How Durable is Tru-Oil on an Electric Guitar?

Q&A Woodworking Forum IndexCategory: Guitar MakingHow Durable is Tru-Oil on an Electric Guitar?
Westfarthing Woodworks asked 6 months ago

I’m curious about how long the Tru-Oil finish will hold up on an electric guitar body.

I’m working on a kit body which I plan to sand and stain then apply Tru-Oil.

I recall reading somewhere or hearing that Tru Oil is not a permanent finish but I’m not sure how true this is.

Any insight would be greatly appreciated!


1 Answers
Westfarthing Woodworks answered 6 months ago

Thank you for the question Matt. I have finished several guitars with Tru-Oil and have never had anything go wrong either during or after the finish. Some of these have been in use for over a decade, both acoustic and electric.

The finish itself is not as strong as a lacquer or a poly, but the look is also very different too. A guitar finished in tru-oil needs to be handled a little easier, because it can scratch faster and liquids can harm the finish faster. As long as you are not being overly rough with your guitar, you will be happy with tru-oil.

As far as being permanent, the finishes are still on my guitars even after all this time. Tru-Oil is a polymerized oil, so it’s basically a plant oil that has been cooked at a high temperature to help the molecules link to each other.

This is why it dries so well on the surface where other oils sink in more. The coating is definitely there, and it definitely does not come off over time. It almost applies like a wiping varnish, forming a layer on the surface.

If you have any additional questions, please let me know, and best of luck with your guitar. Apply super thin coats, and you will have a great looking finish in the end.

Happy building.

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