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How to clean nitro finish

Discussion in 'Pre-CBS Strats (before 1966)' started by Mustang65, Dec 15, 2018.

  1. Mustang65

    Mustang65 Strat-Talk Member

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    so far I’ve only used a very soft guitar polish cloth. Is there anything else that is OK to use to clean a nitro finish. The guitar is a 1965. Also, is there any difference to cleaning new nitro finishes, as in AVRI models? Thank you.
     
  2. henderman

    henderman Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    the lacquer finishes on a guitar are the same as they are on a car, you can use all the same products, just not the bucket of soapy water. :)

    l like meguire's cleaner wax.
     
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  3. rolandson

    rolandson Still Breathing Strat-Talk Supporter

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    1. Cloth dampened with water.
    2. Cloth dampened with Naphthalene...aka lighter fluid.
    There is a cleaner used in automotive body shops that is an excellent degreaser that promises not to harm lacquered finishes called:

    900 Pre-Kleano
    :
    http://refinish.basf.us/products/900-pre-kleano/

    I've used it only on my car. One day a house painter was spraying an enamel and coated cars along an entire block. Before he left town in the middle of the night, he gave a can of it to me. He asked me to share with the fellow who's Porsche he painted but I couldn't locate him...

    The stuff removed the wax under the paint thus taking the unwanted paint off my car, without doing harm to the car's finish.

    It ain't cheap, but it was very effective. If you are cleaning that intensively, test it first by Q-Tip in an...you know the drill. Just wait a couple of days after testing to make certain it didn't have long term affects that were not immediately apparent.

    The stuff fender currently uses is not the same lacquer of old. It has additives that make it acceptable to California. Plus it is tinted to make it look aged. I think you are better off asking fender directly.

    Here's to hoping you get a straight answer...:thumb:
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2018
  4. jball85

    jball85 Strat-O-Master

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    Gibson guitar cleaner, Nomad guitar polish, Fender custom shop guitar cleaner all safe on nitro. Elbow grease and a soft polishing cloth work well if you don't have the polish. Sometimes I breath on my neck then wipe it, like a pair of glasses. For Nitro maple fretboards I use gorgomyte once or twice a year, and polish to clean it off the left over.
     
  5. wht1

    wht1 Strat-Talk Member

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    Be careful. I used a product approved for nitro finishes on a really dirty tobacco stained 1950s Tele and the product lifted the nitro. It seems like ages of grime can sink into and bond with the finish. Someone had warned me that this could happen so I only tried it on a small spot and quit. Since then I leave old finishes alone.
     
  6. vid1900

    vid1900 Senior Stratmaster

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    Guitar shops put expensive cleaners and polishes under the counter to sell to customers.

    BUT in the backroom the pros use:

    Naphtha to clean off any oils and gummy residue (this also removes any waxes). Safe for all guitar finishes. $14 USD a gallon (probably a 3 lifetime supply).

    Novus2 to polish out fine scratches and bring the finish back to full mirror. $9 lifetime supply

    Blitz 1 Grand paste wax (contains no silicone, does not leave white flakes behind) $15 lifetime supply

    Don't be fooled into buying a bunch of overpriced crap, use what the pros use.

    naphtha.jpg s-l640.jpg 1691639.jpg
     
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  7. vid1900

    vid1900 Senior Stratmaster

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    Remember that liquid **waxes** don't really have wax in them.

    They are just silicone and maybe a tiny suspension of wax that is too little to matter.

    Silicones can make chip repair a nightmare, so avoid them at all cost.

    Silicone is the used car lot's favorite trick, wipe it over a faded car and the color looks deep and shiny - for about 3 days.

    37f131c541f679bfce20bc03595419d2089430a8.jpg
     
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  8. Bazz Jass

    Bazz Jass Chairman of the Fingerboard Strat-Talk Supporter

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    This stuff is HIGHLY recommended in the vintage acoustic world - old nitro finished Martins etc.

    No silicon!!

    http://virtuosopolish.com/
     
  9. Michelotti

    Michelotti Strat-Talker

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    I’m another fan of
    1 Grand Blitz Wax
     
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  10. Michelotti

    Michelotti Strat-Talker

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    Available in UK from frost.co.uk (and other sources, probably).
     
  11. fezz parka

    fezz parka Making a record.... Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Bingo!
     
  12. Mustang65

    Mustang65 Strat-Talk Member

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    Thanks all. Interesting food for thought. The naphtha seems scary, though I’m sure many have used it. Just frightens me more than a tad. Thank you all again!
     
  13. vid1900

    vid1900 Senior Stratmaster

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    "lighter fluid" that you have in all those disposable lighters in your home, is low grade Naphtha.

    So you've had experience with it your entire life, maybe even carried it around in your pocket, and nothing scary has happened.

    Try it on a Squier, try it to get adhesive off your case, use it to clean a joint before you glue some plastic - once you try it, you will never go back to $$$$$ cleaners that are probably 90% Naphtha and 10% perfume.
     
  14. Bazz Jass

    Bazz Jass Chairman of the Fingerboard Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Jimi Hendrix for one....
     
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  15. Mipstoo

    Mipstoo Senior Stratmaster

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    Whoohoo

    [​IMG]
     
  16. Rugler1

    Rugler1 New Member!

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    Make sure to wipe off excess oil with a soft, dry rag. All you generally need to clean your your guitar is some elbow grease and a soft, dry cloth. If a dry cloth is not cutting it, you may use a damp cloth that has been well wrung out. Several times a year, you may want to use a polish after you've done your cleaning.
     
  17. Miotch

    Miotch Senior Stratmaster

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    I've used just a damp rag and even with a little soap on occassion. But I, too, just generally wipe down with soft, dry rag. Used to use pool chalk on my palm between sets to lessen stickiness of lacquer neck. Until I figured out it was sticky because I kept using pool chalk on my hand.
     
  18. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I use Meguire's Cleaner Wax - Ron Kirn's suggestion and works great on nitro and poly.
     
  19. Mipstoo

    Mipstoo Senior Stratmaster

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    I don't do much cleaning on mine... wipe 'em off, keep the board hydrated and a lot of TLC... works great!
     
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