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how to Clean a real dirty rosewood fingerboard!!

#1 User is offline   Paulocon 

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 06:52 AM

Hi all, I know this topic might and should have been covered already - but my newish guitar a '1997 Korean Les Paul' Goldtop has such a dirty and grimy fretboard, I really need advice on how to 'properly' clean it etc. I have been reading up on products like 'Dunlop 65 formula' and 'Guitar Honey' from Gerlitz etc. But what would you recommend (cleaners or products) to scrub the grime and dirt from the fretboard to get it ready...before I treat it and apply any of these products to it etc.

Please advise....

Cheers

Paulocon
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#2 User is offline   RaSTuS 

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 07:05 AM

If there's a big build up of gunk, many use a credit card or similar to scrape as much of that gunk off as possible first, then I'd recommend naptha to help dissolve and remove any other greasy remnants, once the naptha has evaporated then a fretboard conditioner or the oil of your choice (there's sooo many, everyone has their own preference) to seal and protect the fretboard.
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#3 User is offline   Paulocon 

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 07:22 AM

View PostRaSTuS, on 08 June 2011 - 07:05 AM, said:

If there's a big build up of gunk, many use a credit card or similar to scrape as much of that gunk off as possible first, then I'd recommend naptha to help dissolve and remove any other greasy remnants, once the naptha has evaporated then a fretboard conditioner or the oil of your choice (there's sooo many, everyone has their own preference) to seal and protect the fretboard.


Hi there, thanks for your response - but I don't know what naptha is, could you explain in more detail what it is and what I should use with it to remove the grime and dirt. Its not between the frets it more all over the actual wood of the fretboard, so it just needs a good scrub. Would a soft toothbrush be a good idea to use to clean away the dirt with this naptha thing etc.

Cheers
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#4 User is offline   Whitmore Willy 

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 07:28 AM

naptha is lighter fluid....the type you use in a cigarette lighter.

http://forum.gibson....4572-wire-wool/

Other good articles in the DIY at the top of the Epi Lounge.
If you use anything like steel wool, mask your pickups.

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#5 User is offline   RaSTuS 

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 07:32 AM

View PostPaulocon, on 08 June 2011 - 07:22 AM, said:

Hi there, thanks for your response - but I don't know what naptha is, could you explain in more detail what it is and what I should use with it to remove the grime and dirt. Its not between the frets it more all over the actual wood of the fretboard, so it just needs a good scrub. Would a soft toothbrush be a good idea to use to clean away the dirt with this naptha thing etc.

Cheers

Naptha is probably better known as lighter fluid, it's a reasonably mild solvent and should be available at most hardware stores, normally a rag is used to rub it on, and a clean rag to wipe it off, if the grime build-up is extreme I suppose a toothbrush could be used to help do a little scrubbing, just make sure to wipe the excess off as you proceed.
Only the mediocre are always at their best.

GUITARS: ........... 60 odd lumps of Wood, Aluminium and Plastic with many and varied electric bits attached.
PEDALS: ............
Dunlop Cry Baby Wah, Crowther Double Hotcake, Digitech Bad Monkey Tube Overdrive, Korg Pitch Black Tuner.
AMPS & CABS: .
Egnater Tweaker Head (15w), Roland CM-30 (30w), Line 6 Spider II (30w), Peavey TKO 115 (80W), Marshall MF Head (350w) Line 6 Quad Box (320w).

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#6 User is offline   RaSTuS 

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 07:42 AM

As Willy mentions, if you want to polish the frets with steel wool at the same time it's a good idea to mask off the pickups to stop the metal scraps from entering the pickup cavity and/or sticking to the pickups, they are magnetic after all.

But I wouldn't bother with masking off the fretboard, this is a long an tedious process, instead I would recommend making up some "auto maskers" as I explain in this post (link below), it's much, much quicker and very easy to do.

http://forum.gibson....post__p__913900
Only the mediocre are always at their best.

GUITARS: ........... 60 odd lumps of Wood, Aluminium and Plastic with many and varied electric bits attached.
PEDALS: ............
Dunlop Cry Baby Wah, Crowther Double Hotcake, Digitech Bad Monkey Tube Overdrive, Korg Pitch Black Tuner.
AMPS & CABS: .
Egnater Tweaker Head (15w), Roland CM-30 (30w), Line 6 Spider II (30w), Peavey TKO 115 (80W), Marshall MF Head (350w) Line 6 Quad Box (320w).

Some of my collection
A man of many faces !!!
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#7 User is offline   bonzoboy 

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Posted 09 June 2011 - 11:10 PM

For cruddy fretboards I use regular guitar polish or for really bad gunk I use Lemon oil and one of the non-metallic scouring pads such as you use on Teflon-that way there's no chance of metal dust or pieces getting fouled in your pickups.BTW an old but stiff tooth brush can do the trick too.
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#8 User is offline   Bookkeeper's Son 

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Posted 09 June 2011 - 11:46 PM

If using 0000 steel wool, there's no need to protect the rosewood fingerboard; in fact, the wool will clean and polish the fingerboard and the frets at the same time, quite safely. Work across the grain.

