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Applying gloss finish to an oil finished bass.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jcburn, Apr 20, 2010.

  1. Not sure which forum this is applicable to so I'll start here. Apologies to mods if I've got it wrong.
    I'm looking at having my Yamaha TRB5 finished to preserve the wonderful finish as I sweat a ton when I play and I think I will ruin the oil/rubbed finish. Is this hard to do or not possible?
  2. lowfreq33


    Jan 27, 2010
    Endorsing Artist: Genz Benz Amplification
    Not necessary. As long as you wipe it down after playing it should be fine.

    Also, changing the finish will change the tone somewhat.
  3. ausf


    Jun 24, 2008
    New York

    I may be wrong, but it's got crackle written all over it. Unless you're prepared for a complete strip down refinish.
  4. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    I'm pretty sure the finish on the TRB is a hard satin polyurethane-type finish, not oil. After a while it will get glossy where your hands/arms/body rubs against it, but all that's doing is polishing the satin texture on the finish.

  5. nic salsus

    nic salsus

    Mar 16, 2010
    If it is oiled that's that.....no other kind of finish is going to go onto oil very easily if at all.
  6. Not quite sure what the finish is. It seems like the blue is straight on top of the wood with a matte finish, not sure if there is a satin finish over this.
  7. joinercape

    joinercape Supporting Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Actually most oil finishes make a great base for French Polish, which can be polished up very glossy and is easy to fix down the road. It's a terrific neck finish, not so durable for bodies IME.
  8. MNAirHead

    MNAirHead Supporting Member

    what about a gloss oil?
  9. joinercape

    joinercape Supporting Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    The other possible answer here is to just have the existing finish buffed out and polished. No matter what kind of finish it is, it will buff up well if it's cured.
  10. I think my worry comes from seeing this exact model bass a few years ago for sale second hand in a music shop here and where your forearm would rest had discoloured(in some areas to the wood)obviously through sweat and wear and tear. I could see this happening with me. Maybe I just need to suck it up and if this happens just have the bass sanded back and rfinished in a few years.
  11. dj5


    Sep 17, 2009
    I had a neck finished in tung oil, and wondered the same thing as you. Try Googling it. Don't take my word for it, but I found an article which said that it WAS possible to varnish over the top of an oil based finish. Not being 100% sure about this, I gave it a light sanding all over, and sprayed an acrylic matt varnish over all of it. It worked perfectly, and my fears about the oil soaking deep into the wood and interfering with the varnish were unfounded. The only worry i have now is the durability of acrylic varnish over poly, but it's been fine so far.
    Look it up - they gave an explanation of why it was ok which I seem to remember involving the fact that many commercial tung oils contain a proportion of varnish anyway, and that varnish is perfectly compatible with it. It even recommended tung oil as a sealer underneath varnish (poly), but as I said, look it up for yourself, I'd hate for you to ruin your finish on my say-so!

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