Official Luthiers Forum!

Solely owned and operated by Lance Kragenbrink
It is currently Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:08 pm


All times are UTC - 5 hours





Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 34 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2017 4:27 am 
Offline
Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 23
I don't know why given that I was building a D-28 clone at the time myself, but last year I paid a repair shop to refret my Les Paul while they were doing a headstock repair.

I guess I know a whole lot more now than I did back then but I'm kicking myself for not looking more closely at the job before signing off on it. The fact that the guy had left glue marks on the fretboard should have been a warning sign.

To summarise, the crowns were completely flat and still had file marks all over them, the ends were really roughly finished, and as it turns out nearly all the frets were sitting on a shelf of glue. The frets weren't properly radiused. This combined with some shocking tang trimming meant they stuck up at the ends, which he addressed with epoxy to fill the gaps, and on one fret he even glued in some scrap tang material to fill it!!!

Despite this bodgery, you could still get a scalpel blade under the fret ends. ImageImage

Due to the ends sticking up and very poor reprofiling, the frets were way wider at the ends than in the middle.

The good thing to come out of this is as an amateur luthier I have now been forced to learn how to do a Les Paul refret which I started tonight. I'm actually really looking forward to seeing how good i can get it.

One final shocker was the pictured fret I removed. I'm not even sure how the tang was possible with this one...ImageImageImage

ImageImage


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2017 9:12 am 
Offline
Koa
Koa

Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 10:27 pm
Posts: 1871
Location: South Carolina
First name: John
Last Name: Cox
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
It honestly looks like it was his first go at doing fretwork.

I mean... Just the fact that the frets were dead flat with no radius across the fretboard, he didn't recrown them, and the fret ends stick *way* out of the board should be some sort of hint.

On the good side.... At least he didn't scratch up your neck and fretboard real bad doing that....


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2017 9:52 am 
Offline
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
Posts: 9724
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
Country: United States
Status: Professional
That's terrible work, perhaps the worst I have ever seen.

Ask for a full refund.

It also looks like the fret ends were messed with.... off the guitar and then installed. There are also fractures in the binding at every fret location.....

I'm curious how does the headstock repair look?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:13 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Mon Dec 27, 2004 5:02 am
Posts: 8494
Location: United States
First name: Lance
Last Name: Kragenbrink
City: Vandercook Lake
State: Michigan
Zip/Postal Code: 49203
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Semi-pro
Meh! Who plays above the 12t fret anyways. beehive


Seriously, that's horrible work.

_________________
Subscribe to the OLF Classifieds!
Support the OLF! Bookmark our AMAZON link!
Sole owner & moderator of LuthiersForum.com
Lance@LuthiersForum.com


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2017 4:32 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2014 10:02 am
Posts: 250
First name: Daniel
Last Name: Petrzelka
State: Washington
Country: United States
Focus: Build
Did the guy recycle old frets?



These users thanked the author dpetrzelka for the post: Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:04 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 5:30 am 
Offline
Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 23
Hesh wrote:

I'm curious how does the headstock repair look?


Initially it was invisible but since it has settled you can see it again. It just needs flatting off. Paint is this guy's forte, headstock repairs in particular but he was a nightmare to deal with. I'm also annoyed that he convinced me into refinishing the neck in polyeurethane rather than nitro. When I first taped up the fretboard to see if I could rescue the fretwork the tape pulled his lacquer off!!! Nice keying there, buddy. Maybe at some stage I'll pluck up the courage to blow some nitro over it.

The new frets are now in waiting to be levelled and crowned. The board was of course not flat and not a uniform 12". I bought a Stewmac 18" sanding beam for the job and am sure glad i did. Already the fretwork is looking a million times better. Depressing given that this is only the 3rd guitar I have fretted!!



These users thanked the author Bosco Birdswood for the post: Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:08 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 2:29 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:36 am
Posts: 5112
Location: Southeast US
City: Lenoir City
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37772
Country: US
Focus: Build
Well look at the bright side, you could close your eyes and redo it with a sledgehammer and you couldn't do any worse. That is horrible work.

