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  1. #1

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    What is the best guitar polish that doesn't hurt nitro lacquer and doesn't leave oily buildup?

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  3. #2

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    I like Virtuoso cleaner and polish. Works really well.


    Best Guitar Polish for Removing Smudges/Grime?-virtuoso-guitar-polish-jpg

  4. #3

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    Saliva.

    *Not* joking.

  5. #4

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    Keep in mind that polishing, is, in many cases, the process of creating progressively finer scratches onto the surface of something. Honestly, this is what gemstone polishing does. (Kind of ironic----the "perfect" finish is really massive imperfections etched into the surface.)

    The same is true with car polishes...they contain abrasives....which produce tiny scratches...which reflect light back...using really, really fine sandpaper or abrasive powders dissolved, then it gets dirty, and we get to clean it.

    For many things, a lot of polishing is like cleaning teeth...a bit is OK, but too much and you're wearing away enamel, or the surface finish.

    I'm a minimalist...a damp rag...saliva is sterile and will dissolve some grease, dirt, as it literally does contain digestive enzymes.

    I'd be wary of anything that ends up having color come off into the polishing cloth.

  6. #5

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    Hey Jack, every time I'm done playing I spray a microfiber towel with 2 spritz's of zymol quick detailer and wipe down the guitar. I flip the towel over and buff it with the dry side. Leaves it decontaminated, smooth and fresh. No oily residue. $10.00 at autozone.
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  7. #6

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    I use something called "Lizard Spit". Been using it for years, smells great, cleans good. I would also recommend purchasing a nice cleaning cloth as this also does wonders.

  8. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe DeNisco
    Hey Jack, every time I'm done playing I spray a microfiber towel with 2 spritz's of zymol quick detailer and wipe down the guitar. I flip the towel over and buff it with the dry side. Leaves it decontaminated, smooth and fresh. No oily residue. $10.00 at autozone.

    Interesting. Does this have the traditional zymol fruit smell? (I use zymol when I get up the initiative, about once every five years, to wax my car.)

  9. #8

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    I have tried everything under the sun including car care products and nothing beats Virtuoso cleaner and polish but they are both creams so it takes a bit longer than a mist and wipe product. If you are in a hurry what Joe or Danny uses but if you are looking for a shine that needs sunglasses then Virtuoso. Also you can just tell immediately that nitro lacquer just loves this stuff.

  10. #9

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    The virtuoso is a sealant. The spray retailers maintain so you don't have to reapply so often.
    Virtuoso is amazing.

  11. #10

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    Joe I beg to differ with my friend. Virtuoso is not a sealant. It is a polish. See for yourself on their website. It is not a wax or a sealant like Menzerna is. I do use mist products for quickie cleans but when I get serious I use Virtuoso. You should not use a wax or a sealant on nitro finishes as it needs to breathe. Now as far as gold plate goes nothing beats the Menzerna you turned me on to.

  12. #11

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    If it is organic stuff like sweat stains or dried sweat slurry, mild foamy hand soap and a lightly dampened i.e. not sopping wet cotton cloth works wonders. Follow up with a dry cotton cloth. Make sure that there aren't any cracks in the lacquer though. Or try naptha on stubborn stains.

    And I think that the guitar is as clean as it needs to be. It won't have the showroom shine of a Virtuoso-ed guitar but it will be clean.

  13. #12

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    Per Gibson the only wax that should be used would be a all natural carnauba as it has a "breathing quality" to it.
    I bought a new Black Lucille in the 90's. It must of had a fair amount of moisture in the wood. I wanted it to shine like a black limo so I put a couple coats of sealant and wax on it. A couple weeks later it had water blisters all over it. I popped one and you could see the moisture. This would not have happened if I didn't clog up the lacquer so the moisture could escape. I ruined that guitar. Cars are metal and don't need to breathe. Guitars are wood that do. Now if we are talking a poly finish than put what ever you want on it. If your guitar is old then putting a sealant on it is probably pretty safe but if it is newish I would not. Also if you put a sealant on nitro and use a humidifier how is the moisture going to get in ? I guess it can still get in somewhat through the F-holes ? I'm a west coast boy so I don't use one and am no expert.

