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Nitro Lacquer on the frets? Really Fender?

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by the velvet catfish, Jan 10, 2017.

  1. PCollen

    PCollen Tele-Holic

    783
    May 7, 2010
    Florida

    Well your dream-day has arrived, because I opened up the case of my FSR CP50's Strat (MIM) with a one-piece tinted and laquered flame maple neck and it is PERFECT...the neck and frets are flawless. Personally, I think your problem is an anomaly rather than the norm.
     
  2. AndrewG

    AndrewG Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    64
    May 15, 2007
    Exeter, England
    What a guitar should have and what it actually has are two different things. I've spent thousands on guitars (SCGC, Martin, Gibson etc), and every single one, without exception, needed a setup in varying degrees. Expecting perfection is a futile pursuit.
    Guitars are like off-the-peg suits. I have never bought a suit which didn't need a tweak here and there to get it fitting as I, not the maker, want it to fit.
     
    Fiesta Red likes this.
  3. the velvet catfish

    the velvet catfish Tele-Meister

    Age:
    46
    461
    Sep 8, 2005
    Kansas
     
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  5. abrianb

    abrianb Tele-Meister

    154
    Mar 5, 2014
    Indiana
    I think Ron is right, A CNC in California, Mexico or China is cheap to run. Hardware, finish details and set up is where the costs will add up.
    Also consider that Fender is traditionally not a high end product. Leo made electric instruments that were functional and affordable.
     
  6. the velvet catfish

    the velvet catfish Tele-Meister

    Age:
    46
    461
    Sep 8, 2005
    Kansas
    My other point is it wouldn't have cost them anything extra to spray the neck cut the slots, then fret it. That's not too much to ask is it? Lol
     
    JayFreddy likes this.
  7. 4pickupguy

    4pickupguy Poster Extraordinaire

    May 12, 2013
    Fort Worth, Texas
    mask the fret board and take 15 minutes to steel wool the laquer off the frets. It couldnt be easier. Keep the guitar and start putting together Warmoth guitars.
    Fenders quality goes up and down from what ive seen. I personally think the mid to late 70's were an exceptionally bad period for them. Laquer on the fret is pretty ghetto for a $900 dollar guitar.
    I have played only Warmoth since 85' or 86'. I have never seen a quality change in thier product. lurve thier stuff.
    You can stop looking for Fender to make it right. You made choices that preclude that as an option. OOO steel wool is $3 at Home Depot. A good roll of 3M Blue Line 1" about $7. Fix it and move on.
    Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2017
    the velvet catfish likes this.
  8. Conversely

    Conversely TDPRI Member

    17
    Dec 9, 2013
    SC
    I prefer directional lacquers on my frets. If you can't hear the difference, well, there's nothing we can do for you.
     
  9. crossroader

    crossroader Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    60
    Sep 24, 2004
    Endicott, NY
    And then we'd all be reading your rant about the chips in the lacquer that resulted from frets being installed over the finish.
    ;)
     
  10. ecosse

    ecosse Tele-Meister

    223
    Jul 24, 2011
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    This is the neck on my classic 50's tele. As you can see there is lacquer on the frets. I can't feel or notice it at all. Normal practice on maple boards as far as I know? I've seen it on 52 RI before. Play it and it goes away. IMG_0662.JPG
     
  11. MilwMark

    MilwMark Poster Extraordinaire

    Apr 29, 2013
    near Arnold's
    So maybe the summary is:

    - some lacquer on the frets is normal and almost inevitable, unless you want to pay up for individual labor to remove on each guitar, in a way that the "market" generally would not bear.
    - that lacquer will go away with minimal play in most cases
    - @the velvet catfish - your guitar seems to have more, and more persistent, lacquer than most. That might well have been a defect. But is not representative. And if it bugs you, you should have returned it. But maybe that particular guitar is so sweet otherwise, it's worth overlooking, popping the neck off, and cleaning those frets?

