The opposite of the relic: Who else here tries to keep their guitars looking like new?

Discussion in 'Sidewinders Bar & Grille' started by Handsome McClane, Jul 11, 2021.

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How do you prefer your guitars to look?

  1. Relic'd and worn even if it's brand new.

    6 vote(s)
    3.1%
  2. Looking shiny and new always.

    84 vote(s)
    43.3%
  3. Prefer one in good shape but I don't get upset if something happens to it. Natural relic is OK.

    77 vote(s)
    39.7%
  4. Don't really give it much thought.

    17 vote(s)
    8.8%
  5. Shut up and play yer guitar.

    27 vote(s)
    13.9%
  6. I like turtles.

    16 vote(s)
    8.2%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Chont

    Chont Most Honored Senior Member

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    Deleted... wrong thread LOL

    but i'll have everyone know i'm removing the plastic off the guard today.
     
  2. Brucegomb

    Brucegomb Strat-Talker

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    HA HA HA - That's funny. Nice hear this however. I try to keep all my axes in top condition. However, I've learned that nick and bumps happen and try to roll with the flow. Natural wear to me doesn't bother me. A guitar that has a well kept up and has aged his guitar naturally looks awesome. But Neglected, Abused or Smash Relic'd are junk IN MY MIND. And remember, from my view, it's all in MY mind. Don't expect me to ooo and ahhh over a Relic or a $15,000 1961 pickguard.
     
  3. Joe R

    Joe R Strat-Talk Member

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    Excellent!!! I am solidly in your camp. I just don't see the point of shelling out thousands of dollars for a guitar that looks like it's been dragged behind a bus for half a mile. Plus, a relic isn't honest wear. They look synthetic. The only way to have a guitar that looks like it has been lovingly played for decades is to play it for decades. I have such guitars, but I STILL polish them and make them look as good as possible. In my opinion, there is nothing better than a guitar with some honest wear that has been kept up. I have a 25 year old Strat that looks like it was made yesterday. The only way to see its age is to look at the frets which have been worn down quite a bit. For me, pride in your instrument translates into the quality of your playing.
     
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  4. Nate D

    Nate D Most Honored Senior Member

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    I've bought a few relics and like them. Honestly, it's because my two favorite electrics over the years are naturally beat up and worn in. They sound and play better than every other guitar. I got the relics because as I added to my collection I found that no "new" guitar did it for me. I just couldn't bond with them. They felt too sticky or stiff or whatever. So I got a relic and it felt way more comfortable for me and I got the whole "relic as a finish" thing. For me it's about coming close to the feel of my well worn in and well loved guitars. I don't obsess over keeping them clean, but always take the time to wipe the dust off- especially as I change strings out.
     
  5. gazzie

    gazzie Strat-Talk Member

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    I have over 40 guitars, started buying them in the 70s and I have never once polished one. The only thing I look after at all is the "playing surface", ie strings, fretboard and frets. I wipe down/clean the strings after playing, and during playing. I use Music Nomad String Fuel. Every now and then I will clean a fretboard, but not often. A fret dress every so often. That's all. Some of my guitars look pretty worn now, but all natural. Some still look almost new. Some look faded. It depends on the finish. Poly finishes have a few knocks, scrapes and paint chips. Nitro ones look much more worn and some even look battered. Hardware is everything from new looking, a bit tarnished, to rusted to hell. All play great!
     
  6. AndyF

    AndyF Strat-Talk Member

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    I don't understand the whole relic thing. Why spend good money to buy a guitar that is already beat up. If I was a working musician and I played my guitars every night in clubs and bars, and it got worn from my use, then it is a testament to the amount of playing that I have done. Look at Willy Nelson's guitar. But to buy a guitar that is made to look used is kind of a cheat.
     
  7. bbigd0

    bbigd0 Strat-Talk Member

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    I want them all as decent looking as is possible. The artificial "Relic" thing is a real head scratcher to me
     
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  8. Whitebeard

    Whitebeard Strat-Talk Member

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    Here's another from "Back in the day". Myself and pretty much every player I knew took care of our instruments. At the same time we played out and they got nicked and dinged up a little. I laugh every time I see/hear someone buying a reliced (sp.) guitar. Buy a new guitar and wear it out yourself or buy someone's old worn guitar for half the price of a new guitar in "showroom" condition. Don't pay extra because someone in the "custom shop" intentionally damaged the finish of a new guitar so someone will buy it who wants a guitar that "looks like" they've been playing it for years and worn it out. So phony!
     
