My Bass Neck Smells TERRIBLE! HELP!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ETEcarmine, Dec 8, 2005.

  1. ETEcarmine


    Jun 29, 2005
    I just bought a brand new, out of the box Music Man Stingray 5. I love this bass. I've had it for a week now, and I just took it out of my case, and the neck smells really bad. It's a VERY sharp, shooting-up-the-nose kind of smell, kinda smells like soaking wet rotting wood. But the neck has not been exposed to any harsh conditions at all and it looks and feels great. Anyone know what can be wrong, and if so, what can I do?


  2. CentralCoastBass

    CentralCoastBass Supporting Member

    Feb 4, 2004
    San Luis Obispo, CA
    National Reso-Phonic Guitars
    leave it out of the case for a few days and drop a smelly tree in there. if it still stinks, take a shower. then try some guitar polish on the neck. last resort is maybe some lemon oil????? though probably not recommended.
  3. CentralCoastBass

    CentralCoastBass Supporting Member

    Feb 4, 2004
    San Luis Obispo, CA
    National Reso-Phonic Guitars
    just kidding on the shower part. but i would use lemon oil or pledge to get out the stank, but some people would say that it will dry out the neck wood.
  4. Carmine!!! No friggin way, it's Steve Q, Adams friend, howsit goin man? You finally settled on a stingray huh? where'd you get it from?
  5. dharma

    dharma Srubby wubbly

    Oct 14, 2005
    Monroe, Louisiana
    Someplace where the slather their bass necks in pooh, apparently.


    Just kidding man.

    I'd say that you should take it to a specialist in these matters, or if you can't find one of them, a guitar tech.

    When my bref stinks, I go to da bref doctor.
  6. Put Johnsons Baby Powder on it, itl make it smooth and it will smell good :D
  7. Sippy


    Aug 1, 2005
    ummm.. how about u don't cover up the smell.. and u try to find out what is making the smell... what else is in ur case?
  8. Luis Fabara

    Luis Fabara

    Aug 13, 2000
    Ecuador (South America)
    Audio Pro - Ecuador
    Did you left your bass dirty of hand sweat after playing it.. and then put it in the case?

    If you did...
    Bad Move.

    Use a Dunlop 65 Guitar Cleaning Formula..

    It worked for me to remove the smell from a tobacco smelling neck
  9. Jazzbassman23


    Apr 20, 2000
    You do realize that Ernie Ball doesn't poly coat their necks, and that what you're smelling is likely the gunstock oil that they apply. My guess is that you're just not used to a neck smelling like that. Personally, I kind of like it.
  10. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    My bro has some of this for his guitar, and I'm sure it's lemon oil. And no, lemon oil doesn't dry out your neck, it will actually prevent that. Avoid pledge like the plague.
  11. Son of Magni

    Son of Magni

    May 10, 2005
    Builder: ThorBass
    Yeah, just say NO to pledge. Use lemon essential oil (only on bare wood though).
  12. Juneau


    Jul 15, 2004
    Dallas, TX.
    If the neck isnt ply coated, you can use Kiwi Natural Shoe polish on it. Can run some 0000 steel wool over it to remove any old gunk. Make sure not to get filings in your pickups or cavity. Whipe down with a dry paper towel. Apply a tiny bit of shoe polish to a clean towel, rub it in till it shines. Make sure you wipe off any excess and rub in what you put on well. Can buy it at the grocerry store, and while it smells like well, shoe polish (actually smells like wax), it might be better smelling than Tung oil if thats what on it now.
  13. Ray-man

    Ray-man Guest

    Sep 10, 2005
    If you go the lemon oil route, be SURE that your product contains NO WAX! I think Formby's is one of the lemon oils that contains no wax, but I'm not positive. You have a neck there that has no hard sealing finish on it, so it will be prone to picking up and retaining smells. My guitar tech tells me: very fine steel wool followed by lemon oil with NO WAX.
  14. Dr Stankface

    Dr Stankface Supporting Member

    Mar 28, 2005
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Put some Formby lemon oil on it. That'll do the trick. :D

  15. Chef

    Chef Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    May 23, 2004
    Columbia MO
    Staff Reviewer; Bass Gear Magazine
    put your earplugs in your nose :bag:
  16. Luckydog

    Luckydog Supporting Member

    Dec 25, 1999
    Another take on the lemon oil thing...not recommended by Roger Sadowsky. This is from a previous post of Roge's-

    The issue of adjusting the truss rod when oiling a fingeboard is not an
    issue. The issue is what kind of oil you are using and how long you
    are "soaking". I recommend linseed oil and DO NOT recommend soaking.
    Just cover the entire fingerboard with enough oil to just "wet" the
    board, let it stand no more than 5 minutes, and wipe off all the excess
    with a dry paper towel. If you want to let it "air dry" overnight
    before you restring--that's OK--but don't "wet-soak" the board for long
    periods of time.

    Oils that are sold for wood finishing like tung oil preparations get
    too gummy feeling in my opinion. I have always found lemon oil (as in
    Old English) to make boards dry out faster than if left alone. After
    24 years of this, I still like linseed oil the best.

    Roger Sadowsky
  17. Bull44


    Dec 13, 2004
    He said as in Old English (pledge) not ture lemon oil. If you go to like a health food store or such and get a bottle of lemon essential oil thats compleatly differet stuff and will not dry out your wood. Plus it gives it a realy good sent! That being said im sure linseed oil works well to, I mean if Mr Sadowsky recomends it then it must be ok :D
  18. Luis Fabara

    Luis Fabara

    Aug 13, 2000
    Ecuador (South America)
    Audio Pro - Ecuador
    It is not lemon oil.
    It evaporates after a while, it is not oily...

    I do have Lemon oil for other purposes and it different.

    I do not recommend Oil for cleaning
  19. ETEcarmine


    Jun 29, 2005
    Thanks to everyone for replying. I really had no idea what the problem could have been. I know there's no finish on the neck and that leaves it succeptible to more damage. That's why I'm a bit paranoid about it. Thanks again, and by the way, most of you guys should do standup. Freaking great!
  20. Jazzbassman23


    Apr 20, 2000
    No offense to the above suggestions, but EB advises against using lemon oil on maple necks. Is yours maple or rosewood? Go to their website and find how they advise treating their fingerboards. It's in the FAQ section. If the bass is new, I wouldn't do anything to it. The "new smell" will disappear shortly, I'm sure.