    How'm I doing?
     
    the velvet catfish and ecosse like this.
  12. ecosse

    ecosse Tele-Meister

    223
    Jul 24, 2011
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Here's another surprise for you, the lacquer is going to wear near the forearm. Part of the reason I chose this model. I'm 100% satisfied with it by the way minus the bridge pickup which I've swapped out. This is after a year of extensive playing.

    IMG_0665.JPG
     
  13. the velvet catfish

    the velvet catfish Tele-Meister

    Age:
    46
    461
    Sep 8, 2005
    Kansas
    I already did... and yes it was a heavy persistent dose... I admitted I liked it too! I just don't agree with FMIC ignoring better practices and my emails. So I ranted about it trying to raise awareness.
     
  14. the velvet catfish

    the velvet catfish Tele-Meister

    Age:
    46
    461
    Sep 8, 2005
    Kansas
    Mines already starting to do the same.. it's why I bought it... not fake wear
     
  15. MilwMark

    MilwMark Poster Extraordinaire

    Apr 29, 2013
    near Arnold's
    But everyone has "defects" or "exceptions". Seems most that have lacquer on the frets have much less, and it comes right off. So yours may not be representative of anything, other than an aberration.
     
  16. MickM

    MickM Friend of Leo's

    Removing it is a one tool job. Remove the strings, lightly score the board at the base of the frets on each side with a single edge razor blade or exacto knife. The offending excess should come off without much effort. I bought an Allparts neck that had the same issue which is annoying but easily fixed.
     
  17. the velvet catfish

    the velvet catfish Tele-Meister

    Age:
    46
    461
    Sep 8, 2005
    Kansas
    Regardless of its depth of defect... having been played over 60 hours, it could have been avoided by better processes. Someone deemed it fit to ship that way. This rant is my way of saying no... not cool. I have since removed the neck and this is not the typical case of Lacquer I found on my 52.. this stuff is bonding well to the frets, and I can assure you a fingernail ain't budging it lol! I dunno if the Lacquer and coloring agent they used is causing it to be a pain in the you know what but it's not gonna fall off with playing either! I tested a metal scraper and it ain't gonna flake off! This is not the typical scenario. [​IMG]
     
  18. the velvet catfish

    the velvet catfish Tele-Meister

    Age:
    46
    461
    Sep 8, 2005
    Kansas
    No you'd see me ranting about the damage I did to the fingerboard cuz I slipped lol!
     
  19. mitchfinck

    mitchfinck Tele-Meister

    Age:
    26
    442
    Dec 7, 2015
    Stratford, Ontario
    Ever play a Rickenbacker? They lacquer the entire fretboard... some people hate it... I actually love it. Best playing guitar for me by far.
     
  20. the velvet catfish

    the velvet catfish Tele-Meister

    Age:
    46
    461
    Sep 8, 2005
    Kansas
    I get the impression that some on here would be ok with a guitar with myriad of problems worse than mine and be happy just because it says Fender on the headstock lol!

    FMIC today is resting upon the reputation of a man long gone, and two acquisitions ago. I'm no better, I bought it for its heritage and namesake. However, I can say with confidence there are better made instruments with more attention to detail at less cost available today. I remember when an American Standard was $900 new and I had no issues with those. Now FMIC is price gouging and fleecing without offering any more value to their instruments.

    Now I will stop ranting and thanks for the participation and input everyone.
     
  21. JayFreddy

    JayFreddy Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    51
    Nov 6, 2006
    Dallas TX USA
    Sometimes it's an easy fix, sometimes it isn't.

    I think the OP is being a little hysterical about it, but I agree with him that it would be easy to avoid.

    Count me in the "hate it" camp. Love the sound, hate the feel. BTW, I had a Rick bass back in the 80's that did not have glop on the frets.

    Promises, promises... LOL

    I agree that Fender could and should do better. I'm not going off on a tirade against them, but I do think there's room for improvement.

    Maybe I'm overly optimistic, but I think if we just stick to our guns and keep mentioning it, eventually it will be phased out.
     
    the velvet catfish likes this.
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