What's your preferred fret wire for Les Paul guitars?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by Kenni, Dec 6, 2017.


  1. Kenni

    Kenni Member

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    Hi there, good people! :)

    I have several Single Cut guitar re-frets coming up soon, and I thought it would be nice to hear a little about what preferred fret wire you guys like to use.

    Perhaps also a little about how you determine what fret wire to look for.. for example, do you pull out one of the old frets, and use that as a guide, etc.

    Cheers & Thanks! :)
     
  2. Jack Daniels

    Jack Daniels Supporting Member

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    Use whatever size you (or your customer?) prefer to play on. I personally use the same wire on all my electrics. Stew Mac 152. For accoustics, I use Stew Mac 148. Regardless of the number of cutaways or lack there of..
     
  3. Ayrton

    Ayrton Member

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    Jescar, and only Jescar. Whatever size you prefer, nickel or Stainless, use Jescar.
     
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  4. GuitarsFromMars

    GuitarsFromMars Member

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    Dunlop 6105 is the McChicken of fretwire.
     
  5. GM Reszel

    GM Reszel Member

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    Strange question - as if the cutaway determines what fret you want? You'll get lots of conjecture here - mine's Jescar 47104 (.047"x.104") - this is a great fret; not too big, not too small,,perfect for me. I'm mostly using SS but EVO gold is cool too especially if the hardware is gold.
     
  6. Kenni

    Kenni Member

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    Hmm, excuse me... I chose that title since I was looking for some new fret wire for some of my Single Cut guitars...

    Alright, thanks :)
    I'll spend some time taking a look at the different wires that Jescar can provide :)

    Cheers!
     
  7. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    well what kind of frets do you like then? big? small? and yeah, what does "single cut" have to do with anything? is that a specific brand of guitar?

    also, why do you have "several" refrets coming up? are these guitars all worn out? or are the stock frets not to your liking?

    if you've worn out that many frets, you might want to strongly consider stainless. if they're worn flat all over just from playing the hell out of them then whatever size you like would be fine, but if they're grooved under the strings in the chord positions then you're squeezing too hard! in that case you might want to avoid too tall a fret or you'll tend to squeeze the notes sharp.

    +1 to jescar being the best brand wire regardless of size or material. (i myself like the big 57x110 in stainless on my electrics).
     
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  8. KGWagner

    KGWagner Member

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    For single cut-away guitars, I'm with Walter and prefer to use 57x110 stainless wire. If I'm doing a double cutaway, then I'd rather have 57x110 stainless. For the rare no-cutaway like a Flying V, then the best seems to be the stainless 57x110 wire. If you'd prefer to go fretless, the 57x110 wire seems to intonate better. The only time I would use something else is if someone paid me, but even then I kick a bit...
     
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  9. Ayrton

    Ayrton Member

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    57110SS for me as well.
     
  10. Kenni

    Kenni Member

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    Hmm, guess I'm more used to the medium/medium-jumbo...
    Easy now... I just added the 'single cut' because I had several different single cut guitars in need of a refret...

    I have several refrets coming up because I've bought some old Japanese Les Pauls, where the frets are worn really low.. too low to dress the frets..
    That's why.

    I haven't worn out the frets... And I certainly don't do it that fast ;) hehe.

    Thanks for the info, @walterw :)
     
  11. Kenni

    Kenni Member

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    Ha ha ha, you're very funny, huh?....
    You don't have to put it like that... I mainly added the 'single cut' because I have several Les Paul guitars with different fret tang width...
    That's why I put it like that..
     
  12. Fireball XL5

    Fireball XL5 Supporting Member

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    Okay, so now we know they are Les Paul type guitars which typically means the guitars have a shorter Gibson 24.75" scale length. Much more useful info for determining fret size than "single cut".

    I personally prefer jumbo-size Jescar 57110's in stainless steel and have refretted several of my Les Paul's with that wire and love the feel and playability. Some player's are leary of going with jumbo wire on a shorter Gibson scale guitar as they feel fingering will be too cramped when playing in the upper fret registers, and thus opt for a narrower fret.

    I don't find cramped fingering with jumbo frets on a Gibson scale to a problem at all. In fact I find fingering on upper frets with jumbos to be easier, but everyone is different.

    My vote is for Jescar Jumbo 57110 size frets in stainless steel.
     
  13. Kenni

    Kenni Member

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    I've changed the title... but yes, Les Paul guitars...

    Thanks for that, @Fireball XL5 :)
     
  14. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    OK so it's well-established that we all love our 57x110 stainless on everything :dude, but that means nothing to you, it's about what frets you like.
    if you genuinely prefer that kind of vibe, then something like the jescar 47x105 would be right in line with that, sort of a "big for its time" vintage gibson fret.

    it might be worth a shot to try out some guitars with full-on tall jumbo wire, you might find you like the bigger stuff after all. the big stuff is better for bending and vibrato as well as being easier to do barre chords, because your fingers don't touch the wood so much. the tradeoff is that you feel them more when you slide up the neck, and again if you tend to squeeze too hard you'll be sharp all the time.
     

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