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Removing wax from a Warwick

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by silky smoove, Oct 27, 2004.

  1. silky smoove

    silky smoove

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    I've got a '97 Warwick Corvette (heavily modded at this point) that I would like to "hard" finish. I love the bass to death, but I've grown quite tired of having to wax it everytime I change the strings. My intent is to do as much of the prep work myself as possible, and then I'm having a professional paint shop (who has had experience with musical instruments) do the actual finishing.

    My question is this: Is there an easy way to remove the wax from the finish? Perhaps a chemical that works well for removing wax, but won't hurt the natural bubinga wood. Any advice would be much appreciated.

    Oh, a side note: Is there any risk involved with the neck if I take it off while they're finishing the body. I had intended to do this, but have become concerned with possible waprage due to the lack of string tension on the truss rod. Thanks again!
  2. Rhythmalism


    Sep 25, 2004
    Not familiar with wax removal, but the neck might need a truss rod adjustment after leaving it off for a few days, mine did.
  3. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU

    I hope you're not saying that you're painting that beautiful bubinga to some color? :eek:
    I'd only rather finish it with lacquer - so you can see the colour and grain of the wood.

    As for removing wax, or even if its necessary, I'd ask this in the Luthier's corner forum, as there are people more experienced there who are experts in this field.
  4. sambass


    Apr 15, 2003
    i was wondering the same thing actually... laquering that is...
  5. Cliff Bordwell

    Cliff Bordwell Commercial User

    Jan 6, 2004
    USA , Orlando , Florida
    Owner of CB BASSES
    Mineral spirits will take the wax off nicely.
    Hard finished necks can be unstable since one side is sealed
    by the hard coat and the other(the fingerboard) is not.
    This can make the moisture levels between the two sides differ, making the neck move during humidity changes.
  6. silky smoove

    silky smoove

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    I didn't make my self clear when I said I was going to "hard" finish it. I'm definitely NOT going to be painting this thing. I just want a clear finish that does not require waxing every month, but want the visual aesthetics of it to remain the same.

    As for the suggestion to use mineral spirits. Will that be hard on the wood at all?

    Oh, and regarding finishing the neck, I hadn't intended to finish the neck as its a wenge neck and Garett Baker at Warmoth told me that wenge does not require a finish, just the occasional oil'ing. Thanks for the help guys!
  7. tenebrae

    tenebrae nothing to see here move along please thank you

    May 4, 2001
    a major fault line
    Who will be doing the work, if you don't mind my asking?
  8. birdsg


    Dec 18, 2003
    Birmingham England
    Guys, I may be completely wrong but i am sure I read somewhere that after a certain period of time you no longer need to wax your warwicks??

  9. johans

    johans G.U.I - Groovin' under influence

    Oct 28, 2004
    the Bay Area, CA

    as far as i know
    the waxing help the wood to 'breathe' so ..

    chances you should keep on waxing :p :bassist:
  10. As I've been waxing my Thumb NT for the best part of fifteen years, using the "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" philosophy, that has kept the wood in beautiful condition, I'd be inclined to say <b>keep waxing</b> your bass - I know it's a pain in the butt, but this is how these basses are - I think the idea of 'sealing' the wood is a good way round the constant waxing, but it will alter the look and feel of the wood, on a purely aesthetic level, so I don't think that will be probelm.

    One thought though is that, having seen the various levels of fine sanding invloved in getting the surface of the wood prepped for finish, I'd really recommmend getting a good luthier to do the whole job for you - I wouldn't dream of sanding my bass my self - it would be like performing surgery on a good friend - I'd be too worried that I'd hurt the little love!

    See - this is what a 14 yaer old Warwick looks like - if you look after it:

    <img src=http://www.munkio.com/music/warwick%20pics/bass_face_on2.jpg>
  11. birdsg


    Dec 18, 2003
    Birmingham England
    Well, I cant find the article so I am probably wrong and judging by urb's bass I guess KEEP WAXING as well!!

    Maybe an eMail to Warwick techies may help you?

  12. silky smoove

    silky smoove

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    Thanks again for the help guys, you're great.

    I actually emailed Warwick (got an email back from Dana B. Goods) a while back and they said that this is a viable option and is actually done a lot more than would be expected. According to them (Dana, not Warwick) they said that all it really does is darken the tone a very small amount, and that otherwise it should be just fine.

    I've considered doing this several times, and always find a way to talk myself out of it..... ugh..... decisions decisions decisions........

    EDIT: Oh, and Urb, the figuring on that bass is absolutely gorgeous, you've got a realy beauty there!
  13. maxbass


    May 22, 2002
    Milano Italy

    Still both your fingerboard and neck will need periodic waxing..
  14. air_leech


    Sep 1, 2000
    I think the waxing procedure is what some people define as "labour of love".
    I really like the feel of the smooth warwick maple on my '00 Streamer LX 5. I would understand it if you wanted to seal the bass to avoid nicks and scratches (more of a problem with the maple than the bubinga which is much harder) but the waxing procedure is a 6 mins. affair that actually makes the bass instantly look better and you only have to do it once a month.