#1
Recently I bough an old gibson U2, I was trying to clean the metal parts betwen the frets but they are very dirty and even rusty in some parts. What do you recommend me for cleaning them?

Thanks.
#2
Quote by sevmc22
Recently I bough an old gibson U2, I was trying to clean the metal parts betwen the frets but they are very dirty and even rusty in some parts. What do you recommend me for cleaning them?

Thanks.


The metal parts are the frets. Just saying.

Anyway, get some super fine 0000 steel wool, painters tape, a terry or cotton cloth and some polishing compound.

First, tape off the fretboard around each fret (one by one or all at once, however you like) so that the steel wool, even though it is a fine grade, won't damage the wood. The GENTLY polish the frets with the steel wool. You'll notice it will remove oxidation, dirt, grime and possibly even light "rust". Then take the cotton cloth, dab it in the polishing compound (I have the Turtle Wax kind found in the automotive section) and then GENTLY rub is on the fret after it has been polished with the steel wool. You should pretty much see a very shiny, almost brand new looking fret. Repeat this process all the way down the neck on each fret. Then clean and condition the fretboard with some lemon oil or fretboard conditioner and that will top it off.

And, of course, make sure you remove all the strings. It'll be fine for a little while. Hope this helps.

Also, the steel wool fibers will get almost everywhere, so I'd lay down an old towel on the table and lay something over the guitar so that the pickups don't pick up the fibers. If the fibers get on the finish, they're pretty light, so just blow them up and gently dust the rest with a cotton cloth.
ESP Eclipse II SW - D'Addario 11-49 Eb
LTD F-400FM - Ernie Ball 12-56 C#
Ibanez Iceman 300
Peavey Transtube 112 EFX
Last edited by TH3M B0N3Z at Dec 6, 2011,
#3
Quote by TH3M B0N3Z
The metal parts are the frets. Just saying.

Anyway, get some super fine 0000 steel wool, painters tape, a terry or cotton cloth and some polishing compound.

First, tape off the fretboard around each fret (one by one or all at once, however you like) so that the steel wool, even though it is a fine grade, won't damage the wood. The GENTLY polish the frets with the steel wool. You'll notice it will remove oxidation, dirt, grime and possibly even light "rust". Then take the cotton cloth, dab it in the polishing compound (I have the Turtle Wax kind found in the automotive section) and then GENTLY rub is on the fret after it has been polished with the steel wool. You should pretty much see a very shiny, almost brand new looking fret. Repeat this process all the way down the neck on each fret. Then clean and condition the fretboard with some lemon oil or fretboard conditioner and that will top it off.

And, of course, make sure you remove all the strings. It'll be fine for a little while. Hope this helps.

Also, the steel wool fibers will get almost everywhere, so I'd lay down an old towel on the table and lay something over the guitar so that the pickups don't pick up the fibers. If the fibers get on the finish, they're pretty light, so just blow them up and gently dust the rest with a cotton cloth.


Wow! thanks for the reply, I will start righ now with it
#4
I usually just use some water and a toothpick, cotton swab, and dental floss as my tools. I've only had one experience where that didn't work and it was with a terrifically old guitar with pretty tarnished frets. I scraped at them with a toothpick and used floss for the sides, but I also used polish, forgot what make/brand...

EDIT: thembones' reply was more detailed and better than mine, but just my two cents!
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#5
Quote by FoolOnThePlanet
I usually just use some water and a toothpick, cotton swab, and dental floss as my tools. I've only had one experience where that didn't work and it was with a terrifically old guitar with pretty tarnished frets. I scraped at them with a toothpick and used floss for the sides, but I also used polish, forgot what make/brand...

EDIT: thembones' reply was more detailed and better than mine, but just my two cents!


Thanks for the reply, hmm both are good ideas, your idea is easier so it will depend on the cost of the materials when I get to the market.

