This is the solid swamp ash Telecaster after 4-5 days of low watt exposure on each side using the SG-4 prototype lamp (same as the SG-1 but 4 foot long). I don’t have much to compare to since I’ve never aged ash before, but it gave the guitar a nice color, tan with hints of grey, a weathered look. I was shooting for darker brown but still love what I got. The SG lamps are mainly UVA, which is deeper penetrating. I’m going to follow up with a few days of the Universal UV lamp, which is very high in the UVB spectrum, to see if that browns it up more. If not, that is ok as well, as the current color quality is very good, even if not as dark as my previous pine examples. The little flaws show up perfectly and is exactly what I was going for: a rough yet finished look.
I’ve asked Gary over at Solarez for some UV sealer, and he is sending some down. This is a completely different product, designed to put on in a few ultra thin coats to seal in the oils and prevent discoloration. I’m testing this new sealer, plus I will be trying a new dual cure finish he has, sprayed on. Still going for a thin finish that is designed to wear off naturally, to mimic the old nitrocellulose finishes of the 50s and 60s.
I also bought a Hipshot B-Bender with G bar and Drop D tuning. Granted, this is overkill and has nothing to do with finishes, but all that chrome will make the guitar look really nice and make it even more playable for a string bender like myself. After all, the goal is to create a highly usable guitar, just as you would do for your customers or yourself. I’m not here to create museum pieces.