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Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com

Help me choose the Wisest Fretwork Tools

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by Tritono, Mar 29, 2011.

  1. piece of ash

    piece of ash Friend of Leo's

    Dec 29, 2010
    Sugar Land, TX
    Rick,

    Many people opt for alternate tools for flattening because the tools that are out there leave something to be desired.

    I bought the Stewmac fret leveler bar. The roughness of the grinding didn't exactly convince me it would be flat. It is slippery, hard to hold on to, and the center of gravity is too high... so it's easy to dig with edge of the tool... and it's too heavy

    Files are never straight... just hold one up to a precision straightedge... all of these 6 inch long files are just a joke as far as I'm concerned. Worthwhile for repairs maybe.

    Any tool that is shorter than the fretboard elevates the amount of skill required to flatten the frets.

    So... some of these alternate tools are actually quite better than the off-the-shelf tools. I just bought the the "quartz" leveler off Ebay... I checked it against a $100 straightedge... it's FLAT.

    Keep in mind, someone who's been doing this awhile has developed a keen "feel"... so short boards/files will not stop them from getting it done. But if you don't have this level of "feel"... a truly flat tool, lightweight, well balanced, longer than the board will help to idiot-proof the process.
     

  2. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Tele-Meister

    384
    Feb 3, 2011
    down south junkin
    how long is your stewmac bar?
     

  3. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Tele-Meister

    384
    Feb 3, 2011
    down south junkin
    that should be long enough to do a neck right?
     

  4. Tritono

    Tritono TDPRI Member

    61
    Mar 28, 2011
    Mental Multiverse
    Im decided for the 24" leveler. Seems the most intelligent size. I though alot about the size because I read that some users think that long levelers like 24" will wear mostly the frets of the medium area of the fingerboard but I dont think so, is not logical:confused:. Im thinking in buy the 24" straithedge size too. Reach all the frets for niveling or measurement seems pretty logical if someone wants perfect results. A 6" file seems to be good for spot leveling but better use the 24" leveler to level all the frets for more accurate results. Im right?

    rick: I think 24" is enough, in fact you have a good amount of extra free area, I was worried about if is too long. 24" seems to be a good size for bass too
     

  5. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Tele-Meister

    384
    Feb 3, 2011
    down south junkin
    why are you using a file if you have beam and paper?
     

  6. piece of ash

    piece of ash Friend of Leo's

    Dec 29, 2010
    Sugar Land, TX
    Yes... but you will not the like the stewmac leveler...

    It is slippery

    It is heavy... TOO heavy.

    It is too narrow

    The center of gravity is too high

    It is not a good tool
     

  7. Tritono

    Tritono TDPRI Member

    61
    Mar 28, 2011
    Mental Multiverse
    I dont want to buy the file but Im thinking about. A 6" file will work for beveling the ends of the frets and will be multi proposite. But maybe with the 24" leveler you can angle the bevel of the frets withouth problem. I said that some people use the 6" file for spot leveling but it dont seem very accurate to me only correct some frets. Better re do the entire work with accuracy! or not?
     

  8. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Tele-Meister

    384
    Feb 3, 2011
    down south junkin


    why not bevel the ends with this?

    http://www.stewmac.com/shop/Tools/S...ing/Fret_Beveling_File.html?tab=Video#details
     

  9. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Tele-Meister

    384
    Feb 3, 2011
    down south junkin

  10. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Tele-Meister

    384
    Feb 3, 2011
    down south junkin
    stews 24in is $64. bundled with my other things i need shipping is at a minimum.
     

  11. piece of ash

    piece of ash Friend of Leo's

    Dec 29, 2010
    Sugar Land, TX

  12. piece of ash

    piece of ash Friend of Leo's

    Dec 29, 2010
    Sugar Land, TX
    That's not the point... it is not a good tool... so what what it costs is moot.
     

  13. Tritono

    Tritono TDPRI Member

    61
    Mar 28, 2011
    Mental Multiverse
    I though in buy that leveler at first. But the guy only have Canada and USA for International Shipping and dont have activated the "Contact for Answers" option. I cant ask for a international quote. Plus the Stewmac one seems solid and in the review most of the users like that heavy weight. The narrow thing seems to be a plus to keep more consistent the radius along the neck when niveling, seems intelligent.

    rick: I want to pay one shipping too. Even buying all from Stewmac the shipping for me is $86 but Im in Chile, South America.

    About the beveler I think I will buy it. I was asking myself about if the 35º angle will be the angle that I need but I dont now, one fact is that mostly of the guitars from factory seems to come with that 35º (the legend say that)
     

  14. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Tele-Meister

    384
    Feb 3, 2011
    down south junkin
    so aside from it being tall and heavy, will it get the job done?
     

  15. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Tele-Meister

    384
    Feb 3, 2011
    down south junkin
    maybe ash will tell us about the side leveler.
    makes sense seeing as how they will be uniformed frets.
     

  16. piece of ash

    piece of ash Friend of Leo's

    Dec 29, 2010
    Sugar Land, TX
    Yes... it will get the job done... but you will regret buying it... I do... want mine? I just checked mine for the first time against my good rule... it's not even flat on one side. It weighs 4.4 lbs... too heavy... hard to hang on to... cheap chrome with no texture. The ebay guy's price with shipping is still less than SM's.

    I don't know that i see much use for the side leveler either:

    1) You're operating blind

    2) The frets will have to flushed individually prior to using that tool.

    3) Precise angle is not that critical... and easy enough to do without

    It might make sense on a new build... make less sense on a refret where you're trying to preserve (i.e. NOT clobber) the finish on the side of fretboard.
     

  17. Tritono

    Tritono TDPRI Member

    61
    Mar 28, 2011
    Mental Multiverse
    Thank you. I think I will buy the 24" because like I said I cant contact to the guy, he dont ship to my country and because the narrow the leveler, better for my thinking and for the radius. But I understand that it can be not flat. Why you dont contacted to stewmac? the first thing that I do when I buy something is to check it. If the tools arent in good condition, they will need to replace it inmediately.

    About the beveling, seems to be a comfort thing to do the job quickly. Is expensive but I want to play more than do fretwork. Mmm. I will think about.

    Hey man, what grids of sandpapers do you use mostly?
     

  18. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Tele-Meister

    384
    Feb 3, 2011
    down south junkin
    it never touches the fretboard. thats why it was designed the way it was.
     

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