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Fingerboard damage/pickguard

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by ShadowImage, Dec 20, 2016.


  1. ShadowImage

    ShadowImage Guest

    Jan 12, 2016
    I often pluck/pick my strings directly over the fretboard, right around the 20-24th fret. There is actually beginning to be visible damage to the fingerboard wood as it's getting chipped away. Does anyone else run into this problem? Has anyone ever considered removing the 20-24th frets and installing a pickguard here? I heard that adding some tort could improve the tone. :)
     
  2. vin97

    vin97

    Mar 7, 2016
    Germany
    Are you plucking with your nails?
    Either way, could you upload a quick photo of the damage?
     
  3. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    Most fenders already have a pickguard in that area, so not an issue.
     
  4. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    Must be a new model.
     
    Jeff Scott likes this.
  5. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    I've been playing up on the fretboard forever and none of my basses (all rosewood or ebony) have ever shown any damage. I've had a few that showed just the slightest wear on the edge of the neck where i rest my thumb, but no chipping or gouging of the board.
     
    ShadowImage likes this.
  6. lz4005

    lz4005

    Oct 22, 2013
    You need a Fender V.

    fender-bass-v-.
     
    ShadowImage likes this.
  7. ShadowImage

    ShadowImage Guest

    Jan 12, 2016
    I tried to take a photo but it doesn't really show up.
    Actually that looks perfect for my playing style. Admittedly I'm not a Fender fan though. It's pretty rare I ever need to get above the 12th fret and never above the 16th. Just doing a quick search though, it seems most Fender V's have 20 frets though?
     
  8. lz4005

    lz4005

    Oct 22, 2013
    V's are exactly as pictured. 16 frets, EADGC tuning.
     
  9. 96tbird

    96tbird PLEASE STAND BY Supporting Member

    Nothing stays new forever. Use it and it will show wear.
     
    ShadowImage likes this.
  10. ShadowImage

    ShadowImage Guest

    Jan 12, 2016
    I'm honestly confused because I searched "Fender V" on Musician's Friend and everything has 20 frets :/ Granted, I don't really know anything about Fenders so maybe I'm missing something?
     
  11. lz4005

    lz4005

    Oct 22, 2013
    The Fender Bass V has been out of production since the 70s.
     
    ShadowImage likes this.
  12. ShadowImage

    ShadowImage Guest

    Jan 12, 2016
    Oh that makes sense, cool. I read that there were only about 200 of them made and I could get one for only about $5000. Unless someone is making a modern copy, that doesn't sound like it would work out :p
     
  13. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    You say you play in the 22-24 fret area, most any 20 fret fender satisfies your requirements.
     
  14. ShadowImage

    ShadowImage Guest

    Jan 12, 2016
    That's pretty cool, I didn't know that. I've only played modern bass guitars, with 24 frets. Never picked up a single Fender or Fender clone in my life.
     
  15. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    I doesn't need to be a Fender if you aren't a fan. There are plenty of other makes that have only 20 frets. Rick 4003, Ibanez Talman, and EBMM to name a few.
     
    ShadowImage likes this.
  16. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Yeah the last thing you need is a 24 fret bass with your playing style. Not knocking you at all. Play how you want to. But, yeah, a 20 fret bass would solve your problems quick.

    That being said, if you want to keep your bass, go for it. Removing the last few frets and slapping a guard up there won't hurt a thing as long as resale value is not a concern for you. Might even look cool.
     
    ShadowImage likes this.
  17. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    I see only 15.
     
  18. Bruce Johnson

    Bruce Johnson Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 4, 2011
    Fillmore, CA
    Professional Luthier
    A simple fix is to cut and fit strips of black electrical tape on the fingerboard, between the frets, up in those spaces that you are hitting with the pick. The black tape won't be too visually obvious. When it starts to get scuffed up, peel it up and put down another strip. It will protect the fingerboard without harming it. And, sitting down between the frets, it won't affect the playing or action.

    Black vinyl electrical tape is tough stuff, and the adhesive is strong. It will take a lot of strikes from sharp objects without cutting through. I use it to protect the fingerboard when I'm using files on the frets.
     
    ShadowImage likes this.
  19. 202dy

    202dy Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2006
    Many good solutions here. Lots of good information.

    This is not a gear problem. This is a technique problem.

    The solution is to work on right hand technique so that no damage occurs to the instrument.
     
    ShadowImage likes this.
  20. ShadowImage

    ShadowImage Guest

    Jan 12, 2016
    Thank you, I actually didn't know there were many full scale bases with less than 24 frets... turns out 20 frets isn't actually that uncommon :roflmao: Seems like one would definitely be up my ally.
     

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