Chipped wood on my Ibanez SR506. Need advice!

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by BassMan7530, Jul 24, 2009.

  1. BassMan7530


    May 2, 2009
    Awhile ago, I noticed that there is a small piece of wood chipped out of my bass, and I've just let it go for awhile, but recently it's been bugging me, and I'm wondering as to how I can fix it. :help:

    It's a fairly small chip, and isn't too noticable when I play, but it kinda sticks out when my bass is sitting out or just on my stand. It's only about a half inch long and maybe an eigth of an inch wide. It runs horizontally (perpendicular to my fingers when playing) right where I rest my thumb on my neck pickup (I assume it was gouged out on accident as I was playing :() My 506 has the darker Brown Mahogany finish, and with the gouge, the light color of the wood underneath contrasts so much that it sticks out pretty visibly.

    A friend of my mom's suggested I simply use some Dark Mahogany Wood Stain and apply it, and let it sit for a good 24 hours. After that, he told me to use some furniture polish and it will look perfectly normal.

    My mom's friend's specialty is antique furniture restoration and is very professional and knowledgeable about what he does. I would assume that stickign to his advice would be the right thing to do; he seems like a very credible source and I don't doubt his judgement at all. I am just curious, however; who else here has had similar problems/ knows how to fix such problems? If anyone else has some alternate way of going about this problem, feel free to give suggestions.

    Thanks for the help guys!
  2. I don't think it will look "perfectly normal": I believe extremely few finish repairs can claim that without using the original tint.

    Close enough? Dunno. I wonder if there is an unfinished area you can try it first to see if it will work to your satisfaction. In the electronics chamber, perhaps?
  3. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    A matching stain is what I'd use. Otherwise, it's probably a complete refinish and you don't want to attempt that.

    Get a small can of a gelled oil based stain and apply it with a Q tip. Let it sit for a few minutes and wipe up the excess with a paper towel. It'll dry flat looking but won't be as noticeable.

    You could probably put a gloss clear coat over the stain and attempt to blend it in with the rest of the top, but that's a lot tougher work. Have your mom's friend look at it and see if he's willing to take it on.

    I've touched up many minor dings like this on instruments and furniture and it's always an improvement. I just bought an antique dresser and I used some coloured wax to touch up a couple marks that showed up once I cleaned off all the grime. Looks great now. Obviously there's no way I'm going to refinish an antique and ruin its value.
  4. BassMan7530


    May 2, 2009
    Thanks JustDavid, I'll give that a try sometime (I do believe the electronics chamber is unfinished). If it works in there, I'll see what I can do. Thanks for the advice.

    Thanks for the suggestions as well, 62bass. Refinishing or putting a clear coat over the stain does seem like it would be a bit of a hassle, I'm thinking the oil based stain would be my best bet. And even if it is flat, I'd much rather have that than a much more noticable chip, after all. Maybe next time my mom's friend is out this way, I'll have him bring some over if he has it and we can try that out.

    I may just buy some stain on my own to keep for future use if it's ever needed though. 62bass, what would you suggest I look for when looking for a good oil based stain for my particular bass? I don't know a lot about that kind of stuff, and some more advice would be appreciated just to point me in the right direction.

    Thanks a lot guys
  5. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    I don't know what's available in your area, but I use a gelled wood stain (the gelled format makes it much easier to control, plus it has other advantages) over the thinner penetrating type stains. I've used a number of brands, all were pretty good. Currently I use the WoodKote brand, but I've used Minwax and Varathane brands and a few others. The Minwax and Varathane are available here at Home Depot in the paint department.

    There is absolutely no standard when it comes to colours of stains. Each brand's "red mahogany" for example will look completely different. So you just have to experiment. You can mix together colours to achieve a desired tint, but stay within one brand when doing so.

    These stains wipe off easily with paint thinner, such as Varsol, when still wet, so if you don't like it, you're not stuck with it if you decide it's not right.

    Before applying the stain, clean the area of dirt and wax. I use Varsol after a bit of cleaning with water with a drop of dish soap in it.

    Another temporary but fairly effective stain that a lot of furniture guys use is shoe wax. I like the Kiwi brand myself. You just dab it on the spot and wipe it in, then let it dry, then buff it out with a soft cotton cloth. You'd be surprised how many guys use this. It's cheap, comes in lots of colours and it can be removed later with paint thinner or alcohol.

    You can also buy tinted wax sticks for the same purpose. Looks something like a crayon.

    The advantage of waxes is they're not permanent. Once a wood stain dries, it's very tough to remove.