remove wax from lacquer finish

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Brian Evans
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remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Brian Evans »

If one has a guitar with an acrylic lacquer finish that has been waxed with carnauba type wax, how would you remove the wax without damaging the finish?

Thanks, Brian

David King
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by David King »

I suspect naptha is the go-to here.

Brian Evans
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Brian Evans »

Naptha is a mineral spirit that isn't actually available under that name in Canada. I suspect that it's the same thing as Coleman camp fuel - Ie an old fashioned camping stove fuel. What do you think? The common mineral spirits here are generic paint thinner, lacquer thinner and varsol. Paint thinner is awful smelly stuff, varsol is very oily and I am afraid lacquer thinner will damage the lacquer.

Brian

Joshua Levin-Epstein
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Joshua Levin-Epstein »

If you can't buy naptha, buy lighter fluid (Ronson, Zippo etc). Its the same stuff but more expensive.

David King
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by David King »

Low-odor mineral spirits may also be available. Model shops might still sell the tiny bottles of Testor's enamel and that thinner seems to work but I'd definitely test it first. Perhaps the auto parts stores now have a low-tox wax remover.

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Bob Gramann
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Bob Gramann »

Ammonia in the wash water moves wax pretty handily from an automobile. A spray and a wipe with Windex might do it for the lacquer. I have used Windex before to clean guitar finishes with no ill effects. Just don't leave it on the surface too long.

Clay Schaeffer
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Clay Schaeffer »

Paint thinner is a bit more oily and slower drying than naphtha but a close cousin, and will remove wax. Mohawk makes "wax wash" which is essentially naphtha in a spray can (with a little bit of toluene) that is fairly low odor. It is made for "touch up" furniture techs for use in customer's homes to prep furniture for repair work. They do have Canadian distributors.

Todd Stock
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Todd Stock »

My Canadian friend says that it is sold as 'Camping Fuel' by Rona in US gallon and US quart sizes - the can should be labeled as '100% Naphtha Petroleum Distillate' and will have the following item and part numbers: Article #0263201 Model #14-434. Recochem Branded.

Some Home Depots in Canada apparently have it as well, and labeled the same way. While Coleman brand stove fuel is mostly naphtha (aka white gas when we were kids), it also has rust inhibitors and other additives...to be avoided if you can get the pure stuff.

Mark Fogleman
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Mark Fogleman »

Joshua Levin-Epstein wrote:If you can't buy naptha, buy lighter fluid (Ronson, Zippo etc). Its the same stuff but more expensive.
I thought Ronson lighter fluid no longer has Naptha?

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Barry Daniels
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Barry Daniels »

The MSDS says it contains light petroleum distillates which is sort of the same thing as naphtha. Keep in mind that nomenclature for petroleum based compounds is fairly squishy. For example: naphtha is not a single chemical but a family of similar compounds.

I read on another forum that the real purpose behind the recent changes in Ronson lighter fluid was to remove benzene from the mixture, which makes a lot of economic sense.
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Clay Schaeffer
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Clay Schaeffer »

"I read on another forum that the real purpose behind the recent changes in Ronson lighter fluid was to remove benzene from the mixture, which makes a lot of economic sense."


Which is not to be confused with benzine, which is sometimes used as another name for naphtha. :roll:

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Barry Daniels
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Barry Daniels »

See what I mean. Squishy.
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Mario Kessels
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Mario Kessels »

I have been breaking my head finding Naphtha in Holland, till iI found out that the Motip degreaser I have been using for years is Naphta. so there you go, available everywhere I would think.
It just has some 2 propanol added to it, anywhere from 0 to 20 percent.
Grz Mario

Charles Wheeler
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Re: remove wax from lacquer finish

Post by Charles Wheeler »

Good ideas. Anything more on it we can get?

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