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Kherome
04-01-2019, 02:35 AM
I haven't seen a lot mentioned about how to care for the wood beyond humidification. I have seen passing references to conditioning the fret board. What does this mean? How often should it be done and with what products? Do you need to do anything to the wood body of the uke? Thanks!

Rllink
04-01-2019, 03:13 AM
I haven't seen a lot mentioned about how to care for the wood beyond humidification. I have seen passing references to conditioning the fret board. What does this mean? How often should it be done and with what products? Do you need to do anything to the wood body of the uke? Thanks!

I wipe some mineral oil on my fretboard every time I have the strings off. I just wipe some on and then wipe it off. I clean the frets with a tooth brush while I'm at it. Sometimes I'll wipe it on if I think that it is looking dry, but really, usually only when I change strings. There are lots of concoctions out there that people use as well for fretboards, so you can use any of them. Like everything, everyone has something they swear by. They all do the same thing and that is to moisturize the fretboard and keep it from drying out and cracking. I don't know if one is better than the rest, but Taylor guitars recommended mineral oil when I first started learning about ukuleles and I've used it since my first string change. Mineral oil is cheap and it is pretty safe. Some people drink the stuff.

kkimura
04-01-2019, 06:50 AM
Avoid exposing the wood to temperatures that exceed 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

Bill Sheehan
04-01-2019, 07:28 AM
Hahahahahahaha! Are you stirring the pot again, Kkimura??? ;)

kkimura
04-01-2019, 07:38 AM
Seriously, most woods begin to char at 450 degrees. ;)

Back to the original question, my OXK had an extremely dry fret board when new. Now, after a few applications of fret board conditioner over the years, it seems to be darkening where my finger tips press the strings the most. (The first three frets)

captain-janeway
04-01-2019, 09:05 AM
Avoid exposing the wood to temperatures that exceed 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

heck my little moped engine doesn't like temps that high either lol!

glennerd
04-01-2019, 09:28 AM
After a whole lot of conflicting information I ended up with f-one fret board oil. Can't remember why I chose that one (maybe because it was available locally), but mineral oil probably works just as good. All I really remember is lemon oil really seems to polarize people. Depending on the saddle type, I might oil that too if it looks dry.

Kenn2018
04-01-2019, 04:43 PM
Fretboards are, in general, raw wood without a finish other than oil. So the care and treatment should be different than the body and neck woods. MyaMoe, I think, recommended (still recommends?) using extra virgin olive oil on the fretboard. Not only will if keep it conditioned, it will smell good too! (Seriously.) Wipe off after application. Too much can swell the fretboard wood and affect the fret wires.

Their bodies have a hand-rubbed oil finish. They recommend Planet Waves lemon oil that is made for instruments.

Bodies, necks can have different finishes. Matt, satin, gloss, high gloss. Nitrocellulose lacquers, polymer UV cured. Most recommend using a guitar/instrument cleaner and or polish. Don't use a polish made for gloss finishes on a matt finish. DO NOT USE THE CLEANER/POLISH ON THE FRETBOARD! They are not made for using on raw wood.

I use Music Nomad One Guitar Detailer. And One Cleaner/Polish for gloss finishes.

Sweat contains salts and oils that can remain on the surfaces. Wiping down with a lint-free cloth after playing keeps it clean. A very lightly dampened cloth will clean a lot of dirt off of the finish on the body or neck.

Arcy
04-01-2019, 07:05 PM
Olive oil can go rancid. I'd be leery of putting that (or any other non-drying (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-drying_oil) vegetable oil) on an ukulele. Mineral oil or lemon oil or made-for-instrument oils are safer and likely more effective.

Taylor Guitars uses a clear Turtle Wax on the body and neck and 0000 steel wool then BLO on the fretboard. This video show how much (very little) they use on a cloth for the fretboard:

ELIXIR Strings Tech Tip: Guitar Cleaning and Maintenance Techniques (Part 1)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=plU27QJBKn8

Jarmo_S
04-01-2019, 10:35 PM
My electric maple neck fretboard has some lacquer I think, so just some cleaning liquid with a cloth, if it looks dirty. I try play with clean fingers.

Classical guitar is over 40 years old and I don't remember when I have used oil for cleaning it even though it is "raw" wood. And looks just fine.
Same with acoustic guitar, also about 40 years old and fretboard has no stuff like lacquer and it does look good.

I don't plan to oil my ukulele fingerboards either.

Or perhaps if they are influenced to sunlight?

Jerryc41
04-02-2019, 01:46 AM
I haven't seen a lot mentioned about how to care for the wood beyond humidification. I have seen passing references to conditioning the fret board. What does this mean? How often should it be done and with what products? Do you need to do anything to the wood body of the uke? Thanks!

I keep them in hard cases, so they stay clean. I also have a lot of microfiber cloths that I run over them occasionally. I bought some fretboard oil that I use when the board looks dried out. A toothbrush or small paintbrush is good for the crevices and open gears on the tuners. I would never use any kind of wax or commercial cleaner on the body.

Swamp Yankee
04-02-2019, 02:45 AM
I think less is best when it comes to oiling fretboards. A drop of bore oil on a clean cotton cloth, well rubbed in, is enough to do a few inches of fretboard. Anything more than 5 drops total on a concert is probably too much for me. I do this probably once a year and even then, only if the fretboard and bridge are looking pale and dry.

No polishes on the body at all, ever. Clean cloth, dampened if needed. Stubborn schmutz gets a bit of naptha (Ronsonoil lighter fluid) on a clean cotton cloth to remove it.

glennerd
04-02-2019, 05:16 AM
Per some previous comments, I only oil my fretboard if it looks dry. Some fretboards may never look dry. Also, good to check manufacturer's recommendation (although I still wouldn't use olive oil, but that's my personal choice).

Ukecaster
04-02-2019, 05:39 AM
Dunlop makes this stuff. I use maybe 1-2 times/yr on rosewood fingerboards. Seems to moisturize the wood and darken it up slightly, just a few drops on a clean rag.

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