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Steel Wool

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by GregWV, Feb 22, 2013.

  1. GregWV

    GregWV Tele-Meister

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    Took some steel wool to the neck of me Tele last night. Maybe the best mod I've ever done.

    Anybody else done this with great results?
     
  2. 73Fender

    73Fender Friend of Leo's

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    Lots of posts of members here using steel wool (careful with that stuff), 3 M pads (I prefer these) and or sand paper. I'm assuming you had a sticky nitro neck?

    Other guys say play the hell out of the nitro stickiness and it will go away, hasn't worked for me yet but I have limited playing time.

    Glad it worked out for you. First time I did it my white 3 M pad (fine grit) came up with a white powdery residue, then smoothness and no visible evidence of the procedure.
     
  3. Major Gruber

    Major Gruber Tele-Afflicted

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    I have this november 1951 Telecaster with a 1972 wallnut refin. After inquiries, I decided I'll never give another refin on this guitar. Old sandings thinned the body already too much (around 1,5 millimeters) so one more sanding was definitely too too much. But the 1972 finish was shinning awfully. I really hated that. So with the advice of my luthier, I took a 000 steel wool and gently made it more and more matt. I could have gone completely matt, but I kept it satin and it's beautiful. Now I'm happy with it and I feel good with the fact it'll never go back to the original blonde :)
     
  4. sjtalon

    sjtalon Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I use to use 0000 steel wool but it can be a mess on the pups if you don't tape them up. Now I have a Grey 3m pad (Scotch-Brite) that is the ticket.
     
  5. RI Tom

    RI Tom TDPRI Member

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    Per some helpful feedback I received here a few weeks back, I went with a green 3M pad on the back of my MIM Tele's sticky neck - wow, 1 minute or less of "work" and the results are just great.
     
  6. telex76

    telex76 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I used steel wool on both my AVRI 52 tele and 57 strat.
    Never been sorry after 10 years.
     
  7. strateles

    strateles Tele-Holic

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    I'm in the 3M camp, worked wonders!
     
  8. 73Fender

    73Fender Friend of Leo's

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    I used to use steel wool but I heard nightmares about those metal hairs getting in the pickups, and that once they come near the magnets they even become more magnetically attracted or charged (something like that).

    When polishing frets, I used to tape over the pick ups, then cover that part of the body with plastic wrap. When done, I would vacuum with a shop vac, then blow off with the shop vac, maybe overkill but never had a problem but all that is a pain and you can still miss some of those hairs.

    Read a guy's post somewhere, he killed one set of pick ups with steel wool, then next time he removed the neck to use the steel wool. When done he reinstalled the neck but found he still had steel wool hairs around. He took a magnet and went over his clothes and found that they where all over his clothing.

    I'm done with steel wool. In my last career we used the red 3M pads for sanding burrs etc in metal so figure a rough grit, the green for polishing shafts etc. so medium grit. I only discovered the white / grey pads recently but they are very fine grit.
     
  9. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Silver Supporter

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    Yep, keep that steel away, use 3M pads. I used a rough green pad <30 seconds and then follow with the white pad to kind of buff it out. Fantastic job! Start out lightly and it will still leave some gloss. If you want more off, just do some more buffing.
     
  10. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity

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    Yeah, steel wool and electric guitars are like Gasoline and camp fires…

    it's entirely possible everything will work out fine…. but….. there's always the real possibility of an "Ohhhh Fu**" moment too…

    Ron Kinr
     
  11. 73Fender

    73Fender Friend of Leo's

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    Yep, and I usually use a cleaner afterwards to get off any leftover residue.

    I hate those moments although they can serve as good teaching tools, like the school of hard knocks, once bitten twice shy or something.
     
  12. TeleKato

    TeleKato Friend of Leo's

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    Scotchbrite pads for me. Though someone one this forum, once, told me that I had "ruined" the neck by doing so. However, if ruining it means that it's now smooth as silk, then ruined it was.

    Oh ... I then move to using some ultra-fine sandpaper (1000grit or more) and then get out a fingernail buffer and a little of the same stuff that you use to make one's nails shiny (a very fine-grained emulsion -- I've used car scratch-treatment too) ... and that finishes the job off right.
     
  13. Cymro14

    Cymro14 Tele-Afflicted

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    Gonna take some of that steel wool to the poly body on my Baja ...round the parts that wear naturally........gently, and then all over the body.
     
  14. BlueCajun

    BlueCajun Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Just curious, did any of you guys steel wool or scotchbrite the front (if maple fretboard) of the neck as well? Or just the back? If so, how did it look?

    I've used scotchbrite on the back of my poly finished Strat neck with rosewood board. And I'm pretty happy with the results. I've been thinking of doing the same to the front and back of my nitro CP50s Strat neck (it's one of the nitro FSRs) with maple board. But I'm a little nervous about how it will look.
     
  15. 73Fender

    73Fender Friend of Leo's

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    I've only done the back as the the sticky back was all that was bugging me.
     
  16. Fatmanstratman

    Fatmanstratman Poster Extraordinaire

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    Interestingly enough, when I was teaching myself all the trial-and-error tricks for relicing a poly body (which started out that real bright mustard-yellow colour) I used steel wool onto which I sprayed WD40.

    Not only did it make the steel wool less abrasive, it also got into the poly and darkened it. I had made a "dummy" pickguard to ensure that the area underneath was protected, as would happen in a real vintage guitar.

    The results were quite pleasing:

    [​IMG]
     
  17. thumbpick

    thumbpick Tele-Afflicted

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    fatmanstratman...good idea..i could live with that
     
  18. ddewerd

    ddewerd Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    steel wool for me

    Did it about 20 years ago on my '63. I touch it up once every couple of years.

    Not a great pic (and probably not a great job either), but you get the idea

    [​IMG]

    Smooth as silk!

    Cheers,
    Doug
     
  19. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    3M pads hit all of my necks, unless they are satin to begin with.
     
  20. xFallenx

    xFallenx Friend of Leo's

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    I use my fingers to wear down the neck of my guitars ;)
     
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