I am about to begin french polishing my first spruce top and it is very white and I would like it to stay that way. All my other guitars have been cedar and darker tonewoods on the back so color wasn't really and issue. I have two different shellacs at my house: LMI very blonde and Stew-Mac Colortone platina. Both are very light and to my eye nearly identical for identical sized flakes. Does anyone know which actually turns out lighter or opinions on which they would use. For all I know they are actually the same flakes rebranded .
The lightest shellac I've ever seen is Behlen Superblonde and if you want a "pale face", that's the stuff to use. Bear in mind that over time spent in daylight and our oxygen rich atmosphere, the color of even the very lightest guitar tops will progress to an amber eventually.
Thanks for the responses. To wrap this up, I called up shellac.net and they told me some interesting facts. First, they are the suppliers to Stew Mac and claim their platina shellac is the clearest in the industry. Second, Behlen no longer sells shellac. Since the Stew-Mac platina is what I have on hand, I'm just going to go with that. I can live with the darkening over time. It adds character.
I've used both the LMI and the StewMac - couldn't tell any difference. I'm sure you already know this, but as a remider be sure to seal all the non-spruce materials on the top before you begin to avoid any "bleed" of color.
Just out of curiosity, are you referring to a simple spit coat of shellac (which I always do), or something else. I am still having trouble sealing and filling the gaps in the top binding without the color bleeding into the spruce.