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> About Re-fretting
Mertay
post Dec 14 2017, 05:23 PM
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Visited my luthier today for a chat and noticed he was working on re-fretting a guitar. I didn't stay to watch the whole process but it was pretty cool.

He explained to me how its a bit harder to work with guitars with binding, fixing tiny chips on the fretboard, how the tiny space of fret cutted areas matter (you can't just bang a fret there...) and I also got to see sanding the surface of the fretboard. The guitar was on old Epi, once he sanded the fretboard the ugly/dirty/dry looking rosewood fretboard really looked beautiful as I wasn't expecting that.

Anyway, even those few steps I got to see takes a considerable time. I also got to understand why one luthier can charge very different from the other for the same job. As far as I understand re-fretting can take 2 hours to a full day (maybe 2 if repair is involved) depending how well and detailed the approach is.

He even told me he doesn't even prefer to have a re-fret job even though he asks more than the other luthiers, only prefers to work with customers whos friendly or he has experience with. Reason is the amounth of money vs time doing simple adjustment and string change is much more profitable (and he gets a few guitars like that everyday).

Even though its cheaper where I live compared to EU or USA, I've always though re-fretting was too expensive everywhere, today after learning a part of it my mind has changed. A detailed work is really hard, takes time and patience.


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klasaine
post Dec 14 2017, 06:05 PM
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And keep in mind that putting them in is the easy part.
Then the luthier has to 'crown' the tops and shape the edges. Shaping the fret edges is different for every guitar that's been played a bit. For some guitars with binding, a re-fret will entail removing the binding to do it correctly. Most of the time with new frets you'll also need a new nut. If you've had the axe for a while then you've probably had as couple of fret jobs or 'level and dress' - filing the frets to even out the the low spots, remove nicks and pits, etc. and the nut has most likely been cut down a bit. After all that and a nice polish on those new frets you need to completely redo the intonation and general set up. It's highly skilled work and most guitar repair guys don't do a great or thorough job.

*My guy here in L.A. moved to New Mexico (Albuquerque) and I have yet to find someone who can do a re-fret as well as he did it.

This post has been edited by klasaine: Dec 14 2017, 06:08 PM


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bleez
post Dec 14 2017, 07:12 PM
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A few years back I had 5 new frets done on my Les Paul. The guy did not do a very good job at all, he didnt replace the binding on the new frets, it was quite poor. I ended up taking it elsewhere to get a full refrett. Fortunately, this second guy done an amazing job biggrin.gif frets were great, he done all the binding and basically performed a factory reset! also, the setup he done was proper good. When I got it back, the guitar had never played or sounded better, even with me playing it cool.gif
There was even a blog post on their site with pics!

So if anyone happens to find themselves in need of top class luthier work in Glasgow then I can totally recommend Jimmy Egypt smile.gif


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PosterBoy
post Dec 14 2017, 07:12 PM
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The guy I trust with my guitars (who lives 2.5 hrs away) does a great job on frets but almost refuses to refret with Stainless steel as it ruins the tools, so he puts the price of new tools on the price of a refret.


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Mertay
post Dec 14 2017, 09:39 PM
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QUOTE (klasaine @ Dec 14 2017, 05:05 PM) *
*My guy here in L.A. moved to New Mexico (Albuquerque) and I have yet to find someone who can do a re-fret as well as he did it.


That sucks sad.gif until I met my luthier I always advised friends to send the guitars to bigger citys to 2-3 well know luthiers. Although they were famous, I once went to one for a basic setup and didn't like his job at all (maybe we couldn't undertand each other well, communication is also a big part of expectation).

Could be shipped but I don't trust shipping companys where I live, there are amazing horror storys (one friends cab. was almost distroyed, I saw the pic.s and like even with a hammer I couldn't do such damage mad.gif )

QUOTE (bleez @ Dec 14 2017, 06:12 PM) *
frets were great, he done all the binding and basically performed a factory reset! also, the setup he done was proper good. When I got it back, the guitar had never played or sounded better, even with me playing it cool.gif


He told me even neck wrap could happen if the spaces the frets will fit is too tight, probably thats what you experienced and fixed.

QUOTE (PosterBoy @ Dec 14 2017, 06:12 PM) *
The guy I trust with my guitars (who lives 2.5 hrs away) does a great job on frets but almost refuses to refret with Stainless steel as it ruins the tools, so he puts the price of new tools on the price of a refret.


