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Sweetwater Forums [Archived]

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Maple neck or fretboard treatment


I need to clean & I guess treat my maple necks & fretboards on a couple guitars. I usually use Dunlops 65 lemon oil on my basses but it says not to use on maple fretboards or I read that somewhere. so what is everyone using?? or what is the best to use I need to order some stuff and was wanting to put it on the order. also is there a site or some place to read about the care of maple neck or fretboards versus the rosewood fretboards
February 5, 2012 @06:06am
GM Reszel

If you're talking about a maple fretboard that has any type of hard finish you can treat it as a finished product and use any type of guitar cleaner for the light stuff. If however you have excessive build up you can clean the board with naphtha (ie, lighter fluid). Naphtha doesn't harm finish (I've even used it on lacquer) and it will help remove dirt and grime.
For my own guitars (and w/ customers permission) I will use 0000 steel wool on my maple boards. It WILL 'satinize' (degloss) any glossy fretboard and I prefer that. There are some that may not prefer taking away an attractive gloss particularly on a vintage instrument but I tape a piece of paper over my pickups, use the 0000 in the direction of the strings, blow off the steel wool from the pickup area, remove the protective paper/tape and you're good to go.
If you're talking about oil finished (or unfinished) maple boards treat that with the fb treatment of your choice such as teak oil. With all that said I seldom oil any of my boards (annually - typically after winter). I only occasionally clean them with the naphtha and steel wool. Most importantly wipe it down with a clean, dry cloth immediately after playing.
February 6, 2012 @04:48pm