Modern Gretsch Guitars

MIJ Gretsch guitars with nitro finish?

1

It seems with the boutique quality and explosion of the 2000's that the growing trend for most manufacturers has been to offer their "pro level",(say roughly $1,000 and up price point), guitars with vintage correct nitro cellulose finishes. Therefore, I've always been surprised that Nitro finishes on pro level Japan Gretsch guitars seem to be few and far between. After all, the whole Gretsch vibe is that of paying homage to the golden 50's and 60's era of electric guitar building and design. For the street prices being paid for MIJ models I think that Nitro finishes should be a standard feature on all high end Gretsch models. I know nitro is standard on all USA made custom shop instruments, unless of course the owner for some strange reason requests poly? But for me I've always preferred the way nitro looks, ages,feels,and even the smell.

I have a 2008 125th ani that is Nitro finished. I also know you can get a Setzer model in nitro as well as the Rev horton model. Other than those what else can you get? The penguin reissue seems to be the only Jet offered this way.

When the vintage select series came out, I was really hoping that they would all be finished in nitro. So what's the deal? Why is it that Gretsch pro level instruments aren't all being finished in nitro like most other major companies who make pro level instruments these days?

I may be a bit overly obsessive about this, but am I the only one who prefers nitro and would like it to be standard if I'm buying an instrument in the thousands of dollars range?

2

always frustrated me but there was a cliff gallup model jet that was only out like 2008 or 2009 IIRC that also was nitro but it is slim pickings

3

Cuts to much into their profits...time is money and the process is a bit more pricey to accomplish..plus the majority of the people don't care..I do and so do you but it doesn't phase people that they have a sheet of plastic wrapped around their instrument. Nitro affects the vibration of the wood in a good way that's allows the wood to vibrate more and produce resonance in my opinion. I would like to see these 2500 dollar plus instruments be finished in all nitro...as far as what I've heard ...and I may be totally wrong, but I heard they still spray a light coat of poly and then use nitro to give the impression that the instrument is all nitro...love to know more about that process if it's true...but in no way will we get instruments finished like they were in the 50s and 60s. Just one guys opinion.

4

Most of the Vintage Select are lacquer as are all the Duane Eddy models and a Setzer; the Gallup model came out only last year. Lacquer takes 3 or 4 (or more) times to cure than modern poly.

5

They totally disregarded the 6122-62 , which to me is ludicrous...one of the most iconic guitars that gave Gretsch the revival of their brand in sixties. For 2999.00 and not to do it in nitro for that guitar has me scratching my head. Again for me I like the look and feel of nitro . Sound is always subjective . The same nitro they used pre 1974 was different. The new regulations caused them to change .

6

Cuts to much into their profits...time is money and the process is a bit more pricey to accomplish..plus the majority of the people don't care..I do and so do you but it doesn't phase people that they have a sheet of plastic wrapped around their instrument. Nitro affects the vibration of the wood in a good way that's allows the wood to vibrate more and produce resonance in my opinion. I would like to see these 2500 dollar plus instruments be finished in all nitro...as far as what I've heard ...and I may be totally wrong, but I heard they still spray a light coat of poly and then use nitro to give the impression that the instrument is all nitro...love to know more about that process if it's true...but in no way will we get instruments finished like they were in the 50s and 60s. Just one guys opinion.

– Mike Schindler

My 59LTV is an order of magnitude better than my old 6120AM was, even when I put the TV Classics into i. I doubt it was the "nitro" which still has narry a check, hazing, yellowing or clouding entering it's sixth year.

Worth the extra money for the extra attention in the build? Sure. Would it sound any better than if it has traditional Gibson style nitro? Probably not. But it's never going to look aged like my Les Paul.

7

always frustrated me but there was a cliff gallup model jet that was only out like 2008 or 2009 IIRC that also was nitro but it is slim pickings

– powerjet

I had one for a while. The nitro wore through on the black top and made it look like sneakers that have dried out after a soaking. It was pretty thin, so I just polished the rest off to match.

9

Was there a previously released Cliff Gallup model, did I miss it?

10

Was there a previously released Cliff Gallup model, did I miss it?

– Deed Eddy

I think they talk about the model G6128-DSV. It first came out in 2004 and was discontinued 2014 or 2015. It was not an official Cliff Gallup model, but had all the features except the bridge, and was sometimes advertised as "The Cat man" after a Gene Vincent song. It had nitro finish and came with a tweed case.

12

Petty the specs aren’t consistent on the site

The standard 6128 depth is 1.75" (44.45 mm) The vintage select depth is 2" (50.8 mm)

Doesnt say for cliff’s model

13

Vintage depth is 1 7/8" to about '70; the RocJets (post '70) were advertised as 1.5".

14

Thank you. Wonder why the vintage select is deeper....

There’s no dyna 6131 at the mo other than the sparkle

15

Was there a previously released Cliff Gallup model, did I miss it?

– Deed Eddy

Yes, like stated above, The 6128 DSV was lacquer and was sometimes referred to as a Cliff Gallup style 1955. I have one from 2004.

S Mac

16

I own 4 pro lines. 2 with nitro and 2 without. There is no difernce in tone that I can detect at all. Yes the nitro feels and looks better. In terms of breathing. If that’s really a thing my poly hollow bodies breath just fine through their f holes

17

They totally disregarded the 6122-62 , which to me is ludicrous...one of the most iconic guitars that gave Gretsch the revival of their brand in sixties. For 2999.00 and not to do it in nitro for that guitar has me scratching my head. Again for me I like the look and feel of nitro . Sound is always subjective . The same nitro they used pre 1974 was different. The new regulations caused them to change .

– Mike Schindler

Actually the product that stays on the guitar isn't different at all. The only thing that has changed is the vehicle solvent which is now acetone because it has a VOC exemption.

18

How would I be able to verify if my guitar has been done with nitro? I roughly remember reading something about using a little bit of nail polish remover based on aceton within the pickup cavity.

19

That will work blue flame. Put it on a cotton bud and after a couple of wipes, you should see some of the finish coning off onto the cotton bud

Needless to say you should do this in an out of sight area and take great care not to drip acetone onto the finish in areas that can be seen.

20

How would I be able to verify if my guitar has been done with nitro? I roughly remember reading something about using a little bit of nail polish remover based on aceton within the pickup cavity.

– blueflame

Put the guitar in it’s case then find a warm spot on the floor from the sun. Leave the case there for a 1/2 hour, open the case and if it has a sweet smell it’s lacquer.

21

Put the guitar in it’s case then find a warm spot on the floor from the sun. Leave the case there for a 1/2 hour, open the case and if it has a sweet smell it’s lacquer.

– Curt Wilson

Thanks Shuggie, thanks Curt. The smell is the reason why I always suspected it to be nitro. Although it has vanished a little after a few years. Sun is currently a problem as there were only 4 hours of it for the whole month

But I will try both procedures.

Thanks.

22

Put the guitar in it’s case then find a warm spot on the floor from the sun. Leave the case there for a 1/2 hour, open the case and if it has a sweet smell it’s lacquer.

– Curt Wilson

Just make sure you use a case without any added scent substances that might fool you.


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