Stain on rosewood board

Discussion in 'Finely Finished' started by brandonwhite, Feb 23, 2020.

  1. brandonwhite

    brandonwhite Tele-Meister

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    I know there are products dedicated to "ebonizing" rosewood fretboards out there,
    but I'm not going for the black ebony look.

    What I have is a rosewood fretboard with a bit of a purple hue to it.
    I think adding an orange-ish brown stain will warm it up and de-purple it.

    I guess the question is: will a regular ol' hardware store oil-based stain do the trick?
    Like Minwax or Varathane?
     
  2. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    It will probably work, but I would avoid it. Many of those fretboard stains end up on your fingers. Rosewood is very oily and wont take stain super well. Purple huh? Got a picture? If you must do it I would de oil it with acetone or MEK prior.
     
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  3. brandonwhite

    brandonwhite Tele-Meister

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    It's not straight-up purple, but it's got a bit of a purple undertone. My other rosewood fb's are nice and chocolatey, and this one's a little weird.

    But yeah, thanks for the feedback. I don't want any stain coming off on my fingers.
     
  4. RodeoTex

    RodeoTex Poster Extraordinaire

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    Leather dye works very well for tinting rosewood.
     
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  5. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Friend of Leo's

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    I've used transtint dye diluted in alcohol to stain rosewood but not fretboards. Normally I would say practice on scrap but of course you don't have any. I personally don't like anything on fretboards, particularly oils, but we've been thru that before.
     
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  6. rze99

    rze99 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Agreed.

    Rosewood boards need prepping to take well.

    Get dark brown leather dye. Mix in a bit of black to your taste to get that chocolate look.

    Mix it in a little dish. Test on something before using.

    I use a UK one called Dylon.

    Take the neck off. Use very fine sand paper or wire wool to smooth the surface and remove skin and oil debris from your hands.

    You can use Vaseline applied with a q tip to protect the dot markers. But don’t dye there anyway.

    Get all the surface clean of any sanding smoothing grit.

    Apply the dye. I use a fine artist's brush.

    You need to be very accurate and it'll stain your skin well too!

    Leave it at least overnight.

    Check the dye coverage in good daylight. Apply more if needed. Then leave again

    remove any dye on the frets with a razor blade.

    It will look very matt. I typically then use dark scratch cover oils and rub it entirely off. This imparts a lovely light sheen like a well played fretboard.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2020
  7. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have tried colortone stain diluted with water and it comes off after playing, I stained a light rosewood board ebony with a minwax woodstain pen and it felt tacky and came off in high wear areas. It looked terrible. I hard to reapply, let it dry for a good few weeks and then I sealed it with tru oil. It's been fine since then. I play it daily and that was a few years ago that I sealed it.


    20190518_161339.jpg
     
  8. old_picker

    old_picker Tele-Afflicted

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    rub the rosewood down with acetone
    spirit stain is good - rub it in then rub off the excess with a bit of old tee shirt - do it a couple of times till you get the colour right
    yellow red and blue dye makes brown so you have blue and red giving the board a purple look so a bit of yellow might be enough just to turn that corner
     
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