Gold Plate / Chrome Kit (please Forgive If This Is Reposted Info)

Discussion in 'Luthier Tips' started by Buddy, Apr 25, 2019.

  1. Buddy

    Buddy Well-Known Member

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    After receiving my "new," used SX GG7 recently, with the gold plating in fairly faded condition, I began a search for replacement parts. After a while I remembered watching this youtube clip about a gold plating / chroming DIY kit for home use.

    There is a very good chance that I was linked to this video from this very forum, so if someone else has already shared this, I truly apologize, and all due credit should go to the O/P for finding this resource.

    If this has not been shared before, well, it's kinda neat, and it might just come in handy for hard to replace pieces that look tired and faded.

    Anyway... here!

     
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  2. Buddy

    Buddy Well-Known Member

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    Gold Plated Bump
     
  3. Buddy

    Buddy Well-Known Member

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    Turns out, after looking it up, the big kit, as shown in the video, costs in the neighborhood of $1,000.

    There's a smaller kit that can gold plate 300 square inches for about $350.

    I guess maybe it's just easier and cheaper to buy new parts for one guitar. But if you are a luthier, where this might be a need that comes up frequently, and there are out of production or hard to find parts, maybe it could be a useful tool.
     
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  4. mighty_duck

    mighty_duck Well-Known Member

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    Maybe real gold is overkill for an SX.
    But what about brass plating?
     
  5. idiotsdelight

    idiotsdelight Well-Known Member

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    Interesting video.

    I like the look of worn hardware.
     
  6. Mickey

    Mickey Gandalf the Intonationer

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    Why bother gold plating a "sow's ear" ???
    Put good hardware on an SX to begin with. :)
     
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  7. Fat Jack

    Fat Jack Well-Known Member

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    any plating done right is expensive so yeah the kit ain't cheap. All smart assery aside if I wanted to refresh 'gold' hardware I'd gold leaf it it takes a real smooth steady hand but you will have gold covered hardware. Mickey does have a great point tarnished hardware is the perfect excuse to upgrade to quality hardware.
     
  8. dspellman

    dspellman Well-Known Member

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    In order, the best way to get good gold hardware on your guitar is to:

    1. Buy it. To be honest, a lot of it is thinly plated cheap junk sold for fairly high prices. Doesn't matter what the brand name might be. But for things like screws and tuners, it's the only way to fly.

    2. Replate it. You're not saving money by doing it yourself; that's just spending money on a science project. A good commercial plating company will do it cheaper and (if you request it) put a better polish and a thicker plating and you'll be far less likely to see it flaking off in your near future. Avoid replating things that have etched surfaces, brands, names, etc. -- these will lose their definition with the new plating.

    The best way to KEEP your gold hardware gold is to

    1. Wax it. Non-abrasive, non-chemical (as much as possible) plain old carnauba wax. The hard stuff in the one-pound tin is the best. Wax on, wax off with a very soft cloth.

    2. Get a Vapor Corrosion Inhibitor and keep it in the case with your guitar. Google it. The same things that keep rust away keep the underpinnings of your gold hardware from corroding. Cheap.

    3. Wipe the sweat off your guitar and do NOT put the cloth inside the case with your guitar.

    4. Put a piece of plastic between your strings and your fretboard. I know there's no gold on the fretboard, but this will prevent tiny electric currents from forming between strings and frets and anything the strings are attached to. Corrosion is an electrochemical process.

    The best way to CLEAN your gold hardware periodically is to feed it to one of those ultrasonic jewelry cleaners. Cheaper than you think and very efficient.
     
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  9. mozz

    mozz Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    I know there are write-ups on electroplating for the DIY. Maybe not for gold but for silver and a few other metals. I have a few HP variable power supplies here and it was on my "learn to do" lists.
     
  10. nomadh

    nomadh Well-Known Member

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    Gold hardware looks like the guitar is trying too hard. It doesn't even look great most the time but it can look good once its worn in. Sort of like the punk kid born with a silver (or gold) spoon and his fancy duds that never learned to work. When the gravy train runs out then he has to get a job and he looks like he learned some and wore his clothes in you can finally respect him. Thats how I see worn gold hw.
     
  11. nomadh

    nomadh Well-Known Member

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    Ughh. Are you supposed to own the guitar or is it supposed to own you?
     

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