Fretboard maintainance

Discussion in 'Guitar Gear Talk Forum' started by ultrabot90, Oct 14, 2009.

  1. ultrabot90

    ultrabot90 Like fishes need bicycles

    My C70's frets have got a lot of muck between them, and since I'm gonna get its strings changed in the first week of November, I was wondering if I should clean up the fingerboard with something. How d'you folks suggest I go about this? I need to lemon-oil-treat the thing?

  2. angel_of_sin

    angel_of_sin bassist.....

    just take some wood polish cream and polish the fretboard...........and DON"T use cologne...i heard some f*ckface around here advising someone to use aftershave or cologne.............
  3. thehundredthone

    thehundredthone New Member

    Yeah don't use cologne, instead polish an unfinished fretboard. [EDIT: This was a sarcastic comment, FFS don't polish an unfinished fretboard!]

    You can get most of the muck off with a dry cloth. Regularly wiping down the guitar after playing it will prevent most of this buildup. Once it is more or less clean, you can use lemon oil if you so wish. Be sure not to use too much.
  4. ultrabot90

    ultrabot90 Like fishes need bicycles

    ^I'm always suspicious of lemon oil, cus's acidic. Clearly deteriorative in the long run.

    Here's another guy's take on this. oil.html
    Cleaning with bout this? That page seems to go against wood polishes for the reasons of it having seemingly-irritating silicones, which is kind of at odds with this guy.

    I think I'll just clean it down well when changing strings, perhaps with turps if it wins approval, then see if it needs any treatment at all.
  5. thepacifist2013

    thepacifist2013 V.I.P Member

    Don't do that! The grade of that pad will be much finer than the scotch brite here. You need 0000 grade steel-wool to rub the fretboard.
    And do not use wood-cream/polish. From what I know, it deposits under your fret tangs and starts affecting the glue......frets loosen with overuse.

    I'm assuming here your fretboard is unfinished. If it's finished, it's probably finished with some hard-assed lacquer/resin, in which case you can go ahead and phuck around with it all you want.

    For unfinished rosewood fretboards, I strongly recommend

    It's the best I've used....and I've used 3-4 products (including lemon oil) before I had lovely results with this. It's expensive, but a small bottle will virtually last one guitar for its lifetime. It's expensive yeah, but not so much in the long run. And the guy ships to India, Mine arrived within 7 business days of ordering.
  6. flood

    flood New Member

    i've had my best results using the polish used for dark wind instruments.

    when using ultra-fine steel wool, you'd be happiest working with tthe neck rremoved from the body. if you aren't sure about that, make sure the rest of the body is covered and protected somehow, PARTICULARLY the pickups. it'll be next to impossible to get the ultra-fine strands out later, it'll damage the covers and if you have really bad luck, get inside the pup, corrode and/or short the windings.
  7. ultrabot90

    ultrabot90 Like fishes need bicycles

    I've no clue if it's finished or not - guitar model is C70 and the fretboard is rosewood according to the intertubes, if that helps.

    @pacifist...Wont steel wool scrape off the wood of the fretboard as well? :shock:

    @Flood - It's a classical guitar. No pickups, and not to mention a glue-in neck, but thanks. ;)

  8. thehundredthone

    thehundredthone New Member

    Rosewood fingerboards are almost always unfinished. Use a nice clean cloth. If you feel it's too dry then you can apply whichever fingerboard oil you like. They're all criticised equally. Just don't go with the silicone based ones.
  9. thepacifist2013

    thepacifist2013 V.I.P Member

    0000 grade steel wool won't. As flood says, tape the pickups! It's next to impossible to get the steel wool particles off them!

    It's advisable to use fret doctor every 6 months to 9 months dependong on the condition of the fretboard. With reasonable dry fretboards, it takes around 4-5 drops for the entire fretboard, since the oil is highly lubricating. I don't know why this happens, but I've observed that after 2-3 applications, the "finish" lasts much longer. a 10 ml bottle would, by crude mathematics, be enough for around 30-35 applications.

    As Javed Jaffrey would say "Don't the use cottons!". Use your fingers to apply it. It's more messy that way.....leave it on for some time to let the wood absorb. Then wipe off the excess with cotton.

    +1 to thehundredthone's post immediately above mine.
  10. ultrabot90

    ultrabot90 Like fishes need bicycles

    Fever kept me restricted to a bit of lurking over the past few days.

    @Pacifist- I don't have a credit card - can't buy the Fret Doc. Won't turpentine do? >.<
  11. thepacifist2013

    thepacifist2013 V.I.P Member

    Never used turpentine so won't know. Use just a clean cloth then.
  12. flood

    flood New Member

    steel wool will get the wood too, but not very differently than ultra-fine sandpaper would. in fact, i actually used it to get some of the grime off the wood. i think it's beneficial.

    one word of warning - do not use cooking oils of any sort - i used olive oil once and much to my chagrin, it started smelling after going rancid.

    if you can't order over the net, follow your nose to the local music store and pick up the oil i was talking about, woodwind bore oil (thanks thepacifist for the exact description and name). should do the job; worked well on my fretboard. do remember to renew it once or twice a year.

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