Did vintage Fenders have waxed screws?

Discussion in 'Vintage Tele Discussion Forum (pre-1974)' started by fernieite, Oct 16, 2018.

  1. Telecasterless

    Telecasterless Friend of Leo's

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    I wax screws where water is involved. Screws on your shower drain for example. Lots of water means rust over time. I had to use an easy out (which wasn't easy) to get someone else's old rusted in drain screws out with buggered ends. In this application, I think wax or soap is a good idea. I might do it with wood, but maybe not a guitar.
     
  2. Paul Jenkin

    Paul Jenkin Friend of Leo's

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    My dad was a cabinet maker and antique furniture restorer and he used to put a tiny dab of bees wax on screws before he used them. He said it doesn't reduce the effectiveness of the screw but it makes them a lot easier to extract without stripping the slotted head.

    I wouldn't be surprised if Fender (and others) used this technique.
     
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  3. Tonetele

    Tonetele Poster Extraordinaire

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    One of the two luthiers I trust,who has worked on at least three of my builds, advised me to cut smaller holes ( say by 1/16") and then use wax on the screw so you get a tighter fit but don't harm the wood. I let him do some finishing set ups on three guitars. He attended the Galloup School of Luthiery in the US- a protracted live in course- and is a skilled guitar builderI think he has a point.
     
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  4. Count

    Count Friend of Leo's

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    Soap, Beeswax, Candle wax, been using them on screws for at least sixty years. Taught by my grandfather who did his cabinet maker apprenticeship in the 1890s. He was taught by his father the technique has been in use by professional wood workers for an awful long time. Forget the 1990 story, 1990 BC maybe.
     
  5. Ricky D.

    Ricky D. Poster Extraordinaire

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    The practice goes back much farther than the 90s. Growing up in the 50s, I always helped my father with projects around the house. He kept an old bar of soap in his tool box to lube the threads before running a screw into wood. Different material but the same principle.

    I wouldn't use oil, could get messy. :)
     
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  6. netgear69

    netgear69 Tele-Afflicted

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    I use a dry bar of soap on every screw i use.. learnt my lesson well forcing a screw into a fresh drilled hole the screw heats up and off comes the head
     
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  7. Alamo

    Alamo Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    If you don't have any wax or soap at hand, just pull the screw, pin or nail through your hair.
    as if combing your hair.
     
  8. Grant Austin

    Grant Austin Tele-Meister

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    For tuner screws: wax. For big, load-bearing screws: wood glue. I sometimes use wood glue on pickguard screws too.

    My superstition is that the wood glue helps keep the holes from stripping out.
     
  9. fasteddie42

    fasteddie42 Tele-Holic

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    Dad taught me to keep a bar of soap on the jobsite.
     
  10. TELE_BLUES

    TELE_BLUES Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    It's a really good idea for the cheap overseas made soft screws.Almost a must in maple,rosewood ect or any other really hard wood.Twist a screw head of a screw once and you'll lube screws forever
     
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  11. thegreatshocka

    thegreatshocka Tele-Meister

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    I got some bars of beeswax on Amazon specifically for tuner and neck screws. Before I was using a bar of Irish Spring, which worked great and made my guitar smell clean and manly! ULTIMATE TONE.
     
  12. kafka

    kafka Tele-Afflicted

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    I wonder how changes in dental care habits have affected the quality of this advice. I wonder if certain craftsmen were rated higher because they chewed tobacco.

    "Never trust a carpenter who doesn't chew." I think we can get that inserted into the lexicon. Then someone can discover the meaning and do some research. And then, when they test, they'll find that it's false, and then people will point out that tobacco cultivation has changed over the past 50 years, so their test is wrong.

    And then, I can start marketing small batch gourmet spittin' tobacco, formulated specifically to help your nails hold.
     
  13. Tedzo

    Tedzo Tele-Meister

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    You guys are screwy.....
     
  14. fernieite

    fernieite Tele-Meister

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    Thanks for the comments indicating that waxing screws has been a common practice for many decades.

    Here's a picture of a vintage 1940s / 50s Parowax box that recommends the practice as well. I imagine almost every household in the States and Canada had a box of paraffin (candle wax) like this back in the day, and many used a bit of wax on their screws, as a result.

    Anyway, getting back to my original question - can anyone verify that this was a practice with assembling vintage Fender instruments? ;)

    IMG_0485.JPG
     
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  15. trapdoor2

    trapdoor2 Tele-Holic Gold Supporter

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    For guitars (and banjos), you need the ultimate in mojo. I prefer...

    51CPEZE-tGL.jpg
     
  16. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I watched an old carpenter rub the point of a nail in his ear when he thought the wood was about to split.
     
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  17. Sconnie

    Sconnie Tele-Afflicted

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    Seems to me it's most important for driving screws into hardwood, especially tiny screws.

    Remember: less is more.
     
  18. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've always heard Fender used wax on the neck screws. Frankly though, back in the day we never even thought about removing a neck so no idea for sure!
    Personally I would not use oil, but a small amount, on a maple neck, is probably not an issue..
    But I use a little tube of Burts Bees Wax to lubricate the neck screws. It's expecially important on new necks with holes that are virgin.
     
  19. zulicious

    zulicious TDPRI Member

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    I've used the same local beeswax since '83.
    In a sealed container, so it never dries out.

    I was taught carpentry by my uncle in South
    East Asia since I was seven; very familiar with
    natural beeswax. And lots and lots of shellac.
    Learned this fairly early in the apprenticeship.

    Then again, I still know some that never ever
    use anything metal in carpentry, till this day.
     
  20. archiemax

    archiemax Tele-Meister

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    Me, I use bar soap for neck and tuner screws. All it takes is one episode of a tuner screw breaking off & you're a convert for life.
     
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