  14. #13

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    Vin, I don't know much but I know something about this. Virtuoso "polish" is more of a protecting product. It contains a mild cleaner they won't disclose what it is but it leaves a Glaze behind to protect the surface. Glazes and sealants are basically the same thing. It also offers uv protection. It's a polish and a surface protectant all in one. It's on there website.
    Joe D

  15. #14

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    Thanks Joe. I guess I am wrong. I always thought a sealant and a wax sealed and a polish just polished.
    My bad. I still believe a nitro finish needs to breath as that is the big purpose of using it. Their must be a breathing quality to the Virtuoso like their is with carnauba ? or am I incorrect there too ?

  16. #15

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    There's nothing better for my smudges and grunge than Virtuoso polish. The "polish" cleans too. I bought a guitar a few days ago that had user grunge on it. The Virtuoso "polish", not the cleaner, removed all the grunge. One only needs to use a small amount to clean and polish the entire surface of the guitar. A small $9 bottle will last several years. I tried Zymo, after being recommended here a few years ago, and personally didn't care for it. I'll never use anything but Virtuoso polish. I bought the cleaner too, but it's not necessary to use for anything but hardcore cases, imo.

  17. #16

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    i've been using liquid guardsmen polish for years (they have an aerosal now, which i don't use)..always great results

    "Unlike some polishes, Guardsman contains no waxes, abrasives or silicones and leaves no greasy film or build up. Recommended by furniture makers, Guardsman is excellence in furniture care since 1915."


    Best Guitar Polish for Removing Smudges/Grime?-61int9j97ml-_sl1500_-jpg

    cheers

  18. #17

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    I'd be careful with car care products -- there are funky solvents in some stuff.

    I'm working through a bottle of Dunlop 65 which has been great. no complaints, no problems & great results on Gibson etc. Really, I love it! I haven't gotten around to Virtuoso yet, but it's next on the test list for sure . . .

    If you are working on vintage or precious instruments, less chemicals is more IMO. An old 100% cotton rag goes a long ways with spit . . . same with hardware -- gold or whatever.

    In the art world (which I know better than guitar world), plain old fashioned baking soda applied with a tooth brush is preferred by many curators for polishing silver artifacts. Just so we're clear, baking soda on a guitar is a very bad idea, but a similar minimalist approach is probably a good mentality for a nice guitar. Might be a useful analogy.

    If you're looking for a truly authoritative voice on instrument polish & cleaning, I'd visit the best violin shop in town. Those guys operate on a very high technical level.

  19. #18

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    One thing I do know is most car care products contain silicone so be very careful if you decide to use one. Do your research. I have heard good things about Guardsman also but never used it. The Fender mist and wipe is pretty good stuff but the best of the best is Virtuoso IMO. Of course we all have our strong opinions but if someone knows of something better than Virtuoso please post what it is so I can try some. Me and my guitars will thank you. :-)

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by vinnyv1k
    Thanks Joe. I guess I am wrong. I always thought a sealant and a wax sealed and a polish just polished.
    My bad. I still believe a nitro finish needs to breath as that is the big purpose of using it. Their must be a breathing quality to the Virtuoso like their is with carnauba ? or am I incorrect there too ?
    Your not wrong bro. Your eyes tell you what's good and the virtuoso is good. The facts about carnauba are a little sketchy. Wax containing carnauba has a lot of other stuff if in it. I believe the most amount of carnauba that any wax can contain is roughly 60%. So there's other stuff in it.
    Also, the information on the virtuoso website is nebulous. But the science to this stuff is pretty basic.
    JD

  21. #20

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    I am already missing Patrick chiming in on a post like this. :-(

  22. #21

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    Joe I have used S100 carnauba wax in the past which claims to be 100% Brazilian carnauba and nothing else with great results but still not as good as Virtuoso.
    Last edited by vinnyv1k; 08-25-2015 at 06:33 PM.

  23. #22

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    try the guardsman!!!…it was/is? martin guitars oem polish supplier…and a bottle will last ages! and clean any furniture in the house besides!! as long as it finished..not raw wood...

    guardsman besides no wax, abrasive or silicones also contains no petroleum distillates..i am not that familiar with virtuoso, but apparently it does!..its hazardous material

    cheers
    Last edited by neatomic; 08-25-2015 at 06:40 PM.

