Guitar finish that changes the color of the wood the least

Discussion in 'Luthiery, Modifications & Customizations' started by Pimiboj, Oct 12, 2019.

  1. Pimiboj

    Pimiboj SS.org Regular

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    Hey guys,

    I need some advice on finishing. So I've finished my first guitar with some automotive 2k lacquer, but this changed the color of the wood badly. This bugged me so much that I decided to sand it off and try it again with a different finish. Now I'm looking to find a finish that changes the natural color of the wood the least.
    I know all finishes change the color but this stuff made all the contrast in my Wenge disappear and turned my white limba into some amber color.
    So now rests the question, what finishes do you guys recommend for this purpose?

    Thanks in advance for the advice!
     
  2. atracksler

    atracksler SS.org Regular

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    I just got this finish called Osmo. It is fan flipping tastic. Makes the wood glow.
     
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  3. KR250

    KR250 Build addict

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    Water based finishes will have the least yellowing effect, at least from my experience so far. Have had good results of non-yellowing with Solarez UV epoxy as well.
     
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  4. NickS

    NickS Rocket Surgeon

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    Generally speaking most any oil based finish is going to darken and/or "amber" the wood color to varying degrees. A good waterborne finish will give you a more natural look, but does not typically impart the kind of depth-of-finish look you get with oil.

    Water based finishes are fine to use, that's what I put on the ukulele I built for my son, but they are also generally not as durable as oil based finishes either.
     
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  5. failsafe

    failsafe SS.org Regular

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    I figured a good 2k would be crystal clear
     
  6. Pimiboj

    Pimiboj SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for the advice! I'll try a few waterbased finished on some scraps, I will let you know how it goes.
     
  7. HaMMerHeD

    HaMMerHeD SS.org Regular

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  8. NickS

    NickS Rocket Surgeon

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  9. Omzig

    Omzig SS.org Regular

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    Rustins plastic coat has been the best hardwearing non yellowing finish ive used sofar (cures fully in about 5 days)

    Solarez UV is also non yellowing (has a slight blue tint ive found) but a year after finishing one of my guitars in it it has become very brittle and has started to chip away from areas were screws have been tightened (neck plate/rear covers ect) i would'nt using it again

    1k Automative clears ive used have also been/stayed clear but these can take 4-8 months to fully cure for flating.

    Super glue/CA is also a great clear hardwearing finish but is super nasty to apply.
     
  10. Deegatron

    Deegatron SS.org Regular

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    I've used the Varathane waterborn before. VERY VERY clear finish. but i'll be damned if I can get the stuff to lay down proper. It wont lay down even for me and it seems like it goes on super thick and then shrinks substantially when it dries so you think you've got a nice thick coat on there and boom... sand through. YMMV
     
  11. MoonJelly

    MoonJelly a subtle stinging sensation..

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    Rubio Monocoat "pure" (that's the clear one)

    Lots of shops I follow are switching over to it for furniture, because it doesn't yellow the wood and goes down in one coat. It's a satin, not gloss, though.

    I have not used it on a guitar yet, but after seeing this I'm going to try it on one of my builds.

    It's the most durable oil/wax product I've tried, I see why furniture shops like it so much. You can get a small bottle for about $7-8.
     
  12. MikeNeal

    MikeNeal SS.org Regular

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    I use Rubio Pure on all my builds, really easy to apply, and durable. it wont change the color of the wood, but it will darken it.
     

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