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Re: Changing a Fretboard
      05/04/12 02:16 PM
Hi caveman..

Divisions of the octave other than 12 can be fun and interesting, so I'd certainly recommend giving it a try.

Those pre-slotted fretboards look good, but are actually quite expensive. A normal pau ferro slotted fretboard from LMI would be about $20. So you pay a big premium for the non-standard slots and to be honest it is trivially simple to do. But more of that in a moment.

There are two ways to remove a fretboard. You remove the frets, and then either break the glue join between the fretboard and neck or plane off the old fretboard. There are pro's and con's to both methods, but essentially the decision is usually based on which is going to do least possible damage to the finish on the neck. Because the quality of the job will largely depend on how well finished it is, and touching up the finish is the most time consuming part of the job.

A bound fretboard shouldn't make any difference, but with one caveat. You need to be certain that the binding channel hasn't been cut deeper than the fretboard thickness and into the wood of the neck. If it has, you will need to have the replacement fretboard bound as well, and that could add to the cost.

So to get to the point where you have the new fretboard fitted and ready to fret you would expect to pay £200 minimum. Then you have to have it fretted, and with 17 frets per octave you are looking at 40% extra frets above a normal refret, or in other words... about one and a half refrets. Workshops vary, but for a unbound fretboard prices range from £100 to £200 if a quick search is anything to go by.

To get an idea of cost so far; the fretboard from the US will need shipping, duty and VAT added to the price and would be about £35; so you are looking at a minimum of £350 to do the job. Possibly more.

There is an alternative that might be a lot cheaper and just as good quality. And that is to buy a replacement neck with an unslotted fretboard. Most companies that actually make their replacement necks themselves will be able to offer it as an option, and they might even be able to custom fret it for you too. Certainly worth an email to Warmoth, or any of their UK competitors.

17 fret per octave equal temperament is easy enough to calculate, I've written a spreadsheet to calculate any number of fret divisions for any scale length. So if it would help I can always give you accurate measurements to pass on to your luthier of choice.

Anyway, quite a lot to think about there for you caveman. If you have any more thoughts or questions just let me know.

Andy

--------------------
When the going gets weird, the Weird turn Pro.

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Subject Posted by Posted on
* Changing a Fretboard caveman82 05/04/12 10:32 AM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard Anonymous   11/04/12 04:44 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard zenguitarModerator   11/04/12 11:10 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard zenguitarModerator   07/04/12 02:54 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard zenguitarModerator   07/04/12 12:11 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard Music Wolf   07/04/12 12:52 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard Anonymous   06/04/12 11:41 AM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard zenguitarModerator   06/04/12 01:13 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard Anonymous   06/04/12 04:15 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard DaveFry   06/04/12 06:32 AM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard caveman82   06/04/12 11:06 AM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard zenguitarModerator   05/04/12 07:09 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard caveman82   06/04/12 11:04 AM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard zenguitarModerator   06/04/12 02:11 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard caveman82   07/04/12 09:43 AM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard Random Guitarist   05/04/12 05:26 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard caveman82   05/04/12 06:33 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard zenguitarModerator   05/04/12 02:16 PM
. * Re: Changing a Fretboard caveman82   05/04/12 04:35 PM

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