  24. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by vinnyv1k
    I am already missing Patrick chiming in on a post like this. :-(
    Patrick was a Virtuoso man. Patrick turned me on to it.

  25. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by neatomic
    try the guardsman!!!…it was/is? martin guitars oem polish supplier…and a bottle will last ages! and clean any furniture in the house besides!! as long as it finished..not raw wood...

    guardsman besides no wax, abrasive or silicones also contains no petroleum distillates..i am not that familiar with virtuoso, but apparently it does!..its hazardous material

    cheers
    Not "hazardous" to Nitro finishes...quite the contrary actually.

    Virtuoso Premium Polish and Cleaner - Home

    http://theguitarrepairworkshop.com/virtuoso-polish/

    I've only once used the "cleaner." For most "cleaning" jobs the polish will do the job.

    Last edited by 2bornot2bop; 08-25-2015 at 06:59 PM.

  26. #25

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    I'm a happy Smith Pro Formula Polish user.

    http://www.amazon.com/Ken-Smith-Pro-.../dp/B0002GHSYS

  27. #26

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    All the shiny guitar guys i know use Virtuoso.

    I like spit and a torn up flannel shirt.

  28. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by vinnyv1k
    Joe I have used S100 carnauba wax in the past which claims to be 100% Brazilian carnauba and nothing else with great results but still not as good as Virtuoso.
    Virtuoso is polish and wax combined. No wax will increase shine. That's what a polish does. Wax only protects. And read the fine print on the p21s/s200 100% carnauba. 100% of the wax it contains is Carnauba.
    Vin keep using the virtuoso. It's nice stuff no question.
    As for others saying don't use car care products on a guitar... What would you use on a $2,000,000 Bugatti Veyron? Answer= a car care product.

  29. #28
    one interesting thing about lacquer...I was telling my "real" repairman about the hack job the guy did on my Tal Farlow when he changed the nut and chipped the finish and he told me that the laquer gibson has been using for the last 25 years is not the same stuff as the original lacquer and even if you carefully score the finish at the side of the nut it's unfortunately all too common that it chips out.

  30. #29

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    The only thing about using car care products is a lot of times you just don't really know what is in it and most do contain silicone as a shining agent. I completely ruined a brand new Gibson using car care products. Yes their are some that will do a marvelous job on your guitar but you need to be in the know about what to use and many people just are not. It can be a risky roll of the dice. Joe this seems to be a area you have a vast knowledge on but for many of us it can be a risk. Car lacquer is not nitrocellose lacquer. I like specialized products. Car polish on my car, glass cleaner on my windows, motor oil in my car's engine, olive oil in my frying pan, and guitar polish on my guitar. When a polish like Virtuoso says it is made specifically for nitrocellose lacquer I know it is zero risk putting it on my guitar. I can't say that about Turtle Wax. Joe if you know of a car polish with no silicone or abrasives that is much better than Virtuoso I am all ears my friend. If you say it's better than Virtuoso I am on my way to Autozone immediately bro. Even some guitar polishes can be risky. In the early 1990's Martin guitar polish had a massive recall as their was a bad batch formula that would completely cloud up nitro. I always used Gibson polish but it was never all that great. Never hurt the finish ever but kind of a smeary swill. It would just kind of smear sweat and grunge around but not great at removing it and always leaves a film you can see. Joe I need to send you a bottle of Virtuoso and get you riding on the V-train bro :-)

  31. #30

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    Jack I heard the same thing about Gibson changing their nitrocellose formula. It was done to attempt to lessen checking.
    Last edited by vinnyv1k; 08-25-2015 at 10:47 PM.

  32. #31

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    Car care products are great at what they do -- but I'd be careful to check the emollients.

    FWIW, I like Formby's Lemon Oil on my fretboards

    I guess it all depends on how purist you want to get with it.

  33. #32

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    What do Collings Guitars and Taylor Guitars use? Turtle Wax Express Shine. Our friend, PTChris, recommended Zymol, before he took off.

    Classical guitar luthiers recommend and use Novus No 2 Plastic Cleaner on their French Polished guitars. A fine-furniture maker and restorer acquaintance uses Liberon Black Bison Wax.

