Vintage Radius and Fret Wire - Not Actually Evil

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by TelePunkJCM, Jun 10, 2019.

  1. TelePunkJCM

    TelePunkJCM Tele-Meister

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    I’m relatively experienced. Play in several bands in different styles. Been at it about a decade.

    Have always shied away from vintage radius and wire because it’s “hard to play”.

    Fell in love with a Tele with vintage radius and frets.

    Lo and behold, it’s fine to play.

    My natural style seems to use few full barre chords. I gravitate instead to triads and riffs based on triads or partial “triads” (is that a thing?) on any of the strings all over the neck.

    For that style, the curved radius is actually very comfortable. And the small frets don’t seem to be a hindrance. In fact, for sliding up or down to another triad or fragment, they seem more accurate. For hybrid picking, which I seem to do a fair bit, the curved radius is great.

    Kinda neat.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2019
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  2. 6String69

    6String69 Tele-Holic

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    I love vintage fret wire and neck radius. Once I tried one, I was hooked.
     
  3. lammie200

    lammie200 Friend of Leo's

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    The whole flatter radius/bigger frets thing is overrated IMHO. At least so for shorter stubby fingers like mine.
     
  4. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    I am an unapologetic fan of the 7.25" radius and of vintage (6230) frets. I used to have two Teles, both with 9.5" radius necks. Now they both have 7.25" radius necks on them. I actually find them much easier to play, at least for my style. I use a lot of barre chords.
     
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  5. Controller

    Controller Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Yes, my favorite Tele neck is vintage radius and frets - Classic 50s. For me it is also the fastest neck.
     
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  6. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Friend of Leo's

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    That combo is always my preference, and I consider it the norm for myself. I have passed on many, many, many guitars because they don't have it. I don't get the complaints. If anything, I find everything easier to play with this combo. I wish I could try a neck with more radius, actually. I also wish I could get Gibsons with much curvier boards.
     
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  7. EspyHop

    EspyHop Tele-Holic

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    Evil???

    If a 7.5 with 6230s is wrong, I don’t want to be right.
     
  8. Greg_L

    Greg_L Tele-Holic

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    And uncomfortable.
     
  9. TelePunkJCM

    TelePunkJCM Tele-Meister

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    Funny you mention. I own one Gibson LP. It’s the only Gibson I’ve really bonded with. I replaced the bridge and my shop said it took a bit of work to get the saddle radius right - because the neck is more like a 9-9.5” radius than the spec’d 12”. I had no idea. Go figure. Dumb luck I guess.

    My Martin seems pretty flat but the frets are smaller. It plays great too.
     
  10. Keefsdad

    Keefsdad Tele-Holic

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    I don't mind the feel of them , but play a lot and i would wear them down really fast.
     
  11. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Friend of Leo's

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    What year was it made?

    Some old early '70s fretless wonder '54 reissue Les Paul Customs I've played have a quite curvy board. That combined with the fretless wonder frets, and I was instantly sold...except for my lack of several thousands of dollars.

    When my '04 Standard needs to be refretted (not too much longer), I am going to have my guitar guy introduce as much radius as he can without sanding into the side dots, and install 6230s. I'm hoping he can get it to a 10" radius or so.
     
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  12. TelePunkJCM

    TelePunkJCM Tele-Meister

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    It sure. It’s a heritage Cherry Burst plainish top Standard with a medium chunky neck. Weighs only about 7.5 lb so I assume it’s weight relieved. I believe first decade of the 2000s maybe?
     
  13. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Friend of Leo's

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    If it's from that period, then the 1st and 5th digits of the serial number = the last two digits of the year.

    E.g. 01234 = 2004.

    The three digits in between are a number indicating which day of the year the guitar was made.

    E.g. 123 = 123rd day of the year...which is May 3, unless it's a leap year, in which case it's May 2nd.

    In other words, the first five are a date code more than a true "serial" number. The remaining numbers are the true "serial" numbers, starting over each day. Therefore every standard production line guitar made on the same day of the same year has the same first five digits.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2019
  14. TelePunkJCM

    TelePunkJCM Tele-Meister

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    @EsquireOK - you piqued my curiosity. Even easier. Just checked. Back of the headstock is stamped 2008.
     
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  15. El Tele Lobo

    El Tele Lobo Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    My Jazzbo build (detailed in a thread here elsewhere) has an Allparts V neck with vintage frets and a 7.25" radius. I love it for playing jazz.
     
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  16. Stubee

    Stubee Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

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    I love the vintage feel of my AV62 Tele Custom, probably the most comfortable guitar I’ve ever owned and I’ve owned a bunch. Got an ‘83 AV62 Strat too and that sucker plays nice if you just look at it.

    I play a lotta flattop and going to an old Gibson or whatever after extended time with my Fenders is like rubbing my old fretting hand down a railroad track with bad ties. I’ll never quite understand how a vintage Fender can be considered hard to play or whatever, but different opinions keep the world turning.
     
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  17. mimmo

    mimmo Friend of Leo's

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    I can live with a 9.5 radius but 7.25 is home to me. Simply.
     
  18. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I own a vintage radius necked strat and have played many 7.25 radiused necks. Comfort is not the issue other than having to dig for the strings because there is little clearance, they just suck for large bends around the 12th fret up as they often die out too early and for bending in general if you like a lower action and have mid to meaty sized fingers.

    If you play fast lead with lots of bending and vibrato they are a chore to use. They slow you down and often fail on you. The fret life is short too.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2019
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  19. lineboat

    lineboat Friend of Leo's

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    I try to get a 7.25 on anything I buy. If not, it usually gets replaced pretty quick.
    It’s already been said, but it makes barre chords much easier, and I’ve never had any of the issues people talk about.
    Fretting out? Nope. Not if they’re set up right.
     
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  20. TelePunkJCM

    TelePunkJCM Tele-Meister

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    Well. Now I did it. I bought and returned a Tele that was way too expensive. Particularly to play our originals in tiny, dingy clubs. But it also had 10” radius and big old jumbo frets. They were dressed beautifully but I didn’t bond with them.

    So I spent some of that (still too much $$ I suppose) on a 2017 floor model “Pure Vintage” 52 Tele. Only 7 lb and with a .9 deep neck at the nut. Pretty cool.

    I’m not sure why the call it Pure Vintage instead of American Vintage but I’m excited to get it. Supposedly it has the vintage radius and frets. I can return it if it doesn’t work out, but I have a good feeling about it.

    As Mr. Petty sang so eloquently, the waiting is the hardest part.
     
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