Lacquer is like paint on a car. Unless you drive a Delorean you car has paint. Almost all mass produced brass instruments have lacquer unless they are silver plated. Just like paint you can get different tint's to add to lacquer to make it almost any color you want. The higher end instruments tend to use less tint and less total lacquer then the low end student models. If you want to get lacquer off you have to use a chemical like Zip Strip or Citristrip etc..... On a high end instrument one treatment and lost's of flossing is all it takes on a student horn it will normaly take two treatments becasue they put the stuff on thicker on student horns. Once you get the lacquer off edcon1981 and was all the residue off with hot soapy water then you have bare brass. Now is the time to use MAAS,Flitz, Never Dull, Brasso etc...... to remove the tarnish and shine the brass. Some people use automotive paste to act as a perservative to slow the tarnish down between polishing's. I am going to be sand blasting my son's Holton over Christmas break after I strip it and replace the leadpipe. I have not decided if I am going to relacquer it or leave it bare. I know I will not be useing any tint since I hate the cheap gold color that most trumpet's have when they use dark tint. I have always preffered a metals natural apperance to tinted lacquer or paint! In fact while I like gold plated I hate almost all forms of simulated gold ie paint, tint etc....... All brass instruments will shine up nicely some have very distinct color depending on what type of brass was used. Yellow,Rose,Red all have slight variations in their huge when polished due to the differing amounts of copper in them!