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got my replacement jazz neck in the mail

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by narcopolo, May 1, 2006.

  1. narcopolo


    Sep 12, 2005
    richmond, va
    now what? it's a mighty mite. um, it looks like i need to finish it or whate-have-you. any ideas on how to do that? and how hard is it gonna be to bolt it on?
  2. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    One easy way to finish it is with a wipe on Minwax polyurethane finish. You'll have to mask off the fingerboard. I usually sand the first coat while wet using 600 wet or dry paper and keeping it wet while doing so. Then wipe it dry and wait 12 hours or more before wiping on more coats. Succeeding coats don't need as much drying time but I use the first coat as a sealer and I want that really dry. Don't try to build up thick coats. I like the gloss better than the satin which tends to look cloudy after a few coats. On maple 4 coats should be enough but you can go more if you want. The Minwax wipe on dries fast enough that you can do 2 coats a day.

    When it's really dry, say a couple days, you can lightly rub it with 0000 steel wool to give a satin finish that won't feel sticky to your hand.

    That's a pretty easy way of doing it. There are other methods, such as spraying on lacquer or acrylic, but that can get a bit more complex. There are also a lot of tung oil finishes which will work. They don't however contain much tung oil. I think the Minwax will give better protection.

    I often use a very fast dry alkyd varnish thinned with an equal amount of naptha, but it requires a bit of experience since it dries almost as fast as nitro lacquer. The brand i use is Benjamin Moore 1 Hour varnish in gloss. I can get 4 coats on in a day. Sherwin Williams and Zinnser also make a similar product.

    When your neck is ready, come back and get some tips on mounting it. Lots of guys here have done it.
  3. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    Yes, if the neck is sealed you'll have to completely remove it if you want to use a tung oil finish that's meant to soak into the wood. That can be a lot of work. Test it by putting on a bit of paint thinner and seeing if it penetrates quickly indicating it's not sealed. If it just sits on top it's been sealed.

    The Minwax wipe on Poly, available in gloss or satin, is nothing but a thinned out polyurethane varnish meant to be wiped on in thin coats. It will build up nicely to a thick enough finish and because it levels out and dries so quickly you have less problems with dust settling in the finish. You should be able to put on 2 coats a day easily.

    As I mentioned before, I make my own wipe on finish using a very fast dry alkyd resin varnish thinned with an equal amount of naptha (very fast drying) or mineral spirits (a bit slower drying).

    If you want to make your own version of the Minwax wipe on poly, buy a can of regular Minwax polyurethane and thin it with an equal amount of paint thinner (mineral spirits) Minwax doesn't want you to know this, nor do the other manufacturers of similar products. It's much cheaper.

    Some of the wipe on "Danish Oil" type finishes meant to penetrate the wood and not be built up to a finish on top of the wood are varnish with a lot of a drying oil in them. They are quite soft and not suitable to buld up to a thicker finish. A lot of companies make these products. If your neck is sealed don't use these.

    For such a small job and to keep it simple, just use the Minwax wipe on poly in gloss. (it dries harder than the satin). After the last coat has dried (I'd give it a couple days) rub it out with 0000 steel wool for a satin finish which is very smooth on the hand. Because the finish will be very thin, don't rub too hard, just enough to take off the gloss if that's what you want.

    By the way, there's a lot of finishing tips on the Fine Woodworking website (or was a while ago when I looked last). Authors like Jeff Jewitt and Michael Dresner ( I think that's how it's spelled) and they both have books out on the subject if you're inclined to learn more.

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