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Does purpleheart always turn dark?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ole Jason, Oct 5, 2004.

  1. Do purpleheart fretboards always turn dark? Does it effect the sound/feel of the board at all? I'm looking at getting one of the Conklin GTBD-7's... there's one on ebay right now and the fretboard is obviously quite dark. I ask because I can get a new one for around $100 more than this used one and don't know if there would be any difference.
  2. Tim Barber

    Tim Barber Commercial User

    Apr 28, 2003
    Serenity Valley
    Owner: Barber Music
    Yes, when exposed to light and warmth.

  3. if it is finished with oil or wax, it can also pick up sweat and dirt. cleaning the board #0000 (superfine) steel wool will remove dirt and improve the color of the wood. (at least it does for rosewood.) don't forget to apply your favorite conditioner (lemon oil, boiled linseed oil, other "brand" special blends of oil, etc.).

  4. Stevious G

    Stevious G

    May 5, 2003
    Only $100? New ones come with warrenties.

    And Purpleheart is always gonna do that, yeah. The only way to slow it down would be to use a UV-blocking finish, and even that'd just buy it a few extra years.
  5. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    Sinny, Oztraya
    My Alembic S1 has a purpleheart body and neck lams. At 24yo, they're now a very nondescript brown, but the lams in the neck of my other Alembic are still a nice purple after 15 years.
  6. I'm afraid so...Purpleheart seems to turn sort of a brown at some point. I believe that all of the Rosewoods actually do this. I have a bass with Cocobolo that was a deep red color that has now turned to a dark brown almost like striped Ebony. It still looks good, just different.
  7. From some articles I just looked up on the net,


    It seems that purpleheart actually is cut brown and turns purple when exposed to UV light (sunlight is a good source).

    I have a bass with a purpleheart fretboard and it is quite purple (but then it is only about 3 months old), soo. Only time will tell, but I'm not concerned.
  8. AlembicPlayer

    AlembicPlayer Im not wearing shorts

    Aug 15, 2004
    Pacific Northwet, USA
    that's interesting what was said about exposing it to sun light makes it darker.....I've found the opposite to be true.

    I made this guitar with a purpleheart top about 4 years ago...it has not turned brown..in fact, when exposed to the sun, it gets very purple.

    maybe with a finger board, the oils from your skin are making it darker?

    anyway...mine is still purple. Maybe the tung oil and bees wax finish is preserving it?