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SX maple fretlesses - durability?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Temcat, Feb 7, 2016.

  1. Folks who own SX fretless basses with maple boards - how durable are these? I heard that maple is too soft and gets dirty soon, but also that those SX necks have a thick finish. What is your real life experience with them? I'm especially interested to hear about the level of wear with roundwounds.
  2. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I have fretless SX P, but it has flats. You can always sand down the finish as it wears. You can also go Jaco, and put on or pay a tech to put on a tough epoxy finish.
  3. How long do you own your P? Has the fingerboard required maintenance like sanding during that time?
  4. Mvilmany


    Mar 13, 2013
    Upstate NY
    Years ago, a friend loaned me a mid-70's Fender P With a fretless maple board. The whole neck and fingerboard was coated with poly. By the time it came to me, the poly had been completely worn through on the D and G strings above the 5th "fret".

    I personally prefer flats for fretless and would suggest a harder finish if you want to go rounds.
  5. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I have had it about a year, but I don't play it much. It has needed no maintainence.
    netohugo likes this.
  6. Nighthound


    Dec 18, 2015
    I was just curious if you liked the round wounds on a fretless? I never tried on but seen one with rosewood finger board and the strings chewed thru it big time. I think u can always apply a layer of epoxy.
    I have two SX 6 string fretlesses..one with the ash and one with the basswood but both came with flat wound strings and I think they are labella...I love the strings that came with the basses..
    I just got my second SX last night and only had the other one for a month but both have flats..
  7. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    I bought an Ursa 5 and also a bargain fretless SX neck for it. The neck was maple with a very thick coating of poly all over it. It was also defective. The defect was that a couple of the black block inlays on the neck weren't glued right and they would lift up and lift they heavy poly with it. Then the neck would not play right. Well this didn't matter to me because my goal was to remove the maple board and install a new ebony one (which I did). New neck was terrific, but my experience before I took the maple fingerboard off, made me wonder about SX maple fretless necks. Got me to thinking that if I ever wanted a fretless SX with a maple neck, I'd sand all the poly off and epoxy coat the whole thing both for durability and to keep the coating from lifting.
  8. Oops, missed this. I do like rounds on a fretless—in fact, that's what I'm playing exclusively currently.
    I like the feel of flats but I coudn't make them work for me in practice; either the tone wasn't good, or I was getting lost in the mix.
    I do now about epoxying but hope to avoid this. I suspect though that should the fingerboard need leveling, it'd be easier to do with epoxy than with that poly finish.
    Nighthound likes this.
  9. The SX neck I'm about to get doesn't have block inlays.

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