Moden Eagle 1 Satin Finish Question


New Member
Dec 5, 2012
North East
Dear Gents,

I recently bought a Modern Eagle 1 NOS in tiger yellow. It's an excellent guitar and I love it. My question is about the satin finish. The way I play I sometimes place a couple of fingers down on the guitar body between the pickups next to the high E string. In just playing for a few days I polished the satin finish by rubbing it and picking against it. I lightly took some 0000 steel wool to it and that dulled it back up again but it left some small scratches. My efforts to remove the scratches only polished it to shine again. It seems that PRS uses some sand paper or superfine steel wool to do the finish on these satin models. I consider myself an "owner" and a player and I know that this is no big deal, but I also like to tinker with guitars and I want to know how to fix it. If anything just for piece of mind that I could fix it if I wanted to. As I see it my options are:

1. Keep playing it until I wear a Willy Nelson style hole in the top.
2. Keep playing it and after a while send it to PTC for them to fix it...if that's possible.
3. If someone here has a ME 1 with similar issues maybe someone could tell me how to fix it.

Thanks in advance for any ideas...
Bob Gomez

The picture I have here is before I started playing the guitar constantly. So it doesn't show the polishing.
I have a well used ME1 and polishing is par for the course. Mine is polished by my fingers between the bridge and the volume knob. If you play the guitar, like you should, it's just going to happen.

You could send it to the PTC for them to gloss it all over, which some folks have done, and this would "fix"the problem as it were. Personally, I'd play it and leave it au naturel - mine has developed a fantastic personality because of it.

I don't know of any way to fix the satin finish, other than by a complete refin.
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Wow, that's a beautiful Eagle.

As Twin says it seems par for the course and although I've only had my Eagle 1 about 5 weeks or so I also have shiny spots. As it happens I have seen and played Twinfan's ME1 and it is fantastic. He brought it to my house when we were doing a deal on an amp and as soon as you pick it up you feel connected... put your favourite T shirt on, faded jeans and trainers/ sneakers pick his guitar up you're all set. I'm hoping my own guitar will age as gracefully and cool as his! I have heard of a guy over here who had his ME 1 polished to a glossy finish, regretted it and sold it as it lost all it's character. Being a fairly thin finish he may have caused more damaged by having it returned to satin. Play it and enjoy it, the look, finish and feel are what made me know that an ME was my ultimate guitar and my opinion hasn't changed since I've played some PS and other more expensive models.
I'll have to get some pics of mine in its current "lightly relic'd" state - the pickup covers are truly shocking. I'm giving it a fret polish and setup at the weekend, so I'll try and get some done after that and post them here...
This is the kind of relic-ing I can get behind - real use.....

Twinfan, I'm eager to see your pics...

Kukumba, I suggest that you let the area where your fingers rest wear naturally. If you keep sanding/buffing every time you give it a finger shine, you will son be through the finish to bare wood and that would be bad. Oil, moisture and dirt from you fingers will be bad for the wood. I would not consider a refinish unless I had played so long and so much that without sanding/buffing the wood started to show through.
I wouldn't consider a refinish on an ME1 period. They're all going to develop character which they should keep :D
I have the same habit. I finger pick a lot and rest my pinky or unused finger there. On some guitars I can see swirls really bad where my fingers rest. Of course this doesn't happen over night. When I use my PRS I am very aware of no pick guard and try my best to not rest my fingers there. I'd imagine the more you sand/polish the more finish you'll just remove. I've had people suggest to me to get one of these clear pcik guards that use static to stay onto the guitar. I'm curious to see other alternatives.
Thanks for all the good advice. The stick on pick guards work great for regular glossy finish PRS's, but they dont stick at all to the satin finish. I also agree that fooling with it is a super bad idea because I will wear down to the wood quickly. I can tell this is a thin Nitro finish and there is not much meat on the bone. Anyway, Im going to forget that it bothers me and just keep playing. If it starts to wear to the point that I feel it starts to get close to the wood or the stain I'll be sending it to PTC for them to take a look.

I have been lurking here for a while and it's a great place. Thanks for all your help!
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Another vote to let it be. The satin finish on the ME1s is one of my favorite things about those guitars.