Dirty, unfinished maple...

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by Riscchip, Aug 18, 2006.

  1. Riscchip

    Riscchip Supporting Member

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    Apologies if this has been covered in another thread...I didn't spend more than 5-10 minutes looking and might have missed it.

    Anyway, I have an old, very nice Schecter neck that was put on a guitar and used without ever finishing it. It's probably 20-25 years old. Perfectly true, no twisting, no issues, plays great.

    That said, I'm going to finish it with Tru-Oil, but first I'm wondering if anyone can suggest a wayt to clean it up a bit. It has lots of dirty black staining on the fingerboartd and on the back of the neck from being played with no finish. Sanding has helped about 25%, and I don't want to sand more than than I need to prepare for finishing. Any other tricks to cleaning it up you would care to share?

    Thanks!
     
  2. larry1096

    larry1096 Member

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    Wander to Frets.com (Frank Ford's site) and check out what he says about using deionized water to clean light colored woods. Sounds about right for this instance.


    Larry
     
  3. bullfrogblues

    bullfrogblues Supporting Member

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    You might try using naptha to clean it up. It stinks, but it usually does a great job of removing grime, grease, and stains. Or get some Zippo lighter fluid, same thing.

    Allan.
     
  4. Riscchip

    Riscchip Supporting Member

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    Thanks guys! I'll look into both those options (geez naptha should have been more obvious to me--that's one usually top of the list for cleaning anything on a guitar).
     
  5. GuitarsFromMars

    GuitarsFromMars Member

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    naptha is the way to go...
     
  6. countandduke

    countandduke Member

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    I used to know the order of "spirits" to use on wood to get it really nice and clean and naptha was somewhere in there, so was mineral spirits and something else, BUT I too have found naptha the way to go and have even used "Goo Gone" on those polymerized finishes when old gooey stickers won't come off easily but I have found naptha works well with that too.

    My suggestion, is to use naptha to get it nice and clean then wait maybe half a day or so (no reason, you could wait an hour or even less if you want) and then apply some kind of wood conditioner or tung oil just to get some natural oils back into the wood.

    Good luck, nothing better than a nice wood neck that's been rubbed and buffed.............gigggitty....

    Chris
     
  7. Mike9

    Mike9 Supporting Member

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    Naptha will not leave an oily residue like mineral spirits will. Funny - you are trying to repair what many players try to achieve - :D
     
  8. AS193

    AS193 Member

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    To really clean the Maple, the best thing to use would be something like Minwax Wood Bleach. It is a two-part peroxide solution, and can be metered so the results can go from just a little cleaner, to bone white.

    Naptha or mineral spirits will only clean off surface grime, and maybe a little deeper lightening. Also, both Naptha and MS are a petrolium product.

    You may get some results from Lacquer thinner, but maybe not. LT works best to dissolve and evaporate oil stains in raw wood. Other than thinning and cutting lacquer, that is.
     
  9. Structo

    Structo Member

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    Wood bleach can make it too white.
    I take it this is a maple fretboard as well?
    I haven't tried it but I have heard of guys using TSP for cleaning wood.
    Just don't soak the wood too much.
    A dampened rag should do the trick.

    Then finish sand the neck to remove the whiskers.
    I like to dye my necks using Stew Mac Vintage Amber stain or dye.
    I mix it with water and make it a bit weaker than the tone I'm after.
    Then wipe it on the bare wood until the desired color.
    Let it dry and apply the Tru Oil in thin coats until you have the desired amount on.
    You can steel wool it with #0000 after every three or four coats to keep it smooth and level.
    After the final steel wooling, take a scrap of old denim and burnish the oil by rubbing it up and down the neck real fast building up the heat and you will have a slick and fast neck.
     

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