Neck Finishes


Senior member
So I've got my warmoth strat with a maple on maple neck, looks awesome, but ive got this cheap squire strat maple neck, and it is either a satin finish or unfinished, and it feels much better, its slicker on the back, (the playability is nothing like the warmoth though), so I was wondering whats the best way to get the back of the neck to be slicker, I've heard #0000 steel wool a good way to go any advice?
Avoid steel wool unless you want metallic dust in your pickups and such.

Try non-metallic abrasive pads, like Scotch Brite or the equivalent, in 0000 grade. This will remove any gloss from a surface, which in my opinion would be a bad idea...but some folks like it.
Buffing the surface to make it more glossy is a different thing.
Tape off your pickups with drafting or painters tape when working with 0000 steel wool.  Do the buffing in a workshop or other area, wipe everything down with a tshirt and then hit it with some canned air.  So long as you aren't going absolutely nuts you wont come anywhere near going through the finish, you're just scuffing the surface up a little.
i would wet sand the back of the neck with 800 paper. if that isnt matte enough go to 600. i've done that with good results on some guitars i have where the finish was sticky.
DO NOT use water to wet-sand a neck or body!

Maple likes to warp when it gets together with water.
Some people might get away with different approaches, but it's too risky to use in practice.
In other words, for those of us that do a lot of work on guitars, and know a lot of people that work on guitars, wet-sanding is not a typical approach.

The best suggestions are the 0000 steel wool or non-metallic abrasive pads to dull the finish.
I consider the steel wool to be "outdated", and it leaves metallic dust everywhere, but it will do the job just fine.
My best advice is to call up a reputible furniture repair and refinishing shop. My dad owns one, and there honestly isn't a lot of difference between doing finish work on guitars and doing it on furniture. If you describe to them what you're trying to do, they will tell you the best approach in how to do it. Plus, they might even do it for a lot less than a music shop will--to a furniture guy, you're asking him to work on something about the size of a table leg, so he'll charge you the same price as working on a table leg. Just guide him along a little bit in regards to the care needed for the frets and the fretboard.