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I use a variety of StewMac's wires, medium and medium/taller stuff general (I think it's the 148, 149 that I use most). Decently large, not absurdly jumbo-sized, slightly smaller for acoustics, slightly larger for electrics. It just depends on the feel you want; go to a store and play some 'vintage' style Fenders (tiny frets), compare to a shred machine, say a Jackson or Ibanez, with big jumbo frets. Then figure out what you want. 6105 is Dunlop's model number, sides (width, height, tang size, etc.) are easily found on their website. Then look at whatever supplier you choose and pick the wire that's the closest match.

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I think for someone who has no idea, or can't make up their mind, something between a .045" and .050" height is good.

Those heights are enough to allow easy bending, without making your fingers feel like they're way up on a "high wire" in a circus act, like those .050"+ fret heights.

Width not as important; Anything between .080" and .104" will feel quite normal. The more narrow size will sometimes sound a little more "crisp" if the original crown shape is kept. I guess I like that these days, because I get the gnarly tone from pickups and amps. Some say the wider wire wears more slowly, but I can't say I've seen it work that way.

Dunlop's 6105 is .055" tall, and .090" wide. The height is a little too much for me, because I take very little off when leveling. Lots of guys want that size though. I have an awful lot of it, for someone who doesn't like it.

Warmoth's "6105" is .047" tall, and .095" wide. They cause so much damn confusion for people by giving that size the "6105" label. It is a good size though. I would put Warmoth "6105" on my guitar before putting Dunlop 6105 on.

If I was forced to buy wire from StewMac, I would go for their #0152 (Dan Erlewine's favorite, so they say), or #0155 (I already have some of that)

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To answer the original post... myself I'm very much into note bending and vibrato, so I like a very high fret. I had an Ibanez like this a few years back, and I want my next guitar to have the highest... short of scalloping! That would be the 6100's.

However, I'm also considering SS fretwire... but does anyone know why StewMac doesn't carry SS fretwire?

The tallest SS I can find... and its pretty tall... is on Allparts. (I dont have the numbers handy, but its almost like 6100)

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Maybe StewMac (especially upper management) thinks most of their customers are too stupid to use SS wire. Whatever the reason, it was a stupid decision. Imagine the money they could have been making on SS fret-wire over the past few years. Now you can get SS wire from StewMac competitors.

A few years ago, StewMac's reason (*told to me*) why they wouldn't sell SS frets was : " Because our fret cutters can't handle it". And "a sample of SS wire from a Japanese supplier was too soft" (StewMac's regular fret-wire is from Japan, and I gather they are quite loyal to that company)

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Interesting.. thanks! (Hmmmm.. Japanese "saving face" issues? :D )

BTW the tallest SS fretwire on Allparts is: LT_0897-B05 (.055")

I guess StewMac's diamond fret files should handle those no problem.... but would they present any problems for thier fret cutter? (0619)


Edited by P90
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i use ss fretwire exclusively...my stewmac tang nipper cuts it just fine,and so do my cutters(home depot wirecutters)

the diamond files would handle it...but i file the ends with a metal file,and sandpaper...

my stewmac fret files don't work too well for dressing them,so i don't dress them at all...i just get the fretboard as perfect as i can,and seat the frets as well as i can,and i have no need for leveling or crowning.

but the stewmac fret files WILL work...it just ain't easyi prefer the ss frets anyway because they just feel better.and i enjoy installing them

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