Interesting, I'll ask about this if I don't forget the next time I'll visit him.


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Todd Simpson
post Dec 16 2017, 02:07 AM
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I fret leveled/balanced a Neon Green Import BC Rich Gunslinger and it was a complete waste of money. I loved the way guitar looked. It looked like one of the USA models from the 80s. It played like one of the imports from today. I hoped the Fret Level/Balance would help. Nope. Still a crap guitar that looked great. I also put a brand new Duncan Alnico 8 mag pickup in it! No help there either. The balsa wood was just crap. So after spending as much in upgrades as the guitar costs to buy new, and selling it for a huge loss. I learned a great lesson. You make or lose money on a guitar when you buy it. Not when you upgrade/sell it. Also, I learned that Pretty Guitars can very easily be CRAP guitars. They can make em look great these days and charge pennies on the dollar. But they are intended for suckers and first timers. I was a sucker.

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This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Dec 16 2017, 02:10 AM


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AK Rich
post Dec 16 2017, 05:52 PM
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I have wondered how a refret would go on a neck with the True Temperament frets and how many curse words would be uttered in the process.
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fzalfa
post Dec 16 2017, 07:26 PM
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i have spend some bucks to upgrade my first Les Paul

it's an €piphone Les Paul Studio, it worth about 350€ in 1994.

i have replace:

- the nut
- the whole wiring with high quality ones
- the pots are now , CTS brand
- the pickup selector and jack are from switchcraft
- the pickups are Seymour Duncan APH-2S Slash Alnico II Pro Zebra
- true Orange drop capacitor...
- total fret work, neck curve adjusted etc....

this one was broken after a fall, i have paid 100€ for a repair, plus the whole stuff i have fit.... the total value is more than twice the brand new prices !

but i love it !!

Cheers

Laurent


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Todd Simpson
post Dec 16 2017, 08:16 PM
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AS long as the guitar makes you happy that's all that matters!!!! My problem was that the BC RICH made me just ANGRY after spending all that money and then having it play and sound not much better. I just had to sell it so I wouldn't get mad each time I looked at it smile.gif

Todd

QUOTE (fzalfa @ Dec 16 2017, 02:26 PM) *
i have spend some bucks to upgrade my first Les Paul

it's an €piphone Les Paul Studio, it worth about 350€ in 1994.

i have replace:

- the nut
- the whole wiring with high quality ones
- the pots are now , CTS brand
- the pickup selector and jack are from switchcraft
- the pickups are Seymour Duncan APH-2S Slash Alnico II Pro Zebra
- true Orange drop capacitor...
- total fret work, neck curve adjusted etc....

this one was broken after a fall, i have paid 100€ for a repair, plus the whole stuff i have fit.... the total value is more than twice the brand new prices !

but i love it !!

Cheers

Laurent



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Sensible Jones
post Dec 18 2017, 03:46 PM
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QUOTE (AK Rich @ Dec 16 2017, 05:52 PM) *
I have wondered how a refret would go on a neck with the True Temperament frets and how many curse words would be uttered in the process.

Your wish is my command!!!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtTnchwHktQ


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-VNhTvjE_xI


I can't talk from experience about these as I've never installed them. I've only ever done a Fret Dress on them once and yes, there was much swearing!!!
biggrin.gif


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AK Rich
post Dec 19 2017, 02:51 AM
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Well that was interesting. Thanks Jonesey! Obviously that was much more time consuming than installing standard frets etc. Now I have to wonder again lol. Let's say someone has the unfortunate accident and damages one, or a few of those frets. Say the fretboard was struck and some of the frets are now dented and need to be replaced or they are simply worn out. Does the fact that they are super glued into the fretboard make them very difficult or impossible to remove without damaging the fretboard, and do you need to replace the entire fretboard and all of the frets as well? And how much additional swearing will be required to complete the process? wink.gif
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klasaine
post Dec 19 2017, 06:18 AM
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This is one of the main reasons nobody uses these guitars.


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AK Rich
post Dec 19 2017, 06:30 AM
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QUOTE (klasaine @ Dec 18 2017, 09:18 PM) *
This is one of the main reasons nobody uses these guitars.