Thanks
#6
Quote by FoolOnThePlanet
I usually just use some water and a toothpick, cotton swab, and dental floss as my tools. I've only had one experience where that didn't work and it was with a terrifically old guitar with pretty tarnished frets. I scraped at them with a toothpick and used floss for the sides, but I also used polish, forgot what make/brand...

EDIT: thembones' reply was more detailed and better than mine, but just my two cents!

do wat?


I went and found this:
https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1498427&highlight=.0000

but TH3M B0NZ captured most of what I was going to say. Do it that way. Yes, it takes longer but this is not something you want to **** around with.
#7
Quote by sevmc22
Wow! thanks for the reply, I will start righ now with it


No problem. =)

Don't use water like the other guy mentioned. Water and wood? Hell no.

Also, get some Q-Tips to clean any polishing compound that slips past the tape and wants to hide against the frets. It'll dry and won't be as easy to remove later on. The Q-Tips will get it right out as long as it's fairly wet.

I do this a lot myself. Also, perform this task once in a while, not like every string change or anything. Sometimes just polishing the frets with the steel wool will do the trick for just a nice touch up in between all the other steps.

Let me know how it turns out for you. The results for me are like brand new frets every time.
ESP Eclipse II SW - D'Addario 11-49 Eb
LTD F-400FM - Ernie Ball 12-56 C#
Ibanez Iceman 300
Peavey Transtube 112 EFX
Last edited by TH3M B0N3Z at Dec 6, 2011,
#8
I'm not saying to bath the fretboard, you dip the end of a Q-tip in a little water and it's fine!
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#9
i personally would not use rubbing cmpd on my frets. there will be a fine coating left on there could and most likely gum the strings up.

this is what i have done since i have started playing, masking tape and #0000 steel wool. they will be extremely shiny and nice and smoothed.

dont use too much lemon oil on the fretboard.

and also just in case you didn't know you do not need to oil maple boards, they are either already lacquered or finished with some form of finishing oil.
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alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



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#10
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO steel wool!!!!!!!!!
The fibres *may* be left behind and WILL get into yer fingers. DAMHIK!
Use a 3M scotchbrite pad sorta abrasive.. the finer the better. Ya *may* leave some fibres behind; but they'll be synthetic, not metal. I've found the similar scrubby pads WITHOUT the abrasive to work nearly as well .
I stay away from the polishing compound, too. It will leave a white residue that's awfull difficult to scrape away from the smaller grooves aside the frets and will *never* come out of any grain it seeps into

just my $.02
Not saying the others are wrong... just differing options
#12
Quote by trashedlostfdup
i personally would not use rubbing cmpd on my frets. there will be a fine coating left on there could and most likely gum the strings up.

this is what i have done since i have started playing, masking tape and #0000 steel wool. they will be extremely shiny and nice and smoothed.

dont use too much lemon oil on the fretboard.

and also just in case you didn't know you do not need to oil maple boards, they are either already lacquered or finished with some form of finishing oil.


Not rubbing compound, polishing compound. Rubbing compound is coarser and polishing compound is finer. And as long as you wipe the stuff off with a cloth, it won't gum the strings up or leave anything else behind. I've done it many times myself and I've never had gummed up strings or anything negative or undesirable happen.
ESP Eclipse II SW - D'Addario 11-49 Eb
LTD F-400FM - Ernie Ball 12-56 C#
Ibanez Iceman 300
Peavey Transtube 112 EFX
#13
Heres an easy, cheap, effective way. Get some masking or painters tape and tape off the fretboard but leave only the frets exposed. Now rub each fret 5 to 10 times with 0000 steel wool. Now remove the tape which when removed the tape will actually pull some of the loose stuff and deep down stuff out. Then get a soft rag and some glass cleaner that is safe for wood. Now spray the rag with it but do not making it soaking wet. Just dampen the rag. Now thuroughly rub the fretboard with it and pay close attention to the edges of the frets. When you are done you will have a very nice and clean fretboard with nice shiny frets.


