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Losing finish on Neck (Happy end)

katarzis

Member
Messages
1,251
hi,
the finish on my beloved MB 54 Anniversary is beginnig to fade because of excessive playing (reliced the right way ;-)).
i know there are some people who like it better this way, and the feel is actualy smoother but i miss the consistancy along the whole neck.
is refinish is the only option?


If i decided to live it this way, can the wood be damaged when having no finish?


Thanks.

 
Last edited:

EADGBE

Senior Member
Messages
12,341
Yes the wood can be damaged without a finish. Do you know what the original finish is? You could have someone refinish the neck. Or you could could tung oil the exposed section. Unfinished wood tends to absorb moisture when the humidity is high. And when the humidity gets low it can shrink. The swelling and shrinking over time can cause the neck to warp, or cause the fretboard to come up off of the neck, or cause cracks. It doesn't always happen. And sometimes it may take years. But if you really like the guitar you may want to go ahead and have it refinished.
 

straycat113

Member
Messages
2,926
I honestly do not believe any damage can happen to your neck or every EBMM guitar would have neck issues, though considering the climate where you live fret sprout could possibly become an issue. You have a light Nitro finish on that neck correct? Not to go off course as I am no fan of a Relic finish and it seems like neither are you lol, but this is where their popularity is making your life difficult. The Nitro system they use today is different from the days of Leo and they use such a light coating because guys want the effect you have and they want it fast. So for all intent that neck was actually made to speed up the process. I do not know what year that guitar is as it may not even be a year old and no knock on you playing it hard, but you can see it is almost unnatural the way the finish is coming off. The only thing you can do is send Fender the neck back for a respray, though that would not fall under a warranty issue. You would have to keep your fingers crossed and since it is MB instrument and costs you a good amount of scratch they may do it on your dime. Bring it up to Mike Eldred on the Fender FMIC forum (he has his own section) as you will be hard pressed finding a more helpful and nicer guy. Mike sometimes drops in here and posts but I would reach out to him if I were you.

I also think you will find this very interesting if you are handy- http://www.reranch.com/fenderneck.htm
 

strings2wood

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,217
TGP.at its best.
Useful information,
Helpful advice and several options.:beer

I honestly do not believe any damage can happen to your neck or every EBMM guitar would have neck issues, though considering the climate where you live fret sprout could possibly become an issue. You have a light Nitro finish on that neck correct? Not to go off course as I am no fan of a Relic finish and it seems like neither are you lol, but this is where their popularity is making your life difficult. The Nitro system they use today is different from the days of Leo and they use such a light coating because guys want the effect you have and they want it fast. So for all intent that neck was actually made to speed up the process. I do not know what year that guitar is as it may not even be a year old and no knock on you playing it hard, but you can see it is almost unnatural the way the finish is coming off. The only thing you can do is send Fender the neck back for a respray, though that would not fall under a warranty issue. You would have to keep your fingers crossed and since it is MB instrument and costs you a good amount of scratch they may do it on your dime. Bring it up to Mike Eldred on the Fender FMIC forum (he has his own section) as you will be hard pressed finding a more helpful and nicer guy. Mike sometimes drops in here and posts but I would reach out to him if I were you.

I also think you will find this very interesting if you are handy- http://www.reranch.com/fenderneck.htm
 

EtaCarinae

Member
Messages
1,425
Your guitar is trying to tell you something. Too much playing on the low frets. Time to start shredding up high!
 

ef_in_fla

Member
Messages
2,449
Sand the remainder and do the oil thing. Tung oil, or Tru oil, or bore oil, or other various oils I hear thrown around here.
 

RAILhead

(real name is Maury, BTW)
Messages
4,639
If it were mine, I'd either do nothing, or I'd sand off the remaining finish along the length of the neck and tung oil/Tru-Oil it.
 

Rod

Tone is Paramount
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
22,368
Tru Oil is a great neck sealer....... I'm using it now to finish an all mahogany body I have as well... great stuff....
 

katarzis

Member
Messages
1,251
Your guitar is trying to tell you something. Too much playing on the low frets. Time to start shredding up high!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=p3v4mtsJ0MU


Thanks.
I have the guitar for for about 5 years, it is from 2004.
finish was very thin in this area from the beginning.

if it can damage the wood, how can you explain relics coming out of the factory like this?


the finish on the fret area is still on.
eaither i leave it this way. or sand off just the back of the neck and refinish it.
 

bluesjuke

Disrespected Elder
Messages
24,128
I beleive there is some remnant of sealer in the wood still when it wears like yours.

Beautiful wood on your neck too, my favorite Strat neck ever is the MB '54 Strat.
 

bluesjuke

Disrespected Elder
Messages
24,128
I believe there is some remnant of sealer in the wood still when it wears like yours.

Beautiful wood on your neck too, my favorite Strat neck ever is the MB '54 Strat.
 

dspellman

Senior Member
Messages
8,310
I have the guitar for for about 5 years, it is from 2004.
finish was very thin in this area from the beginning.

if it can damage the wood, how can you explain relics coming out of the factory like this?
the finish on the fret area is still on.
eaither i leave it this way. or sand off just the back of the neck and refinish it.
"Relics" coming out of the factory have a sealer and a coat of a matte finish on the areas that look like bare wood. I have an office across the parking lot from the entrance of the Fender Museum, and I can easily confirm that in person, if you wish, next time I'm down there, but if you look closely, you can both see and feel it. Gibson makes no bones about it -- their "aged" replicas have absolutely no bare wood, despite appearances.

You can absolutely damage the wood by leaving it unfinished (there are exceptions to this, including woods that have a lot of natural moisture-thwarting oils, such as teak, ebony, rosewood). Moisture, salt and acids will damage the wood fibers over time and produce a condition very much like dry rot (if you've ever redone an old sailboat...). Fender's custom shop has often noted that on the guitars that they copy for certain rockers, ding for ding. Warmoth will make it absolutely clear that they won't warranty necks that don't get a finish (unless it's one built out of one of the woods that don't need it). And this is the reason why maple fretboards are *always* finished. The areas on the fretboard where finish wears off are obvious; dirt and moisture work themselves fairly deeply into the wood fibers in short order. But with an older guitar, you'll also find that the wood has softened to the point where you can almost dig it out of those areas with a fingernail.

Note that you don't need to refinish the back of the neck in nitrocellulose lacquer (though you'll want to strip the rest of it off of there), nor does it need to be a glossy finish. A lot of guitars are being finished in a matte or satin poly (or nitro) or in one of the polymerizing oils, such as boiled linseed oil (Tru-Oil is one brand) or "tung oil finish" ( Formbys, Minwax, etc.). The oil finishes will require a bit of redoing every year or two; they don't offer anything like the protection of poly or nitro, and you will find them getting dirt into the wood fiber ends more quickly (particularly if it's a heavily used guitar), but any finish is better than none. Tung oil/linseed oil is best for a guitar that's in rotation with others or that stays home most of the time.
 

katarzis

Member
Messages
1,251
Just visited my guitar tech, and he said there's still some finish on.
i'll keep it this way until the finish is off.

Thanks all!
 




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