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FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Strat Under Black Light - Dark Spot/Edge



Jun 7th, 2017 04:01 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hi guys,

I just bought a fairly mint 1994 Fender Start '57 Reissue. Photos in the attached link. Guitar looks and feels great. Because of the mint condition the guy was selling it in, I wanted to make sure all was ok so I checked it under a black light. The end of one "horn" has a black smudge on it and the top edge (oriented when playing) has a darker line on it. I tried my best to capture that in the photos.

I have a Gibson that has been fixed up in multiple places so I can tell when something was actually repaired under the black light. This doesn't seem like a repair type of mark. It's in the black finish area and you can't see anything under regular light. Can't feel anything if you run your finger over it.

Is it possible that the finish is thinner in those areas and shows up darker, or just an inconsistent finish? I plan on taking off the neck and pick guard later today to confirm dates and will try to update the photos once that's done. Thanks in advance!



Rock Of Gibraltar

Thou Shalt Gas !
Jun 7th, 2017 07:49 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

probably just some wear on the lacquer ? the guitar looks mint under normal light



Jun 7th, 2017 08:03 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Appreciate the response. That's what I was thinking too, but don't have too much experience with Fenders. Have a couple of Gibson LPs that have binding on the edges, so you don't see this type of wear happening.

Guitar is as close to mint as you can get, just a couple of dings. Maybe the strap rubbed against the finish. Either way, love the way it plays.



Jun 7th, 2017 08:00 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've never bothered checking with a blacklight, but if it looks okay without the light then I wouldn't worry.

First thing, from 1994 they would've been using a different basecoat (probably polyurethane) with lacquer on top. It could be something between layers. Second, repairs often happen before the instrument ever leaves the factory and it is nothing to worry about. I say this having worked in a couple factories and having more than a passing familiarity with a few more. Super glue fixes will happen on brand new instruments. So, finding evidence of such a thing doesn't imply malfeasance on the part of a previous owner. Occasionally they are eyesores, but in my experience most reputed brands cover their tracks reasonably well. If it looks okay 23 years later without a black light, then it is nothing to worry about.

My other thought is that occasionally chemicals/etc leech into lacquer. I have a '57 reissue that has a silly putty imprint from the writing on a strap on the back of the top horn, and marks from arms are common. I mention this because they all look like they are in spots that would have heavy contact to a strap or a body part.

Again, when we're talking about a 23 year old guitar. If there was some instability or weirdness it would've happened by now.



Jun 7th, 2017 08:31 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Thanks for putting my mind at ease. Took the neck and pickguard off earlier today just to make sure all was good. Dates, cavities seem to all be good, nothing fishy. I added a few extra photos to the album. First time I've had to do something like that, so happy with the result. Now I can focus on enjoying the way this guitar sounds!

Steve Dallman
Contributing Member

Merrill, Wisconsin

Age is just a number...mine is big
Jun 9th, 2017 07:15 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

It does look like a slight touchup before the clear. I went through the Gibson Memphis plant. Their finish rework bins were large and full. Evidently the touch up pen is different than the original spray. Common and no problem, unless you perform under intense black lights.

FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Strat Under Black Light - Dark Spot/Edge

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