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Swirling A Fretboard


Ace
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Yeah, kinda what the title suggests... in andyt's thread I've seen that the "hangers" he used for handling the bodies obviously got swirled along with the bodies and the image brought an idea into my mind: could you swirl over an entire fretboard (either maple or with a base coat), then clearcoat over it? The idea of course is to continue the swirl pattern of the body seamlessly onto the neck to get an extraordinary (some might say tacky :-) )look. This is more of a theoretical question for me as I've not done any real finishing work so far and as such I see myself swirling anything in the near future about as much as I see myself pole vaulting in the olympics, but I find the idea intriguing (the swirled fretboard, not the pole vaulting...).

Now, if any of you are thinking of offering this as a new option in the near future let me know, so I can file for design patent before and injunction the hell out of you :-D just kidding of course.

so long

Andreas aka Ace

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you can finish a fretboard so i am sure you could swirl a neck

your big problem is wear

I'm getting images of a cast acrylic neck with a swirl captured between a fingerboard layer and the neck layer. Ooooooo. :D

Great Prostheta, now you've got me all hot and bothered...

Seriously though, using medium jumbo or jumbo frets, I don't know if wear is going to be that much of an issue. But I thought about a full scallop, too. I guess the sanest thing to do would be to take a "cheap" fretboard and use primer along with a basecoat on it, instead of directly swirling a "naked" maple board, does that sound about right to you guys?

And while we're on the topic of finished necks, anyone ever thought of doing a 100% swirl? I mean, on the back of the neck as well, going around in one pass? Hmm, I might just buy a cheap DIY kit on ebay and give that a try (my lack of prior swirling / finish work nonwithstanding.../

so long

Andreas aka Ace

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found the pics of an old Herc Fede complete swirl, he must have had a deep swirl tank & a good way to push the whole guitar into the water

Thought that it might have been done before. This one is too dark for my taste, might be the images though. The fretboard doesn't look scalloped to me. You got any more info on this guitar? Perhaps if Herc has done more of them or, if he hasn't, if there have been any specific problems?

so long

Andreas aka Ace

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lets put things in context - when i said "your big problem is wear" i did not mean it will definitely wear through

look at the closest examples we have - first the lacquered fender maple neck. we know they wear through eventually, but quite a few never do - it depends how much they are played and the finish that is on them. the old nitro ones wear quickly, some of the modern finishes last a fair bit longer, although look at a maple neck from the 90's and you usually see a loss of paint at the edges and over the dots

the other example that comes to mind is the prince white cloud guitar with fretboard painted to match the body. i seem to recall that prince had his regularly touched up, and the biggest problem was wear at the edges rather than the face of the board

fret size/scalloping would help protect the board, but wont do much to stop the edges wearing away

i think a lot of clear over the swirl would be the safest way to protect it, and that top layer could be touched up if it started to wear. do fretwork and roll the fretboard edges prior to swirling to give it the best chance of surviving. but then their are the downsides of thick lacquer coats on the fretboard to consider

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