#1
I know this question comes up everywhere.... a lot. But he's my twist (i guess) on the age old question:

First and foremost I do not want a single response stating how "cool" yellowing on a guitar is and how it makes it "look like an age-old wizard" or "a war-ravaged hero of the lands". Though I do agree with those statements on certain guitars, my ESP LTD DJ-600 (Explorer version) is not the type of guitar that looks nice yellowed. The contrast of white and blood is what makes it awesome, in my opinion.

I understand that it is natural and it is due to the forces of nature. I understand it is a natural part of any guitar to fade from it's original colour. I would just like to know:

1. if anyone had some home-grown tricks and tips to slow down the process? (Minus every condescending answer stating to "leave it in the darkness, in a case, and play it once a month with night vision goggles at midnight")

2. The headstock is the part yellowing the quickest. I understand its usually due to the fact that the finish on the body is inconsistent with the finish on the headstock. Would anyone have an estimate price on getting a headstock re-painted/finished? I've always wanted to get it redone to match the paint job on the body or at least to get rid of the LTD tag on it. (It really does have specs to rival an ESP model guitar but its built in Korea so it automatically gets the LTD tag and can get looked down upon)

Thanks in advance
#2
But yellowing is cool.





But seriously, you'd better learn to like it because I haven't heard of a way to stop or reverse it. Just keep it in a case when you aren't using it, and only play it in the dark I guess


And if you want a price for a paint job, you should start looking around your area for luthiers and get a quote. But it will probably cost the value of the guitar.

It's an LTD, man, it isn't worth much. IMO you should either sell it, or learn to accept it. It's not worth pouring money into.

Oh didn't see that you only wanted the headstock repainted. I say go for it if that's all it takes to make you happy. You could probably just do that yourself and use a waterslide decal, but don't try to sell the guitar as a real ESP later on, that is just low(and illegal).
Last edited by W4RP1G at Apr 14, 2013,
#4
I hear smoke helps get rid of yellowing.


But, seriously, the only way to keep it from yellowing is put it in a case and never use it ever again.


Or try bleaching it.


2/3 statements are wrong.
#5
There is absolutely no way of stopping or slowing the discolouration. There certainly are things that will speed it up (smoke, contact with various types of rubber and leather, being left in strong sunlight, heat sources, etc) but nothing that will slow it down.

Refinishing costs a lot. You typically can not get just a headstock refinished unless the guitar uses a bolt-on neck (which I believe yours does not). In theory you can mask off the headstock and refinish it just fine, but it's not a common job; you'll almost always be buying a full refinish. Bear in mind too that having the headstock repainted means you lose the headstock decals, logos, serial number and so on. Red is also a very, very hard colour to match, so whatever you had added to the headstock likely would not match the body. Again, this is where a full refinish comes in. Though considering a new finish would yellow, too, and likely quicker than the factory finish, this may end up being a waste of money for you regardless.

The only thing you can do that may very vaguely reduce the discolouration of your guitar without having to completely refinish it is to very, very carefully sand off only the clear gloss coat and respray it with an even thicker gloss poly coat. This will be hard, take a very long time to do and be very, very easy to screw up. It also will discolour, eventually, and it can't do anything for the discolouration of the white coat itself, but it would at least renew the discolouration in the clear coat. I say again: tough, slow, not very effective, easy to **** up.
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#6
Automotive cut and polish? My LP Custom is doing the yellowing thing, only on the face of the body though which is odd but I kinda like it, gives it some mojo. I like mojo in guitars.
Last edited by dazza027 at Apr 14, 2013,
#7
Dont buy white guitars, isnt much you can do really.

Also, its an LTD, not an ESP and anybody who actually recognises what an LTD is over an ESP isnt really going to look down on it for being an LTD.

They would do it for being spiky and covered in blood

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#8
Quote by MrFlibble
In theory you can mask off the headstock and refinish it just fine, but it's not a common job

I don't see why that would stop anyone from doing it, unless they wanted to use that as an excuse to make him pay for a full refinish.


But I still say do it yourself. Buy a can of arctic white Reranch lacquer and clear gloss, scuff sand it with 320, mask it off, shoot it with the white, shoot it with clear, level and buff after 3 weeks.

If you do add a waterslide decal, you would do that before spraying the clear. Then you would shoot it with a ton of coats. The decal should look natural after the level and buff.
#9
I know this might be completely wrong but I know if you put hydrogen peroxide on plastic/rubber that has yellowed it restores the color... maybe it would work on a poly finish? Google retrobrite.

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#10
Quote by W4RP1G
I don't see why that would stop anyone from doing it, unless they wanted to use that as an excuse to make him pay for a full refinish.


But I still say do it yourself. Buy a can of arctic white Reranch lacquer and clear gloss, scuff sand it with 320, mask it off, shoot it with the white, shoot it with clear, level and buff after 3 weeks.

If you do add a waterslide decal, you would do that before spraying the clear. Then you would shoot it with a ton of coats. The decal should look natural after the level and buff.

At this point, the question is: Is this guitar really, really worth that much trouble?
#11
Quote by Dimarzio45
At this point, the question is: Is this guitar really, really worth that much trouble?