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  9. fezz parka

    fezz parka fezz parka

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    That's it.

    And it's way better than putting a fake Fender decal on a Chinese neck. ;)
     
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  10. CigBurn

    CigBurn Total Hack

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    I'm not a fan of red, or blue guitars.. so you know what I do?

    I don't buy them and I don't worry about the people that do.
     
  11. Nate D

    Nate D Most Honored Senior Member

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    Yep. I used to be a staunch anti relic guy because I liked my guitars that wore in on their own. But a newer unplayed guitar just didn't feel that good to me. I had a 52 tele reissue and a 57 strat reissue and I just couldn't get into them.

    But that's why it's an option... not a mandatory... LOL

    Edit: And FWIW, I still prefer my naturally worn in guitars, but the relics do get pretty close from a feel perspective.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2021
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  12. Skyking

    Skyking New Member!

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    Scratches, nicks, chips - I don't care. Heck, it can take me months to wipe coffee spill stains from pickguard. Bought 'em to play 'em, not put under glass
     
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  13. Surf Green

    Surf Green Strat-Talk Member

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    All of mine look fairly new. Genuine battle scars are ok, but I would never fake it.
     
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  14. Chont

    Chont Most Honored Senior Member

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    I like keeping my guitars nice and clean. But relics are nice too. As long as they’re done right.
     
  15. onscenenow

    onscenenow Strat-Talk Member

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    I own 8 guitars, I keep them in excellent shape, replace parts as necessary and I play them all. They treat me well and I try to return the favor. My oldest guitar was made in 1935 and my newest one was made in 2000. Aside from a few nicks and wear marks they all look fairly new. I like the way a clean guitar feels and looks, much like my cars.
     
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  16. Gas4Strats

    Gas4Strats Strat-Talker

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    There was I story I heard about a cave man. They found his tools and he kept them in really good condition. Looks like I inherited his genes.
     
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  17. buzzword

    buzzword Strat-Talk Member Silver Member

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    I take pretty good care of everything I own, in fact if I borrow something from you you're likely to get it back in better condition than it was when you lent it to me. As far as my guitars go I usually wipe down the strings and neck after playing, but occasionally don't bother. I like to keep them clean and occasionally wipe the body down as well, but don' t freak out about dings, I'm careful but to some degree it's just gonna happen. Just like a new car.

    I would personally be embarrassed to buy a new artificially relic'd guitar, it strikes me as a poseur move.
     
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  18. Dibbs

    Dibbs Senior Stratmaster

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    Yeah, no. I've been keeping my Strat in a stand, for years, no damage. At some point, people just started getting this attitude, that scratches, nicks, and damage on guitars were acceptable. Most pro musicians will tell you this is not the case. (see what I did, there?) You simply don't see this type of damage, on a violin, trumpet, or saxophone, no matter how long or hard they are played. There was a time when the attitude that wear and tear on a musical instrument was sacrilege. Like scratching Candy Apple Paint, on a hot rod.
    These days, everybody justifies instrument damage; calling it "character", "wear & tear", and "relic-ing", and acting like it's acceptable. Sorry.
     
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  19. jbylake

    jbylake Fabulously Famous Nobody Silver Member

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    :D:D
     
  20. Intune

    Intune Senior Stratmaster

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    That’s much my take on new gear too. I love the new shiny American Originals but I just can’t get past the stickiness, sharp shiny new plastics. I’ve had a fiesta red tele and the 60’s Strat. I have relics that just felt way more playable. I could have put the time in but the days of one guitar are long gone. So both were traded in for a custom shop relic.

    Another point I’d like to make is that for me I buy the faux custom shop relics even the NOS stuff because it has the specs of the vintage stuff. Relic or closest clean doesn’t matter to me it’s the neck shape, fret work, pickups, fit and finish that I gravitate towards.
     
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