Windex on rosewood fretboards?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jenderfazz, Aug 6, 2003.

  1. A friend of mine who owns a music store told me that too much lemon oil can be bad for a fretboard, so windex is good in between to clean up the gunk in a fretboard. I'm not looking to shine it up and make it spotless, but my fingerboard is getting filthy and I need to remove all the greasy residue on it. Is windex a good choice in the meantime? I know it's fine on maple, but rosewood? I'll get some lemon oil next time I change my strings and thoroughly clean each fret, I'm just wondering if anyone has any experience. Thanks.
  2. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    I just use a wet rag.. gets most of it off.
  3. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    A wet rag is good or some guitar polish on a rag. If it gets real cruddy, go to a hardware store and buy the lightest grade steelwool you can get. Use it on rosewood boards wiping the same way as the grain and then put the lemon oil on

  4. windex... never

    any drying agent in supermarket lemon oil that this guy thinks is bad for your fretboard.... is nothing compared to WINDEX's drying abilities!

    I keep a nice clean face cloth in my case. Wiping it down after each use and you should be good enough between oilings
  5. Wow, ok. So windex is bad... I guess I'll use a wet rag. Thanks for the info.
  6. adrian garcia

    adrian garcia In Memoriam

    Apr 9, 2001
    las vegas. nevada
    Endorsing Artist: Nordy Basses, Schroeder Cabs, Gallien Krueger Amps
    use the oil- Mike Tobias himself told me to keep a rosewood board well oiled- whatever you do- no windex!
    i dont even know that i would use water- wood warps with water- that is why luthiers use fast drying Naphta to show grain instead of water- i watered a spalt top a few too many times to show it off and it warped like a potato chip! - luckily, Mike T was able to deal with it - the steel wool idea is good- get #0000 steel woold- make sure it doesnt scratch your finish if its laquered.
  7. Lighter fluid gets rid of the gunk, and evaporates quickly. Rub some oil in (I use Schaftol gun stock oil) and let it dry a bit.
  8. rickreyn

    rickreyn Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
    What? Have you been watching the Big Fat Greek Wedding?

    Stick with the tried and true.

    I use lemon oil.
  9. FYI: Naphta is what Zippo lighter fluid is made from.

    I use Naphta as a cleaner after stripping finish off the furniture I've refinished.
  10. jivetkr

    jivetkr Supporting Member

    May 15, 2002
    Thats exactly what I thought of when I saw this.
  11. rickreyn

    rickreyn Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
    For informational purposes, the father in the Big Fat Greek wedding thinks Windex will cure anything. It is a running joke in the movie. This is why I thought of the Big Fat Greek Wedding when I saw this post.
  12. McHack


    Jul 29, 2003
    Central Ohio!
  13. adrian garcia

    adrian garcia In Memoriam

    Apr 9, 2001
    las vegas. nevada
    Endorsing Artist: Nordy Basses, Schroeder Cabs, Gallien Krueger Amps
    so , if i get Athete's Foot, I can use windex to get rid of it? and warts? :D
  14. tyson


    Feb 9, 2000
    Dallas, TX
    Windex, ammonia, pinesol, etc. should not be used on a car's finish since it eats away the wax, clear gloss and paint. it should also not be use on wood since it will eat away the goodness of the wood's natural oils and its finish if it has one. if a fretboard is filthy i agree with clean moist rag idea, then a dry rag, then drying and a light application of the ol' Orange Glo or similar non-wax wood cleaner. otherwise i would just stick to regular apps of Orange Glo since it seems to pick up the routine funk from my fingers just fine...
  15. rickreyn

    rickreyn Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
  16. It's strange that nobody mentioned tung oil for rosewood, which is a great preservative for dark unfinished woods. It's Tung tree oil, and It replenishes natural oils in the wood, and prevents it from drying out and cracking. I swear by it, and I can find it in most hardware stores, just make sure your fretboard is really clean before you use it.
  17. Orange Glo? I have that stuff! I was waiting for someone to mention it. At least I know I can use it. I also have Tung Oil left over from my Squier de-fretting, so I guess I can use it on my Fender. But being fretted, won't it loosen the frets or something? Also, Tung oil gave my fingerboard a very dark look, considerably darker than it was. Will it "stain" my Fender board?
  18. I don't think there's any danger of frets becoming loose after using tung oil, it doesn't affect the wood in that way. You just sponge on a thin coat, let sit for 10-20 minutes, then wipe off with a clean cloth.
    As far as staining the wood, all my rosewood neck basses were very dark to start with, so I can't say what it would do to a lighter coloured board. I would be hesitant to do it, because I love the look of a light rosewood, and I wouldn't want to take any chances.
  19. Tung will darken your board, and as a routine treatment, it will build up faster than lemon oil, thats why it is a finish, and not a treatment. That being said, I like a Tung oiled rosewood fingerboard, just not 5 or 6 or 10 times. When I finish a bass with Tung, I will put 10 to 20 coats, depending on the absorbancy of the wood, and what doesn't soak into the wood just sits on the surface and dries to a gummy residue, which is then wooled off. I use lemon oil as a regular treatment for fingerboards, but make sure not to saturate, and wipe off excess. Excess is also the stuff that wicks out onto your fingers after you think youve got it all off.
  20. Well, I used Orange Glo, and, what can I say, it feels like a new bass! It worked really well. I'll eventually try Lemon oil, and probably tung oil over time, but I'm good for quite a while now. Thanks everyone.