wax for woodies and other maintenance
Jul 10, 2008 at 12:46 PM Post #16 of 33

DemonicLemming

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Quote:

Originally Posted by nikongod /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Do they even need to be waxed?

I know you will say yes, because that is the theme of this thread, so I will put my next post right here.

The preservation of something old is a noble goal, but are you preserving it or changing it? This is a tricky question. at some point changing it does preserve it better, but at some point it is change for the sake of change. They built new stuff for the sake of change, no need to bother with the old.

IMHO with a rare and expensive headphone this is VERY similar to repainting an antique motorcycle. The bike is often worth more with 1/4 of the original paint flaking off, and the rest shortly behind VS a full brand new paint job.

to add another question:
If the woodies need to be waxed, what condition do you think that they are in when none of the previous owners of these 5 (or so) year old headphones has ever done it? what about 10 and almost 20 year old woodies?

and as a third:
are you more likely to remove the lettering from a headphone letting it sit on your head and treating it well, or while buffing the new coats of wax?



I would respond to two points here -

Waxing the headphones isn't going to "change" them any more than waxing a car, assuming the wood is already treated with some sort of clear coat or lacquer from the factory. Adding carnauba wax is simply putting another layer of shiny stuff on top. It's not going to change the character, resonance ability, structure, or physical properties of the wood, and if you want to remove it, all it takes is warm water and mild soap. Assuming the wood isn't treated from the factory, waxing the headphones with carnauba isn't going to change the headphones any more than normal handling would - because untreated wood will absorb the oil from your hands when you touch them. Even, for the sake of argument, assuming you do change them, it would be a color change only, and since it's wood, every set of cans coming off the line is going to have a different color anyway.

Now, if the OP was asking about applying, say, clearcoat or lacquer over raw wood, then I'd agree with the motorcycle painting analogy; however, wax is very easily reversible, and not nearly as radical in changing them as something like a recable job, or the markl mod.

As far as removing the lettering while buffing, that shouldn't be a concern, assuming one uses the proper technique to apply the wax and remove the residue. It doesn't take much pressure at all - no more than cleaning with a damp rag to remove dirt - so I'd doubt the lettering would come off, unless it's a headphone that's known to lose said lettering during normal handling.
 
Jul 10, 2008 at 1:21 PM Post #17 of 33

BushGuy

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Along these lines, you have to remember how Nikongod sometimes wears his headphones - a far greater danger to them than waxing in the normal fashion. The pictorial evidence was published right here on Head-Fi some time ago. EEEWwww.
 
Jul 10, 2008 at 2:01 PM Post #18 of 33

wrecked_porsche

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Quote:

Originally Posted by BushGuy /img/forum/go_quote.gif
The pictorial evidence was published right here on Head-Fi some time ago. EEEWwww.


I've heard about this legend many times, but I've never actually seen the pic... Good thing?
biggrin.gif



Anyway, all three of you make good points.
smily_headphones1.gif


I think for me its gonna be soft clean cloth only for my W11jpn. Its soo perfect and pretty now, I'm not gonna mess with it at all in any way. Besides, mine are stored in a nice big box specifically bought for it, no dust or dirt or anything is gonna go near my baby... handling it with extreme care. So I don't see this as a problem.

I'm looking at them right now... soo pretty.
wink.gif


I think another point that the OP should note is that the need to wax his headphone can be reduced if they are handled with extreme care and stored in a nice box away from dust and sunlight.
smily_headphones1.gif

I know my W11jpns are pretty happy that way.
wink.gif
 
Jul 10, 2008 at 2:15 PM Post #19 of 33

rti1000

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Well, being new here I thought i'd go straight to the horses mouth. I just got off the phone with Grado Labs. When I asked their sales director if anything should be used to protect the woods finish and/or to prevent it from cracking his response was "Why would you need to do that?" Basicly the rest of the conversation boiled down to wipe them off with a soft clean cloth and if you absoutely have to use something no heavier than "Pledge". He said they have had no instances that he is aware of arising from the wood drying out and cracking, and other than keeping them clean by wiping them off with a dry cloth, you should have many years of enjoyment out of them.
 
Jul 10, 2008 at 2:25 PM Post #20 of 33

atothex

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Good points, all. I don't think I want to place them back in the box between listening sessions, though. A banana hanger should do, I hope.

So, the wax process may mess up the lettering? I was hoping it'd protect it, like wax protects your car's clear coat. I just assumed it works similarly, but of course I'm not sure, hence the thread. Wax on cars isn't so much for shine as it is for protection. POLISH is for shine.
 
