ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How Will Your Guitar Age/Relic Naturally

Updated on March 26, 2015
Source

Discounting how people relic their guitar on purpose in this article I will be talking about how you can expect a guitar to age if you just leave it to do it by itself over time. Some people like the look of an aged guitar, some people don't, this is just personal opinion. My aim of this article is going to be about how different guitars can be expected to age, different parts made from different materials will age differently.

Each separate guitar will age differently, even if they are made next to each other at the factory. This is because all guitars are treated differently in the lifetimes, some are gigged hard and left out of their case, some are just played at home and kept protected. Even guitars that are just kept at home can age significantly differently depending on the climate they are kept in and the amount of sun/ UV the guitar receives.

Body Paint & Lacquer

Older guitars (Before mid 70's) and some more expensive modern models (and all USA Gibsons) have Nitrocellulose finishes. These nitro finishes age like you see on many famous old aged guitars and give the classic aged look. They yellow in colour and lose some of their deep shine by going slightly dull. This is because the nitro is always evaporating thus getting thinner, and has little UV resistance. Any dings on the guitar body over time will mainly show as cracks in the finished, as will any quick changes in heat causing cracks called "Checking".

Most modern or cheaper guitars are finished with Polyester or Polyurethane on top of the paint. This finish doesn't crack, or dull like nitro however it does yellow slightly over time due to UV. These guitars tend to chip if bashed sometimes to the point where an old poly guitar can look almost pebble dashed if not well looked after. This finish is much stronger than the previous nitro finishes.

Body finishes take years upon years to age, apart from knocks on the guitars (Which depends on how careless you are), to get any noticeable yellowing you will be waiting at least 10 years if the guitar is left out in the house, even longer if kept in its case.

Do you like the look of aged guitars?

See results

Neck

Lots of guitar necks are made from maple, with age maple goes a slight yellow tint. This happens no matter what the finish of the neck is. Finish also effects necks, if your neck is nitrocellulose finished then the neck will darken over time easily as the nitro wears, and eventually you may wear through the finish. If the neck is poly finished then it will darken over time as it gets dirtier from your hands, and if the poly is thin then it may wear in the same way the nitro does (It will just take much longer.). If the neck finish is a "satin" finish then over time your hand will polish the back of the neck into a gloss finish.

If you have a satin finished neck it will wear to become shiny and gloss.

Very slightly yellow plastics on my 2 month old Squier
Very slightly yellow plastics on my 2 month old Squier

Plastics

Plastics are often the most obvious sign of aging. It happens the quickest with the different often becoming noticeable within a couple of years. This aging is often obvious on Fender guitars or guitars with large pickguards, models such as the Stratocaster and Telecaster commonly have white pickguards when new. This acrylic plastic ages quickly when exposed to UV light. From what I have researched and obvserved it seems that Squier's tend to age quickly, my affinity series is showing significant yellowing after only a year (in a non smoking household). In comparison I have seen pictures of some American standards that don't seem to have aged at all in 5-10 years.

Interestingly the very first Fender Esquire's, Nocasters, Broadcasters and Stratocasters produced in the early to mid 50's used a "bakelite" plastic where the pickguards seem not to yellow, even in the 50-60 years since they were made.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)