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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Lately I’m curious about altering the length and shape of the bar on my RG550.

Totally get the pipe bending and stuff, what I’m stuck on is being a tart and wanting it to look nice once I’m done. 😅

My guitar has plain black hardware, I’m assuming once I’ve chopped the length and rounded the tip it won’t be nice and black anymore (this is a reissue so hasn’t got thirty years of wear on it).

Are these parts usually powder coated? Has anyone tried getting them refinished before? Any snags?
 

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I think they are either powder coated or black oxidized.

I'd recommend buying a soar bar and making mods to that.

You can always cover the bar with light foam light the newer trem arms have.

Not sure where you would find that though.
 

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I'm definitely not an expert :D but I'll toss my hat in:

I wouldn't expect black oxide on guitar hardware, as it is extremely thin and fares very poorly against corrosion without something like a constantly re-applied layer of oil to protect it.

i think the old-school hardware finishes were electroplated--probably nickel+chromate layers for chrome, gold, colored chrome flavors (chrome is literally an electroplate finish), zinc+chromate for Black. Then they started powdercoating instead, for most colors whenever possible. I believe Black is still plated.

If i'm not mistaken, this is why some colors (again, such as Black--probably zinc+black chromate), even on newer guitars, are generally notorious for holding up better than others, and why older (pre-powdercoat switch) hardware finishes are generally known to hold up better, regardless of color.

rich can correct or expound on this probably :nerd: , but based on my very limited knowledge, I suspect your guitar's hardware is black zinc plate, not powdercoat.
 

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I'm not extremely knowledgeable in that myself so your probably right.

Black oxide definitely doesn't last.
But then again my personal experience is that the black ones get weird rust patterns and rub wear.

It just reminded me of oxide coatings with perhaps a clear over it.

I'm pretty sure that's what the older black Duncan screws are on their invaders, and the rust / ware was pretty similar to the edge trem I just restored.

I also restored the invaders and the only way I could get them to look like the newer ones now days was to order black oxide iron button screws, and then clear coat them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hm. Ok, I’ll definitely get a spare arm or two and play with length and shape and decide if I even have something I care about the look of before going this route, but anyone got any ideas where I could get black zinc plate on something as small and one off as a trem arm? Wouldn’t need to be fast so if there’s something like a guitar shop out there collecting orders for a batch it would be ideal 😉

What was that about ‘light foam’ though? Genuinely have no idea what that is?
 
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