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Orange Oil / Lemon Oil for Fretboards

bread

Power User
I've been using "Parker & Bailey Orange Oil Polish" on my guitar fretboards for about 10 years now. I've seen recent discussions online from folk who say that this can cause damage to the fretboard and instead use one of the branded guitar fretboard oils such as the Dunlop 65 Fretboard Oil that looks like a much more expensive version of what I'm using.

Is this just complete nonsense or have I been slowly dissolving my guitars over the past decade LOL ?
 
The other day I asked the folks at Xotic what they recommend for the unfinished roasted maple necks and fingerboards on their guitars and they said Dr. Duck 2080 Ax Wax Cleaning Kit. The fingerboard and neck on their guitar is as smooth as silk so I wanted to maintain it that way.

https://a.co/d/gt2EVyD

Prior to that I’d been using MusicNomad’s MN103 Guitar ONE All-in-1 Cleaner, Polish, and Wax. A spritz on my cleaning cloth and a quick wipe between sets and before and at the end of the night helped get rid of sweat and grime. I’ve been using this stuff for years on all my guitars.

https://a.co/d/fs9v3eN
 
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Actual Orange and Lemon oil might be harmful, but any "orange" or "lemon" polish is just mineral oil with scent added and pose no harm, so you're good.
… it only takes a drop or two on a rag, wipe the fingerboard and buffing it in. I do the unfinished fingerboards when I change strings or every six months, whichever comes first.
 
as Blix said above, watch out for actual Orange or Lemon. Alcohol and acid will eat and dry the wood away over time. Some cleaners have alcohol additives to dry faster. Oil and fragrance is fine. The other thing is that rosewood and maple need to be cared for differently. For unfinished maple I sand my fingerboards for cleaning with 800 then add casey tru-oil. for maple boards with gloss, I do nothing. For rosewood, I use any of the standard fretboard oils that are sold once every 6 months or so.
 
as Blix said above, watch out for actual Orange or Lemon. Alcohol and acid will eat and dry the wood away over time. Some cleaners have alcohol additives to dry faster. Oil and fragrance is fine. The other thing is that rosewood and maple need to be cared for differently. For unfinished maple I sand my fingerboards for cleaning with 800 then add casey tru-oil. for maple boards with gloss, I do nothing. For rosewood, I use any of the standard fretboard oils that are sold once every 6 months or so.

I never treat maple I just wipe it over.
 
Seems like to me, ebony and rosewood with oil on it just attracts gunk. A little H2O on a rag cleans it up.
 
For me Dunlop Lemon oil for rosewood and ebony. Just ones in a year and few drops, that's enough.

I had AT100 guitar with maple fretboard and for that I didn't use any oil but instead Sinol and fretboard was like new and
no problems. (Idea for using Sinol I got from one guitar technican who works as professional)

Picture of that Sinol
1694038148611.png
That Sinol takes dirt away really well and evaporate quick and it not absorbed inside wood.
Other equipments I use for guitar cleaning soft clout, toothbrush, and also I have few polishing rubbers.
After playing guitar I every time wipe strings from top side and here and there from downside.
I have MusicNomad tool
1694038774733.png
 
What is the problem with orange oil ? Been using this product over the last 20 years without any problem ever.
 
What is the problem with orange oil ? Been using this product over the last 20 years without any problem ever.
There isn't a problem with it, but I saw some people online on another forum saying it was really bad for the guitar. I checked here and got the right answers.
 
I use the Ernie Ball Wonder Wipes fretboard conditioner. You really only need to treat your fretboard once a year or so, if ever after the first time.
 
For my ebony fingerboard, I only use 100% essential lemon oil. About 3 drops once or twice a year.
 
"Real" lemon oil is acidic and can damage raw wood. "Lemon oil" that you buy for polishing wood is just mineral oil with fragrance and maybe some detergents and/or mild solvents added.

I just use mineral oil. Clean the fretboard. I use very fine 3M pads and/or rubbing alcohol. Rubbing alcohol will remove grease and oils that may have built up. Then put some mineral oil on a paper towel and apply to the wood. Let sit for a while and then wipe off the excess with a clean rag.
 
Yep. You can buy food grade white mineral oil at the pharmacy in the digestive health isle (it's a laxative). For a few bucks you'll get enough to last you 20 years. Works well on wooden cutting boards and utensils as well. It doesn't go rancid like most plant based oils can.
 
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1 - clean/degrease with naphtha.
2 - You can't go wrong with Dr. Ducks Ax Wax on everything
3 - buff when dry

Note: Alcohol may damage the finish making it cloudy and sticky to the touch.
 
Have used lemon oil, same old bottle forever (30+ years) just recently ran out of it, and all kinds of woods, never a problem ever. YMMV IMHO.
 
1 - clean/degrease with naphtha.
2 - You can't go wrong with Dr. Ducks Ax Wax on everything
3 - buff when dry

Note: Alcohol may damage the finish making it cloudy and sticky to the touch.

Great suggestion… naptha 🙌

I forgot… We use this in the shop to visually pop wood grain and look at it for character. Cleans well too.

Great suggestion… smells for a little bit, but what volatile doesn’t?

How hard is that wax? Carnauba hard?
 
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