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gingerfish

Wenge fretboard fretless.

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So, I have just received a second Warwick FNA Jazzman in a trade.

I was hoping to get a fretless as a trade but that didn't happen so I am left with a fretted bass that I either need to sell to raise funds or I am considering defretting.

So my question is. Will a wenge fretboard work for a fretless? Anyone played one? I know that when Warwick offered this bass as a fretless option they changed it to an ebony board so that might be the plan but just wanted to see what people suggest.

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Wenge has such an open grain, I don't think I'd use it as a fretless board without a bit of grain filling and fairly tough finish.

Mind you, Wishnevsky did it http://www.talkbass.com/proxy.php?image=http%3A%2F%2Fi420.photobucket.com%2Falbums%2Fpp285%2F49sfine%2FWishbass%2520Fantasy%2520951%2FFantasy951032.jpg&hash=0117310e01cb7216b24f999861efa5b6

Edited by alittlebitrobot

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Yep, it'll work. You could leave it natural / oil it as if you would a Wenge neck. Or you could give it a hard Epoxy or CA finish if you don't want to feel and see the pores as well as toughening it up. Though even left natural it's similar in hardness to Rosewood.

Be VERY careful defretting it, it will chip! If you haven't done it before it may be best to either do a practice one on rosewood or Maple or pay a luthier to do it for you.

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[quote name='Manton Customs' timestamp='1429729476' post='2754422']
Be VERY careful defretting it, it will chip! If you haven't done it before it may be best to either do a practice one on rosewood or Maple or pay a luthier to do it for you.
[/quote]

Agreed! TBH even if you practice on other basses, you'd still likely as not have chips/slivers out of the fingerboard when you defret.

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Obvious advice - groundwound, half wound or flats will reduce fingerboard wear. Depending on what you paid , scarcity of FNA Jazzman fretless, what you think about FNA you have and the luthiers available to you, a new ebony fingerboard might be a better financial possibility than sell / trade and find another.

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I will not be doing the work myself. Recently used John Shuker for a fret dress and he would be my first point of contact for this work. I just wanted to know if it is feasible, not seen one so wanted to know the overall opinion was.

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[quote name='warwickhunt' timestamp='1429730055' post='2754429']
Agreed! TBH even if you practice on other basses, you'd still likely as not have chips/slivers out of the fingerboard when you defret.
[/quote]

Yep! You can minimise it by heating the frets with a soldering iron first and never pulling on the fret, just lever using the flush cutters. Standard practice for any fretboard (and put here for the sake of the OP), but Wenge and Ebony aren't very forgiving... Fortunately both patch up well though!

Edited by Manton Customs

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I've got a 2000 Thumb which I had defretted by a luthier. I use roundwounds on it. No problems.

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Hello,

I would like to know if you have defretted your warwick bass with a wenge fingerboard?

I have a ww streamer LX jazzman and I'm also thinking about doing it (by a luthier).

Are you happy with the result? Which finish did you choose?

Do you advise me to do it?

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I had a Paul Lairat semi acoustic with a wenge fingerboard, was fantastic on all aspects. I had LaBella Black Nylons on it, so no fingerboard wear.

I wouldn't put round wound on non treated wenge, but it's up to you.

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@SymBass dropped me a message.

I assumed he had seen the finished result but it looks like I never posted the final results. The bass was defretted and refinished by John Shuker. The body was quite dented and a very ugly colour and now is more or less perfect. Kept the wenge board and used a polyester finish. Strung with flats (think they are chromes but not 100%) 

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On 22/04/2015 at 20:30, 3below said:

Obvious advice - groundwound, half wound or flats will reduce fingerboard wear. Depending on what you paid , scarcity of FNA Jazzman fretless, what you think about FNA you have and the luthiers available to you, a new ebony fingerboard might be a better financial possibility than sell / trade and find another.

This. Or find a suitable replacement neck in fretless?

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I have a fretless Streamer LX Jazzman with an ebony board which I have been thinking of having fretted, wanna talk? 🙂

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