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Fret Dressing & Maintenance


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  • 2 months later...

Well.. lets go trough a refret and we'll use stew mac prices... (you can also MAKE some of these tools and i will list the generic cost)

start by yanking hte frets with a pair of pullers.. $26.45.. You can also grind down and hone a pair of end nippers $15.. (I've been using mine for 10 years)

then you'll want to level the board with a radius block $15.95 (for one... you'll need a set of them...$97 (but you cna get them cheaper off evilbay)

next new frets.. you can pre-bend them by hand with two dykes or buy a bender $89.90 or make one... i dont know the cost but i saw one posted here.

then you'll want a fretting hammer.. I use a stew mac hammer $19.95 and a deadblow I got at woodcraft $9

OR an arbor press $50 and a stew mac adapter with inserts $50

now.. i ALWAYS trim my tangs, even on unbound boards and then seal over the slots (stops them from poking out later) Tang nipper $50 (or you can do it by dremel but that takes a lot longer and time is money)

then you'll need something to level and bevel your fret ends... Stew mac $70 i made mine out of a 6" maple 3X3 slotted it on a table saw at the correct angle and inserted a file $10 bux

then you'll want an end dressing file.. $10-25 depending on what you get..

THen some stickit sandpaper to go on your radiius block to level the frets $40 a roll

I give my jobs a final level with one of the aluminum 18" radius blocks $132 EACH.. i have four!

Then you need a crowing file.. I use both the offest diamond file $99 and the double edge traditional type file $40

Then you need sandpaper and steel wool to get your frets ready to polish...

then you need a dremel and a set of polishing wheels and some metal polishing compound to polish your frets (prices here depend on what and where ya get it.. i use eastwood white rouge and regular dremel polishing wheels)

Oh.. a dremel toolk... I use a cordless dremel stylus.. $65 bucks

If you added up everything on my fretwork station, its well over $1000 closer to $1500

If you start out with just 9.5 and 12 inch radius blocks, buy stuff off evilebay, you can save some money.

(but dont go too cheap.. cheap tools are cheap tools.... end nippers need to be high quality steel, chea stuff will just make a mess)

Edited by YearsOfDecay
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