Goncalo Alves Fretless Fingerboard

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by line6man, Jun 20, 2008.

  1. Hi guys, this is my first post here...

    a few weeks ago, i ordered a neck from the warmoth showcase...

    it was a birdseye maple jazz bass neck with a goncalo alves fingerboard, lined and inlayed fretless.

    i am beginning to worry about the wood.
    the guy at warmoth told me that goncalo alves is normally too soft to be used as a fingerboard/fretboard, but sometimes they get a "special" piece that has the right properties to be used as such.

    does anybody have a goncalo fingerboard or fretboard?

    i would very strongly prefer to use flatwound strings because they are easy on the fingerboard and i love the smooth feel, but if the neck is too mellow, i may need to use roundwounds.
    would roundwounds just destroy the hell out of goncalo?
  2. lowtide

    lowtide Commercial User

    Oct 14, 2006
    Bradenton, Florida
    Owner: Buzzard's Bass Shop
    Don't worry . . . IF you wear it out, in about 10 years, you can then put whatever ya want on your neck. Far too much stress is put on the wear and tear of fingerboards. Screw it~! Play that puppy.
    BassyBill likes this.
  3. j3b3r


    Aug 19, 2000
    If you're afraid to wear it out, just put some finish on it.:p

    I was almost bought a Goncalo/Goncalo warmoth neck at first, but I ended up with Maple/Maple.
  4. Warmoth didnt have an option to do the finish on the fingerboard...
    juts on the back of the neck.

    unless your talking about epoxy-ing, in that case:
    i would love to epoxy it, but the only guy i found that does epoxy work is HG Thor, and his website has a 2 year waiting list...

    how long would such a neck last, using roundwounds, before it would need to be sanded down or epoxied or whatnot?
  5. bass_fish


    Oct 26, 2006
    the Netherlands
    if you play with the right technique(vibrato, bending) probably years... will you see marks? ow yeah, but there is a difference between visible marks and marks that affect sound and playability...
  6. There is more to epoxy than just Thor's place. I had www.dolanguitars.com put a polyester finish on my CB and it worked great.

    I know Rob Allen offers this wood for fingerboards, but he also uses tapewound strings.
  7. j3b3r


    Aug 19, 2000
    Would it be easier if you just put some Wipe-on polyurethane ??

  8. you mean like the stuff you use on hardwood floors?

    honestly, I would really rather have it done professionally...
    I am terrible at doing things like this... I don't want to mess it up.

    I sent an email to michael dolan regarding the epoxy work, so hopefully he can help me with this.
  9. has anybody tried this guy:

    its either him or michael dolan, to epoxy my fingerboard...
    who does a better job?

    dolan does it for $150, and sam does it for $200
  10. alright nevermind...
    I talked on the phone with sam for a while...

    he explained to me the difference between polyester and (regular epoxy? whatever its called)
    the way he explained it, polyester is like playing on glass. it has a certain clickyness to it.
    but the epoxy that he uses is more like a hard rubber material, without that clickyness.

    his epoxy will give me more of that "jaco" sound than the polyester would.

    so I am going to have him do his epoxy on the fingerboard.

    my next question...
    I was thinking of maybe having him dye the wood red.
    this is a very subjective question...
    but what do you guys think about dying the wood?
    in a way, its unnatural, but it might look really cool.

    (btw, this is being posted from my cell phone, so the formatting might be all wierd)
  11. j3b3r


    Aug 19, 2000
    Glad that you've found what ur looking for. As for dying the wood, If I were you, I'll dye the wood ebony black or walnut dark brown.
  12. i think that i have decided on just leaving it natural.
    i love the thought of a blood red dye on the wood, but nature made this wood the way it is, why change that.

    but i change my mind alot as well, so who knows.

    nobody else has any opinion on the look of red dye?
  13. Perhaps you should do the research on coloring the fingerboard BEFORE you do it. :D
  14. Whoa...that´s an awesome piece...thanks for sharing it!
  15. That's a beautiful board.

    My bass has a Goncalo Alves top. Once you get a gloss finish over it, this very hard tonewood takes on a 3D brush-stroke-like apperance with lots of depth and "movement." The high-grade stuff resembles Tiger-Eye gemstone.


  16. DigthemLows


    Oct 10, 2003
    Sacramento CA
    It's very hard wood! I love mine!


  17. j3b3r


    Aug 19, 2000
    Is that squire vintage modified ?? What body will you attach the neck to ?
    Man, that's a cool looking fretboard, I wish I choosed that board.
  18. Yeah, its a VM fretless J.
    i am going to just use that body for now, but if my wallet ever recovers from this neck (epoxy work and such), i would like to go for a warmoth J bass body.

    i was originally thinking alpine white, but now that i see the neck in person, it may not look too good.
    the sunburst looks great with the goncalo, so maybe i will have the body done in sunburst.
    warmoth has like 5 different sunburst options, so i will have to pick one that looks good.

    i originally wanted an ebony fingerboard, but now that i have the goncalo, i am so glad that i went for it...
    now i get to laugh at all the guys with rosewood and maple fingerboards/fretboards.
  19. nice bass!

    yeah, that little piece of the fingerboard above the nut is finished in the gloss like the rest of the neck. it has that 3d kind of look to it.
    the fingerboard really looks and feels like there is a satin finish on it...
    i am not a fan of satins so i cant wait until its covered in glass by the epoxy.
    it should really come alive.