New Gibson Fretboard Observation

Rick

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I'd be more concerned if I received a wet fretboard. Oil isn't wet. This is not a Gibson thing. Guitars don't generally come from the factory with an oily board. I know you think it's super cool to put oil on your fretboard to make it look wet every time you change the strings, but it's unnecessary and isn't doing anything to keep your board from being "dry."

Rosewood comes in all different shades from red to brown to nearly black. A "light" colored board is not dry.
 

PierM

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I'd be more concerned if I received a wet fretboard. Oil isn't wet. This is not a Gibson thing. Guitars don't generally come from the factory with an oily board. I know you think it's super cool to put oil on your fretboard to make it look wet every time you change the strings, but it's unnecessary and isn't doing anything to keep your board from being "dry."

Rosewood comes in all different shades from red to brown to nearly black. A "light" colored board is not dry.


In fact isn’t a oiling problem, at all. The fact people believe they are “fixing” the look overoiling their fretboards, doesnt means they understand the problem, which is, as said before, the sloppy prepping of the wood, prior the fretting. They are cutting corners, that’s it.
 

danzego

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Awesome, thanks! And the example you provided is exactly one week after my guitar came off the line. :)

Whoa, cool. That would also make yours stamped the day before the one I have arriving this week (a replacement for one I got with a ridged neck).
 

danzego

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I'd be more concerned if I received a wet fretboard. Oil isn't wet. This is not a Gibson thing. Guitars don't generally come from the factory with an oily board. I know you think it's super cool to put oil on your fretboard to make it look wet every time you change the strings, but it's unnecessary and isn't doing anything to keep your board from being "dry."

Rosewood comes in all different shades from red to brown to nearly black. A "light" colored board is not dry.

I don’t mean this to be confrontational, but while a light colored board may not be dry, a straight up dry board definitely IS. Both of these absolutely exist and it’s not hard to tell the difference.

I’d go so far as to say most people complaining that their board is dry aren’t doing so just because it’s a light colored rosewood.
 
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danzego

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In fact isn’t a oiling problem, at all. The fact people believe they are “fixing” the look overoiling their fretboards, doesnt means they understand the problem, which is, as said before, the sloppy prepping of the wood, prior the fretting. They are cutting corners, that’s it.

What are they doing wrong? I certainly don’t know the entire process, so I’m definitely curious. :)
 

Rick

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I don’t mean this to be confrontational, but while a light colored board may not be dry, a straight up dry board definitely IS. Both of these absolutely exist and it’s not hard to tell the difference.

I’d go so far as to say most people complaining that their board is dry aren’t doing so just because it’s a light colored rosewood.
Can you give an example of a "dry" rosewood fretboard?
 

MSB

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i'd bet more people oil it to try to make it darker than they feel its dry. Slap some black RW on a few and the complaints go out the window.

I really can't recall a time I oiled one because it felt dry, but I've done it plenty because it looked it.
 

danzego

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Can you give an example of a "dry" rosewood fretboard?

Not really sure what you mean by "give you an example" of a dry rosewood fretboard. When you see a rosewood fretboard that looks pale and dry, that's an example of a "dry" rosewood fretboard.
 

StudioFan

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If you were to actually play you frigging guitars then they wouldn’t look dry .

They are not dry , and they do not require oil , and that is why Gibson does not oil them .

A little Fast Fret (white mineral oil) can be nice though.

Why does everyone think a good board should be so dark ?

The rosewood board on my 65 is not so dark as it is smooth and buttery brown .
 

Dilver

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I have a different theory: Gibson got into all sorts of trouble a few years ago because of their rosewood sources and a lot of their stock was seized. I think they have found a new source for rosewood and it is of lesser quality or perhaps even a different strain of rosewood than what we’re used to seeing. There are many types of rosewood that can qualify as “in the rosewood family” and would still allow Gibson to list the material used as rosewood.

Now before people start blasting me, I’m not saying your new Les Pauls are of inferior quality, I’m just noticing a difference in the rosewood fretboards on Gibson guitars in the past 4 years or so, and guessing as to the reason why. I have no proof nor do I claim to know.
 

Rick

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Not really sure what you mean by "give you an example" of a dry rosewood fretboard. When you see a rosewood fretboard that looks pale and dry, that's an example of a "dry" rosewood fretboard.
I'm mean show me a picture, link to a thread with someone that has a dry fretboard, etc. I mean it should be common since they come from Gibson like this right?

I have a strong feeling those "pale and dry" fretboards you are talking about are just light colored boards that aren't drenched in oil. They are just as dry as any other piece of wood on a guitar is supposed to be. Oil isn't wet, and it isn't needed for fretboards other than aesthetic reasons after cleaning.
 

danzego

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I'm mean show me a picture, link to a thread with someone that has a dry fretboard, etc. I mean it should be common since they come from Gibson like this right?

