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What is up with Japanese nitro?
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bluejeannot
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stone Free wrote:
Felix and JV: Very informative and exactly what I was wanting to know. Darn, it's a shame about the poly undercoat on my LS145S and ES135.
Don't get me wrong, they play, sound and look great, but with nitro it would allow the wood to breathe and allow its tone to be more present,
plus the ageing factor too.

Felix, I've had that link for years and was always puzzled by the Lacquer Finish designation.

Again, thanks to you both for clearing this up!
I`m afraid a coat of nitro is as impervious to moisture(I presume this is what you mean by the wood "breathing")as a coat of poly,Besides who wants a guitar to breathe especially if it has bad breath!.Youll be wanting your guitars to fart next! Gabe.
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Last edited by bluejeannot on Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:09 pm; edited 1 time in total
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marcusnieman
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2011 9:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Truth be told, tonally, I can't tell any perceptible difference between an all nitro, nitro/poly or thin poly finish (although, the thick poly coats deaden the tone and sustain to some degree).

There are so many variables like wood, age of wood, pickups, neck, and on and on and on.... that make the real difference in how they sound. Breathing wood?

To me, the whole nitro thing is a selling/value tool... obviously, the higher spec guitars and certainly the vintage guitars used nitro. But they don't sound like they do because of it.

That's just my two cent's on it
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Stone Free
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2011 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From what I understand, poly MUCH more readily fills in ALL the gaps/holes/fissures (i.e. penetrates it more) in the wood, thus keeping manufacturers from not having to put on multiple coats of, say, a nitro finish. This would apparently seal the guitar's wood even more, I would think, thus altering the tonal complexity of the wood (the latter, of course, a huge factor in its type/age ...). Seems a thin coat (or two, idk) of nitro would allow the inherent qualities of the wood to better present itself tonally for not being completely filled in and "choked," for lack of better adjectives.

Hence my reference to "breathing." A completely sealed poly guitar would seem to wind up interacting differently to PUPs, ageing, climate, ... than a nitro one.

Just tryin' to be logimical, ya know.
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marcusnieman
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Joined: 22 May 2003
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2011 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stone Free wrote:
From what I understand, poly MUCH more readily fills in ALL the gaps/holes/fissures (i.e. penetrates it more) in the wood, thus keeping manufacturers from not having to put on multiple coats of, say, a nitro finish. This would apparently seal the guitar's wood even more, I would think, thus altering the tonal complexity of the wood (the latter, of course, a huge factor in its type/age ...). Seems a thin coat (or two, idk) of nitro would allow the inherent qualities of the wood to better present itself tonally for not being completely filled in and "choked," for lack of better adjectives.

Hence my reference to "breathing." A completely sealed poly guitar would seem to wind up interacting differently to PUPs, ageing, climate, ... than a nitro one.

Just tryin' to be logimical, ya know.


I know what you're saying but due to the viscosity of lacquers and resins, they are not absorbed all the way through the wood....it's porous and the little gaps (microscopic air cells, really) still exist in the wood... the finish is a topical treatment - it doesn't trap the sound within the body.

Some people will argue that the more dense, and heavy wood types produce greater resonance(remember the 14lb Les Pauls and the solid rosewood Tele's?) than more airy woods like Ash because the sound transfer through the body is more direct..... that was the theory behind the Dan Armstrong lucite guitars from the 70's that weighed a ton.

This is always a good discussion because there are so many differing theories and opinions.... but to me, my ear tells me that I can't hear a difference.
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Udonitron
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 5:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is post and pre-catalysed lacquer.
The pre-cat generally has polymers in it to prevent it from curing too quickly in the can etc.
Pure nitrocellulose will craze/check with temp changes and wood swelling and contracting.

Most nitro manufacturers today to not like their product to craze or check so they add polymers to prevent it as it is primarily used for cabinetry and fine woodworking....people do not like to spend a ton on some custom furniture or kitchen cabinets only to have them check.

The only benefit to nitro, IMO, is the feel factor.
It is not sticky and wears nicely but does not protect or preserve like plastic poly does.


Pure nitro will check however...my 580 Navigator did.





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marcusnieman
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 9:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice. What's up Udo? Long time no see.... hope all is well, compadre.
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Udonitron
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Marcus

How are ya mate?
What is new? LOOOONG time hey?
All is well on the island, you?

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marcusnieman
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 6:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Udonitron wrote:
Hey Marcus

How are ya mate?
What is new? LOOOONG time hey?
All is well on the island, you?


All's well....welcome back
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Udonitron
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cheers man
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makaze
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2011 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Old Red LS100 from 1981/2 has the best nitro finish I have seen on a tokai.

After seeing very little effect after applying acetone on many springy's and Reborns I was amazed at the ease with which the nitro comes off.

The Nitro makes the guitar an absolute piece of beauty, the red has aged to a wonderful old tone without much cracking etc. it just makes the colour look and feel old.

I have yet to get a springy 80+ to convince me it isn't poly finish, maybe with a thin thin coats of nitro.
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jacco
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2011 3:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Both my 1979 LS80 and 1981 LS100 whipe off right away. There's an Old Red on it's way to me as we speak, will do the test and see if it's any different. Curious!
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luis
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 25, 2011 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

makaze, a guitar stand with rubber will "burn" Tokai nitro.I just noticed some Tokai nitro called "laquer" is hard than "all laquer" finish. I do prefer all laquer and it makes a model cost a lot more (ie:LS-540 over LS-420)
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