View Full Version : How to Refret a Guitar
06-05-2006, 01:27 PM
any info is appreciated...tools? technique? prices? removing the old frets? installing? hard?easy?
06-05-2006, 01:32 PM
it will be hard, you'll probably need special tools. tools and new frets aren't too expensive. removing the old frets will be the easy part. go have it done by a professional. it'll be easier, but probably not cheap.
06-05-2006, 04:15 PM
This will help ALOT. I've read through most of this book and it gives you a huge tool list, although it's not all necessary, and goes through all the steps of pulling frets, fretting, and dressing them. I can't think of any better way to learn than this, besides going to school for it...
06-06-2006, 02:16 AM
Getting the old frets out and the new ones in is the easy part. Getting a good playing fretjob is harder.
There aren't that many tools you need, alot of the stewmac tools are only worth while it your doing alot of fretwork. All you need is a soft head hammer, a long flat file or good qualtiy sharpening stone and a triangle file with the edges rounded.
To remove the old frets heat the frets with a soldering iron. Then slowly and carefully pull out the frets specialised fret pullers or with a thin blade to slowy bring up part of the fret then do the rest with pliers. If you are unsure on doing this google it and there are plently of defretting guides (i even think theres one on this forum)
To install the new ones pre bend the fretwire to a radius greater than that of the fretboard (some places sell you the wire in rolls so this step is not needed)
Cut the frets so they are slighty longer than the slot they are going into.
Getting the frets into the slots can been done afew ways, one is with a hammer, the other is with a press system with radiused cauls.
When hammering the frets should be seated with a minimium amout of blows, a plastic or brass head hammer should be used as not to damage the frets.
When using cauls such as the ones avaliable from stewmac that can go in either a drillpress or arbor press. When doing this I slighty hammer one side of the frets in with a mallet before pressing the fret in so it does not move.
When hammering or pressing frets in some makers like to add a slither of glue along the fret tang.
Now the frets need to be cut flush with the fretboard, leveled, a bevel added to the edge and recrowned.
06-06-2006, 08:20 AM
does anybody have any guesses on the prices to have it done proffesionally...i know it varies, but a ball park estimate would be very helpful.
06-07-2006, 03:52 PM
06-07-2006, 04:24 PM
It's not as easy as Dave says.
Other things to take in to consideration is the fret tang width. When you remove the old frets, you usually have to get a fret with a tang with a bit greater than the old fret, it at least has to be about equal. If it's smaller, the fret won't grab on to the slot.
Also, about the radius. You want the radius as close to the fretboard radius as possible. If it's too great or too flat, it will be hard to get an even seat all the way across the fret.
Doing it without the proper tools is taking a very unnecessary risk. Pulling a fret out with pliers is just asking for trouble, you're not supporting the wood any and it can chip and splinter very easily, no matter how slow you go and careful you are.
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