Dentend in frets - Jemsite
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-08-2017, 07:35 PM Thread Starter
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Dentend in frets

Just wondering I am a pretty hard player and Ive noticed on almost every guitar i play within a few years or a year my frets will get some dent around the fret and maybe wear the fret down a bit Now i was wondering if anyone out there might know of any kind of trick too maybe make my frets last a little longer longer? (im talking about the metal fret bar) Thanks
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-08-2017, 09:41 PM
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Re: Dentend in frets

Play softer?

It might be worthwhile refretting with stainless steel, it'll be costly initially, but last a lot longer.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-08-2017, 10:04 PM
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Re: Dentend in frets


It's like takin' care of your teeth!

Last edited by Leviathus; 02-08-2017 at 10:05 PM. Reason: meaning of dentend
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-08-2017, 10:33 PM
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Re: Dentend in frets

how are you playing intonated is the bigger question? Until you lighten up refret (or replace the worst frets individually) with stainless fretwire (it's harder than nickle/silver)
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-09-2017, 05:16 AM
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Re: Dentend in frets

Do you have wrist pain / Carpel Tunnel?

When I started playing (many years ago) I pressed hard on the strings too.
My wrist was killing me so I started playing with a lighter grip and it fixed my problem.
I did have two guitars that needed fret leveling because of this.

Once I started playing with a lighter grip, my playing got cleaner and faster!

Give it a shot-
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-09-2017, 08:32 AM
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Re: Dentend in frets

Depending on what you play and how you play it (playing with a lighter touch may be very difficult or even unlikely), fret wear is inevitable, even on stainless steel, or so I've been told. They will last considerably longer though. But they're not without downsides. The wear on the strings is increased. You'll find that on the wound strings, the windings will simply be gone rather quickly in places over the frets. On the unwound strings, if you attempt a sustained vibrato, say ~3 or more seconds, the string will start to scrape and grind on that fret. Stop doing that motion for a few minutes, and things will return to normal. One other technique I've discovered I can no longer do more than a few times without the string predictably breaking under my left hand: on the high E, if I bend at the 13th fret (or around this area), then tap on a higher fret and bend more, then add some vibrato. Never had any of these problems on nickel-silver frets.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-10-2017, 08:17 AM
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Re: Dentend in frets

I have discussions with 2 luthiers about these stainless steel frets, both prefer way much the nickel-silver frets as the stainless steel ones do add some brightness and will dastrically increase the strings wear as written above.
Luthiers have to buy new tools for the stainless steel frets which might imply some overcost for guitar owners. One of the 2 luthiers told me something also with the fact that the stainless steel material is harder to remove from the wood or something like that, don't remember precisely
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-10-2017, 08:58 AM
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Re: Dentend in frets

Consider using FastFret it really helps reduce friction & keep the strings clean on any type of frets.

If you feel a fret crunching during vibrato that is a string problem or perhaps the frets need a quick polish. When you feel that friction there is a problem that needs to be remedied (string change or fret polish).

Luthiers like NS (like most guitarists) for obvious reasons... tone, feel and easier to work with than SS. While I would never buy an axe with SS frets myself, string wear is not really a consideration because you should change strings very often anyways if you want the best sound/feel. Would you rather the strings wear than the frets wear?
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-10-2017, 09:41 AM
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Re: Dentend in frets

Having used stainless steel frets for around a year and a half now, I probably wouldn't go back to using nickel silver. For most things, they really provide a frictionless, glassy smooth feeling. It helps notes approach the condition of them playing themselves.

I hear people all the time saying that they are brighter, but I haven't really noticed this. It could be true, but the amount is so small as to be really, really hard to hear. Plus, one could always compensate in the equipment providing amplification.

When I noticed the fret grinding/crunching, I took the guitar back to the person who did the fretting, and he did another fret polish, but it didn't solve anything. Also, this happens with a completely new string. There's something else going on. He told me that it could be heat produced that temporarily changes the molecular structure of the string, resulting in the scraping.
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