Jul 10, 2008 at 3:20 PM Post #22 of 33

Uncle Erik

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You don't need to wax your headphones. Grado and others use a water-based polyurethane finish. It's not like the other finishes that need it, like tung oil, boiled linseed, lacquer, shellac, etc. Poly is very durable and wax doesn't do much to protect it.

Moisture isn't a problem with wood, either. In fact, you want some moisture content in it. If it gets too dry, it doesn't hold up well.

If you want to clean your woodies, just use a non-abrasive cloth, like an old t-shirt, that's slightly damp. That's all you need.

Anyone wanting to know more about wood finishing should check out Fine Woodwoking magazine and the books by Taunton.
 
Jul 10, 2008 at 5:20 PM Post #26 of 33

DemonicLemming

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Quote:

Originally Posted by atothex /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Good points, all. I don't think I want to place them back in the box between listening sessions, though. A banana hanger should do, I hope.

So, the wax process may mess up the lettering? I was hoping it'd protect it, like wax protects your car's clear coat. I just assumed it works similarly, but of course I'm not sure, hence the thread. Wax on cars isn't so much for shine as it is for protection. POLISH is for shine.



Oh, wrong on that one - wax is for shine, as it degrades very, very quickly. A good synthetic polish, on the other hand, properly layered, protects the paint and clearcoat for months.

Although, I have to say, i have never heard of the idea that waxing a car takes off a layer of paint - which it most certainly does not. Now, buffing - which is a completely different process - does take a very, very small layer off the top, but what buffing really accomplishes is taking the sharp edges off spiderwebbing, very shallow scratches, etc, so they don't reflect light nearly as much and are thus made much less visible. Simply waxing or polishing - with something like Tropi-Care, Zaino, Poorboys, etc - merely layers coats of protective material over the clearcoat.

Unfortunately, car detailing is another one of my hobbies.
biggrin.gif


However, as has been said, all doing processes like that to treated - be it painted, lacquered, clear-coated, whatever - headphones is make them shiny. I seriously doubt that baring excessively abusive use, a normal set of wood headphones, untreated, would even ever have any issues if not scrupulously protected.
 
Jul 10, 2008 at 6:04 PM Post #27 of 33

potato28

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Uncle Erik /img/forum/go_quote.gif
You don't need to wax your headphones. Grado and others use a water-based polyurethane finish. It's not like the other finishes that need it, like tung oil, boiled linseed, lacquer, shellac, etc. Poly is very durable and wax doesn't do much to protect it.

Moisture isn't a problem with wood, either. In fact, you want some moisture content in it. If it gets too dry, it doesn't hold up well.

If you want to clean your woodies, just use a non-abrasive cloth, like an old t-shirt, that's slightly damp. That's all you need.

Anyone wanting to know more about wood finishing should check out Fine Woodwoking magazine and the books by Taunton.



Qft, and only wax if you know that the wood is untreated.
 
Jul 11, 2008 at 5:24 AM Post #28 of 33

olblueyez

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Quote:

Originally Posted by DemonicLemming /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Oh, wrong on that one - wax is for shine, as it degrades very, very quickly. A good synthetic polish, on the other hand, properly layered, protects the paint and clearcoat for months.

Although, I have to say, i have never heard of the idea that waxing a car takes off a layer of paint - which it most certainly does not. Now, buffing - which is a completely different process - does take a very, very small layer off the top, but what buffing really accomplishes is taking the sharp edges off spiderwebbing, very shallow scratches, etc, so they don't reflect light nearly as much and are thus made much less visible. Simply waxing or polishing - with something like Tropi-Care, Zaino, Poorboys, etc - merely layers coats of protective material over the clearcoat.

Unfortunately, car detailing is another one of my hobbies.
biggrin.gif


However, as has been said, all doing processes like that to treated - be it painted, lacquered, clear-coated, whatever - headphones is make them shiny. I seriously doubt that baring excessively abusive use, a normal set of wood headphones, untreated, would even ever have any issues if not scrupulously protected.



What do you think the color on the rag is?
 
Jul 11, 2008 at 4:55 PM Post #30 of 33

DemonicLemming

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Quote:

Originally Posted by olblueyez /img/forum/go_quote.gif
What do you think the color on the rag is?


I've detailed well over 50 cars, and I've never once had wax or polish come off the car that was the color of the paint. Plus, if waxing or polishing took a layer of paint off a car every time you did it, my car would be bare fiberglass right now.

Sort of curious, who told you that waxing removed a coat of paint? Furthermore, how'd they explain how waxing a car would wick the paint through the clearcoat? I think someone was playing a nasty joke on you when they said that.
 

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