I can't get a good finish on my neck

juanbermusic

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Hi everyone!! I have a maple neck, I have tried linseed oil, but it went away with the friction. So I decided to sand and a while ago I used tru Oil, but it also comes off the back. I don't know if I'm doing something wrong when applying it, should I sand between coats? How many layers should I use? It says on the bottle that it's carcinogenic, so I'm not amused that it comes off with friction. (Do you recommend any other finish with a matte/satin effect? I have a painting gun)
 

Timbresmith1

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The solvents or Japan-driers in some oils are reputedly carcinogenic. Pretty sure almost all of that goes away when the solvent evaporates and the finish polymerizes.
Was the neck raw wood when you bought it, or was it sealed?
If it had sealer in it, unless you sanded it before you oiled it, you just put oil onto sealer, and most of that probably got wiped off.
I prefer one coat sanding sealer and a few coats of gloss lacquer.
Everybody seems to want that old Fender neck feel, while avoiding what Fender did 🤷🏼‍♂️ (Which was fast and economical).
 

Timbresmith1

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My take on it? Gloss lacquer that dries hard (only takes a few coats) and then play the wear in. You can steel wool it lightly with 0000 steel wool, but taking all of the finish off just puts you back at square 1.
 

Sea Devil

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If it is indeed raw wood, and I suspect it's not, Feed-N-Wax is great for providing just a bit of protection from moisture while retaining some of the feel of raw wood.
 

Boreas

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If it is indeed raw wood, and I suspect it's not, Feed-N-Wax is great for providing just a bit of protection from moisture while retaining some of the feel of raw wood.

How do you know the oil is "coming off"? Is it peeling? Scratching? How much did you put on? How rough are your hands? What was the final sanding grit you used before applying it? Pix are always helpful.

Oil will have difficulty getting its teeth into glass-smooth rock maple. The wood is pretty close to steel! You may want to try something like 400 grit MAX on the area that gets the most wear, and apply MANY coats as directed. Each coat isn't more than a few molecules thick after wiping off the residual. But those molecules should bind better with the rougher wood, giving subsequent coats more tooth.
 

Beebe

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The solvents or Japan-driers in some oils are reputedly carcinogenic. Pretty sure almost all of that goes away when the solvent evaporates and the finish polymerizes.
Was the neck raw wood when you bought it, or was it sealed?
If it had sealer in it, unless you sanded it before you oiled it, you just put oil onto sealer, and most of that probably got wiped off.
I prefer one coat sanding sealer and a few coats of gloss lacquer.
Everybody seems to want that old Fender neck feel, while avoiding what Fender did 🤷🏼‍♂️ (Which was fast and economical).

The solvents go away for the most part. The siccatives (aka driers) maybe not.

Siccatives are metallic salts that act as catalysts which speed up the polymerization of the oil. Catalysts by definition don't get used up in chemical reactions, but just help speed them up.

So my guess is that there would be a very small amount of these heavy metals (maybe Manganese, Cobalt, less likely Lead...) still in the hardened oil. These may or may not be harmful depending on exactly which compounds are used, how much was used, and individual sensitivity.

I would also guess that most of these metals would be surrounded by hardened oil resulting in a very small amount actually contacting the skin.

So I would be cautious of hardware store oils that don't necessarily have clear ingredient lists.

You can make a less toxic product using items you can find at art supply stores:

Artist oil paint medium (Like Water Purified Linseed oil or Walnut oil) or pure Tung oil as the drying oil.

Citrus, Rosemary, or Spike Lavender essence instead of petroleum based solvents for diluting oils.

And if you want a coat to harden faster than a week or two you can use UV lights (like violin makers use), or add your own siccative, or dryer that an artist would add to help oil paint dry faster. At least you'll know exactly which metal you are adding.

EDIT: Some good info on "driers" here:

 
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Silverface

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I don't know if I'm doing something wrong when applying it, should I sand between coats? How many layers should I use? It says on the bottle that it's carcinogenic, so I'm not amused that it comes off with friction.
One coat of Tru Oil builds up a film about 1/30th the thickness of a SNGLE coat or lacquer - and you need at least 3 coats of lacquer before it flows out evenly.

In other words, you need about 100 coats of Tru Oil to equal a MINIMAL clear lacquer finish, not including any sealer!