I have a strong feeling those "pale and dry" fretboards you are talking about are just light colored boards that aren't drenched in oil. They are just as dry as any other piece of wood on a guitar is supposed to be. Oil isn't wet, and it isn't needed for fretboards other than aesthetic reasons after cleaning.

This is nothing new. A simple web search will provide plenty of discussions and pictures on the topic. There’s a difference between simply being dry and dry as in “not wet”. Furthermore, people know what light colored woods look like.

I know you’re skeptical, having not experienced this, but give folks the benefit of the doubt; it’s a very simple thing to notice. In fact, it’s the first thing I noticed when I pulled my 2019 Traditional out of its case when I bought it brand new last year.
 

PierM

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Yeah, let’s keep acting denial, Gibson will never change.

200$ Eko fretboard (24 years old), never oiled;

img_0192-jpg.323794


Gibson parade;

2zyv6uf.jpg
IMG_2378_zpsyvpyauqi.jpg
IMG_2377_zpsigznd3hj.jpg
EsTMKs7.jpg
P4jYjep.jpg
sPMJjvb.jpg
Gibson_USA2017_Rosewood_Issues.jpg
 

lpfan1980

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I was in Sam Ash the other day & was checking out a new LP Standard they had on the floor. I noticed that the fretboard was really dry. I noticed that on a lot of other models too.
Are they not conditioning the fretboards with oil or something? The wood looked like it was freshly sanded.
I ves seen that too in demos nothing some Lem Oil cant fix. Maybe they ship better dry i dunno. :D
 

danzego

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Absolutely not one of the more extreme examples I’ve seen, but here are a couple of pics of a dry from the factory board. The whitish hue was obvious to me the first time I saw these pics. This guitar will be here Friday; I asked my sales guy at Sweetwater to have their tech condition the board before being sent.

48251775666_c6ec1fff2f_o.jpg


48251844287_bd44ca6e3d_o.jpg



And the whole guitar, for kicks:

48251776036_76cd15241d_o.jpg


When I got my 2019 Traditional last year, it definitely needed to be conditioned. I wasn’t just mistaking the board for a light colored piece of wood, haha.
 

Rick

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Absolutely not one of the more extreme examples I’ve seen, but here are a couple of pics of a dry from the factory board. The whitish hue was obvious to me the first time I saw these pics. This guitar will be here Friday; I asked my sales guy at Sweetwater to have their tech condition the board before being sent.

48251775666_c6ec1fff2f_o.jpg


48251844287_bd44ca6e3d_o.jpg



And the whole guitar, for kicks:

48251776036_76cd15241d_o.jpg


When I got my 2019 Traditional last year, it definitely needed to be conditioned. I wasn’t just mistaking the board for a light colored piece of wood, haha.
Jesus christ. That is not a "dry" fretboard. I mean, technically it is. Because a guitar without a dry fretboard would be a disaster. Any guitar maker worth anything goes through a lot to make sure the wood is as dry as possible. But that board does not "need" oil at all. I get it, you prefer an oily board. That doesn't make it "dry." Finger oils will make that fretboard look "wet" just like rubbing unnecessary oil on it.
 

Rick

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Yeah, let’s keep acting denial, Gibson will never change.

200$ Eko fretboard (24 years old), never oiled;

img_0192-jpg.323794


Gibson parade;

2zyv6uf.jpg
IMG_2378_zpsyvpyauqi.jpg
IMG_2377_zpsigznd3hj.jpg
EsTMKs7.jpg
P4jYjep.jpg
sPMJjvb.jpg
Gibson_USA2017_Rosewood_Issues.jpg
A picture of an old guitar with a fretboard that is polished and darkened by playing for 25 years, vs a bunch of pictures of fingerboards that either aren't sanded properly or actually did get wet and have raised grain. No one is in denial. Nothing you showed was a "dry" fretboard.
 

danzego

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Jesus christ. That is not a "dry" fretboard. I mean, technically it is. Because a guitar without a dry fretboard would be a disaster. Any guitar maker worth anything goes through a lot to make sure the wood is as dry as possible. But that board does not "need" oil at all. I get it, you prefer an oily board. That doesn't make it "dry." Finger oils will make that fretboard look "wet" just like rubbing unnecessary oil on it.

Well, I do know this, Rick- fretboard conditioner and other wood conditioners for many instruments exist for a reason and have for many, MANY years. It’s not just to make it “look wet” (which is not at all what I’m going for, by the way). It’s to keep the wood in tip top shape over the course of time and, for fretboards, it’s also to give it an optimal playing surface over the entire board without having to put thousands of hours into making it that way.

I sure would like my new guitar to feel and play that way right out of the gate, whether you agree with their use or not. :)

Regarding your use of the words “dry” and “wet”, I think it’s safe to say that everyone understands that fretboards- and wood in general- is supposed to be dry and not wet. They’re referring to it not being conditioned properly to give it that optimal playing surface I mentioned. It’s just like putting a finish on a guitar- to make it look and feel pleasing. I don’t see why that’s a problem.
 
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