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Defretting Accoustic Bass

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Zolbol, Apr 26, 2010.

  1. Zolbol


    Jan 26, 2008
    South Africa
    Hi all..

    Firsty, I've read the stickie's and am now going to embark on my first project:hyper:.

    I got an old Stagg accoustic bass as a gift from a friend and truthfully dont really play it much so i have decided to try the whole defretting thing.. I love tinkering and wot not so here goes nothing :confused:

    If i may, two questions please.

    1. Would surfboard resin and cloth be suitable to use on the fingerboard - it also dries clean and clear and can be sanded??

    2. Um more of a general question and I didn't do a search for this (sorry) but the bridge is lifting slightly - its not to bad nor is it affecting anything as far as I can tell but i'd like to fix it while its being operated on. Is this a hard fix - How does the bridge attach to the body??

    Sorry for the noob questions people but really excited about this new project of mine.:ninja:

    Many thanks in advance.. and wish me luck:bassist:
  2. abarson


    Nov 6, 2003
    Santa Cruz
    Just checked a description of surfboard resin, and I don't think that it is appropriate for a fretboard. Stick with the epoxies that are referenced in the stickies.

    I would definitely repair the lifting bridge, which is not difficult. Use Titebond with clamps that are deep enough to enter through the soundhole.

    Good luck, and post photos of the results.
  3. mikeyswood

    mikeyswood Banned

    Jul 22, 2007
    Cincinnati OH
    Luthier of Michael Wayne Instruments
    I believe that the surfboard resin would be a good choice. It's a polyester resin and it great for this application.

    The bridge is most likely glued on and can be reset with heat.
  4. Zolbol


    Jan 26, 2008
    South Africa
    Thanks for the advice guys.. Um.... Yeh seems like we not so sure about the resin..

    I would think it should be fine too but don't wanna kill the bass lol..

    And to clarify, the bridge just slots into a cut-out and is glued in there??

    Reset with heat?? You mean like a heat gun or similar mikey?? Sorry thats got me puzziing... Lol...

    Double Lol...

    Sorry again for the idiot questions, left high school woodwork behind me a long time ago hahahah..

    While I'm at it, the neck is twisted oh so slightly - any idea's or best left like is I spose?

    And Yeh, the resin?? Anyone else tried surfboard resin?? (to eloborate - my brother in law runs his own surfboard shaping business and has got a whole workshop full of tools and the like) He's also offered to help with my new project so its going to be a blast.

    And will definately post some pics when I'm done guys...

    Many thanks again people!
  5. mikeyswood

    mikeyswood Banned

    Jul 22, 2007
    Cincinnati OH
    Luthier of Michael Wayne Instruments
    Alembic use polyester. Look to their work if you are unsure about the fit of polyester in instruments. The surfboard resin is a thinner version of the same formulation. The bonus is that it will be easy to touch up over time. That is not the case with epoxy.

    The twist is a major concern. From what you describe I would not put much effort into it. Just live with it and you will know more on your next project.

    Pics would be better to help with the bridge. I am thinking of an acoustic bridge that is pulling up from the top of the instrument. If it is that you can heat it to release. A clothes iron will be good if you do not have actual bridge knives.
  6. Cy_Miles


    Feb 3, 2005
    an advantage that surfboard resin, from what I just learned, is that it is UV resistant which many finishes are not
  7. Zolbol


    Jan 26, 2008
    South Africa
    Cool - thanks very much guys - Yeh it is a cheapish bass (free is cheap isn't it lol) No i mean its not a top of the range Fender so yeh going to start this weekend. And i was watching the process for surfboards and it looks simple enough so yeeeehaaaa here I go..

    And Mikey you're exactly right - its an accoustic bridge thats pulling up away from the body - out of the slot if you know what I mean.. I will try the iron thing.. How do i re-set the bridge once i get it out?? Glue??

    As for the slight twist - yeh just going to leave that - its not too serious and I'm not sure but I cant see any way of fixing that.

    Thanks for the great advice guys - Will definately post pics once the project gets underway.

    Rock out!!
  8. Zolbol


    Jan 26, 2008
    South Africa
    Hi again.

    After some consideration the neck isn't too badly twisted and I am going to leave it as is..

    Pics of the bridge however.:help:


    Its quite bad actually. Definately need to fix that??

    Thanks again.


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