Tru Oil is a penetrating stain with some hardening properties provided by polymerized oils. The container is mostly evaporative solvents that do not stay on the surface.

It's essentially the same type of product as a Danish Oil, and you need a LOT of coats for it to provide aa minimal protective film. And if you wipe them on, you re-wet thge previous coats and remove part of the existing film in the process.

It's a good moisture-resistant oil that provides a very low sheen, and the hardening resin gives a bit of surface protection. But unlike coatings, it has little abrasion or impact resistance. It's best when you want to add a little color and moistue resistance to a surface and maintain a natural look.

But it is not a protective coating anywhere close to lacquer, varnish, polyurethane etc.
 

RodeoTex

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Just spray it with lacquer since you've got the equipment.
Oils are not a finish according to Warmoth. It's stamped into the heel of any maple neck you buy from them.
 

Painter644

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The solvents go away for the most part. The siccatives (aka driers) maybe not.

Siccatives are metallic salts that act as catalysts which speed up the polymerization of the oil. Catalysts by definition don't get used up in chemical reactions, but just help speed them up.

So my guess is that there would be a very small amount of these heavy metals (maybe Manganese, Cobalt, less likely Lead...) still in the hardened oil. These may or may not be harmful depending on exactly which compounds are used, how much was used, and individual sensitivity.

I would also guess that most of these metals would be surrounded by hardened oil resulting in a very small amount actually contacting the skin.

So I would be cautious of hardware store oils that don't necessarily have clear ingredient lists.

You can make a less toxic product using items you can find at art supply stores:

Artist oil paint medium (Like Water Purified Linseed oil or Walnut oil) or pure Tung oil as the drying oil.

Citrus, Rosemary, or Spike Lavender essence instead of petroleum based solvents for diluting oils.

And if you want a coat to harden faster than a week or two you can use UV lights (like violin makers use), or add your own siccative, or dryer that an artist would add to help oil paint dry faster. At least you'll know exactly which metal you are adding.

EDIT: Some good info on "driers" here:

Right. Japan driers have killed more painters than turpentine or pigments. Ironically, some people think acrylic paints are safer than oils but they are wrong. Linseed oil is vegetable oil, beeswax is harmless and thinners, turps or odorless thinners can be used sparingly and covered, but the methyl methacrylate is certainly not edible - the pigments are the same, and unless one rubs pigments into one’s skin, the paint itself is harmless. Some not-so-clever “artist” have used raw pigment powder to the detriment to their health - I mean, some of these, in unmixed, airborne form, are heavy metal pigments.

Additives, whether to liquids or in aerosols, are the worst! But, the world, or a tiny part of it, is still searching for an effective fixative for drawings - only one guy had it and the secret went with him to his grave.
 

frfr1982

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Ciao!
Hi everyone!! I have a maple neck, I have tried linseed oil, but it went away with the friction. So I decided to sand and a while ago I used tru Oil, but it also comes off the back. I don't know if I'm doing something wrong when applying it, should I sand between coats? How many layers should I use? It says on the bottle that it's carcinogenic, so I'm not amused that it comes off with friction. (Do you recommend any other finish with a matte/satin effect? I have a painting gun)
Ciao!
I'm Francois from Italy.
For the super fast feeling and confort the best way for my DIY necks Is a thruoil finish from beretta. I think musicman do that and te result It's stunning , the best way for apply it's Thin layers ,1 at day, and remove the eccesso with a Cotton inside an old sock.try It if u can!!
. I search some fotos right now cause i have only a front view.
Ciao!!!
 

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shobotan

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I may have fluked the finish on the maple neck I put on a DIY P Bass, as I have minimal guitar finishing expertise, but I rattle canned on a clear satin acrylic lacquer which I'm really happy with. It feels similar to a Performer Tele I have. Sanded with 1200 after 3 coats, same again, then left it that.
 

Dbrian66

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This is a Squier neck I used on a Strat build project. I sanded it down to bare wood and then finished it with Tru-oil. I forget how many coats, but it was a lot. Sanded the finish very lightly between ever third coat or so.

I am just a hobby player, so I’m not playing the guitar a lot, but it’s been about 5 years now and the finish is still good.

A6AA4CD8-AB8B-45D1-9332-60D0FF837F1B.jpeg
 




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