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February Giveaway

Pearloid

This is a generic name for any of a number of celluloid plastic laminates that are meant to give the overall look of mother-of-pearl or abalone, which are both expensive and becoming increasingly difficult to obtain. A great example of pearloid use is in the trapezoid-shaped fingerboard position inlays on a Gibson Les Paul Standard. In contrast, the upscale Les Paul Custom uses real mother-of-pearl block inlays. Fender uses pearloid laminates for the pickguards of some of its models, such as the American Deluxe Ash Stratocaster and the Special Edition Koa Telecaster. To produce pearloid, celluloid plastic chunks are swirled together in solvent, cured, sliced into sheets and then bonded to the backing laminates. Dyes may be added to achieve an aged look and the overall size of the “figuring” in pearloid comes as a result of how large the chips are at the beginning of the process.

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