Time to Refret My Strat?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by angus99, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. angus99

    angus99 Member

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    I'm the second owner of a '96 Strat Plus with a maple board. Most of the medium jumbo frets are getting pretty flat on top and I was wondering if there's an accepted range for fret height before they need replacing. I think there are other issues with this guitar as well. For instance, I'm getting some rattling on several strings when I play above the second or third fret. When I try for a full bend on the first string at the 7th fret, the tone is totally buzzed out well before I reach the pitch I'm trying to hit. So, I'm guessing I need a truss rod adjustment and maybe a full set up as well.

    Any thoughts?

    thanks

    angus
     
  2. shane88

    shane88 Member

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    get a luthier to look @ it
     
  3. larry1096

    larry1096 Member

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    Whether there is enough fret meat left for a refret is, in part, a judgment call. I don't bother if they're below .040 or so, simply because they'll be too short for me when I get them level.

    OTOH, there are plenty of people who LIKE low frets, and they can certainly get a dressing or two more than I can out of a set.

    Larry
     
  4. angus99

    angus99 Member

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    Thanks. Mine are varying apparently between .043 and .036 and the luthier I took it to says he thinks I can get by with a dressing as opposed to a total refret. But he wasn't trying to sell me either way.

    I have an '82 ES 335 that has virtually perfect frets that seem a bit lower than the Strat -- but that I really like the feel of. I suppose I should just measure those to see if I'd like the Strat that height (assuming neck radius or some other variable doesn't change things).

    angus
     
  5. Chiba

    Chiba Gold Supporting Member

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    Start with setting up the guitar - neck adjustment, action, etc. If that doesn't solve your problem, go for the fret dress (level, crown & polish).

    Most likely the fretwork will carry you for a couple years, then you can get it refretted.

    --chiba
     

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