It's definitely a reason that I don't. Besides, I like the imperfectness of a standard fretted guitar just the way they are. I would imagine that a lot of guitar techs would simply refuse to work on guitars with those kinds of frets.
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klasaine
post Dec 19 2017, 06:57 AM
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A well made and well intonated guitar is not that 'out of tune', especially if your technique is decent. I'm talking about fretting accuracy and evenness of pressure. If you press down too hard or slightly pull down on the low strings - any axe will be out of tune.
True Temperament fret boards are a solution to a problem that doesn't really exist.

All fixed pitch instruments in equal tempered tuning have a note or 3 that aren't perfectly 'there' in every octave. Even a piano. Only string players and vocalists can adjust any and all pitches if and when necessary.

To really understand the 'why' of all this, get this book: Horns, Strings, and Harmony by Arthur Benade ... https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1542369...ngs_and_Harmony

This post has been edited by klasaine: Dec 19 2017, 06:58 AM


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AK Rich
post Dec 19 2017, 07:04 AM
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QUOTE (klasaine @ Dec 18 2017, 09:57 PM) *
True Temperament fret boards are a solution to a problem that doesn't really exist.

Now that statement absolutely nails it in my view. Well said.
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Sensible Jones
post Dec 19 2017, 02:23 PM
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QUOTE (AK Rich @ Dec 19 2017, 02:51 AM) *
Well that was interesting. Thanks Jonesey! Obviously that was much more time consuming than installing standard frets etc. Now I have to wonder again lol. Let's say someone has the unfortunate accident and damages one, or a few of those frets. Say the fretboard was struck and some of the frets are now dented and need to be replaced or they are simply worn out. Does the fact that they are super glued into the fretboard make them very difficult or impossible to remove without damaging the fretboard, and do you need to replace the entire fretboard and all of the frets as well? And how much additional swearing will be required to complete the process? wink.gif

No worries Rich!! In your theoretical case the removal of the frets would be the same as a normal fret. Use a Soldering Iron along the fret to loosen the glue then pull the fret out carefully. Clean up the slot edges and install the new frets as in the vids. Normal Frets are often Super-glued in as well.
smile.gif

This post has been edited by Sensible Jones: Dec 19 2017, 02:24 PM


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AK Rich
post Dec 19 2017, 06:49 PM
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QUOTE (Sensible Jones @ Dec 19 2017, 05:23 AM) *
No worries Rich!! In your theoretical case the removal of the frets would be the same as a normal fret. Use a Soldering Iron along the fret to loosen the glue then pull the fret out carefully. Clean up the slot edges and install the new frets as in the vids. Normal Frets are often Super-glued in as well.
smile.gif

I see said the blind man. Well that doesn't sound too terrible. Thanks again, Mr Jones!
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Sensible Jones
post Dec 20 2017, 02:40 PM
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QUOTE (AK Rich @ Dec 19 2017, 06:49 PM) *
I see said the blind man. Well that doesn't sound too terrible. Thanks again, Mr Jones!

No worrries mate!!! There's plenty of re-fretting vids on YT to get a better idea of what's involved. Mainly, as with everything, it's more a case of having the right tools for the job!!
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Todd Simpson
post Dec 21 2017, 01:38 AM
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there are several artists that LOVE these instruments. Including PER from SCAR SYMMETRY and Mathias from FREAK KITCHEN, and Marcus Sfogli. So some dudes just dig em. Personally, it seems like it would alter too much of your finger positioning. For example, I"m shredding away and shift up to a fret with a wide variance, all the sudden I "miss" the landing and get a sour note. I'm guessing one gets used to where the land mines are on a given neck with TT, then again, one gets used to where the land mines are on a neck without it.

I can't see paying $1,000 for something that honestly seems like a very minor difference. I'd rather buy another Ibanez Prestige smile.gif

Todd

Here is Per doing his thing with a song by NILI BROSH (check her out, she's amazing, and her brother is amazing as well). once you get used to a guitar, and it's neck, it does seem that you could work around it's issues and find a tuning that mostly works, given a good intonation job. smile.gif Also, Per is playing a STRANDBERG with the ENDURO neck that has been modified to be thinner, (more like an Ibanez Profile which is what he used to play) just for him. The strandberg body is a pinch odd, as is the neck and the TT fret job. It's a lot of odd bits on one axe. But, he plays it well and seems to enjoy it smile.gif I've never played a strandberg or a TT. I'm happy as a clam bake with my Prestige to be honest.


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