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Sanding the gloss off a finished neck?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Rockin Mike, Jun 7, 2011.


  1. Rockin Mike

    Rockin Mike

    May 27, 2011
    The gloss finish on the back of my bass's neck slows down my left hand. I thought about going over it with sandpaper to make it more of a matte-like finish. I know it would void the warranty so I'm not going to actually do it, but is it a reasonable idea?
     
  2. 254 stringer

    254 stringer Supporting Member

    Apr 15, 2010
    Waco Texas
    Rub it with a brown paper bag
     
  3. I finished my bass with tung oil. Super slick neck. Wait till the warranty is done, then take off the neck's finish and hit it with an oil finish.
     
  4. I'd be interested in hearing more details about the "take off the neck's finish" part of the process.
     
  5. lowfreq33

    lowfreq33

    Jan 27, 2010
    Nashville
    Endorsing Artist: Genz Benz Amplification
    Scrub it gently with some steel wool. You don't have to take off all of the finish, just rough it up a bit.
     
  6. hbarcat

    hbarcat Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2006
    Rochelle, Illinois
    The answer is a definite "YES".

    I have two Frankenbasses that have after-market necks which I cleared myself. On both, I used 9 layers of PPG automotive catalyzed polyurethane to get a nice thick coat and an ultra hard, ultra durable finish.

    Then I used 400 grit paper to scuff (wet sand) the back of the neck. With this "finish" my hand just glides over the neck and sweat from my hands doesn't slow me down anywhere near as much. I really does make a big difference.

    One problem is that dirt and grime tend to accumulate much faster so you'll need to be very diligent about washing your hands before playing and wiping the neck down often.

    At some point the "scuff" will wear off and you'll end up polishing the back of the neck with continued playing so you can scuff it up again as long as you don't wear all the way through the paint. This happened on one of my basses but I just repainted it. No big deal on my StuMac neck but as you pointed out, voiding the warranty on an valuable Original instrument isn't something to undertake frivolously.
     
  7. makkE

    makkE

    Jan 19, 2010
    Normandie, France
    I had a similar problem, that high gloss was too slinky and too grippy at once, weird I know, depending on sweat level I guess.
    First I used some steelwool to roughen up the finish, worked great for a couple of weeks, but then it got uncomfortable again.
    Used the steel wool again, but now it would just get more and more slippery.

    Ended up with sanding it all down and applying an oil finish. Perfect now. Good grip, but no problem to slide either.
     
  8. Rickett Customs

    Rickett Customs

    Jul 30, 2007
    Southern Maryland
    Luthier: Rickett Customs...........www.rickettcustomguitars.com
    Get a 3M "scotch-brite" pad..... Works like a charm. Just lightly run it on the neck, then harder if desired....
     

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