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Can I stain my fingerboard?


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Hey,

While staining my headstock, I tested that little area behind the nut where the rosewood fingerboard comes out, and one layer of that stain bring LIFE back to my old rosewood board.

Will there be any reprecussions to giving it one layer of stain? I will treat it with a little lemon oil the next day, and she should be good to go...right?

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In theory, a stain just changes the color of the wood, and not the properties...but I noticed after 5 coats on my headstock, it developed a sheen too it, almost like a quick layer of satin clearcoat.

I am more curious in what the playability of the neck will be like. Will stain eventually come off on my fingers, or will it basically just give the rosewood some new life?

I am going to probably do it regardless in a few hours. Right now I am just sanding the back of the headstock, and making white bevels on the top, to give a sleek look to the headstock. It's looking great, but I want to stain the board overnight.

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You first :D

Haha, I got my before pictures, and in about 2 hours I'll stain it. I am going to leave the frets on, only because I have to crown, level and polish them anyway.

As for the dot inlays...they are the crappy white ones right now, so I will just wipe up over them (oil based won't sink into the synthetic material) and when I eventually get the old inlays replaced, they will be good as new.

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Dylan,

seems like the pro luthiers don't like answering simple questions :D So much potential learning to be done. I checked out 5-6 of your custom websites, and my god the guitars were beautiful.

But anyway, I went ahead and gave it a shot...and it worked really really well. It's still drying because I gave it a generous coat (didn't want to mess around with 3-4 small coats) and the change was drastic (for the better)

My dull lifeless, half rotten rosewood now has energy, depth, and a sick grain pattern! Like I said, its still a little sticky, so I don't know how hard its going to get, I will find out tomorrow, but if its not dry enough, I will hold on the lemon oil for a few days, or maybe just steel wool a little bit to get it smooth and fast again.

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I'm gonna say go ahead and give it a shot Dylan...I mean maple freboards are finished with clear coat, so a stain won't harm it..unless you stain it so much the board remains gooey for like 3 months hahaha

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Did you use just straight stain? Or stain + ploy?

I finish most of my bodies in Minwax poly, and I wait ~one month before I feel it is hard enough to buff out properly.

Nah, I have some polyshades I used for a pool table, but I didn't like the sound of a sealer on my fingerboard. When I play, I love the feeling of digging into the wood for bends, and the smack of hard playing onto natural, somewhat dry wood. It adds a vibe I really enjoy, especially with clean tones.

So if I were to finish it with a clearcoat, it would probably seem like a battle more than an enjoyment playing with the guitar. After 2 days, the stain seems really good, and I am actually leveling/crowning my frets without any problem with the fretboard. I'll give it another 5-6 days before I try oil it or steel wool it however.

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