Sharp Frets Easy Fix

candy apple red telecaster

Sharp Frets Easy Fix

sharp fret repair

Sometimes a good deal comes with some not so great extras. Like the Telecaster I just got. It’s a Squier, but it’s a beauty. The Candy Apple Red finish is flawless, and the electronics are acceptable, but it had sharp frets poking out from the fretboard. They weren’t horrible but annoying enough that they had to be dressed down. Considering what I paid for it I figured I’d take a shot at fixing it. I mean, hell I’ve done just about everything else to a guitar but always avoided fret work so it’s high time I gave it a go. First, I watched half a dozen youtube videos on the subject then gathered up my tools and went to work. This turned out to be a relatively simple task although it was a bit tedious and time consuming. All you need is some masking tape, a jewelers file, some sandpaper and something rigid to back the sandpaper that allows it to span 5 or 6 frets at a time, and something to hold the strings out of the way unless you just remove them (which is the smart thing to do). I masked off the sides of the neck only leaving the fret ends exposed then

sharp fret fix

using a flat steel object (I used the back cover of an old stomp box) I dressed down the fret ends. Just hold the sandpaper at a slight angle that approximates the bevel of the frets and slowly go back and forth being careful not to alter the angle too much. You can hear it when you’re on the frets as opposed to the wood. Stop every few passes and check the ends with your fingers. Once you get that part smooth just place some tape on each side of a fret and using the jewelers file slowly round the rest of the fret end. Go slow and easy and check often so you don’t overdo it (it helps if you first grind and sand the edges of the file smooth so it doesn’t cut into the wood if you slip) If you can control the sandpaper and the file so as to maintain the proper angle you’ll be done in no time. And for the sake of your own sanity check out some of those videos on youtube before you dive in on this one.

sharp fret solution

VLUU L200 / Samsung L200

jewelers file


Gibson Les Paul Studio, Hamer Studio, Dean Soltero, Epiphone Les Paul (Korean), Ovation Celebrity, Blackstar HT-1R, Jet City JCA20H, Jet City JCA22H, Orange OR15, and a lot of dirt pedals, some store bought some DIY.

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