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finish on the fretless (ebony) fingerboard?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by nothingman78, Apr 30, 2002.

  1. nothingman78


    Feb 27, 2002
    I heard "Pedulla" fretless bass does finish on the
    ebony fingerboard with polly-utherane(?)...
    If the ebony is the strongest fingerboard, why they coated polly..on ebony? Is it necessary to finish on
    ebony fingerboard to protect for using roundwound
    Does "Zon" fretless bass also coated fingerboard to protect the fingerboard for using rounwound string?
  2. Jeff in TX

    Jeff in TX Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2000
    Lone Star State
    I'm not sure what Pedula uses, but my Sadowsky fretless ebony fretboard is coated with polyester. It looks very much like a Pedula board.

    I got it that way for 2 reasons: first, I prefer the sound of a coated board. In my experience, it has a bit more sustain. Second, it extends the life of the fretboard.

    Zon uses a "Phenowood" fretboard, which is a combination of phenolic and wood. There is no poly coat. It has similar tonal characteristics of a poly-coated board and is resistant to wear.

  3. nothingman78


    Feb 27, 2002
    thanx for your information...
    anyway, do you think that coating on the ebony is
    better than not coated one?
    the one you have is originally coated ebony fingerboard or you coated later?
  4. Jeff in TX

    Jeff in TX Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2000
    Lone Star State
    I played Sadowskys with and without a coated ebony board. As I said, I prefer the coated board because of the increased sustain.

    If you can, play a Pedula Buzz and then a fretless without a coated board (like a good Fender Jazz). It's purely a matter of choice. There are benefits to either based on your particular need or preference.

    The Zons I have owned sustain a bit more, but I prefer the sound of the Sadowsky.

    Good luck!

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    I personally like the sound of an uncoated Ebony board(though I like the look of a coated one!). I think you get closer to the sound of the DB with a plain board. Straight ebony is less sticky feeling as well.
  6. Have a look at the fingerboards of any high quality upright, cello, viola, or violin... uncoated ebony. Now I'm not saying uncoated is right for you... but some of those luthiers REALLY new what they were doing!

    Probably the biggest variable would be your strings... if you need round wounds to get your sound you may need to go coated. If you dig half-rounds, pressure wounds, or flat wounds... probably not.

    Hey, opionions are like a$$holes... everyone has one!
  7. Jontom


    Mar 11, 2002
    New York
    I used Petites' Poly-poxy on my Warwicks' ebony fingerboard. I figure if its good enough for Jaco,its good enough for me! Its true...I put on about 6 coats 3 years ago, and there is no sign of string wear. I use LaBella Supersteps strings(45-105) and like that singing Jaco-type fretless sound...for a more upright like tone, you'd probably want to leave it bare. Also use flat/ground strings...or else you'll be prepping your board every couple months. The way I did it, I can "set it, and forget it"! You can find Petites in boat stores(its epoxy-so you have 2 cans to deal with-and you mix them together).

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