_________________
Steve Smith
"Music is what feelings sound like"



These users thanked the author SteveSmith for the post (total 2): jayluthier (Thu Mar 02, 2017 2:29 pm) • Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:08 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 3:19 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Sun Aug 25, 2013 9:34 am
Posts: 304
Location: Massachusetts
First name: Rob
Last Name: Lak
State: Massachusetts
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
It's got like a rustic, homey feel to it, like something your dad would do for you. "Here ya go son, good as new!"


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 4:10 pm 
Offline
Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 23
Robert Lak wrote:
It's got like a rustic, homey feel to it, like something your dad would do for you. "Here ya go son, good as new!"


Haha - Honestly, my Dad is an artist so would have never delivered this, but my Grandpa was a big fan of rivets...


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 6:45 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2011 12:04 am
Posts: 3431
First name: Chris
Last Name: Pile
City: Wichita
State: Kansas
Country: Good old US of A
I hope you asked for a refund...

_________________
Stop saying "How stupid can you get?" Too many people are taking it as a challenge!



These users thanked the author Chris Pile for the post: Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:09 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 6:58 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 18, 2012 8:35 pm
Posts: 2285
Location: Austin, Texas
First name: Dan
Last Name: Smith
City: Round Rock
State: TX
Zip/Postal Code: 78681
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Amateur
Wow, if it was my guitar, I would have wept.
My condolences.

_________________
wah
Wah-wah-wah-wah
Wah



These users thanked the author dzsmith for the post: Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:09 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 7:05 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2009 6:14 pm
Posts: 438
First name: Mike
Last Name: Imbler
City: Wichita
State: KS
Zip/Postal Code: 67204
Country: usa
Focus: Build
I have never seen one remotely that bad! Kind of looks like a nearsighted beaver worked on it,
Mike



These users thanked the author Imbler for the post (total 2): Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:09 am) • Bosco Birdswood (Fri Jan 20, 2017 5:12 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:37 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member

Joined: Sun Jun 08, 2014 10:06 pm
Posts: 333
First name: Allan
Last Name: Bacon
State: Kansas
Country: USA
Focus: Repair
If someone did that to one of my gits, I'd be in jail the next day.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 1:24 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 04, 2007 3:31 am
Posts: 875
Location: Candler, NC United States
Fretwork. If it were easy, my phone wouldn't be ringing near as much.

_________________
Mountain Song Guitars www.mountainsongguitars.com



These users thanked the author Ken Jones for the post: Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:09 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 5:22 am 
Offline
Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 23
Image

This is my subsequent refret. I might revisit the ends to neaten them further at some stage but even when the action was crazy low there were no buzzes or choking. It feels great too, especially given the recent history of the frets.

What do you guys use on newly levelled rosewood boards? Lemon oil seems to be the general consensus.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 6:04 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:36 am
Posts: 5112
Location: Southeast US
City: Lenoir City
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37772
Country: US
Focus: Build
Howard's Feed and Wax

_________________
Steve Smith
"Music is what feelings sound like"



These users thanked the author SteveSmith for the post (total 3): Clinchriver (Sat Jan 21, 2017 1:04 pm) • Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:10 am) • fumblefinger (Sat Jan 21, 2017 2:04 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 2:07 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member

Joined: Sun Jun 08, 2014 10:06 pm
Posts: 333
First name: Allan
Last Name: Bacon
State: Kansas
Country: USA
Focus: Repair
I used to use "lemon oil" but the Howards Feed and Wax seems to penetrate better. I used it on my cocobolo martial arts weapons and it penetrated where others wouldn't.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 7:13 am 
Offline
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
Posts: 9724
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
Country: United States
Status: Professional
We use Howards too in our commercial repair business and have for over ten years now. Great stuff, really pops the beauty of wood, bridges, truss rod covers (wood ones, not pl*stic....), etc.

Howards also is good to lightly wax boards with before running a bead of thin CA next to a fret and then clamping it with the Jaws II tool. The Howards helps the excess CA wipe off the board perfectly clean.



