February 8, 2013 in Blog

New American Vintage Series “Pure Vintage” Stratocaster Nitro Finish

59-2Up until a few days ago, I was a bit confused on the finish details of the new American Vintage Series line of guitars. Folks were already yelling about a polyurethane base coat “sealer” under the nitro finish. In reality, they didn’t know, so the assumptions made their way. All along, the details were right on Fenders website!

The “Flash-Coat Lacquer” Finish

The finishes on most new American Vintage guitars and basses consist of three coats: sealer, color and a topcoat, all of which are 100-percent nitrocellulose lacquer and are hence quite thin. This is a vintage-style finish treatment that lets an instrument “breathe” with a more natural resonance since it doesn’t “constrain” the instrument’s body as much as thicker and more confining modern finishes.

The term flash-coat lacquer refers specifically to the quickly applied thin and final “flash” of topcoat lacquer applied to most new American Vintage instruments. In addition to the sonic advantage noted above, the composition of and method of application for this final finish layer imparts a more authentically vintage appearance to these new instruments.

So it’s apparent that these new Vintage Series are much more accurate to the originals than the predecessors. Not only the obvious spray to the finish, but even down to the real bone nut and bridge saddle holes, which are now bigger just like the originals.

It looks like folks have already began relicing these guitars. Here’s a few images below of the new American Vintage 59 Stratocaster with a pretty good relic job. I like that it displays the thickness of the finish and gives you a good idea of how these can look when they are played over the years, a lot like an original vintage strat. This isn’t real age, but close enough to get you an idea.

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