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Black Fingerboard Stain

4.0
  • 11 Reviews
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Black Fingerboard Stain

Item # 4237
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$5.14

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Black Fingerboard Stain

About This Item

Higgins India Ink is like ebony in a bottle!
Makes streaked ebony fingerboards and bridges uniformly black.

The days of harvesting uniformly black ebony wood are rapidly fading—most ebony today is streaked with brown and gray. Higgins India Ink has become our favorite for making ebony uniformly black ("ebonizes" other woods, too). Wipe on, and wipe off the excess as needed.

Use it to darken new or old ebony fingerboards, bridges, tailpieces and peghead veneers on guitars, violins, mandolins and banjos.

Higgins India Ink is non-toxic and non-flammable. It mixes well with other colorings to make dark tints and finishes darker. Unlike many black stains, Higgins ink is truly black—won't leave a bluish tint.

2-ounce bottle.

    How to apply:
  • Clean the wood with naphtha and sand to 600-grit.
  • Mask off the nut, binding and anything you don't want to stain.
  • Wear gloves. Apply with a brush or cloth.
  • Let the board dry overnight.
  • When dry, rub off excess pigment with a slightly damp cloth.
  • Let the board dry overnight again.
  • Rub with 0000 steel wool to burnish and remove any last pigment.


Trade Secrets!

Trade Secrets!

For ebony streaks, use black fingerboard stain

Erick Coleman shows why black fingerboard stain is a standard item in any guitarmaker's shop, including the big name builders.

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4.0
  • 4.09 average rating from 11 reviews
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5.0

Very Handsome Finish

By

Verified Buyer


Worked exactly as advertised. Easy to wipe off binding, inlays, frets after application, and gave a VERY dark and handsome finish on the light rosewood fingerboard I applied it to.

Not a uniform blackening of the fingerboard in my case where my fingerboard had some variation in lighter and darker grains, but rather a very dark variegated finish.

An F-One oil treatment on Day 3 was the final step to seal a finish that I think created a beautiful variegated "ebonized" fingerboard on my Gibson SG that did not weep onto my hand at all after following the drying directions.

This worked great, and I'm an amateur at this. I see no evidence of this finish going anywhere other than straight into the wood grain and only wearing off through normal fingerboard wear.

It looks like a pro did it.

5.0

Works like a charm

By

Verified Buyer


Who would have thunk it!! India ink to stain a fingerboard. I have a violin with an ebony fingerboard, but it has a light-colored "skunk stripe" right down the center. I used the stain and it positively worked flawlessly. By all means use 0000 steel wool for finishing. There is no blueish cast. It looks positively natural. So natural in fact that I felt guilty that I was forging and doctoring the instrument for deceptive purposes. But since it won't be sold, no harm done. Highest recommendation.

4.0

great for the shop

By

Verified Buyer


used the other day to blacken out a violin fret board.Lays on nice and smooth. Jet black.If you want a sheen you may have to put a clear on it

5.0

Gets it done!

By

Verified Buyer


This stuff is great....made an ugly fretboard come alive, easy to use....and the fretboard looks like ebony!

5.0

Good Stuff.

By

Verified Buyer


Works like a charm. Dyes rosewood to pitch black. Also can be used to dye curly maple black and then sand down for the zebra stripe effect. Doesn't turn blue like most blacks when it gets sanded. Stays nice and black.

5.0

good

By

Verified Buyer


good

5.0

Easy work , good result 

By

Verified Buyer


great stain good through wooden entry capability

2.0

No good for quick work - bring back the Fiebig's

By

Verified Buyer


Sorry, I do not like it for production work. Outsourcing.

3.0

Undecided

By

Verified Buyer


More transparent than I was expecting. Not sure if I am going to try something else.

3.0

Okay, I guess

By

Verified Buyer


It's good that this is water based, but the old oil-based stuff (leather dye) is better, albeit messier.

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StewMac PDF Catalog, page 41 See Black Fingerboard Stain
on page 41 of our StewMac Digital Catalog