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Fret Slot Depth On A New Finger Board


Brian
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Measuring the width of an Ibanez RG7 string guitar which has a 430mm radius (16.9291338583" to be exact) at the 12th fret and also the depth of the fret tang slot on the side you come up with a neck that is 2-5/16" wide with a fret slot that is 1/16" deep on the outside edge.

Measuring the width of a Fender Tele 6 string guitar which has a 7.25" radius at the 12th fret and also the depth of the fret tang slot on the side you come up with a neck that is 2-1/16" wide with a fret slot that is 1/16" deep on the outside edge.

Even though the difference in width between these two necks is a full 1/4" all the way down their length...........

If you draw out a cross section of both of these necks at any fret slot, you will see the depth of the 6 string with a 7.25" radius in the center of the neck is 7/64" and the depth of a 7 string with almost a 17" radius is 8/64" in the center of the neck.

Seems to me 1/64" or .015625" isn't that much of a difference to worry about when slotting is it?

If you look at the difference of tang lengths from Stew Mac fret wire (which actually has the widest range of lengths from anyone I can find) you will see the shortest being .048" and the deepest being .074" which is a difference of only .026" or in easy terms less than 3/100ths of an inch.

I'm posting this to find out if anyone has a standard depth they use while slotting a fresh finger board for any given radius.

One other thing I would like to find out is which do you prefer a 1/4" thick blank or a 5/16" thick blank?

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It's not a direct answer to the question Brian, but I slot fingerboards from flat as a guide on the basis that the slots will be resawn to a radiused depth after radiusing has been carried out. I use a gent's saw with holes sawn through the blade with Perspex depth-stop guides either side. That is my way of working, which may not necessarily fit another's business or building model.

Are you considering the option of selling fingerboard blanks with unradiused slots to cover the majority of scale lengths and string numbers? I would sell saws, also :-D

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Are you considering the option of selling fingerboard blanks with unradiused slots to cover the majority of scale lengths and string numbers? I would sell saws, also :-D

Nope, complete fret slot systems that are priced so the average home luthier could afford one :D

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Brian...I prefer 1/4" or thinner fretboards...and I think most guys here do as well,because it results in a thinner feeling neck...I actually plane my fretboards(preslotted) to 3/16" or a hair less...and I use short frets so that I can leave more wood behind the truss rod and still have that thin feel...

LMII IIRC sells 5/16" fretboards...and the seem VERY thick...very ungainly and certainly not comfortable to me...stewmacs seem to be 1/4" thick..

Slots...I just recieved a shipment of preslotted boards and default seems to be 2.5mm at the outside edge...or very close to it...

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I've been doing a lot of my fingerboards flat, so the last two projects of mine had a hair depth more than the fret tang. My preference is about .200" fingerboard thickness now that I've completed a few necks. I believe all the fingerboards I have been selling were slotted to 5/32" depth with 1/4" total thickness.

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Brian...I prefer 1/4" or thinner fretboards...and I think most guys here do as well,because it results in a thinner feeling neck...I actually plane my fretboards(preslotted) to 3/16" or a hair less...and I use short frets so that I can leave more wood behind the truss rod and still have that thin feel...

LMII IIRC sells 5/16" fretboards...and the seem VERY thick...very ungainly and certainly not comfortable to me...stewmacs seem to be 1/4" thick..

Slots...I just recieved a shipment of preslotted boards and default seems to be 2.5mm at the outside edge...or very close to it...

+1 I also prefer them a bit thinner! Sounds like a great plan Brian, looking forward to seeing it. Best of luck. Jason

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