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  #1  
Old 11-30-2020, 08:19 AM
ClaptonWannabe2 ClaptonWannabe2 is offline
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Default Fret install newb question...

Do any of you guys install your frets onto the board BEFORE gluing to the neck?

Is there a good reason not to do this? I am not talking dressing and crowning etc. Just hammering them into the slots. Just seems easier and less margin for error. Less wobble, no need for a neck caul.

Or is there some obvious reason that I am missing because this is my first build?

GRacias in advance.
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Old 11-30-2020, 08:37 AM
mirwa mirwa is offline
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Gluing the fretboard onto the neck first allows you to plane the board flat prior to fretting, this illiminates fallaway.

Steve
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Old 11-30-2020, 08:38 AM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is online now
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I’ve done it that way, but don’t anymore.

I once split a fingerboard doing that, but I think that is a very rare occurrence.

The main reason I don’t do it that way is that the only way to ensure that the finger board is really flat is to dress it after the guitar is fully assembled - unless it is a Taylor style neck assembly. If the fingerboard surface is not flat you are then relying on grinding the fret tops to achieve a flat plane. Ultimately what matters is that the tops of the frets lie in a plane, but ensuring the surface into which the frets are installed is flat provides a good starting point for level frets.

In response to Steve’s comment, “fall away” is unacceptable to me. It makes the action higher the higher you play up the fingerboard over the body. If one doesn’t play up there, then it won’t matter to that player. It does matter to me and my playing.

Last edited by charles Tauber; 11-30-2020 at 08:44 AM.
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Old 11-30-2020, 09:36 AM
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BalekSydon BalekSydon is online now
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I do it that way. I am okay with a little fallaway after the body joint so it works for my system.
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Old 12-23-2020, 02:02 PM
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ArchtopLover ArchtopLover is offline
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I've done it this way too (not always, though). Love the control it gives with the board on a flat surface. Gently pressing in the frets with a brass caul mounted in a drill press chuck is, "almost Heaven, West Virginia". Yeah, like that song.

1949 Epiphone Blackstone repairs 11-04-2020 006.jpg

I need fall away after the twelfth fret when I play, or the notes get a bit choked out. I guess I just like too strike the high notes with a little more authority than may be necessary .
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Old 12-23-2020, 02:33 PM
MC5C MC5C is offline
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If you bind the fretboard, you usually tend to install the fretboard on the neck, then install the binding, and then install the frets. At least I do. I install the frets, then carve the neck. I do archtops with floating fretboard extensions, mind you. I haven't made a neck with a fretboard that has to lie flat on a body.
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Old 12-23-2020, 03:27 PM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MC5C View Post
If you bind the fretboard, you usually tend to install the fretboard on the neck, then install the binding, and then install the frets. At least I do. I install the frets, then carve the neck. I do archtops with floating fretboard extensions, mind you.
Just as another perspective, I do both floating fingerboards and non-floating the same way. I cut fret slots, install bindings then glue to neck, then carve the neck. After the neck is attached, I level the fingerboard, then fret. I do fretting on an all-but-complete instrument.

On my current guitar build, I'm experimenting with using a laser cutter/engraver to cut pocket fret slots: no bindings necessary.
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Old 12-23-2020, 06:05 PM
John Arnold John Arnold is offline
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Quote:
If you bind the fretboard, you usually tend to install the fretboard on the neck, then install the binding, and then install the frets. At least I do.
I bind fingerboards and peghead veneers before installing them. Just like Martin. Martin used to install frets after the fingerboard was installed, but no more. They now fret the fingerboard before instrallation, as Gibson has always done.
The advantage of fretting after installation is the ability to level the fingerboard.
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Old 12-24-2020, 05:24 PM
phavriluk phavriluk is online now
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Default A thought

This is starting to look like an example of more cooks in the kitchen than make sense...OP needs to pick and learn one system. Mixing advice creates no end of confusion.
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Old 12-24-2020, 07:50 PM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phavriluk View Post
This is starting to look like an example of more cooks in the kitchen than make sense...OP needs to pick and learn one system. Mixing advice creates no end of confusion.
That is good advice. There are numerous methods that can all be made to work satisfactorily. Chose one, and learn to make it work. If, after getting that method to work, branch out and try others if you like. Mixing and matching methods can lead to confusion and unsatisfactory results.
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Old 12-25-2020, 08:00 AM
Quickstep192 Quickstep192 is offline
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Does installing the frets before gluing induce a bow into the fingerboard that could affect clamping pressure while gluing?
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Old 12-25-2020, 08:37 AM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is online now
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No, not that affects clamping significantly.
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Old 01-04-2021, 08:40 PM
ClaptonWannabe2 ClaptonWannabe2 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArchtopLover View Post
I've done it this way too (not always, though). Love the control it gives with the board on a flat surface. Gently pressing in the frets with a brass caul mounted in a drill press chuck is, "almost Heaven, West Virginia". Yeah, like that song.

Attachment 48866

I need fall away after the twelfth fret when I play, or the notes get a bit choked out. I guess I just like too strike the high notes with a little more authority than may be necessary .
Dang. I want your drill press. And enough room for it.
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  #14  
Old 01-04-2021, 08:44 PM
ClaptonWannabe2 ClaptonWannabe2 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charles Tauber View Post
That is good advice. There are numerous methods that can all be made to work satisfactorily. Chose one, and learn to make it work. If, after getting that method to work,Mixing and matching methods can lead to confusion and unsatisfactory results.

You are describing my entire first build process. Lol

If I am able to tune it to pitch without the bridge slapping me in the face I will be satisfied. Baby steps.
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