Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 47

Thread: Washburn N4 redo

  1. #1
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Washburn N4 redo

    I get emails asking me how I do this and that sometimes, so I thought I would post up what is going on with one of my Davies.

    What I do may not be for everyone, and this thread will get updated as I go. I have several guitars that are being worked on at the moment, so progress may be spotty.

    This is my latest Davies (I now have four), and it was quite a mess when I received it. The whole guitar looked to have never been cleaned, or set up frankly.

    I am no luthier by any means, but I know my way around tools. I learn by reading and doing, so some of this may not be the 100% "correct" way to do things, but they work for me.

    The neck had quite a bit of relief in it even with the truss rod backed off. So in an attempt to rectify this, I clamped it down to a straight edge for about a week, and that seemed to help. I did not apply any heat at this point, but this may be a problem come assembly time.

    Firs thing I decided to tackle was the filthy neck. I have never owned a new Davies, so I don't know if they came with no finish on the neck, or very little. Either way, this neck was quite dirty and just plain gross feeling.

    I started with 180 grit paper and in just a few minutes you can see just how dirty.



    Remember this ding for later...







    The fretboard....(gross)



    I use a simple sanding block of two paint sticks glued together, and Norton (the best) brand paper. Any sandpaper will work of course, but if you have the choice of Norton, get it.





    You can use "finger sanding" on the curved areas, but flat areas need to remain flat. Use the block when sanding the heel and sides. Remember, the point here is to removed dirt and stains, not remove large amounts of wood.





    Here it is after about 20 minutes of sanding. Notice I did not "go to town" on the back of the headstock. Not only is it not really dirty, but you don't want to risk sanding off your serial number.





    Remember the ding?





    While I did lightly sand the back of the headstock, I purposely left the side alone. The finish on the headstock comes matte from the shop, and we want to retain that look.



    I stepped up to 220 grit and in curved areas where sanding scratches might show, I went to 320. Depending on how you want to finish the neck will determine this. If you plan to use something like Tung Oil, then finish sand to 320. Since I like to use gunstock oil (Tru Oil), I stopped at 220.

    Tru Oil is a "hard" finish, and will give the feel of an oiled neck, but with the protection of a hard finish. Not only is it almost idiot proof to apply, it looks great.



    Let me show you my very high tech Tru Oil applicator.



    Yes, that is a small cotton cloth and a small ball of tissue paper. You can substitute the paper with a cotton ball, or even a piece of the same cotton rag. Anything that is soft and soaks up liquid will work (this is not brain surgery).

    This is the very difficult way to build the applicator.



    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

  2. #2
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    OK, application should be self explanatory. Just wipe on a coat of oil in the direction of the grain and let is dry. Don't fuss with it as Tru Oil will self level as it dries.

    On a raw piece of wood, the first coat is going to get soaked up immediately and will be dry to the touch in about an hour.

    Once the oil is dry to the touch, lightly scuff the neck again with 0000 steel wool. Make sure you wipe off or remove any steel wool dust and apply another coat. How may coats is up to you, but the more you apply, the more the shine.

    I usually do 5-6 coats because I do not like a thick finish on my necks.

    Here is what you have after...







    The light area on the back is where someone had a sticker or something. The flash makes it seem worse that it is.





    The oil will dry completely overnight, and will fully cure in a week or so. Once cured, I will buff it with wax to dull the shine, and make it silky smooth.

    I did not talk about the fretboard yet because I have not decided if I am going to refret this neck. Either way, we will go over than in another episode.
    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

  3. #3
    Super Toneologist JustWendell's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Napa, Ca
    Age
    36
    Posts
    1,053

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Good job with your neck, it was definitely in need of cleaning.

    Just did this same process to a cheapie silvertone that my cousin gave to me. Still got to get my lazy but in gear and make a new nut for it since the stock piece of plastic shattered when I tried to remove it for filing. My first time using tru oil and I'm very impressed as it was both super easy to put on and now the neck feels amazing.

  4. #4
    Rebelyellologist
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Celebrating Sobriety for over 2 years
    Age
    41
    Posts
    16,833

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Man, this is an awesome thread, I've really enjoyed reading through it. Are you going to keep posting til you finish the whole guitar?

  5. #5
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Quote Originally Posted by Lucid_Lunatic View Post
    Man, this is an awesome thread, I've really enjoyed reading through it. Are you going to keep posting til you finish the whole guitar?
    Oh heck ya.

    I have several I am trying to finish up at the same time, but this one is really the only one that not just assembly.

    I will try and start on the body this weekend.

