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Buffing and polishing fretboard

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by elBandito, Dec 8, 2013.

  1. elBandito


    Dec 3, 2008
    Rotten Apple
  2. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    I wouldn't use anything as high speed as a rotary tool like those fit. Those are more for polishing metal at high speed.

    I would sand it starting at 600 and work your way up to 2000. Then go to any auto parts store and get a wool buffing pad like this. Chuck it up in a hand drill and lightly buff out the fretboard, dry with no kind of compound. It should give you a really nice luster.
  3. miziomix

    miziomix Über on my mind Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2009
    Milan, Kuala Lumpur
    I use micro mesh. Depending on wood and on whether the bass is finished clear gloss or satin, I go all the way up to 12,000 grit or stop at around 3,600/4,000 grit.
  4. elBandito


    Dec 3, 2008
    Rotten Apple
    Every other bass I owned with rosewood, ebony or wenge fretboards all had nice shiny "hard" fretboard surface. This new neck I'm working on just looks raw and dry looking. I will try some micro mesh first. Thanks.
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  6. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
    Zymöl 'Bridge' is a hard carnuba wax primarily marketed for orchestral instruments. I have used it on an ebony fretless fingerboard and liked the result. This might be a nice 'final surface' treatment after the initial smoothing is done.

    In my case, and I expect most others, it darkened the wood a bit. Try it on a sample before committing to the real fretboard. You warm it to liquid with your fingers (a little at a time) and rub it into the wood, then polish away any excess before it hardens fully.

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