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Stratocaster Refret


Ghwar
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I just bought a stratocaster 70;s reissue and I really love it. it is the best guitar..

EXCEPT the frets are so god damn tiny I can;'t play fast solo without missing a few notes due to the small frets.. on my other guitars they have jumbos and its so much easier when i switch to them after playing the strat.

so is it feasible to change these frets out for some jumbo ones? (im talking like the ones on jacksons or ibanez).. can I do it myself? im not paying 200$ to get it done.. how expensive are the "do it yourself" tools, like everything I would need?

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If you've never done it before then there is a good chance you will have problems. I'm not saying one way or the other but if its a guitar you really like to play and is worth something (sentimentally and monetarily) then you should get a pro to do the job. If you aren't in any rush you can hold off for a while and get some practice on refretting lesser value guitars.

can I do it myself?

I dunno, can you? If you have a good idea of what kind of tools are involved and the various techniques and steps required for a refret, ALSO, if you are adept at using said tools then maybe you can! :D Why not refret a junker and find out for yourself. It requires some precision and care.

As far as tools needed, check out Stewmac for fretting supplies and judge what might be required. Remember, there is more than one way to skin a cat. There are lots of everyday tools that I use that can substitute for the "specialized" (ie. guitar only related) tools being sold there. Stewmac's fretting supplies can get expensive if you bought every specialized tool needed for the job. And I'm talking much more that what a shop would charge for your refret. So if this is just a one-time thing then in the long run you are better off spending the money for a refret. Consider the time, effort and money for tools that could possibly result in a flawed effort as opposed to just taking it in and paying the tab after a properly done refret.

Edited by Southpa
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If the internet is good for one thing, it's people giving you a "heads up" about mistakes you are likely to make (the guys writing books don't like to admit their mistakes most of the time).

My first refret was on an 81 Fender neck, and everytime I think about it, I would really like to go kick a brick wall until my feet turn to mush and I have no choice but to go be a footless circus freak.

Perhaps if I would have had internet access as a teen, and asked if I should attempt it, someone would have stopped me, and just maybe I would have done it years later after enough experience on "better suited" guitar necks.

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Why not just learn to play the thing? You might be surprised at how many different styles and techniques you can play if you open your mind a little.

Just a different perspective.

Good point. My current favorite guitar is a 1961 Kay 'Value Leader', with low frets. Will need a refret because they are brass, and I keep thinking; do I do the usual and put string-bender rock-n-roll frets, or do I play it safe and try to keep it as stock as possible, because every fret height has some kind of advantage over the other fret heights. (as long as they're over .025")

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Why not just learn to play the thing? You might be surprised at how many different styles and techniques you can play if you open your mind a little.

Just a different perspective.

ya know, just cause i have like 10 posts doesnt mean im a total guitar noob.! i actually did a lot of work on this guitar (built it from parts.. 70's neck and 60's everything else) .. and I can play it the way it was meant to be played.. I would prefer larger frets that is all.. it is not like what styles you can play is determined by your fret size :|

Anyway, there is absolutely NO way i am paying the money for this, so i'm gonna have to test it on some scrap neck first...

is it harder to remove frets, or add them?

Edited by Ghwar
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I didn't say you were a noob.

You said, "I can;'t play fast solo without missing a few notes due to the small frets.. on my other guitars they have jumbos and its so much easier when i switch to them after playing the strat."

I was suggesting that you might learn something new if you alter your playing style to suit the guitar. I won't bother you again. :D

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I didn't say you were a noob.

You said, "I can;'t play fast solo without missing a few notes due to the small frets.. on my other guitars they have jumbos and its so much easier when i switch to them after playing the strat."

I was suggesting that you might learn something new if you alter your playing style to suit the guitar. I won't bother you again. :D

You're right, and im sorry.. . but I've learned a lot since i've had this guitar (which has been about a month so far), but one of the things I've learned is no matter how used to them I get i'm still going to be annoyed at them! They are ok for riffs but i really don't like them for soloing that much :D

But i decided you're right.. i 'm going to keep it how it is and just use my other guitars when I feel like it B)

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If it's just a parts guitar with no real numbers-matching value, why not just replace the neck? You can get a neck made with jumbos for a lot less coin than the basic fretting tools will cost, and a lot less time. You could probably even sell the neck you have now to make up some of the costs, too.

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I didn't say you were a noob.

You said, "I can;'t play fast solo without missing a few notes due to the small frets.. on my other guitars they have jumbos and its so much easier when i switch to them after playing the strat."

I was suggesting that you might learn something new if you alter your playing style to suit the guitar. I won't bother you again. :D

You're right, and im sorry.. . but I've learned a lot since i've had this guitar (which has been about a month so far), but one of the things I've learned is no matter how used to them I get i'm still going to be annoyed at them! They are ok for riffs but i really don't like them for soloing that much :D

But i decided you're right.. i 'm going to keep it how it is and just use my other guitars when I feel like it :D

Nice to see some adults on the internet B)

Edited by 5150-abrichardson
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