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The wood looks great, time to finish up some details. Can you see the oxidation on the sides of the frets?

frets.jpg (42841 bytes)

Not in that picture you can't, trust me it's there. You don't think I was going to leave that there do you? Use masking tape to tape the frets off with at least an inch of overhang on each side. Fold one end of the tape so you can easily remove every time. Detack it against your pants first before you put it on the wood, you don't need or want the full adhesive power. It can actually leave a residue on the board, and on clearcoated maple can pull clear off. Pinching the edge of the wool with your thumbnail (grow one) rub in the direction of the fret. You'll see the oxidation disapear and the fret brighten and polish. Don't forget to hit the top of the frets too. If you're seriously anal you can mask off each side of the board up to the frets and polish the angled end of the frets. It's 4 am so I won't be doing this tonight. After a few frets the tape will start to get dark and it's time to switch sides, then replace, you don't want to wear through the tape.

frets_wool.jpg (36663 bytes)

Notice the difference in 21-24? (the 4 on the right:) It's a subtle detail but I notice those the most. Back to work, only 20 more to go!

frets_compare.jpg (40772 bytes)

30 minites later the frets are shining. I'm cleaning the board of all the wool fibers and dust with an old toothbrush. It gets it out of the pores and from against the frets very well.

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Now that the board is raw and dry from wooling I'm going to add some oil back to it. I'll use either bore or lemon oil for this. Lemon oil evaporates faster so it's bore oil on this one and every guitar that's special to me. Bore oil is specifically made for the bores in woodwind instruments, good stuff. Thanks to Rodney James for this bottle!

board_bottle.jpg (57034 bytes)

Easy, a little goes a LONG way. 2 drops in the tip of my rag and I'll stripe the wood between about 5 frets at a time (down low and about 10 up high where they're skinny) to unload the oil.

board_oil.jpg (38646 bytes)

Go back and spread it around making sure to get right up against the frets. Reload and continue on till the board is covered. By the time you get to the end it's time to start buffing the excess off where you started. Buff till the wood is obviously no longer leaching oil.

board_oil_compare.jpg (53113 bytes)

Now this I consider finished. Remember what it looked like before? I'm happy.

board_done.jpg (37729 bytes)

Time for a cig or 2 and then tackle the body.

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Revised: June 24, 2009.