    I don't like my guitars glossy and shiny and so distilled water (my only luxury), foamy hand soap, lightly dampened pure cotton cloth or flannel, followed by dry pure cotton cloth or flannel. Naptha or Windex cut with water for the stubborn gummy stuff. In my opinion, shiny glossy guitars don't get played much.

    YMMV.
    Last edited by Jabberwocky; 08-26-2015 at 02:07 AM.

  34. #33

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    +1 on Guardsman furniture polish. I've also used it for years and can add that it is safe for use even on a french varnish finish. However, from reading the comments here on Virtuoso polish I would guess that Virtuoso is likely superior to Guardsman when it comes to cleaning power.

  35. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bornot2bop
    Even today, they're using lacquer you think? It's brittle compared to today's high tech finishes. Perhaps they've discovered a means of making lacquer less brittle.
    Not sure what you mean by "brittle". When lacquer is applied, it doesn't settle or dry instantly. Many people who spray their own lacquer finishes wait days, or even weeks between successive coats, and they need to worry about moisture because of this extending curing period. (Bad idea to be spraying finishes during August humidity, for e.g.) In fact, there are a lot of comments on this forum complaining about 'tackiness' of lacquer finishes that never seem to dry.

    Also, lacquer will "melt into" an old finish which is why touching up a lacquer finished instrument is a breeze compared to poly type plastic coatings which are hard, and impermeable, and almost impossible to re-do. With a lacquer finish, the trick usually is matching the coloration, and on some guitars, e.g. a cherry red Gibson 335, may require removal of exterior clear coat finishes, reapplication of lacquer with a coloring agent in it, and then reapplication of the clear coat to match what was there. Or melting the color into an old sunburst can be tricky...but this is cosmetics, not the integrity of the finish itself.

    Musical instrument lacquer is less brittle, and more flexible than other types of lacquer, because instruments absorb and lose moisture through the seasons, and wood contracts with a different coexpansion of expansion and contraction, than the lacquer finish....thus causing "crazing" and "checking" of the finish.

    I am curious as to why people think wax is necessary for musical instruments. Basically, paste wax, i.e. hard wax that does not evaporate an hr. (or more) after you put it on, is the only thing that acts as a protectant....other stuff with a pleasant smell is short-acting and just gums up the existing finish attracting dust, and dirt...sorry... there is a huge snake oil industry behind furniture "polishes" and aerosol "waxes".

    But I'm not having people dance across the soundboard of my guitars, or rolling 16 lb. spheres across them, nor am I splashing sodden matter across them....this is the kind of activity that a solid paste wax finish would protect against. A guitar is a piece of wood...it is finished with some kind of sealer coat...then a coloring agent and then maybe shellac, or lacquer, or polyurethane...these are all good, and sufficient finishes (well, shellac will dissolve if you spill a beer or drink on it). (Unless you plan on spilling a pint of lacquer thinner on your Gibson, I wouldn't worry too much about your instrument's finish...and if you did, you'd have much bigger problems, because lacquer thinner is seriously, seriously toxic stuff....practically "liquid leukemia".)

    Most instrument finishes are just fine, with little or no care. Vacuum dust and dirt, wipe it off with a damp, soft rag, is what I would do.


    (I am indebted to Bob Flexner whose book, Understanding Wood Finishing, Rodale Press, 1994, published in conjunction with American Woodworker magazine, is the basis for my information.)
    Last edited by goldenwave77; 08-26-2015 at 11:18 AM.

  36. #35

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    Yes we tend to "overcare" our instruments, or at least I do. One polish I found to be complete swill is Stewart MacDonald Preservation Polish. Stuff is a smear fest.

    Another product to avoid is Gibson's metal cleaner. Took the gold plate right off my L5's tailpiece.

  37. #36

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    When I got my D'Aquisto Excel in mid 1985, Jimmy used lemon Pledge to polish his guitars. He swore by it and thats what I used with no issues. I have to assume he knew what he was doing/talking about.

  38. #37

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    For all you Fender Mist and Shine fans, FYI Meguiars final inspection no.34 is the exact same formula. No silicone.

    Jonathan, Jimmy told me the same thing but he was wrong. Lemon Pledge is loaded with silicone. Jimmy was very old school. It's what mom used so it must be good.

