Metal Guitarist Forums banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,806 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well I got my new angelus and as it was a case queen, the frets were highly tarnished. Figured now would be a perfect time to do another how to. Make sure the fretboard is clean and dry, don't apply any lemon oil before doing the job or else nothing will stick.

Firstly, the materials;

Newspaper
Quality masking tape, do NOT skimp on cheap shit or else removing it will be a nightmare
A sharp razor or exacto knife
Steel wool, 0000/super fine grade



Before touching the fretboard, grab the newspaper and cut it to a size that will cover your pickups with some overhang. Use the masking tape to secure the newspaper to the body so nothing can get into it. This is important as it'll prevent you having to spend ages getting iron filings out of your pickups.



Start from your first fret and apply masking tape to the fretboard going up to the very bottom of the fret. On the first few frets you'll need to use two pieces and just overlap them. Once you get a few frets in, the masking tape will be wider than the space. To make it easier, fold the tape over with the sticky side on the outside.



Place the edge of the tape against the fret and push down toward the other fret until it meets it.



With the excess. grab your knife and cut it off. Point the tip of the blade into the point where the fret and board meet and cut carefully to avoid jumping the blade and scratching the fret or the board. Remove the excess tape.



Grab a ball of the steel wool and with a moderate pressure, polish the fret across the width of the board until it shines. Move down the board until all the frets are cleaned.



As you can see, it makes a hell of a difference. Once the tarnish is gone, bends will be smoother, moving along the board easier and the guitar will look a hell of a lot better.




As you can see, this is why we cover the pickups. Those iron filings are attracted to the poles in the pickups and by having them covered, all you have to do is put the tape you pull off the fret board onto the newspaper and the filings won't be going anywhere when you remove it.



Take your time, getting the tape done correctly is the longest part. When you're done, give your fret board an oil and get to playing!
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
8,320 Posts
Wire wool's a bit of a shitter to work with. I really like the fret rubbers. There's less mess, and it's much easier to clean up.

For taping off, it's cool to start off by running a length of tape down each side of the neck, parallel to the fretboard. It makes taking the tape off at the end much easier, and it gives an extra layer of protection if you want to really get at the fret ends with gay abandon.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,806 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Wire wool's a bit of a shitter to work with. I really like the fret rubbers. There's less mess, and it's much easier to clean up.

For taping off, it's cool to start off by running a length of tape down each side of the neck, parallel to the fretboard. It makes taking the tape off at the end much easier, and it gives an extra layer of protection if you want to really get at the fret ends with gay abandon.
Come to Australia where a fret rubber costs more than several packs of wool. Seriously, prices here are stupid on anything luthier related.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
8,320 Posts
Come to Australia where a fret rubber costs more than several packs of wool. Seriously, prices here are stupid on anything luthier related.
Crimson Guitars on eBay sell them at £7 each or £20 for a set of four. Postage and duty can't be that high. They'll last absolutely ages, too. Way, way longer than a few packs of wire wool. Worth the small investment, I reckon.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,806 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Crimson Guitars on eBay sell them at £7 each or £20 for a set of four. Postage and duty can't be that high. They'll last absolutely ages, too. Way, way longer than a few packs of wire wool. Worth the small investment, I reckon.
20 squiggles= $50~ locally. Add to that the 15-20 postage, and that's almost $100 straight up for four rubbers. Whereas just spending a few minutes covering my pickups means no worrying about all the extra incidentals. You guys have access to Amazon and other sources, we don't. Over here you've got Australian Luthiers Supplies and Real Parts, both of which stock fuck all and charge an arm and a leg. To get stuff from overseas, postage is incredibly high unless you're getting several items, plus the Australian Dollar has tanked. Early last year we were at parity with the greenback, new we struggle to hit $0.70.
 

·
Is Actually Recording
Joined
·
32,765 Posts
20 squiggles= $50~ locally. Add to that the 15-20 postage, and that's almost $100 straight up for four rubbers. Whereas just spending a few minutes covering my pickups means no worrying about all the extra incidentals. You guys have access to Amazon and other sources, we don't. Over here you've got Australian Luthiers Supplies and Real Parts, both of which stock fuck all and charge an arm and a leg. To get stuff from overseas, postage is incredibly high unless you're getting several items, plus the Australian Dollar has tanked. Early last year we were at parity with the greenback, new we struggle to hit $0.70.
Yes, but they'll probably last you for the rest of your life. :lol:

I've been meaning to try fret erasers for a while now. Do you do anything to mask the board, or do you just try not to hit it too much?

It's less the AUD has tanked than the USD has strengthened significantly in the last year or so.
 

·
Is Actually Recording
Joined
·
32,765 Posts
By the way, if you DO tape off the neck and use steel wool...

I usually don't bother to mask off the entire face of the guitar like this. I do, however, use tape to entirely seal over the pickups. When you're done, though, you have all these steel wool shavings stuck to the front of the tape over the pickups. Except, they're not - they're just drawn to the magnetic field, and they;ll fall off the tape as soon as you try to remove it. so, I always tape OVER the tape covering the pickups, to lock all that crap in, and then remove them all together.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
8,320 Posts
Yes, but they'll probably last you for the rest of your life. :lol:

I've been meaning to try fret erasers for a while now. Do you do anything to mask the board, or do you just try not to hit it too much?
I still mask off. I did consider using those fret templates Frenchie posted, but, after watching the Crimson Guitars tutorial on fret work, where they use an eraser followed by some chrome polish stuff called Autosol and got amazing results. I wanted to try their method. The results I got were so cool (my P2's frets are like mirrors now), I'll continue doing that on any guitars that require a heavy clean up, but you could definitely get away with one of those template things if you were just giving a spruce up to some dull but already clean frets. You could maybe use nothing if you were doing a very light job, as they mould to the shape of the fret, but they are an abrasive, so you'd want to only be doing the tops of the frets.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top