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Fretting With A Dremel


S.A.
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Hi all

I saw site somewhere where the guy was using a cnc milling machine to do his fretting. Got me thinking about using a dremel and a straight edge to do the fretting.

Would this work? :D

unfortunately I don't have a dremel to test it with yet, it is in my budget though :D

Thanks

Travis

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I was thinking about cnc machines, looking at crankorgan.com and thought it might be fun to use a roller bearing and a bit of pipe to guide the dremel. It should ensure a straight cut.

But my concerns were more along the line of how much play there is in the dremel collet.

TRavis

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In my opinion a Dremel isn't the tool of choice for this job, you'd be better off using a table saw, or radial arm saw with the fret slotting blade that Stew Mac sells to insure the proper size slots. You could also just buy the miter box setup, but either way your going to want to use the templates like Stew sells for alignment of whatever scale you want. A Dremel will often wander if you try to cut too much at one time also, so this would also be a concern, although it can be used to clean out a previously cut slot of dust and glue. I think this is one job that a Dremel wouldn't be the ideal choice for.

MaTT Vinson

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Plus a bit tiny enough to do the slot, with the kind pressure put on it (those aremeant for inlay cutting, not 1/8" slotting) you'd spend a fortune on bits.

I'm taking a plywood blade to this shop this week for rim grinding. I'll post how it goes. For all the trouble of the dremel rig, you could buy a decent 100 dollar table saw, a 10 dollar plywood blade, spend the 20 bucks to get it machined and then the 25 or so stew charges for the fret template. All in all you'd be out 150 bucks or so.

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I think a dremel could be used. Don't use a bit, use those metal saw blades for dremel type tools that Grizzly sells. If you are going to do it, make it so you can set the radius. Now that would be friggen cool!

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Can you even get a dremel bit that will cut to the right width?

You're basically saying that you'll make a template for a fret slot, then rout it out. Just seems to me like the StewMac saw (either table or hand) would do better. I have the mitre box & hand saw, and I cut my slots in about 10 minutes.

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What would radiusing the slot accomplish?

Probably not much, but it would be a little stronger on a thin fretboard, because the weakest points on a fretboard are underneath the frets where the slots are. Probably just another useless design idea.

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I've used a dremel with a bit that I got from a jewelry store. The guy that showed me told me to make sure I dulled it down a bit first, so it didn't go running away. I had cut the slots originally on a tablesaw with a jig, and once the fingerboard was on the neck, radiused the fingerboard. Once the bit was dulled, I freehanded the fretslots to just past the bur point on the tang to give me the exact amount of bite I wanted, and left the bottom of the slot at the depth that the saw left. I'm still pretty new to this, but I think I was doing that to make sure I didn't get any compression when I put the frets in, but the bur still had enough bite.

Billy Bones

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