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Thread: Buffing under the fretboard extention

  1. #1

    Default Buffing under the fretboard extention

    No matter how hard I try to sneak in the steel wool, compound, buffing rag, I can never get a nice smooth transition from the buffed top to the underneath of the extension.
    Stew Mac has those foam hand drill buffing pads which work great for everywhere else except underneath the fret board. If I could find a narrow enough pad to get under there that would be the ticket.

    I am just curious how other builders get such a smooth finish in that spot.

  2. #2
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buffing under the fretboard extention

    Quote Originally Posted by Istvan View Post
    ...I am just curious how other builders get such a smooth finish in that spot.
    Some manufacturers use "poly" finishes that lay flat and glossy without buffing. (They also show all imperfections under the finish and lead to some people saying they don't like high gloss finishes, but that's another topic.)

    As for me, when I spray lacquer I do whatever it takes to lay a near-perfect coat of lacquer under and around the extender. I can then buff next to the extender and transition to the un-buffed surface beneath.

    When I apply varnish I top-coat with Truoil. It is not too difficult to rub a nice smooth shiny layer of Truoil under the extender.

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  4. #3

    Default Re: Buffing under the fretboard extention

    Yes, I'm just finishing up on a mando I used Epifanes topped with Tru-Oil. Before I put the Tru-Oil on I was very disappointed with the finish, but that Tru-oil just smoothed everything out just fine. I just was looking for an easy way to knock off some of the nubs under the extender, but I have a small little finger and with a little bit of work I was able to get it presentable.

  5. #4
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buffing under the fretboard extention

    I usually cut a strip of soft cotton rag and "shoe shine" under the extender to get a nice glossy TO coat.

  6. #5
    Registered User j. condino's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buffing under the fretboard extention

    I make a little "cheater stick" out of 1/2" wide x 4" long x 1/8" thick scrapwood tapered and sanded smooth on all edges that will allow me to and wrap my application cloth, sandpaper, & / or polishing materials over it and then I can slide it under the extension and finesse things.

    The irony is that as much as I hate the extension, I've come to really like the extension.

    For such a little instrument, nuthin' about building mandolins is easy....

  7. #6
    Adrian Minarovic
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    Default Re: Buffing under the fretboard extention

    Popsicle stick with whatever abrasive or polishing agent attached. I admit I rarely polish that area to 100%. I try my best for the directly visible areas.
    Adrian

  8. #7
    Registered User
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    Default Re: Buffing under the fretboard extention

    I use a black stiff rubbery thing that I got to apply Bondo. It's somewhat flexible and has a long taper that gets real thin. I think when you buy them they're about the size of a large index card. I cut off a section about 2" wide. Then wrap whatever I need around it and that gets under there pretty well. It's a walk in the park compared to trying to get inside the scroll.

  9. #8
    Registered User sunburst's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buffing under the fretboard extention

    Quote Originally Posted by HoGo View Post
    Popsicle stick with whatever abrasive or polishing agent attached...
    Popsicle sticks have lots of uses around the shop. Besides, it's a good excuse to cool off in the summertime with a popsicle!

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  11. #9

    Default Re: Buffing under the fretboard extention

    Quote Originally Posted by sunburst View Post
    Popsicle sticks have lots of uses around the shop. Besides, it's a good excuse to cool off in the summertime with a popsicle!
    What's even better are corn dog sticks!

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