  6. #6
    Skaforlifeologist super rad stuff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    not vegas. ok, i lied.
    Age
    29
    Posts
    8,962

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    cool stuff! thanks for the info ayrton, i'll have to do the whole thing to my butt-naked sg now
    Yo, i'm Ryan™.

    https://www.facebook.com/patchworklv
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=der6aGGzQTk
    ^link to 7 tracks of my band, Patchwork

  7. #7
    OCDologist XSSIVE's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    NEW YORK
    Age
    38
    Posts
    7,350

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    nice work man! lookin' real clean.

    i'm a big fan of dirty maple necks myself so i never clean mine off and just let the oils and stains add to the mojo

    -Mike

  8. #8
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Well there is mojo, and then there is just plain nasty.
    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

  9. #9
    OCDologist XSSIVE's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    NEW YORK
    Age
    38
    Posts
    7,350

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    my rule of thumb is if you can scrape it off with a pick it's nasty, if you need to sand it to get it out it's mojo lol.

    -Mike

  10. #10
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Quote Originally Posted by XSSIVE View Post
    my rule of thumb is if you can scrape it off with a pick it's nasty, if you need to sand it to get it out it's mojo lol.

    -Mike
    Sigged....
    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

  11. #11
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Bumping this old ass thread because it relates to the other neck finishing thread.
    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

  12. #12
    Tone Member bladefrenzy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Charleston , SC
    Age
    51
    Posts
    146

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    How did the project turn out? I really miss my old N4! Excellent guitar. One of those I should have kept!!!

  13. #13
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Quote Originally Posted by bladefrenzy View Post
    How did the project turn out? I really miss my old N4! Excellent guitar. One of those I should have kept!!!
    Fine, there was not really anything to do but clean and refret it. I have a few Davies era N4s, but the one I use the most is a '93 "transition" model.
    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

  14. #14
    Professional Scapegoat BloodRose's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Tween a rock and a hard place
    Age
    52
    Posts
    18,139

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    when you mention wax to buff it, you just use a car wax? or???

    Cool tip with the rag, tissue thing. From reading prev threads, I woulda just used a rag. I have an old Kramer body I need to build
    Believe me when I say that some of the most amazing music in history was made on equipment that's not as good as what you own right now.

    Jol Dantzig

  15. #15
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Last edited by Ayrton; 01-05-2019 at 03:57 PM.
    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

  16. #16
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Wow, almost 10 years to the day!

    Being the glutton for punishment I am, I pulled out this N4 to try and repair it.

    Repair you say?




    This is how this guitar has resided in the case for a decade. The neck had too much relief and the rod was maxed out. I tried clamping, steaming and washers to no avail. The decision was made to remove the board and see what the problem was.

    I steamed off the board with no problems but trying to get the rod out, the neck separated at the scarf joint. I guess the steam compromised the joint and it failed. I wasn't sure what the problem was or how to correct it, so it sat.

    Until yesterday.

    Trying line up everything to get a perfect glue up was a challenge and I got real close. I used the rod, and some pins to line everything up.




    Very close, but nothing I can't correct with a little sanding.





    After much reading, measuring and consulting it was determined that it was just a bum neck. Wood had a mind of its own and this one wanted to upbow.

    I cleaned out the truss rod channel and made a new filler strip. I flooded the channel with thin CA glue to harden the wood. My thinking is this will prevent the wood from compressing under rod tension and make the neck more stable.

    Of course, the neck is almost 30 years old, so it won't be moving anymore.

    Waxed the rod, slathered in the Titebond and clamp, clamp, clamp




    Tomorrow I will glue on the new fretboard and that should correct the problem.
    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

  17. #17
    25's Nemesis Benjy_26's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Age
    38
    Posts
    12,835

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Nice work!

    One question: Will Tru-oil tint a neck? I ask because I have a squier with a fish-belly maple neck that I'd love to get some amber tint on.
    Ain't nothin' but a G thang, baby.

  18. #18
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    TruOil is amber in color and will give a slight tint, but you can add more layers for more color.

    I tint raw wood now with Watco now before TruOil
    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

  19. #19
    25's Nemesis Benjy_26's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Age
    38
    Posts
    12,835

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Quote Originally Posted by Ayrton View Post
    TruOil is amber in color and will give a slight tint, but you can add more layers for more color.

    I tint raw wood now with Watco now before TruOil
    Cool! Thanks for the info!
    Ain't nothin' but a G thang, baby.

  20. #20
    Mojo's Minions Ayrton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Age
    49
    Posts
    9,318

    Default Re: Washburn N4 redo

    Plane down the filler strip





    Install MOP markers






    Introduce the two so they can get to know each other better.





    The original truss nut was a mess, so I cleaned that up with a file.








    Plenty of hide glue and clamps






    I left it clamped up for 48 hours. Then final trimming and prep for new Jescar 57110 stainless



    Glue, hammer, then press (rinse and repeat)







    A sharp chisel takes care of any squeeze out.

    -Chris


    Quote Originally Posted by John Suhr View Post
    Practice cures most tone issues

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •