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Rapid fading of specific colors?

Skeeter

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Jan 12, 2013
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Hi, I’m looking at a used (a little over 2 years old) PRS in Faded Blue Jean. I was able to find its original listing and the color has faded a good bit since then.

The extremely trustworthy, big time PRS dealer tells me that FBJ finish has a very common fading problem, and otherwise lists the guitar as excellent/mint, and again it’s a very trustworthy shop. So it doesn’t appear the guitar was abused or anything.

I have and have had numerous PRSi with the V12 finish, and none have faded, but haven’t had that color before. Is it true that FBJ, and maybe other finishes do fade that rapidly and continuously?

I wouldn’t want to buy this guitar and have it look like those ME1’s, which are satin, and look practically white by now.

What is the shops experience with this kind of color fading? Is it this color-dependent? Is perhaps most of the fading in the first few years, or should I expect this rate of fading to continue, even if I take great care of it and keep it in its case?

Thanks for your insight!
 
If you keep it in the case when you aren’t playing it, additional fading will be negligible.

Blues do fade more than most other colours.
So is it just like a lot initially that comes off, or does it speak to how the prior owner maintained it?
 
The blue ones fade.
I think they use some kind of organic dye
on them and it reacts to light over time?

Yes?
No?
Maybe?
 
It must depend on which blue color. I have 3 blue PRSi, none of which have shown any signs of fading, and they hang on the walls 24x7.

In fairness, one of them is an opaque blue, but it's from 1991.
 
PRS blues can fade, and different blue ones fade differently. I think it's a crapshoot that comes down to wood chemistry and dye chemistry. Light accelerates whatever chemistry is going to happen with that dye on that piece of wood.

I have IIRC 5 blue(-ish) core PRS guitar spanning years from 2004 to 2015. I don't think I've treated them very differently from each other. Four of them have not faded at all that I can tell, but the '12 Faded Blue Burst has faded quite a lot. I can see it because 1.) the blue painted burst around the edge of the body no longer matches well with the body color and 2.) the body is noticeably more blue under the pickup rings.

Luck of the draw.
 
Man, there is/was Cu24 from the early 90s for sale in Poland that is now this really cool pale yellow color after fading from blue. I dig that one.
 
My Tremonti is fading near the cutaway more so than elsewhere. It’s very mild at this point. I’m not sure what color mine is, but I think it’s faded blue jeans.

A0-DA68-CB-92-E8-4-DA4-905-D-651217-ED988-D.jpg
 
So is it just like a lot initially that comes off, or does it speak to how the prior owner maintained it?
I really think it is mostly a matter of how much time it spends out of the case. Some of the old dyes would sink a bit regardless, but the big colour loss is mostly light. I have 4 blue guitars (don’t tell Sergio) and the three that were always in the case when not played have no noticeable fading. The one that was hung for quite a while has faded. Once I noticed that was happening, I cased it.
 
So, if it’s luck of the draw and this particular guitar has faded a good bit just in 2-3 years, is that a sign that this one has bad luck because of the way it was stained, and is gonna continue fading at a good rate? (I have no reason to think that it wasn’t well taken care of, but that doesn’t mean it couldn’t have been hung on a wall, etc.. I don’t know)

Or could I keep it close the color close to as is, if I were to keep it in its case, and away from the sun, etc..

I know this is the type of question that’s difficult to answer with much certainty, but hearing your anecdotal experiences are helpful, since I’ve never had one fade - except for one I played the crap out of for over a decade when I was young, dumb and kept it on a stand all the time and didn’t wipe down after playing. Now my ‘98 Cherry Red looks like burnt orange ;)

Thanks!
 
Hi, I’m looking at a used (a little over 2 years old) PRS in Faded Blue Jean. I was able to find its original listing and the color has faded a good bit since then.

The extremely trustworthy, big time PRS dealer tells me that FBJ finish has a very common fading problem, and otherwise lists the guitar as excellent/mint, and again it’s a very trustworthy shop. So it doesn’t appear the guitar was abused or anything.

I have and have had numerous PRSi with the V12 finish, and none have faded, but haven’t had that color before. Is it true that FBJ, and maybe other finishes do fade that rapidly and continuously?

I wouldn’t want to buy this guitar and have it look like those ME1’s, which are satin, and look practically white by now.

What is the shops experience with this kind of color fading? Is it this color-dependent? Is perhaps most of the fading in the first few years, or should I expect this rate of fading to continue, even if I take great care of it and keep it in its case?

Thanks for your insight!

I have a 2017 Private Stock in that color and yes, mine is fading as well. Good news is I don't really mind, however being a P Stock I'm a bit surprised. I hang mine, don't put my guitars in cases cuz I play them to much. Having said that, I have a 2002 custom 24 in dark Whale Blue and it looks brand new, like the day I got it and it's been out hangin and playin for years. No color change. Maybe it's just the Blue Jean. Who knows what she'll look like in a few years but she ain't goin into a case and still plays awesome so bring it on. have fun.
 
I'm in the same boat...my Blue fade CU24 had faded quite a bit. My blue fade has faded....haha. :cool: I hope PRS does continues doing refinishes...because when it fades too much i want to send it in to get refreshed.
 
I'm in the same boat...my Blue fade CU24 had faded quite a bit. My blue fade has faded....haha. :cool: I hope PRS does continues doing refinishes...because when it fades too much i want to send it in to get refreshed.

I’d love to have my Private stock
color look like it did when I got it just 3 years ago. Never imagined it would lose it’s pop it once had this fast. Good news still plays really well.
 
I've got two experiences. My early 86 was originally some form of blue, it's now kind of a yellowy green with grayish highlights.
I have a 6 year old PS that was listed as purple from the factory, but it's VERY blue on the body. Inlays are purple, though.

Every once in a while I think about having the 86 refinished by the PTC-there's a little crack in the headstock, too...
 
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I've got two experiences. My early 86 was originally some form of blue, it's now kind of a yellowy green with grayish highlights.
I have a 6 year old PS that was listed as purple from the factory, but it's VERY blue on the body. Inlays are purple, though.

I paid $7k for mine. You’d think they would maintain the color we asked for for a long time. Mine is only 3 years old and probably leaves my house for gigs 20 times per year. Not good.
 
It's just the nature of dyes to fade with time and light, times 100 for sunlight. Time alone will do it eventually but UV is the real culprit. All you can do is keep it in the dark as much as possible. Incandescent light would probably be best around it.
 
It's just the nature of dyes to fade with time and light, times 100 for sunlight. Time alone will do it eventually but UV is the real culprit. All you can do is keep it in the dark as much as possible. Incandescent light would probably be best around it.

someone else mentioned that. I have about 8 of my favorites hanging on my wall. Easy to grab cuz I play them all and enjoy looking at them also.
Hate to close it up but I know that’s best for guitar. Weird thing I have dark whale blue CU24 I bought new in 2002 that looks like the day I got it.
Beautiful/zero fade. It’s like that paint job is better than my P Stock. Odd. I just need to decide but thanks for info.
Appreciate it.
 
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