Fender maple fretboard wear

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Mr Insane, Mar 1, 2012.

  1. Mr Insane

    Mr Insane Senior Member

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    For my Tele project, I've decided to relic the neck to look something like this:
    [​IMG]

    2 questions:
    what exactley are the dark spots on the fretboard?

    and how can I mimick them?
     
  2. alk-3

    alk-3 MLP Sponsor

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    The dark spots are where the finish has worn off the fretboard, and the raw wood has oxidized and turned very dark. In order to do this, you need to remove the finish in those spots, then get the wood to oxidize or 'get dirty'. It's not easy to pull this off convincingly.
     
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  3. River

    River Senior Member

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    Best accomplished by playing.

    I've never seen a fake maple board job that didn't look fake. Really, really, fake.
     
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  4. Juan7fernandez

    Juan7fernandez Senior Member

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    I think wearing it down looking authentic is the hardest part. As long as you get that part down, the colors will start to show up just by playing it. the sweat and dirt from your finger tip will get the job done pretty quickly. it happened to me road worn tele. It came with the fretboard already worn through the finish but the color of the wood was still a little bright. In a matter of a month of playing the guitar every night (and not cleaning the fretboard) it was already very noticeable.

    Like I said at the beginning its really hard to make the missing chunks of finish look natural, so definitely look for as much reference as possible. There is plenty out there on the web.
     
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  5. Juan7fernandez

    Juan7fernandez Senior Member

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    try to find close-up shot of worn fretboards and study them as much as possible before you attempt it.
     
  6. Mr Insane

    Mr Insane Senior Member

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    that hard huh, guess I'll just let it happen with time.
     
  7. Juan7fernandez

    Juan7fernandez Senior Member

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    Well the wearing of the finish will take forever I'm not gonna lie. We are talking years of daily use to get it to the point you are talking about. (of course this depends on how think the finish is, but even still I think it will take years of use to get it to look reliced)

    I'd say take your time, study the reference pictures and do it when you feel comfortable.
     
  8. chiasson

    chiasson Junior Member

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    Wow, that guitar looks like it's seen a few gigs.

    I have an AmS tele that I bought from a music store that had a flood. the guitar was literally under water. I dried it out and it's as new; however, the finish on the maple board chipped off in spots and after playing it for a year or so it looks like it's a lot older than it actually is. You could throw yours in a lake for a day or two :D. j/k. I say forgo the relic and just play the thing, HARD!
     
  9. JayDee80

    JayDee80 Senior Member

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    Black dot inlays.

    Sorry, couldn't resist :D
     
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  10. gobig2000

    gobig2000 Senior Member

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    TBH i dont get with the whole relic idea, i like the aged color etc but wear and tear should be made by yourself IMO
     
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  11. alexanderja

    alexanderja Senior Member

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    This is how the board turned out on my '56 replica....

    Not saying its brilliant, but it does look pretty convincing in the flesh.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Kirrt

    Kirrt Guest

    ^ I need an outside pic of that one :slash:
     
  13. alexanderja

    alexanderja Senior Member

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    My camera is a bit crap, .... but I did just go outside in my pants to take it.....

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Cpt_Gonzo

    Cpt_Gonzo Senior Member

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    Well that DOES look convincing. And I imagine that it will look 99.9% "real" in a few years!
     
  15. ptate

    ptate V.I.P. Member V.I.P. Member

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    The reason they look fake is often the wear pattern, rubbing against the grain as much of the loss is through original laquer application thickness and paint hardening/chipping over time, plus the guitarist doesn't often play the "whole" neck.

    Look at the Tele, it's only noticeably worn up to fret 15 and from 7-15 it's only the top few strings...!!:thumb:
     
  16. rarearsenic

    rarearsenic Member

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    If you want reference photos. Go to eddievegas.com. He takes a ton of close up pictures and you'll see how the fretboard wears over time
     
  17. Reverend D

    Reverend D Senior Member

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    Yeah definitely you don't see the whole neck worn unless your someone like Brad Paisley or something haha. If you find a old guitar that the guy played cowboy chords on you might not find things worn higher than the 7th fret.. :D I have certain patterns I wear but don't come close to wearing as much as some of the really good players on here.. :D

    Regards,

    Don
     

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