Just skip to the bottom of my old thread. I have before and after pictures of me doing this. You can see the frets are tarnished a bit and there is black crud stuck to the fretboard around the frets. Then the end product you can see his a shiny clean neck.
https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1498114&highlight=peavey+predator
Last edited by Darkdevil725 at Dec 7, 2011,
#14
Quote by deltaten
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO steel wool!!!!!!!!!
The fibres *may* be left behind and WILL get into yer fingers. DAMHIK!
Use a 3M scotchbrite pad sorta abrasive.. the finer the better. Ya *may* leave some fibres behind; but they'll be synthetic, not metal. I've found the similar scrubby pads WITHOUT the abrasive to work nearly as well .
I stay away from the polishing compound, too. It will leave a white residue that's awfull difficult to scrape away from the smaller grooves aside the frets and will *never* come out of any grain it seeps into

just my $.02
Not saying the others are wrong... just differing options


This, scotchbrite FTW. A super fine pad will polish it alot better than polishing compound will do anyways.
#15
I've used a little water, damp cloth, steel wool, scotchbright, MrClean magic eraser, toothbrush, jackknife and files. All work well, but some are pretty aggressive for a simple clean. Be VERY careful with jackknife or file! Um, no, maybe I should say only use jackknife or file if you have a ton of experience with them. I have no issues using abrasives on the wood, unless it is a maple fretboard, because of the finish. Of course, after a harsh refinish, re-oiling is important. I think a good rub with steel wool makes a fret board much nicer! (I also use steel wool and MrClean on the back of the neck.) As mentioned, steel wool leaves little bits Everywhere, so be prepared.
#16
Quote by RebuildIt
I think a good rub with steel wool makes a fret board much nicer!

This is true, though I never do it cause I do not have anything to oil my board with.
#17
Quote by TH3M B0N3Z
Not rubbing compound, polishing compound. Rubbing compound is coarser and polishing compound is finer. And as long as you wipe the stuff off with a cloth, it won't gum the strings up or leave anything else behind. I've done it many times myself and I've never had gummed up strings or anything negative or undesirable happen.


damn calm down. they are different but in the same class. i chose to use one word and you think another word is more appropriate. i would still not use rubbing compound/polishing compound on the frets. do what you want, but i woudn't and i don't even see a need to. if you are using #0000 steel wool, you dont need anything else. do you realize that you can actually clean glass with #0000 and not scratch it. i have don't that many times.


Delta ten
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO steel wool!!!!!!!!!
The fibres *may* be left behind and WILL get into yer fingers. DAMHIK!
Use a 3M scotchbrite pad sorta abrasive.. the finer the better. Ya *may* leave some fibres behind; but they'll be synthetic, not metal. I've found the similar scrubby pads WITHOUT the abrasive to work nearly as well .
I stay away from the polishing compound, too. It will leave a white residue that's awfull difficult to scrape away from the smaller grooves aside the frets and will *never* come out of any grain it seeps into

just my $.02
Not saying the others are wrong... just differing options


will get into your fingers? i have used steel wool forever and haven't had a problem getting it on my hands, it doesn't hurt or anything. the worst thing it can do is get on your pickups, but you should have them covered anyway when doing this.

scotchbrite pads i have tried are more aggressive than steel wool. i am certainly sure there are other pads i have not tried, but what i do works and gets it done fast and fine.
WTLT 2014 GG&A

Quote by andersondb7
alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



****** NEW NEW NEW!
2017-07-07 2017-07-07 Update and a Chat On Noise Constraints *** NEW FRIDAY 7/7
2017-04-13 RUN AWAY from COMPUTERS!!! TCE? RANT ALERT!!!
2017-03-02 - Guitar Philosophy 1001- Be Prepared For the Situation (Thursday 2017-03-02)
2017-02-21 How to Hot-Rod the Hell of your Stratocaster for $50! (Tuesday 2017-2-21)
Resentments and Rambling from a Guitar Junkie
---> http://trashedengineering.blogspot.com/
#19
Quote by TH3M B0N3Z
The metal parts are the frets. Just saying.

