How to handle one-single high fret! Ernie Ball Music Man JP6!

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by EVH~5150, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. EVH~5150

    EVH~5150 Member

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    TGP'ers,

    I just acquired a used JP6 with stainless frets. During my initial cleaning and setup last night, I confirmed with a fret rocker that the 6th fret is high, but only on the treble side of the neck. The notes on the 5th fret on the high E and B strings choke out badly. Can this be resolved with just a little bit of filing/sanding on that area only, or does the whole neck require a complete fret leveling? I've adjusted the saddles and it helped, but I don't want to raise the action any further. Thanks.
     
  2. Antmax

    Antmax Member

    Messages:
    1,107
    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2015
    Location:
    Brit in Sacramento
    I'd check whether it had lifted on one side. You might be able to press it back down, preferably with superglue in something like a syringe to hold it down. Otherwise you can file it down carefully. The reasons people level the whole neck is usually because there are often several frets and it's just easier to do them all at once. A single one is a little fiddly but often there are 5+ which is quite a lot of work.

    If it's just that fret and you don't have the tools or experience, I'd get someone reputable to just fix that one fret for you. It will probably be cheaper than buying the tools to repair it yourself.
     
    Tone Meister and EVH~5150 like this.
  3. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    16,972
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2002
    I’d take it to a tech. That fret could just need to be reseated. Or that fret could need to be recrowned. I doubt the whole guitar would need to be leveled and recrowned.
     
    Tone Meister and EVH~5150 like this.
  4. EVH~5150

    EVH~5150 Member

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Thanks guys. Well, its ironic that I recently ordered one of those Fret Guru leveling beams, but I wasn't expecting to learn how to use it on this particular guitar. I also have the Z file from Stew Mac...but again..wasn't planning to learn on this caliber of instrument.
     
  5. jvin248

    jvin248 Member

    Messages:
    1,061
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2016
    .

    Press on the fret and see if it moves up and down. If so, get a clamp and a block of wood behind the neck, and drip a little super glue at that location. If you can find the 'thin' version it will soak in deep (just be careful you open to tip with a pin not a utility knife as it splashes when it gushes out). After 24 hours recheck with the fret rocker.

    .
     
    EVH~5150 likes this.
  6. EVH~5150

    EVH~5150 Member

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Thanks!!!!
     
  7. 9fingers

    9fingers Supporting Member

    Messages:
    6,397
    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2005
    Location:
    Hills of WV
    I use magnification. A lifting fret can be very hard to see. WITH magnification I first see if I can see any space under the fret crown. Then, watching the fret crown/fingerboard join I press on the fret with a hard object (like the metal handle end of a butterknife). If there is any movement at all the fret is loose. This is very likely as one fret doesn't just "go high". You may be able to reseat it with some firm taps with a plastic head or brass face hammer. Be careful not to hit any strings in the process or you will leave a string mark on the fret. If this does not seat it & hold it down, then figure some way to clamp it. Either way after seating put a little drop of thin super glue on the side of the neck where the fret tang is exposed. It will wick in along the tang. Let that dry & try it. You can hit it with a drop of Accelerator and try it right away.

    If you try to level a loose fret the leveler will press the fret down, then it will spring back up as the tool leaves it and be high again. So do a real careful exam for loose fret.
     
    walterw and EVH~5150 like this.
  8. EVH~5150

    EVH~5150 Member

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Excellent advice!!! Thank you!!!!
     
  9. EVH~5150

    EVH~5150 Member

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Here's a photo of the guitar on my bench. Ain't she purdy????

    [​IMG]
     
    The_Whale, WhiskeyTango and 9fingers like this.
  10. bojocatkite

    bojocatkite Member

    Messages:
    68
    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2017
  11. GuitarInnovations

    GuitarInnovations Member

    Messages:
    1,116
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Someone around here suggested something far cheaper:

    You take a block of wood the width of the three frets. Cut the sandpaper and tape it so that there is a rough strip going over the middle where the high fret is. On either side of that strip tape down the same sandpaper, but with the grit facing the block. You should be able to sand it down level in no time without compromising the height of the adjacent frets.
     
    Tone_Terrific and EVH~5150 like this.
  12. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    33,753
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2006
    yeah, don't.

    this is really unusual for music man, but like @9fingers says it's most likely a sprung fret, in which case the fix is getting it seated back down again rather than grinding on it.

    it might even be worth getting in touch with ernie ball about it! yes it's used but they might still be able to do something for you.
     
    EVH~5150 and Chris Scott like this.
  13. Chris Scott

    Chris Scott Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,770
    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2006
    Location:
    Playa Jaco, Costa Rica
    Like walter said, MM is a great company, one that for me pretty much sets the bar for customer service, so depending on your location etc it might be the best way to go.

    Fwiw, in my experience this is most likely a sprung fret, and careful re-seating (usually with cyano glue, which requires a deft touch and lots of experience) to rectify. There's a strong possibility there are others as well, so imo the instrument needs a pro's attention.
     
    EVH~5150 likes this.
  14. 9fingers

    9fingers Supporting Member

    Messages:
    6,397
    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2005
    Location:
    Hills of WV
    Like Chris says, it is easy for cyano (Super Glue) to "get away from you". Only use it it if you are used to handling & applying it, or you could quickly have finish issues as well.
     
    EVH~5150 likes this.
  15. EVH~5150

    EVH~5150 Member

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    All great advice! Still following suggestions very closely and will post results after the problem is identified and resolved! Thank you all!
     
    Chris Scott likes this.
  16. GuitarInnovations

    GuitarInnovations Member

    Messages:
    1,116
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    You can use feeler gauges to see if there's any space under the fret, too.
     
    EVH~5150 likes this.
  17. bob-i

    bob-i Member

    Messages:
    7,737
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2005
    Location:
    Central NJ
    I’ve used this method many times, even long before YouTube.

     
    EVH~5150 likes this.
  18. EVH~5150

    EVH~5150 Member

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Well, I used a magnifying lens and it doesn't appear that the fret has lifted.
     
  19. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Member

    Messages:
    25,564
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2004
    Location:
    Canada-GTA
    Would you not think that a guitar of that caliber would have had a good levelling job when assembled?
    So, what happened?
    Check for lifting again, maybe tap it down or press it mechanically to see if it moves.
     
  20. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    33,753
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2006
    did you tap or press it down to see if it moves?

    that's the actual procedure.
     
    EVH~5150 likes this.

Share This Page