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Cleaning dark stains from maple neck

assMan

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That's a great looking top you've got there kimono. I've had mine for a few years now and I still sometimes just stare at it. It is just a great aesthetic design from top to bottom, from the dots to the top to the placement of knobs and switches. And boy is it a great guitar to play. I understand that this was an anniversary guitar and MM wanted it to stand out, and this it does. But I think that if MM had offered the quilt or flame top, the reflex would have sold better. That said, enjoy! My guess is that you'll get that board nice and dirty again in no time.
 

tbonesullivan

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That stuff REALLY does help with the oil. The dirt though can be more difficult. Also, I know some people have used gorgomyte, and it is great stuff, but it will get all the oxides from the frets all over the fretboard, so I don't recommend it for oiled maple boards.
 

Robert Lone

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May 14, 2018
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I've seen whiting pull cosmolene (sp?) Out of nos Mauser stock with only 2-3 applications.

Want a tough job, get that crap out of wood after a nice 100 yr soak. lol
 

danielbravo

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Sep 5, 2018
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I used the method on one of my axis and boom! fantastic. Basically the Bartenders stuff made a big difference after cleaning the neck with the steel wood OOO. Excellent result and then oiled the neck. There is no better method than this. Thanks Kimonostereo!
 

jayjayjay

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Feb 18, 2021
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Somewhat related question - what are you using to buff scratches out? I have a bottle of Stew Mac's Scratch Remover, which works - sort of. It will get rid of scratches, but it's a polish, so it's slightly abrasive (or I was using a dirty rag w/ grit), and you can tell where the scratch remover was used vs. factory finish (I tested it on the back of one of my cheaper guitars to see how it would work before I try it on the front of a more expensive model).

I was thinking maybe I need to follow with a carnuba wax and buff with a rag. Or should I find a buffing pad and pull out my angle grinder?
 

kimonostereo

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It really depends. If the scratch is deep, evaluate if it's fixable with buffing and chemicals. You may want to just leave it alone. Scratches rarely affect playability or sound. Drop filling deep scratches is possible, but best left to a pro.

If it's just light scratches, I'll use a light cleaner wax like Meguiar's Cleaner Wax with a little elbow grease first. If that doesn't work, you can try applying some compound by hand or with a foam pad. For medium scratches that are in just the clearcoat, you can use varying grades of sandpaper to smooth the surface out, then follow up with a compound, then swirl remover/glaze, then a wax. If you've never done this before, I'd suggest practicing on an instrument that isn't valuable to you or to just take it to a pro.
 
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jayjayjay

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Feb 18, 2021
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Thanks! Mostly I'm looking at light scratches, like from a pick, or this one spot where I accidentally let a fret polishing wipe brush against my guitar body. The StewMac scratch remover works, but leaves swirl marks, basically.

I was considering Music Nomad's Carnuba Wax (see here: Amazon.com: MusicNomad MN102 Premium White Brazilian Carnauba Guitar Wax, 4 oz: Musical Instruments), but I may try that Meguiar's. That, and a foam pad into my cordless drill. I have any number of cheaper instruments to try.
 

kimonostereo

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You're welcome! I think sometimes it gets confusing between what is a wax and what is a polish. If you're trying to protect a finish, you want a "wax" or sealant/protector type chemical. If you're trying to get scratches out, you'll want something with abrasives in it. Depending on how badly damaged the finish is, the more abrasive material you'll want in the stuff you're using. I suggested the Meguiar's cleaner wax as it has a small bit of abrasive that can clean up finishes as well as carnauba wax.
 

johndough247

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Sep 12, 2021
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Can this be fixed?

Is there any hope for a neck like this? The 1st fret is what it looks like after several scrubbings with Murphy's Oil soap as well as sanding once with 2000 grit. The 2nd and 3rd fret was what it looked like before.

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Was gigging and teaching quite a bit before COVID hit last year and never got around to maintenance...so it was in my gigbag for quite awhile with gunk on it (not my finest hour). When I finally got around to changing strings and started removing the gunk, it (of course) already stained the fingerboard. Can oxalic acid (or anything else) fix something this bad?
 

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tbonesullivan

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Is there any hope for a neck like this? The 1st fret is what it looks like after several scrubbings with Murphy's Oil soap as well as sanding once with 2000 grit. The 2nd and 3rd fret was what it looked like before.

Was gigging and teaching quite a bit before COVID hit last year and never got around to maintenance...so it was in my gigbag for quite awhile with gunk on it (not my finest hour). When I finally got around to changing strings and started removing the gunk, it (of course) already stained the fingerboard. Can oxalic acid (or anything else) fix something this bad?
That doesn't appear to be an oiled neck and fretboard, so any of the advice in this thread is not really going to apply. That looks like a satin poly finished neck where you wore through the finish, and now have stained bare maple, which has started to oxidize as well. That may be as good as you can get it.
 

Astrofreq

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Santa Fe, NM
I think it looks AWESOME as is. I understand to desire to keep it looking new, but it has character as it is now. :)
 
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