Recently I got an ES 335 as a gift...how lucky am I? Anyways, firstly it was bought from a Guitar shop, not sure which, and I am told they said the guitar had just arrived, and was never taken out of it's case since they ordered it from Gibson.

I started to notice some cosmetic problems. I don't think it will effect the sound but it just really bugs me how expensive this thing is to have these problems.

Right after taking it out of the case for the first time I noticed some slit mark looking things near most of the upper frets, as well as some of the frets looking like the wood and binding near the base of them was slightly raised higher then the fretboard. I have only played a few other guitars but I never noticed this in any other guitar that I have touched, so I am wondering if this is normal? Here are some pics:

After having it about a day, I also noticed the bottom...horns I guess.... of the headstock where it curves had perfectly square patches of "duller then the rest of the body finish." It was a slighty ligher shade of black, and not as glossy as the rest of the guitar. I tried to take a picture but my cheap ass webcam couldn't pick it up.

Finally, the last problem I didn't notice until owning the guitar for about a week or two. This one is probably my fault, and I'd like to know what is causing it so the problem doesn't spread. The cream binding has started to turn a redish hue along the edge of the guitar. It's only on the back side.

It is actually much more noticable then it looks like in these pictures, but my cam sucks

and here is just showing where the discoloration is

At first I figured maybe the foam from my guitar stand caused it, so I put the guitar on the stand to see if the discoloration was happening in the spots where the foam came in contact....it did not. So I doubt it was from the stand. Still, I have stopped using that stand and now switched to a homemade leather stand.

If anyone has info on what created or is causing these problems please let me know! If there is a fix or just a way to prevent it from getting worse or happening agian

Appreciate anyone who read all of that v much!
Wow. Erm, well I can only be of *very* limited help. I have a Gibson, and I would say that the nitrocellulose finishes that Gibsons have simply mark very easily, due to the nature of such a thin finish. It's how Gibsons and vintage Fenders "age" so nicely. If you play it- it will pick up marks, scratches etc. There's nothing you can really do to prevent this, other than being a pussy and not playing it. Or maybe being super, over-careful with it when you do play it, only touching it whilst wearing long sleeves, and wearing cotton gloves lol. But if you do that, you're not really playing your guitar or enjoying it properly.

That's not to say that you should not care about it or treat it like ****. not at all. I'm just saying, guitars with nitrocellulose finishes will accrue tarnishes etc much quicker than guitars with polyurethane finishes. If you play it- it's unavoidable and inevitable. I'm careful with mine, and I always polish it regularly with the correct Gibson Care Kit, but it's still not "as new". Whereas my Epiphone- which has a polyurethane finish- I have bashed about ten times as much as my Gibson, and I've owned it for three times as long, and it doesn't really have very many marks at all.

So, there's that. But my Gibson has not experienced any discolouration anywhere (and I just checked now, to see). I have clear white binding on my Gibson (it's a limited edition Les Paul), and it's as white as it was when I bought it over a year ago. So I can't help you there. Do you polish it? What polish are you using? There are many things that will harm a nitrocellulose finish, so I'm told. If you do polish it, use certified guitar polish for nitro finishes. It's the only way to be sure. I would phone Gibson and ask.

As for the frets- my fretboard doesn't have any 'raised' areas on the board itself. I have an ebony fretboard on mine, you have rosewood. I doubt that's a factor, but it's worth mentioning. The binding cuts look very similar to mine. Except for the first picture you showed, with a really raised piece of binding. I don't know- shoddy craftsmanship?
Last edited by Martin Scott at Aug 3, 2008,
dude i have the same problems with the customshop lp that i just bought, it had those red marks on the binding when i bought it, i think its just a blem in the binding, but another thing was on the cut away part the binding like smeared or something, i cant describe it maybe ill take a pic. but ya. i think its just gibson doesnt care, i mean sure their instruments sound awesome as hell but they need to work on their quality control when it comes to the finish
Quote by gatechballer
SoLgEr is the ****ing man!!!!!
At first I was using Ernie Ball wonder wipes as polish, but I noticed they put light scratches in the finish and left behind paper tissuey debre so I stopped using them and switched to Gibson Pump Polish. I have been using the rag that came with the polish, but it also scratched the finish so I am waiting for a microfiber rag that I ordered to come

thanks for the info everyone...i can't get those discoloration marks out of my mind, I have dinged it in some spots already but I got over those dings in about a days time....I still can't get over the binding color...

also, you can't see it in the pic, but the side with the worse discoloration....on the edge there is a little spot that looks like it has no laquer....its only on the edge though, and really small. It's about the size of a small scratch mark. (actually you kinda can see it, you look near where the light is really bright, to the left of that along the edge where the binding is whiter looking then normal....really really small) But, the other side has no problems like that, and it is still discolored albeit not as badly.
Last edited by danleary at Aug 3, 2008,