stainless steel frets - Jemsite
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-05-2004, 02:40 PM Thread Starter
 
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stainless steel frets

I've recently been contemplating about fitting my jem with stainless steel frets. It has a basswood body, rosewood board, and Paf Pros. How do you guys think stainless steel fret will affect the sound? Has anyone had any first hand experience with them? especially on Jems? I'm very curious! Any kind of help will be appreciated! Thanks so much

-Bo
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-05-2004, 09:58 PM
 
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Re: stainless steel frets

Quote:
Originally Posted by bobojem
I've recently been contemplating about fitting my jem with stainless steel frets. It has a basswood body, rosewood board, and Paf Pros. How do you guys think stainless steel fret will affect the sound? Has anyone had any first hand experience with them? especially on Jems? I'm very curious! Any kind of help will be appreciated! Thanks so much

-Bo
Opinions vary from "no audible difference" to "brighter". A few even say they're "TOO bright". I've only played them on Parkers, but IMO the Nitefly is a very good sounding guitar. I just ordered a neck from Carvin with SS frets because a) I LIKE bright, and b) even if it's TOO bright I can re-EQ and still enjoy those smooth, long wearing frets!
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-05-2004, 10:07 PM Thread Starter
 
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re-eqing should definitly solve the problem, i got a pretty decent eq unit anyway. I think I'll go for them! thanks! Any words of caution?
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-06-2004, 08:46 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobojem
re-eqing should definitly solve the problem, i got a pretty decent eq unit anyway. I think I'll go for them! thanks! Any words of caution?
Well, they're harder than nickel silver ones, so I would take it to someone who's done a SS refret before. The technique is the same, but sometimes there are those "little issues" that you run into the first time around. I just wouldn't want that to be MY axe.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-06-2004, 10:27 AM
 
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I say go with them. They never need replacing, and they'll sustain longer.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-07-2004, 09:16 AM
 
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I use them on my current main guitar. I can't really say if they're brighter or not, since this particular guitar has always had them. All I know is that they feel smooth, and will last much longer than standard frets.

I honestly don't see anything negative about them.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-07-2004, 04:43 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks much guys! i'll try them out!
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-07-2004, 06:25 PM
 
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what about titanium frets!?!?
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-07-2004, 10:39 PM Thread Starter
 
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I prefer ceramic frets over titanium frets. Aside from the fact that ceramic frets sound warmer, they are also more heat resistant than titanium frets, hence the fact that space shuttles use them to protect against the heat produced by the friction between the atmosphere and the ship upon re-entering. My guitar playing is so intense that my guitar frets are vulnerable to such heat. To me ceramic frets would be IDEAL. but i'll settle for stainless steel


hope you know im kidding
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-08-2004, 05:29 PM
 
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...but if the steel ones had tangs deep enough, they could use the truss rod as a heat pipe to transfer the heat away from the neck into a huge finned aluminum heat sink. This would, of course, be the guitar body. Deluxe models could have a fan as well... ;-)
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-08-2004, 10:10 PM Thread Starter
 
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hmmm...a very well thoughtout scheme indeed. However I'm a little worried that the fan noise will travel through the body of the guitar and get picked up by the pickups, then amplified by my Laney Plexi half stack and becomes this eminent noise that resembles the humming of bees...an incredibly large swarm of bees...it'll be particularly useful if i'm attempting to replicated Steve's "Bangkok" but other than that i'll probably need a real powerful noise gate...so...all in all....ceramics is better
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-09-2004, 12:56 AM
 
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There are a couple reasons I haven't bothered using SS frets in anything yet.

1. In a guitar like the Parker fly's with the carbon fretboards, you have a material that will not contract and expand much if any. The frets will never move. In wood they can move, they can pop loose, the frets can become unlevel with wood movement etc. This isn't the end of the world, but it will mean an expensive levelling.
2. Stainless is very hard to work with, in the event that a fret isn't dead level it is major work to level it out, it's also major work to dress the ends, not impossible, but much more time consuming.
3. The feel, I get no response from them on my Parker, it is the one thing about the parker I have never liked. They feel cold, they are to smooth I think, well for me anyway. The brightness isn't an issue, I just don't like the feel personally.

But, that's just my two cents
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-09-2004, 12:59 AM Thread Starter
 
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thanks jeremy, you brought up something i would've never thought of myself. You point is, again, well taken! thank you so much! Just wandering, is there any happy median between SS frets and Conventional Nickle frets?
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-09-2004, 11:22 AM
 
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For me the happy median is quality fretwire. The Dunlop pre-cut quality is all over the place. Sometimes it comes looking like a cold solder joint. I never use it unless I need some weird size and I won't be ordering anything in larger quantities. But I've had good luck with Warmoth and Stew Mac in the past, although even Dan Erlewine is always on the prowl for something harder. I'd love to try stainless, but I also see a near perfect balance in what we have now. A good N/S fret will last a long time, and still be easily workable, easy to level and crown, and over a player guitar's lifetime will require some refrets, but not so many that the slots become useless. It's a good system.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-09-2004, 01:29 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frankfalbo
I'd love to try stainless, but I also see a near perfect balance in what we have now. A good N/S fret will last a long time, and still be easily workable, easy to level and crown, and over a player guitar's lifetime will require some refrets, but not so many that the slots become useless. It's a good system.
Frank, do you work harden your n/s fretwire and if so, how much harder does it get?
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basswood body , dan erlewine , guitar body , guitar playing , paf pro , paf pros , parker fly , rosewood board , sounding guitar , stainless steel frets , steel frets , truss rod

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