Anyway, get some super fine 0000 steel wool, painters tape, a terry or cotton cloth and some polishing compound.

First, tape off the fretboard around each fret (one by one or all at once, however you like) so that the steel wool, even though it is a fine grade, won't damage the wood. The GENTLY polish the frets with the steel wool. You'll notice it will remove oxidation, dirt, grime and possibly even light "rust". Then take the cotton cloth, dab it in the polishing compound (I have the Turtle Wax kind found in the automotive section) and then GENTLY rub is on the fret after it has been polished with the steel wool. You should pretty much see a very shiny, almost brand new looking fret. Repeat this process all the way down the neck on each fret. Then clean and condition the fretboard with some lemon oil or fretboard conditioner and that will top it off.

And, of course, make sure you remove all the strings. It'll be fine for a little while. Hope this helps.

Also, the steel wool fibers will get almost everywhere, so I'd lay down an old towel on the table and lay something over the guitar so that the pickups don't pick up the fibers. If the fibers get on the finish, they're pretty light, so just blow them up and gently dust the rest with a cotton cloth.



A youtube video on this would really help.
Just throwing the idea
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#20
Quote by trashedlostfdup
damn calm down. they are different but in the same class. i chose to use one word and you think another word is more appropriate. i would still not use rubbing compound/polishing compound on the frets. do what you want, but i woudn't and i don't even see a need to. if you are using #0000 steel wool, you dont need anything else. do you realize that you can actually clean glass with #0000 and not scratch it. i have don't that many times.


I was just saying that polishing compound is less abrasive than the rubbing stuff. I saw a tutorial on YouTube about using the PC. I noticed a HUGE difference when I used it, even after using steel wool. It was like a mirror finish. But sometimes, like last night when I changed the strings, I'll just use the steel wool to "touch up" the frets instead of going through the whole deal.
ESP Eclipse II SW - D'Addario 11-49 Eb
LTD F-400FM - Ernie Ball 12-56 C#
Ibanez Iceman 300
Peavey Transtube 112 EFX
#22
Quote by sevmc22
Well I used the TH3M B0N3Z´s suggestion and worked perfectly, thanks!


Sweet. Got any pics? How's the playability of the frets now that they're not so gunked up?
ESP Eclipse II SW - D'Addario 11-49 Eb
LTD F-400FM - Ernie Ball 12-56 C#
Ibanez Iceman 300
Peavey Transtube 112 EFX
#23
I will upload some pics later, the playability is more confortable, the frets are shiny (well, not so shiny because I didn´t make the proces with a lot of time), and the strings response very nice to the clean frets.
#26
Quote by Delboyuk_01
In the interest of health and safety it's probably not a good idea to blow away metal particals, I worked with someone that did exactly that and he spent the rest of the day in hospital getting bits of metal removed from his eyes lol.


I've gotten the steel wool fibers in my fingers before and that doesn't feel too good. But I've never gotten them in my eyes.
ESP Eclipse II SW - D'Addario 11-49 Eb
LTD F-400FM - Ernie Ball 12-56 C#
Ibanez Iceman 300
Peavey Transtube 112 EFX
#28
Quote by StateFarmsThere
There is nothing more metal then bleeding eyeballs.

+1
#30
Quote by dlowe102
I use mequires aluminum/chrome polish=outstanding results

I have been using the exact same stuff for a long time now and I can't find anything that works better. I actually take the mequires Polish and mix it with a little tiny bit of the mequires wax . About 95% Polish and 5% wax. It seems to keep the mirror like finish longer that way. I also use a dremel with the cotton cylinder buffer bit. It's not something I would recommend if your not handy with tools. But if you know what your doing. It seems to work better than anything I have tried in the past.