He who first proclaims to have golden ears is the only one in the argument who can truly have golden ears.' The opponent, therefore, must, by the rules, have tin ears, since there can only be one golden-eared person per argument." - Randall Aiken

    Comment


    • #3
      If the electronics have sufferered that badly you can be sure the rest of the guitar has also. Sounds like a damp humid enviroment it was kept in or played on many seaside gigs.
      I would walk away from a potential trainwreck.
      nosaj
      Binkie McFartnuggets‏:If we really wanted to know the meaning of life we would have fed Stephen Hawking shrooms a long time ago.

      Comment


      • #4
        Seasonal changes can cause wood to crack. I'm sharing important building tips about how to prevent your DIY wood furniture from cracking.
        Binkie McFartnuggets‏:If we really wanted to know the meaning of life we would have fed Stephen Hawking shrooms a long time ago.

        Comment


        • #5
          Have you tested the finish to establish for certain whether it's cellulose or not?

          I've seen this type of cracking with polyester finishes. A black Les Paul that was bought used and just a few years old came to me like this but in slightly worse condition. It had been subjected to extremes of temperature and humidity throughout its short life.. As with yours, you couldn't feel the cracks and it looked to have settled down in possession of the new owner. Guitar finishes are hard and can't take much movement, but the underlying timber can expand and contract quite a bit under prolonged conditions and cause severe cracking. In extreme cases the finish can flake away and on the neck can cause cuts with the razor edges. Cellulose finishes age differently to synthetic finishes such as polyester. Overall, timber shrinks more across the grain than along it and this will crack polyester in line with the grain, and polyester is much more stable when it comes to temperature changes.

          Comment


          • #6
            Maybe the result of a cryogenic treatment of the complete guitar ?
            - Own Opinions Only -

            Comment


            • #7
              "extremes of temperature and humidity" This.

              Looks like it was put through a temperature cycling chamber.

              Comment


              • #8
                If you do some google searching for 'celebrity series Les Paul', you will see that they were not relic'd like this.
                It is possible though, that someone tried to do a DIY relic job and had some kind of failure.

                https://www.vintageandrare.com/produ...991-Black-2742
                https://www.gbase.com/gear/gibson-le...ies-1991-ebony
                http://i.imgur.com/Z2kHeAR.jpg
                "Everything is better with a tube. I have a customer with an all-tube pacemaker. His heartbeat is steady, reassuring and dependable, not like a modern heartbeat. And if it goes wrong he can fix it himself. You can't do that with SMD." - Mick Bailey

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Mick Bailey View Post
                  Have you tested the finish to establish for certain whether it's cellulose or not?

                  I've seen this type of cracking with polyester finishes. A black Les Paul that was bought used and just a few years old came to me like this but in slightly worse condition. It had been subjected to extremes of temperature and humidity throughout its short life.. As with yours, you couldn't feel the cracks and it looked to have settled down in possession of the new owner. Guitar finishes are hard and can't take much movement, but the underlying timber can expand and contract quite a bit under prolonged conditions and cause severe cracking. In extreme cases the finish can flake away and on the neck can cause cuts with the razor edges. Cellulose finishes age differently to synthetic finishes such as polyester. Overall, timber shrinks more across the grain than along it and this will crack polyester in line with the grain, and polyester is much more stable when it comes to temperature changes.
                  I am waiting on a blacklight to arrive - this guitar is a 1991... if it's nitro, it should give off a good amount of glow... And of course will reveal any "repairs" and paint-overs...

                  Originally posted by mozz View Post
                  Looks like it was put through a temperature cycling chamber.
                  something! I first thought maybe some idiot put it in some type of meat freezer and then straight to a sauna.

                  Originally posted by g1 View Post
                  If you do some google searching for 'celebrity series Les Paul', you will see that they were not relic'd like this.
                  It is possible though, that someone tried to do a DIY relic job and had some kind of failure.
                  Yea, I should have mentioned that... this guitar was only made in 1991 at a count of <200, so it is claimed. I didn't think relic'ing as a "style" was even really done yet... and it is pretty rare that Gibson does such extreme relic'ing anyway unless it is an artist series of some sort...

                  Not sure what to make of it, but I am starting to lean toward this being done by the hand of someone who was just bored with it. New, this guitar would have been pretty nice looking, all white plastics, black finish and even has an ebony board! I don't understand the motivation sometimes... someone even put a Bigsby on it at one point... another thing that the dealer (employee that accepted this on trade) was somehow duped into believing was a factory feature.

                  As I mentioned above, I had to Dremel the nut off to change the pot - but I have also done this a few times before... I once had a 2000 Fender Strat American Deluxe that after a few tours I had to Dremel off the pot's nut also because it was also crazy corroded from all the sweat that got into it... and this being a 1991, I suppose it isn't impossible.

                  BUT, my research is leading me to believe that it is not water damage... the water damaged guitars that I can see are in much worse condition... glued joints coming undone, finish basically stripping away, not really checking like this.

                  Anyway, I should be receiving my blacklist today... that will help identify things a bit.

                  Thanks all!!!

                  "'He who first proclaims to have golden ears is the only one in the argument who can truly have golden ears.' The opponent, therefore, must, by the rules, have tin ears, since there can only be one golden-eared person per argument." - Randall Aiken

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