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Converting fretboard radius

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Converting fretboard radius

Postby Edgar Jessop » Sun Sep 24, 2017 8:53 pm

I have a Peavey electric that I plan on refreting. But, I want to convert the fretboard radius from 15 3/4in. to 10in.. I want to avoid simply replacing the neck if possible. So, I'm thinking of sanding the board to the 10in. radius using my sanding caul. The neck has a rosewood board and dot fret markers is 25 1/2in. scale and twenty four frets. What do you think; is this practical or not?
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Re: Converting fretboard radius

Postby David King » Mon Sep 25, 2017 12:14 am

It's totally practical but I would attempt a compound radius rather than a straight 10. I don't know how easy that would be for you without a long flat sanding board or a big belt sander with a straight platen.
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Re: Converting fretboard radius

Postby Brian Evans » Mon Sep 25, 2017 10:14 am

it looks like it's unbound, so check your fingerboard thickness. Take the nut off and double check that it's not a veneer fingerboard. If you have sufficient thickness, go for it. If you think you might get marginal on thickness to refret, think about your options. 10" is less than I am comfortable with, and needs relatively high action if you do a lot of string bending.
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Re: Converting fretboard radius

Postby Barry Daniels » Mon Sep 25, 2017 10:54 am

Make sure the radius will fit your bridge.
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Re: Converting fretboard radius

Postby David King » Mon Sep 25, 2017 2:52 pm

Remember that you'll need to deepen the ends of the fret slots with a fine tooth saw that cuts the appropriate width kerf. You'll also want a way to keep those slots from getting too deep.
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Re: Converting fretboard radius

Postby Edgar Jessop » Mon Sep 25, 2017 3:24 pm

Barry Daniels wrote:Make sure the radius will fit your bridge.

Strat type hard-tail bridge.
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Last edited by Edgar Jessop on Mon Sep 25, 2017 3:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Converting fretboard radius

Postby Edgar Jessop » Mon Sep 25, 2017 3:33 pm

Brian Evans wrote:it looks like it's unbound, so check your fingerboard thickness. Take the nut off and double check that it's not a veneer fingerboard. If you have sufficient thickness, go for it. If you think you might get marginal on thickness to refret, think about your options. 10" is less than I am comfortable with, and needs relatively high action if you do a lot of string bending.

The fingerboard is 5mm thick. My Strat and Teles are 10in.. My LPs are 12in.. I currently use e 4/64" - E 5/64".
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Re: Converting fretboard radius

Postby Jim Hepler » Mon Sep 25, 2017 5:56 pm

Edgar, As I see it there are a few concerns.
1. You will take a fair amount of wood off the outside edges of the fingerboard. You will likely have to deepen the fret slots so that the tang will go all the way down. If you feel comfortable with that and there is enough depth on the fingerboard that shouldn't be too big a problem.

2. Your outer E strings will be lower relative to your inner (D & G) strings. Since your pick-ups appear to be flat on top and without adjustable pole pieces, you MAY have string balance issues. My guess is the D string might be a little quiet. You could probably see how much effect it will have by adjusting your saddles into the arc that you will eventually need, and play a little. Of course your action will be wonky, but it will show you whether or not you'll be comfortable with the different distances between the strings and pick-ups.

3. You may lose the fret markers on the 12th and 24th frets since they are so far out that you will be removing a lot of material there. they can, of course be replaced, if you're comfortable with that.

4. I don't know if anyone cares about whether or not those guitars are "stock" in terms of resale, but if so, this guitar will no longer be stock.

I don't think any of these things are huge issues, even the string height over the pickups, but just thought I'd mention them so you're prepared. Good luck and let us know how it turns out.
-jim
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Re: Converting fretboard radius

Postby Edgar Jessop » Mon Sep 25, 2017 6:27 pm

Jim Hepler wrote:Edgar, As I see it there are a few concerns.
1. You will take a fair amount of wood off the outside edges of the fingerboard. You will likely have to deepen the fret slots so that the tang will go all the way down. If you feel comfortable with that and there is enough depth on the fingerboard that shouldn't be too big a problem.

No problem for me.

2. Your outer E strings will be lower relative to your inner (D & G) strings. Since your pick-ups appear to be flat on top and without adjustable pole pieces, you MAY have string balance issues. My guess is the D string might be a little quiet. You could probably see how much effect it will have by adjusting your saddles into the arc that you will eventually need, and play a little. Of course your action will be wonky, but it will show you whether or not you'll be comfortable with the different distances between the strings and pick-ups.

It's an Auto-Tune guitar. I'll be playing through the piezo bridge pickups.


3. You may lose the fret markers on the 12th and 24th frets since they are so far out that you will be removing a lot of material there. they can, of course be replaced, if you're comfortable with that.

No problem.

4. I don't know if anyone cares about whether or not those guitars are "stock" in terms of resale, but if so, this guitar will no longer be stock.

I'll keep that in mind.

I don't think any of these things are huge issues, even the string height over the pickups, but just thought I'd mention them so you're prepared. Good luck and let us know how it turns out.
-jim

OK, I will. Thanks
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