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Do Ovangkol necks require a "FINISH" to remain stable?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by akori, Sep 27, 2013.


  1. akori

    akori

    Oct 18, 2007
    Colorado
    Hello:
    I've got two ovangkol necks carved by USA Custom, the blanks of which came from Gilmer. I see that any oil will darken and beautify them, stained or not. BUT, I see that Ovangkol is very dry. Having owned several Warwicks, I've always believed they had some sort of rubbed on finish, oil or oil, then wax. Their varied literature (hints) at this.
    So I set out to pick a good hand-applied sealing/ curing oil finish. All I FIND, is a plethora of wildly differing opinions and techniques which totally confound one another. At this point, I couldn't care less what it's called, or if the name means nothing. I'm just looking for the simplest way to thoroughly seal these necks (Just the neck on the ovangkol/ebony fretless, and both the neck and board on the ovangkol/wenge fretted. Because although I have picked up the (idea) somewhere, that ovangkol necks need no finish to be weather-durable, it seems quite dry...if hard as hell. I'm close to just sending them back to USA for a 100.00-each coat of satin nitro and be done with it.
    Some people say wipe on one to four coats of tung, cure one day and viola! Others say wipe on a few coats of casey's true oil over a day and cure 1-2 weeks...some say gunstock oil, some say blah blah blah... Some of these people may be yahoos. I will ask Gilmer and Vikwood. Luthier's Mercantile only "endorses" a certin brand of tru oil.
    Confusing. One could end up sanding or not sanding, etc., or end up with useless labour and a neck that is actually open to the elements.
    Anybody actually KNOW what to do in this situation? If there's a super quick rub-on way to seal it up, that's what I want. If it takes more, I need to know that. Neck stability is key. This is Colorado, the land of moving wood and I HATE that, makes me set up more than I play...
    (FWIW: I found this quote at an Ernie Ball site, second-hand account of witnessing factory application of tru-oil(?), IMMEDIATELY followed by wax (?).
    ------------------------------------
    Originally Posted by Spudmurphy
    Our Forumite fsmith was at the EB open day at Slo and he said that he spent quite some time watching an employee apply the finish to the necks. This is what he said...

    "Yep, it's not a big secret. It's been documented elsewhere. I was very curious because I've been doing my own necks and wanted to see if I was doing it correctly. I spent about 20 minutes at that station and actually talked to the woman who was doing the finish on the necks.


    She applied the oil to the neck wiping a coat over the entire neck and I'd say within 15 seconds she grabbed a paper towel and wiped it off. Then she applied the wax, let it sit for 10 seconds or so and with fresh paper towels wiped it clean and then with another paper towel she did a final wipe down and moved to the next neck. If you blinked she was moving on... I was surprised by how fast she was doing it and asked is that all there is to sealing the necks and she said yes that's it."

    I followed those instructions which resulted in the "factory finish".
    You may think "let's just rub that in a bit more or let's leave it on a bit longer 'cos it's bound to produce better results - no need!!
    ------------------
    I can not, of course verify the accuracy of this account. NOTABLY, many people report that if "tru-oil" is left to cure or harden even for a few hours, it congeals, and requires sanding...which may or may not be a good thing, as more coats may or not be necessary...freaking confusing! If anybody here can tell me a good way to do it, it's MUCH Appreciated!
     

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