#9 User is offline   amx05462 

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Posted 09 June 2011 - 11:53 PM

i use the steel wool with windex . works great. then put on some baby oli when done.

#10 User is offline   Supersonic 

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 12:00 AM

This is probably the third or fourth time I've posted this. It works great. Everyone has their own methods, but I'm sticking with this. The easiest, cheapest, and most effective solution I have found.

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#11 User is offline   Paulocon 

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 04:41 AM

View PostSupersonic101, on 10 June 2011 - 12:00 AM, said:

This is probably the third or fourth time I've posted this. It works great. Everyone has their own methods, but I'm sticking with this. The easiest, cheapest, and most effective solution I have found.

Posted Image

Hi there, Not seen this kit before - looks just the job. I take it you use the 01 solution to scrub and clean the fretboard, then apply the 02 solution to restore the fretboard back to its usual finish. Is this correct? If so, its just what I'm after etc. Should I need to apply anything or any other oils after using the 02 solution eg. guitar honey or lemon oil to the fretboard - or should the 02 solution be enough to restore it. (my fretboard is such an ugly tone of rosewood at the moment and is so grimy and dirty) I want to get it back to a nice rich dark looking wood finish etc.

Cheers for all the help as always!!!

Paulocon
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2008 MII Epiphone Dove Acoustic Natural
1997 MIK Epiphone Les Paul Std Goldtop
1996 MIK Epiphone Fat310 Stratocaster Black
Marshall 'Mini' Stack ZWMFX Amp

#12 User is offline   animalfarm 

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 09:28 AM

Not this bad, I hope...

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#13 User is offline   stein 

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 11:01 AM

I usually start with a wash cloth or a sock to scrub as much grime off as I can. Then, I will use a little lemon oil to do it again, using it in a way to break up the grime and clean it. So, I do one space at a time so it does not evaporate on me.

I Don't like to use steel wool as a regular cleaning method, just because on the whole getting oils in the fretbaord from the wool is something else to clean out, but I do use it to polish frets when it is time. The scour type kitchen pads is a good alternative to steel wool in that it doesn't shed or leave oils, but it does scratch some being not as fine as 0000 steel wool, so following up with steel wool takes care of that in completeness.

#14 User is offline   Supersonic 

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 11:31 AM

View PostPaulocon, on 10 June 2011 - 04:41 AM, said:

Hi there, Not seen this kit before - looks just the job. I take it you use the 01 solution to scrub and clean the fretboard, then apply the 02 solution to restore the fretboard back to its usual finish. Is this correct? If so, its just what I'm after etc. Should I need to apply anything or any other oils after using the 02 solution eg. guitar honey or lemon oil to the fretboard - or should the 02 solution be enough to restore it. (my fretboard is such an ugly tone of rosewood at the moment and is so grimy and dirty) I want to get it back to a nice rich dark looking wood finish etc.

Cheers for all the help as always!!!

Paulocon


You shouldn't need anything else. The fretboard on my SG was VERY dry and also a very light tint before I used this and now it looks and feels great. I used the conditioner 2 or 3 times after I cleaned mine because the fretboard seemed to almost "soak" it all up when I applied it the first time. I guess that's how dry it actually was. Now it plays much better and looks great too, very rich and darker looking as you said. That kit also comes with a "micro-fiber" thing to polish the frets with.
My Epiphone Guitars
Les Paul Standard
G400 Deluxe w/ Maestro Tremolo
P93 Riviera
Early 1970's 6830 acoustic

Other Stuff
Dean Playmate Acoustic/Electric Bass
Ovation Celebrity Acoustic/Electric
Madiera A-2 Acoustic
Trinity River squareneck Dobro
A-Style Mandolin
Various pedals, devices, and other sonic implements of destruction

Amps
Vintage 1974 Fender Deluxe Reverb "Silverface"
Vintage 1965 Silvertone 1482 15 watt combo
Roland Cube 30
Vox AC4-C1-BRG

#15 User is offline   firemanjerry 

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 12:36 PM

View Postbonzoboy, on 09 June 2011 - 11:10 PM, said:

For cruddy fretboards I use regular guitar polish or for really bad gunk I use Lemon oil and one of the non-metallic scouring pads such as you use on Teflon-that way there's no chance of metal dust or pieces getting fouled in your pickups.BTW an old but stiff tooth brush can do the trick too.

"Ditto", What Supersonic101 said. Lemon oil cuts it and treats it at the same time, and leaves your fretboard "Lemony Fresh" to boot! [thumbup]

#16 User is offline   firemanjerry 

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 12:38 PM

View Postanimalfarm, on 10 June 2011 - 09:28 AM, said:

Not this bad, I hope...

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OMG!! [scared]

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