50’s Baja Tele Fret Wire: 2006 vs 2017

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Badger06, Aug 9, 2018.

  1. Badger06

    Badger06 Tele-Meister

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    Hi all,

    I have two 50’s Baja Tele necks that have different fret wire. One is on my desert sand Baja from 2006. The other is a 2017 Baja neck on a Coodercaster Tele I recently built.

    IMG_1679.JPG

    The 2006 neck has much chunkier fret wire compared to the 2017 neck. I’m wondering whether Fender have changed the fret wire spec over the years, or whether the 2006 neck has been re-fretted and re-lacquered at some point before I owned it?!

    Here’s the 2006 neck:

    IMG_1683.JPG

    Here’s the 2017:

    IMG_1684.JPG

    I like both necks, I’d just like to figure out why they’re different. The 2006 neck is slightly nicer to play, but I figure that’s mainly because it’s been squeezed for 12 years and the fretboard edges are softer. The 2017 fretboard has more of an edge to it.

    Here are some more detailed shots of the 2006 neck that I hope might help establish whether it’s been re-fretted or not! I’ve never seen a re-fretted maple neck in person so not really sure what to look for.

    IMG_1690.JPG

    IMG_1691.JPG

    Any thoughts or insights into this mystery are most welcome.

    Cheers!
     
  2. archetype

    archetype Fiend of Leo's

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    The necks will vary re profile and edges, because they’re finished by different people AFAIK Fender has never changed the fret specs on this model.
     
  3. Totally_Tod

    Totally_Tod Tele-Meister

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    Maybe the 2006 has been crowned and leveled?
     
  4. ricardo1912

    ricardo1912 Tele-Afflicted

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    There are definitely differences in necks for the same model due to the hand finishing, which might help explain it. I have two MIM Cabronitas, one of which has my all time favourite Tele neck and the other is OK but not as good. Similarly I have two Bajas and one is nicer to play than the other, even though they are similar ages.
     
  5. Badger06

    Badger06 Tele-Meister

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    My comment re: fretboard edges was more of an observation. For sure each neck is individual in terms of its shape and feel.

    My main question is about the frets, as the fret wire is different.

    I’ve noticed the 2006 neck has some white material at the base of the 19th - 21st frets. Could this be glue from a re-fret?

    Image1533908159.178456.jpg
     
  6. Badger06

    Badger06 Tele-Meister

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    I guess the 2006 could have had a fret crown and level, although that wouldn’t make the frets wider at the base, would it?! I guess it would give the illusion that they are wider.

    If the 2006 had been crowned and leveled I’d expect the 2017 frets to be taller, which they aren’t. They are definitely thinner though...

    Hmm.
     
  7. ozzeng

    ozzeng Tele-Meister

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    The frets on your 2017 Baja tele look like the frets on my 2 Bajas. The frets on your 2006 Baja look wider; it might have been refretted.
     
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