Gear Maintenance Time

Well - we had a long weekend in Germany. So I took the time to maintain my bass. I usually do it about twice a year including changing the strings and oiling the neck and body. After changing and tuning the strings (put them back on tention) I corrent the neck bending and tune again.

I use Ernie ball strings.

How often do you maintain your bass? Do you do it by yourself or do you give it to your local musicstore? Do you also oil your wooden parts? What strings are you using?
Anything else you maintain, e.g. your amp, pedals, etc?


I think he was just curious as to what other people’s routines were, not so much asking for advice on it.

To that extent, I oil my fret board every time I change the strings. I prefer DR strings. The weather here in my area of Florida is usually either a) extremely humid or b) extremely hot and humid. As a result, the the truss rod doesn’t need adjusting very much. I still check it when the strings are replaced just in case the tension difference warps things.


i live in the northeast USA, so we get very cold winters and very hot summers - lots of temperature and humid changes, so i tend to adjust my setup between seasons - specifically when it gets warmer in the spring (may), and cooler in the fall (october), and then ill do another whenever i feel something is off. the rosewood fingerboard on my TRBX is due for an oil, but still has good strings (NYXL) so i need to detune and give it a good oiling. personally i like mineral oil - cheap, natural, no/low odor, does the job nicely, available for $2 at target vs 5x that for “guitar fretboard oil”.


I live in central Ontario Canada and like you get cold winters and hot summers and usually slight truss rod adjustments are only required in the spring and fall.

I check neck relief quite frequently - for the time it takes why not and I do a complete check of the setup when I change strings which is usually every 3 months.

I use boiled linseed oil on the fingerboard and lemon oil (without silicone) on the rest of the guitar every string change.


I do the maintenance and setup when needed. I polish the frets and oil the fingerboard, I liked the Nomad brand because I just happened to have a couple of bottles. As many basses I have and how much I clean and oil the instrument I’m still on the first bottle. I also like the cutting board oil. They are not sticky and works really well.

I have a few tools at my practice station I’d adjust the neck relief when it feels off. I don’t have the schedule for string change, I do it when needed. Some strings sounds/feels better with age and after break in period which can take a while. TI Jazz flats is a good example for that.


I do maintenance as required. When it gets buzzy I’ll do a setup, when the fretboard looks dry I’ll oil it, I use Nomad. I know there’s cheaper stuff but I have Nomad and for the amount I use price is not a worry. When the strings wear out I will replace them.

No set schedule. I do clean them regularly, and wash my hands before playing

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Clean and fast fret as I go and a once a year at the local guitar shop for a health check and new strings. Should learn to do it myself one day.

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It is not that difficult to maintain your bass. There are many YT videos, how to do it.

In the meanwhile it takes me about an hour.

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Yes you tube is definitely the place to look for instructions. That said, keep in mind that you are watching the finished take and or from the person who’s doing this for many times before or worse doing it for a living, they know what they are doing and have made many many mistakes before that’s why it looks so effortless. lol.

Thanks for mentioning that. :+1: :+1: :+1:

Washing your hands before playing and wiping the fretboard and guitar down after a playing session is a very understated practice. IMHO

I tweak truss rods when the bass feels wonky.
You begin to know when it’s moved (spring/fall).
Oil fretboards 2x a year - this is really a must, don’t let that nice wood dry out.

Once in an while I will notice intonation is a mess, probably because I messed something up in the beginning and so I go through everything as needed (not often) but do catch mistakes sometimes.

So this means you are doing it (checks notes) once every two weeks at this point on average?

It’s a good idea - I do it 1-2x per year too, usually on string change, but not always.

Theoretically, lol.

I do them in a big group 2–3 at a time over a couple days (listening to vinyl of course)

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I tried boiled linseed oil…once. wound up scraping the film off the frets and fretboard. You can get a fretboard specific oil on Amazon for around 7 dollars. Does a great job and doesn’t dry to a film.

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