Aging a New Les Paul Junior

moreles

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What is called "aging" n the guitar world would not be considered aging anywhere else. Real again happen with the passage of time. Things age one day per day. That often looks great. The OP is referring to imitation aging, which is entirely different. It's not aging. In furniture, it is called "distressing" and is reviled and belittled. As it should be, IMO. I have no idea why a nice black lacquered Junior needs fake "aging."
 

PierM

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I always smile how many guys here, instead just replying to the actual OP question, they start pontificating like if they were the goddamn Sigmund Freud of guitars. Jeez, shut up. :rofl:

Anyway, aging does require pretty damn good skills, knowledge, and tools. I wouldn't start messing around with such a nice guitar. I’d rather leave it alone and play it.

Then, if you really want to do something, you could use some micromesh to break the gloss a bit, without damaging the clear coat too much, and you could also remove all the hardware and put it for 24h inside a tapperware with some vinegar in it, just dont put the hardware in direct contact with the vinegar, you only want fumes from it. You can also put all the hardware in a bag, with other little objects (like door keys, little pebbles, beach sand, screws...)and shake it a bit, so that stuff get scratched. Must be very light stuff, so it doesnt damage things. You can do pretty much the same with plastics, put them in a bag with some sand and pebbles and shake it. I wouldnt touch the neck tho....and I would not try razor checking, this does require some pretty damn good skills to make it looking barely decent.
 

KelvinS1965

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FWIW my avatar 60s tribute has just recently started showing signs of wear/ageing. I noticed that the top edge of the body (where I rest my arm) has kind of gone dull/patchy. It's a satin finish and quite thin I believe and although the guitar is a 2011 model, I bought it used about 4 years ago and didn't play it much for the first year or two, so it's really only been played a lot in the last 2 years. Not like it's my only guitar either.

I've just bought a Junior myself in the Tobacco sunburst finish and it's very shiny and new, but I noticed that the finish on the body has already picked up some light swirl marks just from playing and possibly even just from giving it a wipe down after playing. I don't think it'll take long for yours to start showing a bit of honest wear.

I did try doing some ageing on an Esquire I put together and I used some acid wheel cleaner, but just left the parts in for a short time. Maybe worth buying some spare parts to experiment on (they aren't that expensive compared to the guitar).
 

Oranjeaap

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Not cleaning it ever does wonders too.
I once did not clean my white les paul custom for 3 years (fretboard aside). When I finally cleaned it there was some more yellowing on the spots that had most dirt. The result is that it's uneven yellowed.

Chrome hardware is really difficult to age properly so if you age the finish I would advice to buy some nickel hardware and just let time do it's thing. If you dont clean nickel the shine is gone within a year
 

dro

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I always wanted one burned. Go figure. I'm the son of a Fireman. Just can't bring myself to burn one of my babies. But I could probably burn yours. Bring it over.
 

voices

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You could try accelerating the natural aging process. Some suggestions:

Wear a giant metal belt buckle. Those big jeweled Western style or Harley Davidson belt buckles should really chew the shit out it.

Leave it outside when not playing. While playing leave the case outside for extra authenticity.

Don’t wash your hands... ever.

Don’t trim your fingernails... ever. Toenails should match, again for authenticity.

Spill Coke and beer on it, wipe off excess with a dry dusty rag.

Bring it to the nearest Daycare and leave it for the day

No rides in the car, rooftop or trunk only and NO case cuz that’s for sissies.

Puke on your guitar, lord knows all the rock and roll greats probably did and stomach acid ages hardware like you wouldn’t believe.

That’s all I’ve got off the top of my head :)
you forgot chain smoke and then smoke some more in an unventilated room. i am dead serious.
 

Meclazine2

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One of my friends leave them outside in the sun to get the checking.

One of the more popular topics on guitar forums in the last 10 years. Initially, i was not a fan, but now, they are a big part of the Fender and Gibson market.

If you have to do it, keep it minimal in yerms of the edges and top.
 

DMBwire

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I have a new Ebony Junior and I am looking to age it myself rather than pay for it. Something akin to the VOS look but not the in-depth work that the Custom Shop does. Any thoughts? Thanks.
Put it in my deep freezer for 6 hours and then outside in good ole FL sunshine/humidity
 

lawrev

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I appreciate all the suggestions and thoughts here. It is not something I will immediately do, it is just something - perhaps - for the future. I will think about it and in the meantime, keep sharing your thoughts and pontifications. :)
 

Thundermtn

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Not trying to step on peoples toes, so nobody flip out. Just playing it will never make it look any different. Fret wear and slight finish wear is all that happen at home.

They have to leave the house, they have to get gigged, they have to be sweated all over, they have to have accidents with case latches and cabinet corners and microphone stands and beer bottles. They get dropped and show buckle rash and grim ovals on the board. They get treated like a tool, an afterthought or a necessary evil for a night of rock 'n roll.
 

ScottCampbell

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Depending on what KIND of "relic" you want, you could leave it out in the sun or under an ultraviolet lamp to age and fade the finish. I find it hard to PREVENT an "aged" finish on mine.
LesPaul-M2.jpg
 

Sct13

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I didn’t read the entire thread.

I have some experience with aging. Remember why aging is important to luthiers....

to match a a guitar repair when the rest of the older...for example you have a broken headstock on an older guitar... the finish is older looking to begin with the new finish will look out of place. So you need to age or match the new to the old.

my advice is to research the older guitars and see what one actually look like.
I have seen some real messed up, overdone disasters ...

I think the best ones are the ones done naturally... of course.

just follow less is more.

don’t over do it. And you will need to experiment.
 

lawrev

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Thanks for the additional thoughts.

I must say I was impressed with the aging done on the Collector's Choice #19 Hinson Les Paul Junior. That one is black. I think that particular guitar is overpriced but I did like the aging done on that. That is what I had in mind, honestly, but there was more aging done to it than just fading and the aging on the nickel parts.
 

skydog

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Take a double boiler where the upper one has holes and put some vinegar in the bottom one and add your hard
 

BDW60

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Agree with some sentiments in this thread. One, pontificators on this topic should for gawdsake shut the hell up. The OP did not ask to be saved by your self righteous sermon. Two, a home played guitar will NEVER look like a well weathered guitar. Nitro or poly. Especially if the owner has multiple guitars to play, kids, an actual job, and limited hours in any given week to handle said guitar.

Here is what a home played guitar looks like after 10 years if well taken care of. It looks like a 9 of 10 shape example with a couple small dings, some swirl marks and some less than shiny hardware. Yippee. That’s not gonna get it done for someone who wants a relic look. And wanting a relic look is legal in all 50 states and even Canada and does not make someone a phony, pretender, valor thief or cattle rustler.

Get a grip, fellas. It’s just a finish preference.
 


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