    Joe I am hoping for the great honor to be the new caretaker for Patrick's Guild.

  39. #38

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    I think we both may be correct. The term "brittle" is pretty vague.

    I guess you could say nitro is "soft" initially until it cures. Flexner does characterize it as "brittle", once it is cured. Poly is just hard, but not brittle, acc'd to Flexner, as it forms extensive bonding between layers making it stronger than lacquer.

    However, he then goes on to discuss wood lacquers vs. lacquer used for metal surfaces:


    "Myth: The best finish for wood is acrylic lacquer used for automobiles, because acrylic lacquer is harder than nitrocellulose lacquer.

    Fact: Acrylic lacquers made for use on automobiles are usually not flexible enough for wood. They don't have to be, since they are intended for steel, If you use an acrylic lacquer not specially formulated for wood, you risk that wood movement will cause tiny cricks in the finish.
    " (pg.162)

    So, acc'd to Flexner, wood-finish lacquer is different than the lacquer you buy in an automotive paint shop. I also know, from the StewMac catalogue, that instrument lacquer is different, more flexible, than ordinary wood finish lacquer used for furniture. (Makes sense, the vibrating top of a guitar or violin, moves a lot more than the surface area of a china breakfront, or chair, or other piece of furniture.)

    The term "brittle" is vague...and when used as a comparative term, the question is what we're comparing it to--instrument lacquer is less brittle....than....furniture lacquer....than acrylic lacquer (used on cars) (And btw, these are all synthetic products, different than traditional shellac (made from crushed insect excretions) from China and India.)

    I'm not sure what the deal is on 'enamel', and whether it is suitable for use on wooden instruments.

  40. #39

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    There's nothing vague about discovering your nice lacquer paint job on your hot rod has chipped. Auto shop painters back in the day referred to lacquer as a "hard" finish coat, and therefore chipped easily. Hence the term "brittle" was appropriate in that context. Do you know what a Bugatti is?

    Again, I was following up on the car reference. But when you think about it, nitro seems easier to chip than poly. However, nitro in my limited experience, seems easier to touch up.

  41. #40

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    Honestly, I don't see too many guitars with chipped gtr. finishes...Lacquer finishes more typically craze and check...or just wear through after long use.

    The vagueness of brittle refers to the fact that there is no objective scale, that I know of. Thus, instrument lacquer is more flexible than furniture lacquer, which is less brittle than car lacquer, which is why car shop guys worried about a finish chipping.

    I have a Heritage acoustic 445 w/ a finish flaw in it...somebody dropped something on it...the wood dented, and the finish is scuffed. I could sand to raw wood, steam up the indented wood with a hot compress, and then when the wood rises, respray and melt the new lacquer into the old. There is no crack in the lacquer itself. I knew enough about instruments and woodworking not to be bothered by this a finish flaw, not affecting playability or sound, which allowed me to pick up a bluesgrass cannon for far less than I could resell it for. The repair requires some sandpaper, a little patience, and a PreVal spray can. (Or I could even take it to an auto shop w/ a spray booth, and supply them the instrument lacquer.)

    Maybe there is some new wonder finish out there that will replace lacquer. Taylor, I think, has gone away entirely from lacquer and only uses water-base, as far as I know. But I'd be surprised if the automotive enamels you refer to, are something that the music industry doesn't know about. Of course, on the other hand, there is a terrific amount of conservatism in the gtr. business, in general, and departures from well-trod paths are more often market failures than successes. With respect to automotive enamel, we are probably both speculating, if the truth be told.
    Last edited by goldenwave77; 08-27-2015 at 04:44 PM.

  42. #41

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    Of all of these responses, I like goldenwave77s' the best. I'm no guitar coatings expert, but I've worked with graphic arts and industrial coatings for over 35 years, and the technologies are very similar.

    Reactive, cross-linked, or catalyzed resinous coatings (like urethanes and some polyesters) are impervious to almost everything, so whatever you want to put on them or clean with them is not going to make much difference. Hopefully you're not driving your guitar through the rain on muddy roads, or baking them in the sun, or pounding them with hammers, so they don't need that type of protection. A polish that contains surfactants (emulsifiers), solvents, emulsions, and waxes is overkill IMO.

