I was referred from another forum and told that there may be a better understanding of this issue here. A client has brought me a beautiful and well cared for Gibson L5. On the side of the lower bout, just about where the player's armpit would be, there is fairly damaged area of the top clearcoat. The color is uneffected. It looks as though someone has taken a terry cloth towel damp with acetone and rubbed the finish. I have not yet touched the instrument and I'm poking here and there to see if anyone has any insight into this problem. The client tells me that he always keeps the guitar in the original case and that it has never been exposed to anything like the backseat of a new car. My first guess is that it is associated with perspiration but I've never seen anything so severe. On an L5, I assume this is a lacquer finish which would be a plus toward a successful repair. The big question is, how deep is the lacquer compromised and is it so compromised that it cannot accept a new top coat without getting into the color layers? The finish is a transitional sunburst and I'd rather leave it alone if I can.