These users thanked the author Hesh for the post (total 2): Clinchriver (Sat Jan 21, 2017 1:04 pm) • Bosco Birdswood (Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:36 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:34 am 
Offline
Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:23 pm
Posts: 24
First name: Christopher
Last Name: Parker
City: Fatetteville
State: AR
Zip/Postal Code: 72701
Country: USA
Focus: Repair
Status: Professional
Wow... That fret job looked quite awful. It doesn't come as such a surprise to me, since I know of at least two "repairmen" in my region that do similar work. You think they'd eventually learn to do it right... Your refret looks infinitely better. The ends look a little funny to me, but at least they're seated well. I think you got a little carried away with faceting the ends. If the ends are properly beveled and nicely seated, it's only necessary to slightly soften the contours of the fret ends in such a way that they all look neat and uniform. Looks to me like you removed too much material.

That said, congratulations on turning a guitar that was horribly mutilated into a functional instrument again!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:46 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2011 12:04 am
Posts: 3431
First name: Chris
Last Name: Pile
City: Wichita
State: Kansas
Country: Good old US of A
Quote:
I think you got a little carried away with faceting the ends. If the ends are properly beveled and nicely seated, it's only necessary to slightly soften the contours of the fret ends in such a way that they all look neat and uniform. Looks to me like you removed too much material.


Not exactly.... It's true all you need is beveled ends with softened corners, but a good craftsmen can round the end of the fret to a hemispherical shape. It's bragging - "Look how good I am!". I say WELL DONE.

_________________
Stop saying "How stupid can you get?" Too many people are taking it as a challenge!



These users thanked the author Chris Pile for the post: Bosco Birdswood (Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:37 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:55 am 
Offline
Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:23 pm
Posts: 24
First name: Christopher
Last Name: Parker
City: Fatetteville
State: AR
Zip/Postal Code: 72701
Country: USA
Focus: Repair
Status: Professional
Chris Pile wrote:
Quote:
I think you got a little carried away with faceting the ends. If the ends are properly beveled and nicely seated, it's only necessary to slightly soften the contours of the fret ends in such a way that they all look neat and uniform. Looks to me like you removed too much material.


Not exactly.... It's true all you need is beveled ends with softened corners, but a good craftsmen can round the end of the fret to a hemispherical shape. It's bragging - "Look how good I am!". I say WELL DONE.
The hemispherical thing always looked a little funny to me, so I've never tried it. Of course, the true test of a good fret job is, does it play and bend without choking or dead notes with the action set to 1/32" and 3/64"? (FWIW I wouldn't leave it that low unless the customer insists that they want it like that)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:57 am 
Offline
Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:23 pm
Posts: 24
First name: Christopher
Last Name: Parker
City: Fatetteville
State: AR
Zip/Postal Code: 72701
Country: USA
Focus: Repair
Status: Professional
Hesh wrote:
We use Howards too in our commercial repair business and have for over ten years now. Great stuff, really pops the beauty of wood, bridges, truss rod covers (wood ones, not pl*stic....), etc.

Howards also is good to lightly wax boards with before running a bead of thin CA next to a fret and then clamping it with the Jaws II tool. The Howards helps the excess CA wipe off the board perfectly clean.
Is it okay for the bead of the fret to be sitting atop the waxed fingerboard? Seems like thin CA would still wick right under it and do its job, but I've not tried this method. Also, how do you apply the wax so that it doesn't penetrate into the slots? My concern obviously is contaminating the slots, so I've been reluctant to experiment with applying any products that might interfere with the glue bond. Any other insight on your procedure would be appreciated. For over two decades I've been using tape to protect the board from excess CA, and now I'm wondering if I've been doing it the hard way all this time...


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:08 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:36 am
Posts: 5112
Location: Southeast US
City: Lenoir City
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37772
Country: US
Focus: Build
It's easy to apply the wax without getting it in the slots, just use a light application. The CA wicks in just fine with no problems. In the interest of full disclosure I admit that I learned this technique (and a bunch of other good stuff) at Ann Arbor Guitars from Dave and Hesh.

