How to make neck faster without ruining it?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by lucianoxrp, Aug 19, 2019.

  1. One of my basses, has a glossy neck that is pretty sticky and hard to move smoothly over it. I've been watching threads and posts of people fixing this same issue, and most of them use the sanding approach. My concern is that, the bass finish it's pretty cool so I don't want to sand it all the way to the wood.
    Is there a not so intrusive way to make the neck a little faster without sanding it out?
    Would it work to apply a very light fine grain sand paper to just remove a little of the glossy finish? If so, is there any collateral damage in the neck color?
  2. jchrisk1

    jchrisk1 Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2009
    Northern MI
    Red scotch brite pads work well. They take off minimal finish.
  3. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Scotch brite pad - just enough to knock off some shine - don't take off the poly, just make it less glossy. As you play it, the shine will return. Then repeat as needed.
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2019
    Yonni, lucianoxrp and DiabolusInMusic like this.
  4. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism

    Clean the neck off real well and then hit it with a good wax. See how the neck feels then. If you want to go further, move to a 3M pad. If that isn't enough, you need to get out some sand paper and oil.
    Allegrus, lucianoxrp and Reedt2000 like this.
  5. Put a piece of tape where the headstock transition is and where the heel is and those will be your stopping points. Scotchbright til its dull.
    lucianoxrp likes this.
  6. Qlanq


    Jul 9, 2007
    As above.
    5 or 6 passes with the pad or very fine sandpaper, that's all it needs.
    Just to take the shine off.
  7. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    ScotchBrite for me, as well. I've not tried this but you can also wet-sand with 1500 grit and mineral oil...use naptha to remove the oil. This is per TBer @walterw .

    Last edited: Aug 20, 2019
  8. onda'bass

    onda'bass Supporting Member

    Sep 5, 2010
    Buffalo Ny
    don't buy a gloss finished neck?
    Lownote38 and Gt6s like this.
  9. Bob_Ross

    Bob_Ross Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 29, 2012
    Head on over to the Unofficial Warmoth forum and look for the sticky thread on “burnishing necks”. It provides a very comprehensive step-by-step procedure for turning the back of any wood neck into a slick fast baby’s bottom.

    edit: Burnishing Raw Necks
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2019
    lucianoxrp likes this.
  10. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    this one is often overlooked!

    get some guitar wax, a carnauba wax made for guitar, and apply to the back of the neck. buff it out and it’ll feel super-slick and is harmless to the finish.
  11. Arie X

    Arie X

    Oct 19, 2015
    wax doesn't last too long on a neck.

    grey scotch brite 7448.

    the 7445 (white) is finer, but it's abrasive can be a health hazzard.
    lucianoxrp likes this.

  12. I looked up the SDS and MSDS for the 7445 pad. They didn’t really list anything under health hazards. Is it the abrasive? I think one sheet said it was titanium dioxide.

    I’m not saying it isn’t a hazard. Genuinely curious as I have these at home.
  13. Arie X

    Arie X

    Oct 19, 2015
    the abrasive is Nepheline Syenite.
    lucianoxrp likes this.
  14. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    right but it's zero-harm zero alteration.

    wax up the neck before the gig and you should be fine for the rest of the night.
    lucianoxrp likes this.
  15. Volker Kirstein

    Volker Kirstein Blippy the Wonder Slug

    I use 600 grit sandpaper as needed to scuff it, usually every 6 months or so. I haven't stripped the finish off, and it appears to have plenty to go before I get to that point.
    lucianoxrp likes this.
  16. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    +1 grey scotchbrite. You can vary how aggressively it cuts with hand pressure. Like others said, tape off headstock and neck heel where you want it to stop. If you change your mind later, it can be easily buffed back up to gloss.
    lucianoxrp likes this.
  17. wishface


    Jan 27, 2012
    Someone mentioned doing this in another thread

    Naturally I'm a bit nervous. BUt i find the neck is sticky for me on my Sire M2. So this is a valid technique?

    How heavily do you need to sand the neck? I don't own any sandpaper (i gather wet and dry paper is the same thing).

    Can you use linseed oil to seal the neck?


    What are the pitfalls to watch out for? Obviously I don't want to damage the instrument. I have never heard of this technique before; I would have assumed sanding the finish would actually make it rougher.

  18. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    I think the theory is that by sanding it, you create a series of tiny grooves in the neck (scratches) that actually reduce the surface area in contact with your hand. It works. Dont use sandpaper though, too easy to dig in and scratch unevenly. Use a grey scotchbrite, most hardware stores carry them. If you are nervous, start with a white scotchbrite, which will barely touch it, just kind of a satin finish. If that feels good, stop there, if not, try grey. Tape off any areas you dont want to touch. This is entirely reversible by buffing back to gloss.
    lucianoxrp likes this.
  19. Lownote38


    Aug 8, 2013
    Nashville, TN
    Baby powder on your hand works, too.
    Allegrus likes this.
  20. Allegrus


    Mar 13, 2019
    Ottawa, ON
    ^^ Good idea. I've also seen people use light cotton gloves with the fingers cut off.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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