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Best way to clean your fretboard?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by FalsehoodBass, May 17, 2002.

  1. FalsehoodBass


    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    Hello, what do you think is the best way to clean your fretboard? Mine is Maple, so i'm more interested in cleaning a maple board.

  2. Remove strings; use lemon oil - I've heard people say that lemon-oil is bad, and I think they could be right if you use too much, or clean the fretboard too often. I've used it, and it gets rid of all the crud.

    - Wil
  3. SlapDaddy


    Mar 28, 2000
    pure linseed oil..smells bad...works good...
  4. Winston TK

    Winston TK Hairpiece Adventurer

    Oct 8, 2001
    Burnaby, BC Canada
    What about using simple guitar polish? I've heard that can be pretty effective.

    This is a really good question. I was just about to post this myself.

    Any other products, techniques?
  5. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    Lemon or linseed oil on rosewood or ebony fingerboards, which are typically unfinished, (the oil sinks in to form a protective barrier)... Maple boards tend to have a lacquer finish, so the oils won't sink in... that being said, lemon oil will clean it nicely, as will guitar, (furniture), polish... be sure to wipe it down with a clean, dry rag before putting strings back on...

  6. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Yep, good ol' spit!
    There are encymes(sp?) that are particularily well suited for breaking down fat, which is holdin the grit to the board.
    With an untreated board, like rosewood especially, it may be a bit too efficiant. And need something else to make the board shine again. With ebony, the wood seems to refinish itself (how???)
    With a treated board, like a laquered maple board, it works well and leaves no trace. Simple, effective and low cost:)

  7. Yep, lemon oil!!! I've got both maple and rosewood necks and it cleans them up nicely!
  8. In a couple guitar maintenance books i've read to see how to clean my son's stratacaster (unfinished maple fretboard), it was indicated to use pure naphtha (lighter fluid) and to not use any oils at all on unfinished maple. I clean his fretboard that way and it really gets rid of the crud. My son tells me he puts guitar polish on himself later, but the book says not to put anything on.

    Put the naphtha on a cloth and wipe the fretboard with the cloth. You don't soak it or squirt it on the fretboard of course. It evaporates extremely quickly. I doubt much, if any, soaks into the fretboard from the cloth.

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