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Thursday, 2 June 2016

Guitar customization trials, some error


2 necks, one guitar.


 
 
The typical nickel material used for guitar frets wears down over time, leaving indents on frets where the strings make contact with them, and making frets rough, which makes it more difficult to bend strings.
 
The nickel frets on this strat have become very worn down, making it difficult to play. And because replacing a neck is only slightly more costly than replacing the frets on an existing neck, I thought to just buy a new guitar neck.
 
And I did. I ordered a custom neck with every refinement I'd want, which is the one in the picture that's to the left of the guitar. But the maple neck I received is too bright-sounding for my taste, and a lot brighter than the original neck... so I've ended up doing what was my alternative option anyway, which was getting a fret-dress for the original neck.
 
A fret-dressing means to shave down all frets until there are no more worn indents, and all the frets are levelled and polished, and even, all the way down the neck.


 

I also applied copper shielding to most of the body cavity-space, but I ran out of material to finish the top two pickup cavities. The copper shielding prevents the pickups and wiring from picking up excess noise, and sending it through the amp, and out the speakers.
 
 
 
 
There's a pic of the guitar with the custom neck installed. Very little of the original guitar is included in that customization.. just the main body wood, the bridge and tremolo system, the input jack, and some of its wiring.
 
I'm going to play the guitar with that new neck for a (likely very short) bit. But, ultimately, I'm going to sell that neck and put the original one back on, and get a few more years out of the levelled frets before replacing them all (the top 6 have been replaced before).
 
But even with the original neck fret-dressed, I'll still not be entirely satisfied with how it feels, and I think I'll shave down the neck thickness some, and apply a different finish to the back of it.
 
 
 
C~ Soundscapes
 

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