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Guitar Finish Types

Guitar Finish Types


First of all, you will need to assess whether your guitar is suited to this type of finish. As the name implies, the highlighted grain/stain finish is a tinted transparent finish that accentuates the grain pattern of your guitar and is sealed with a clear oil finish.

In the majority of cases, you should base your choice of finish on the characteristics of the timber your best electric guitar is constructed from or choose the finish you are most interested in beforehand and order your guitar with this in mind.

For example, if the timber is unevenly matched, has an uninteresting grain pattern or just doesn’t look great for any number of reasons it’s best not to showcase the timber, in which case a solid color finish will be best suited.

Alternatively, if you have a beautiful section of timber with a distinct grain pattern that is well matched it is often a good choice to showcase the timber of your guitar by applying a transparent finish.

The highlighted grain/stain finish is best suited to guitars with a distinct grain pattern as those found on timbers such as Mahogany and Ash or guitars that include a figured maple cap or veneer such as Flamed, Quilted or Spalted Maple.

If your custom electric guitars has been crafted from Basswood, for instance, this method can still look great but is more dependent on the grain pattern of the specific section of timber your guitar has been constructed from. As a general rule, the grain pattern will be lighter and generally more uniform for Basswood bodies than other timbers.

Keep in mind timber (blanks) used for guitar construction are sold in grades, determined by the characteristics and perceived quality of the timber. If the timber of your guitar differs in pattern and color from the examples above chances are you have a different grade of timber than that shown.

Guitar Finishing Materials

If you have assessed your guitar and believe that showcasing the grain is likely to produce a good result your next step is to source the materials you will require to complete the job. 

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