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What happens when you varnish a fret board?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Dean_CustomJazz, Dec 17, 2002.

  1. Dean_CustomJazz

    Dean_CustomJazz Guest

    Jan 23, 2002
    Before you say "DONT!!!" i just want to know, what will happen, because a funny story follows this. Just a few moments ago, my friend jay goes "my friend mike is gunna paint my guitar, he just varnished the neck and everything, even the fret board. let me mind you, mike has played bass for less than 3 weeks. I was wondering just what happens what will happen when the varnish cures?:D
  2. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    :D :D :D
    Jay will chalk this up to a learning experience! It seems to me that it would produce thud like tones instead of crisp notes. I've seen a varnished fret board.
  3. Bass Kahuna

    Bass Kahuna

    Dec 3, 2002
    West Lafayette, Indiana
    Luthier, Custom Builder
    If the person who did the finishing didn't remove the frets first, he might have to take an emery cloth and sanding block to the top of the frets to knock of the varnish there.

    Otherwise, it might change the tone of the instrument a little, and it will affect the "feel" of the fingerboard, but no harm done.

    FYI.. Rickenbacker basses (and some of their guitars, I believe) have always had lacquered fingerboards (pao ferro wood, if I'm not mistaken).

    Happy Holidays,
  4. Bass Kahuna

    Bass Kahuna

    Dec 3, 2002
    West Lafayette, Indiana
    Luthier, Custom Builder
    Oh yea... almost forgot.

    If the fingerboard was rosewood, the varnish will probably not stay on for a real long time, due to the fact that rosewood is a fairly oily wood.