    Surfactants, also called emulsifiers and soaps, will help cut and carry grime and oils. Solvents will dissolve stuff, and though most guitar finishes, including nitrocellulose, have poor solubility in most common solvents, I would be careful when using them, especially on nitro. Nitrocellulose (depending on the grade used) has a very limited solubility in alcohols, more solubility in glycol ethers found in glass cleaners, and is extremely soluble in many lacquer thinners containing esters (like ethyl acetate) and ketones. Naphthas are okay for the most part, but I personally would not use them on guitars at all.

    If a polish contains an "emulsion," that would typically be a small amount of styrenated acrylic, or acrylic, polymer (but could be any type of similar resin) which in both cases, would be like applying a very thin coating of another resin. Or it could be an emulsified wax. I wouldn't think this would be desirable, but maybe not so bad.

    Waxes are added to reduce coefficient of friction to make finishes slicker, and also add a small amount of resistance to scratching and marring. Possibly a desirable effect, but waxes all cause a reduction in gloss, and some might consider this a contamination of the guitar's surface. Silicone has no benefits in a polish for guitars.

    IMO, putting a car wax on a guitar is a very bad idea, but if it works for you, knock yourself out. When I occasionally use a polish on a guitar body, it is one formulated for that purpose. My normal routine is to wash my hands before playing and wipe the guitar down with a cloth from an old flannel shirt when I'm done. If I wash the cloth, I'll wash and dry it in a load without fabric softener.
    Last edited by zigzag; 08-28-2015 at 10:48 AM.

  43. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by vinnyv1k
    For all you Fender Mist and Shine fans, FYI Meguiars final inspection no.34 is the exact same formula. No silicone.

    Jonathan, Jimmy told me the same thing but he was wrong. Lemon Pledge is loaded with silicone. Jimmy was very old school. It's what mom used so it must be good.

    Joe I am hoping for the great honor to be the new caretaker for Patrick's Guild.
    Here's what Meguiars said about it:

    Thank you for your email. Yes the Quik Detailer and the Fender Mist & Wipe are very similar. You can use the Quik Detailer on your guitar if you like, it will be safe. The Fender Guitar product however is formulated for their finishes. I would think that you would get better results with that product but the Quik Detailer should give you good results too. If you have any other questions or comments please feel free to contact me any time. Have a wonderful day!"

    Also, George Gruhn used to recommend Lemon Pledge for sticky guitar necks. I'm not saying it's a good idea, though.

    Quote Originally Posted by ArchtopHeaven
    Has this been discounted? Seems unavailable in the UK and several sites say its no longer available. One site does advertise it but on pre-order?

    I read Fenders blurb on the spray (I think the same product is now called "Fender Custom Shop Quick Clean") and they say to apply it, spray the guitar directly, which of course you should never do lol
    I think it is discontinued, but it looked to me as though Elderly still had it--however, when I click on the link it's not working, so I assume they don't have it either. Sorry for the confusion.

    Although I usually spray it on a cloth, I don't see any reason not to follow their directions.

    Let me also point out that there was a lengthy thread about polish recently that I would link to if the search function were working.

    Danny W.

  44. #43

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    This is complicated stuff. It's obvious that Zigzag, like Flexner, knows the chemistry involved here, which is essential to cut through the maze of misleading terminology, folklore, and "snakeoil" that surrounds the world of finishes.

    I am no expert on this, but I try to consult material from someone who is: For woodworking finishing, that was Flexner. Before that, I would talk to 6 different guys and get 4 different answers. Using his book helped me to understand how to properly stain and finish a 20', 270 degree staircase banister that led up to the 2nd Fl., in my old house. It was red oak, and as anyone who has finished oak, knows, oak has VERY pronounced grain and is a real bitch to stain evenly. It took me a while, but I worked on it at night a little bit at a time...became confident mixing and matching oil-based stains, thinning them, and stripping off and resanding it when it wasn't quite right, and it came out looking great, with a very EVEN golden oak finish that I satin-finished in water base. I could not have afforded to pay someone to do this, as the labor involved was a lot of time to get a good match. (Construction of the staircase banister itself was pricey---and the estimates ranged from $3700 to $18,000, an interesting experience itself. The $3700 guy had been doing these for 35 yrs. and he knew exactly what he was doing---sometimes you get what you pay for---sometimes you just get taken for a ride.)

