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Fretless bass - Danish oil finish

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by shirojiro, Jan 11, 2005.

  1. shirojiro


    Jan 24, 2001
    San Francisco
    I just wanted to share what I've been doing to my Brice V2 5 string fretless.

    I've been happy with the bass, but I wanted to get a little snap and growl out of the tone. I decided to put Watco Danish oil finish on the board since I used to do the same on a Peavey Foundation bass (defret) with a maple board.

    For some reason, the Brice folks put a black stain on the rosewood fretboard. It's hard to remove. I lightly sanded the fretboard and finished it with 0000 steel wool. I also rounded the edges of the fretboard to give it a little more "rolled" feel.

    The oil finish goes on super easily, but the black stain keeps on coming up on the rags. I've got about 5 coats into it right now.

    After letting it dry overnight on the last coat, I strung it up, and it's definitely got more snap to the sound. It's a more defined to my ear now, and slapping sounds brighter for sure.

    I think that it'll help keep the wear down as well since I'm using roundwounds.

  2. The bass, I mean. I worked in a cabinet shop that did oil finishes almost exclusively- sometimes the stuff would ooze up out of the wood's pores for a week! Watch for this, & wipe it up before it dries or it will leave ugly little spots. I finished my son's mini fretless this way. Looks nice & I believe the oil hardens the surface slightly.