_________________
Steve Smith
"Music is what feelings sound like"



These users thanked the author SteveSmith for the post: Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:33 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:53 pm 
Offline
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
Posts: 9724
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
Country: United States
Status: Professional
Christopher we are going to disagree on a number of things that you said but no biggie, to each their own.

For example simply beveling is not good enough.... Many pro players want to take advantage of valuable fret top surface real estate. Radical or even the level of beveling that we see from major manufacturers is often an issue for these folks.

We've done many refrets for this reason including the example of the greaseball weekend wedding player who wants a refret because the last Luthier who fretted his guitar over beveled the ends. I've shared this real life example on this forum several times now.

I share some of these stories because to me custom building guitars is not simply attempting to mimic the piss poor practices of f*ctories but is instead our opportunity to take it to new and more appreciated levels.

Do you know why beveling began? It became a standard practice of f*ctories to avoid the costs associated with semi-skilled labor to shape fret ends. Or, in other words, it's a cheap and ineffective alternative to taking fret work seriously.... Slotted bridge pins are the same thing, a cheap way to avoid semi-skilled labor to slot the bridge, top, and plate..... This is also why nut slots are NEVER cut well from the f*ctory.... Because it would require a higher level of craftsmanship that of course costs more.... money....

I'm not a fan of semi hemispherical fret ends either believing it to be a fad with little practical value. What I do want is very little bevel and nicely shaped fret ends that are not at all sharp. That's my goal. You will find that there are MANY ways to accomplish what I speak of including semi hemispherical fret ends, which I have done, but don't see the value in it beyond nicely shaped, not sharp, not radically beveled fret ends.

Howards is applied very lightly, excess is wiped off in the direction that the frets point, not up against them, and then allowed to dry for a few minutes. It works great. Accelerator is sprayed in the direction that will not contaminate the next slot to be done since you asked for more detail.

We do a lot of fret work at the level of being on the cusp.... of making a PLEK work economically speaking. We also teach this several times a year and some of our students are Luthiers who have been pros for some time.

Back to fret ends. There are many styles of ends and one is not necessarily better than another. It's just what it is and if it qualifies against my standard, are they comfortable, functional, show deliberateness of craftsmanship and I'm happy.

There is a LOT of really bad work out there. Folks who hang out a shingle and don't have a clue what professional standards really are. It's an occupational hazard of Lutherie because until Al Gore invented the Internet.... many of us never got out much....;)


Last edited by Hesh on Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.


These users thanked the author Hesh for the post: Clinchriver (Sat Jan 21, 2017 1:08 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Shocking refret
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:56 pm 
Offline
Walnut
Walnut

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 23
Chris Pile wrote:
Quote:
I think you got a little carried away with faceting the ends. If the ends are properly beveled and nicely seated, it's only necessary to slightly soften the contours of the fret ends in such a way that they all look neat and uniform. Looks to me like you removed too much material.


Not exactly.... It's true all you need is beveled ends with softened corners, but a good craftsmen can round the end of the fret to a hemispherical shape. It's bragging - "Look how good I am!". I say WELL DONE.


Thanks all for your kind words! In preparation for this job (bearing in mind I am but a weekend warrior) I watched a load of related YouTube videos. One that resonated with me was the Crimson Guitars series where Ben Crowe refrets Kelly Jones' SG.

This is where the inspiration to try rounding the fret ends came from. When I fretted my acoustic I just lightly beveled the edges, but I just wanted to try something a bit different with this one.

I was also using a Crimson Guitars fret end file to do the job so though it only fitting to use their technique :)

Nice tool incidentally.

Even though the ends are very rounded, the profiling never enters the playing area of the fret.

All of the above being said, I probably did go a little far with them. Once I've tidied them up a bit more (turns out I need more light when fretting!) I think it will look fine. And if I decide down the line that I don't like it, I'll just whip 'em out again! At least now they're seated neatly with minimal CA (my new best friend) rather than a lake of epoxy, so the clean up should be minimal.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk



These users thanked the author Bosco Birdswood for the post: Hesh (Sat Jan 21, 2017 1:04 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 34 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group
phpBB customization services by 2by2host.com