    When we sold the house, we got the highest price ever obtained in that portion of the town. The almost circular staircase that led up to the 2nd Fl. received a lot of compliments at the various showings before the house sold.

    A knowledge of staining and woodworking, also comes in handy, in looking at antique furniture....a lot of older stuff is just "brown and undistinguished", and was probably never very good, even when new. People paying fancy prices for these "antiques" amused me...conversely when you came across something decent, you had a better sense of why it was good. Kind of like knowing the difference between a 1930's L5 and a Harmony....the latter might be a good, serviceable instrument but it was built at a lower price point initially, and on its best day, probably never sounded like the L5 did. My point here is that one should not pay an L5 price for the Harmony because of its "vintage" status.

    Anyway, my aim, as always, is to stimulate discussion, and maybe somebody will learn something or ask questions they thought not to ask before.
    Last edited by goldenwave77; 08-27-2015 at 06:05 PM.

  45. #44

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    I also found that I was able to cure sticky nitro necks with a couple coats of 100% Brazilian Carnauba. Some Carnauba is impossible to remove once it dries but not the S100 stuff. It is very easy to remove and is 100% Carnauba and nothing else. Comes in a white and blue tub. Works great on my Harley Davidson too. :-)

  46. #45

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    can someone tell me the problem with silicone and guitars?

    i use wd-40 w/ silicone to clean my strings, and i get very little on the fretboard...

  47. #46

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    I have a funny lemon pledge story-

    I know an artist whose painting was bought by a collector and after some time it developed a milky blur. The painting was sent to a conservator for evaluation & repair. It was eventually discovered that the housekeeper had been wiping it down weekly with pledge -- because it was her favorite painting! So it got a proper conservation and all was good.

    This was a $25,000 painting. Fortunately, most paintings have reversible protective varnishes. True story. Lemon pledge might not be your best friend in the long run.

  48. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by tucson matt
    can someone tell me the problem with silicone and guitars?

    i use wd-40 w/ silicone to clean my strings, and i get very little on the fretboard...

    Do yourself a favor, get the iso swabs..cheap, available everywhere, super convenient- individually wrapped, used and toss, relatively non toxic provided you aint eat'em ..haha

    You really dont wanna be handling this stuff and then touching your eyes or mouth, aside from what it may do to your guitar.

  49. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny W.
    Here's what Meguiars said about it:


    Although I usually spray it on a cloth, I don't see any reason not to follow their directions.

    Let me also point out that there was a lengthy thread about polish recently that I would link to if the search function were working.

    Danny W.
    Thanks Danny.

    If you spray directly on to the finish, you risk the chance of it getting into any cracks in the varnish. By applying it to the cloth first, you greatly avoid this happening.

  50. #49

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    Silicone is an inert material used to make stuff slicker. Silicones can be formulated to be reactive and cross-link with themselves or other functional resins. Most often, silicone is used as an additive and is not used as the resinous backbone of a formulated coating. As a treatment for strings, it might be advantageous for guitar strings to make them slicker, but to rejuvenate strings, I'd recommend a solvent, like anhydrous alcohol (e.g. isopropanol), to clean the oxidation, oils, and other grime off of the string surface and in between metal windings. Solvents evaporate so there is no residue.
    Last edited by zigzag; 08-28-2015 at 10:21 AM.

  51. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by ArchtopHeaven
    If your guitar has lacquer checking, spraying directly onto/into that, would/could cause issues with the finish. Especially as most have some sort of wax/oil in them. You dont want to get that on the bare wood of the soundboard.
    Not that I have guitars with checking that often but when I do, I spray on to the cloth and clean around the cracked areas.

    This is why most companies will tell you to avoid spraying directly onto the finish.
    I understand the reasoning, doubt that it's really an issue with this stuff. In any case, none of my guitars have significant checking. Your post I originally replied to said it was something to "never do." I usually spray it on a cloth first because I'm just using it to remove stuff in a small area, but I have no qualms about spraying it right on the guitar for general cleanups.

    Danny W.