That's true. For a beginner, a refinish is really intimidating. For me, a headstock refinish with a decal would probably take a few hours for the prep work and spray and about an hour for the level and buff. But that's assuming that everything goes as planned.
#12
Quote by W4RP1G
That's true. For a beginner, a refinish is really intimidating. For me, a headstock refinish with a decal would probably take a few hours for the prep work and spray and about an hour for the level and buff. But that's assuming that everything goes as planned.

Exactly. Everything going as planned is the biggest wild card of them all...ESPECIALLY with painting and refinishing.
#13
Unfortunately TC I think the choice is going to be between letting it yellow or refinishing in an entirely new colour. The amount of work/money required it would be silly to keep it white imho.
If it was my guitar (and I very nearly bought one of these, huge Atreyu fan from SNaBK through to ADGoY) I would sand down to the wood, paint/dye whatever I fancied, again another shame since I LOVE white guitars ever since I saw my first LP Custom. Maybe you could find/buy a lovely flame/quilt veneer? At any rate it seems painting is the easy part, compared to glossing it up nicely after!
#14
I'm curious since nobody seems to have mentioned it: how long could it take until a white guitar starts showing signs of yellowing? Assuming normal storage of the guitar.
#15
It's impossible to tell.

Every guitar is unique.

1977 Burny FLG70
2004 EBMM JP6
2016 SE Holcolmb
#16
Quote by Cazman
I'm curious since nobody seems to have mentioned it: how long could it take until a white guitar starts showing signs of yellowing? Assuming normal storage of the guitar.

Depends on the definition of 'normal storage.'.....My guitar began to yellow-up slowly over a period of 5 years. It's not quick - assuming it's not around smoke.

Edit: The guitar was already about 13 years old prior to my ownership...and that was the yellowing that I noticed...
Last edited by Dimarzio45 at Apr 14, 2013,
#17
Quote by mash456
I know this question comes up everywhere.... a lot. But he's my twist (i guess) on the age old question:

First and foremost I do not want a single response stating how "cool" yellowing on a guitar is and how it makes it "look like an age-old wizard" or "a war-ravaged hero of the lands". Though I do agree with those statements on certain guitars, my ESP LTD DJ-600 (Explorer version) is not the type of guitar that looks nice yellowed. The contrast of white and blood is what makes it awesome, in my opinion.

I understand that it is natural and it is due to the forces of nature. I understand it is a natural part of any guitar to fade from it's original colour. I would just like to know:

1. if anyone had some home-grown tricks and tips to slow down the process? (Minus every condescending answer stating to "leave it in the darkness, in a case, and play it once a month with night vision goggles at midnight")

2. The headstock is the part yellowing the quickest. I understand its usually due to the fact that the finish on the body is inconsistent with the finish on the headstock. Would anyone have an estimate price on getting a headstock re-painted/finished? I've always wanted to get it redone to match the paint job on the body or at least to get rid of the LTD tag on it. (It really does have specs to rival an ESP model guitar but its built in Korea so it automatically gets the LTD tag and can get looked down upon)

Thanks in advance

I want the flying that esp does with that paint
#18
Dude that's just age. No way around it unless you keep it in a glass vacuum sealed room it gonna happen
#19
I appreciate all the feedback! I guess there's isn't "one of grannie's old tricks" for this life problem. Like whenever I have a scuff on the white paint, I'd just polish it out with toothpaste. Alas, it hasn't seen it's last day, I doubt there's much market for these, so I'll be playing it till it dies. In all honesty the yellowing has barely begun, it's one of those things that is only noticeable if someone points it out. I'm just scared for my pride and joy.

Anyway, I appreciate everything!

On a side note, I'm not a very big Atreyu fan nor a fan of the guitarist, this guitar just caught my eye when I was a kid surfing the internet. They started producing the flying-V version a year later and I lost my chance until, as luck would have it, I was bored and surfing ebay when one came up in California. It was the first guitar I ever bought with my own money and it was my all time favourite guitar I've ever seen to date. It played my first shows and the local music scene was in awe of it's visual ferocity. I think it will forever be my favourite guitar. It it really expensive to refinish it. I suppose I may as well just start saving up money to get a legitimate ESP version made for myself.
#20
Quote by W4RP1G
I don't see why that would stop anyone from doing it, unless they wanted to use that as an excuse to make him pay for a full refinish.
Bingo.

But also because white is hard to colour match (along with red and pink) so there's an element of being consistent, too.
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#21
If you draw little penises on the guitar the yellowing will stop.

Jk, the only way it either a refine or play in the dark.
#22
I'm surprised that nobody has suggested that you try adjusting the truss rod.

j/k

Sorry dude, hopefully you can learn to live with it or have it refinished.
#23
What he really needs is a new amp. Try a 6505+.
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#24
Quote by thehikingdude
I'm surprised that nobody has suggested that you try adjusting the truss rod.

j/k


#25
Bummer dude, as the one guy mentioned you may be able to use some light abrasive cut polish to remove some yellowing, but that may not even work at all or it could be so advanced you would be cutting through the sealer before the color goes away. Oh and yeah its not the actual white part of the guitar changing color is the material it was sealed with, unless it was a polyurethane job then it is the color. With nitro the lacquer is clear and gets shot over the base color to seal it in, it is actually the nitro that starts discoloring because it is porous and sensitive to certain conditions. No real way to stop or completely fix it aside from a refinish.
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