PRIMER ON THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RICK FINISHES

Exceptional restoration is in the details

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Re: PRIMER ON THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RICK FINISHES

Postby (Tarrbot) » Sat May 02, 2015 11:13 pm

Are there any updates to this with a replacement for the old Scratch-X formula?

i had several bottles of it when they changed formulas but I've since moved and in that process seem to have misplaced these bottles.

I saw Paul mention he had some new info in another thread about a replacement but he coyly said it was for another thread.

I can't think of a better thread for this to be discussed in than this one.

Anyone?
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Re: PRIMER ON THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RICK FINISHES

Postby (jingle_jangle) » Tue May 05, 2015 10:18 pm

It's about time I stopped being coy and updated my recommendations for restoring Rickenbacker finishes, as well as for keeping them as good as factory-new.

In the years since I first wrote on this topic, I've had the daily experience of continuing to experiment with all sorts of materials, and my latest refinishes and restorations all benefit from this experimentation.

I'm also going to admit that I'm a big boy, who has taken a new approach toward one of my "locked in concrete" pieces of advice, and reversed my stand on it.

But, first, this news:

CLEARCOAT:

I am now using a new clear coat on all my restorations, which is expensive as he** ($400.00+ per gallon), but is the absolute best thing in the universe that I've found since first using urethane clear coats back in 1983. It's glossier, sets up dust-free in mere minutes, polishes better, and fully cures in 72 hours to an amazingly bullet-proof and solvent-proof glass-like shield over your precious instrument. I've been using it for about 3 months now, and will use it exclusively from now on. It will increase the cost to me of materials about $10.00 per refinish, and for the time being, I'll eat that cost.

FINISH RESTORATION:

You'll recall that I warned customers away from the "new" (now old) Scratch-X 2.0, as it was a coarser abrasive that the original Scratch-X. The original Scratch-X was replaced in my bag of tricks by Swirl-X, which I still recommend for those who can easily score it, and Amazon makes it easier than ever to find and order.

I now have a new polishing material to remove swirl marks and halo scratches, especially on dark finishes like Jetglo, which tend to show these fine defects much sooner and easier than other colors. I use it prior to Zymol, and in place of Swirl-X, though you could theoretically still use Swirl-X after the new stuff and before Zymol.

The new material is MAAS Metal Polish, available in large tins or smaller tubes. This stuff is really good for conversion varnish and lacquer finishes. It starts out as an abrasive paste that is even coarser than Scratch-X 2.0, but as you rub it in vigorously, the abrasive actually breaks down into finer and finer particles, until the finish of the guitar is very close to a mirror. Any very, very fine scratches that may remain will be filled by the application of Zymol liquid. And, as I said, if you really want to drive your significant other crazy ("come to bed, honey, it's 3:30 a.m.!"), you can start out with MAAS, move on to Swirl-X, and then finish off with Zymol. ("Honey, have you been hanging with swimsuit models? Your hands smell like coconuts!")

Do NOT substitute any other metal polishes for MAAS. Especially not Brasso, which will scratch clear coat like crazy. Jury's still out on Simichrome and the various silver creams. Stick to MAAS for the time being.

FINISH PRESERVATION:

I'm still sticking with the Zymol Cleaner-Wax in the light blue plastic bottle. I use Zymol paste on my cars, but the cleaner wax is the stuff to use on guitars. Remember--water-based, no petroleum distillates, no silicone, nothing artificial. Natural carnauba and oils, period. You can build layer upon layer because of the water used as a solvent instead of jet fuel...

APPLICATION AND POLISHING CLOTHS:

For application of polishing materials and Zymol, I still favor cloth diapers, cut up into 4" squares. Launder them in a mesh bag with no fabric softener. Dry them without any dryer sheets, either. Cloth diapers are made of many layers of loose-weave, hypo-allergenic, non-scratching cotton. Common dust will scratch conversion varnish, so keep the diaper squares clean and store them in a zip-lock bag in your case.

Here's where I'll drop the bomb and reverse one of my long-held prejudices that I ranted on and on about...

Whereas I used to curse and swear that they were the devil's invention, I now recommend using microfiber cloths to wipe down your Rickenbacker, and to remove polishes and Zymol as you are detailing the instrument. GASP! They don't work particularly well in applying compounds or wax, as they don't trap enough liquid or paste materials to be effective, but to remove fingerprints from a well-waxed Rickenbacker, or for use along with a spray bottle of cool water to wipe down your Rick, they are the best. Cautionary note: If you have an older finish that hasn't been waxed in awhile, microfibers will micro-scratch! They will take a shiny Jetglo finish that has not been waxed in awhile and make it hazy. But then, you can do the MAAS/Zymol thing and bring it right back. And, if you wipe your finish down with a microfiber cloth and it does show hazing, it's time to wax again.

So, diapers to rub, microfiber to buff and wipe down, as long as there's wax on the clear coat. I buy my microfiber cloths at Home Depot. They sell large bags of them for about $10.00 for 18 cloths in white and orange, mixed. SKU# 675 309. These are big cloths, about a foot square plus. Bargain. Washable and reusable.

That's it, up to date for now. Give 'em a try and report back!
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Re: PRIMER ON THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RICK FINISHES

Postby (strummersteve) » Mon Dec 07, 2015 7:24 am

What about the Rickenbacker's with a matte finish such as a 650 D or 650 S?
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Re: PRIMER ON THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RICK FINISHES

Postby (JoeyG1949) » Sat Feb 20, 2016 11:42 am

Thank you!
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Re: PRIMER ON THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RICK FINISHES

Postby (kt66) » Fri Dec 16, 2016 10:24 pm

Any special dos and don'ts for Maple Glow ? ('88 340)

I have searched the thread before asking I promise you.

thanks
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Re: PRIMER ON THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RICK FINISHES

Postby (jingle_jangle) » Fri Dec 16, 2016 11:14 pm

Nothing special, except to keep to a regimen of non-yellowing waxes,and don't use any products with petroleum distillates.

If you ready the whole thread, the reasons for this advice should be obvious!
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Re: PRIMER ON THE CARE AND FEEDING OF RICK FINISHES

Postby (paologregorio) » Fri Aug 31, 2018 11:05 pm

Paul, have you tried the Zymoel Spray Detailer? A few months back, Frank Scholl mentoned he uses it for between gig cleanings or when a guitar doesn't need a heavier polish, so I bought a bottle via Amazon. Works nicely. Here's the company link: https://www.zymol.com/detailer.aspx
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