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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 9:12 am 
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Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 8:27 am
Posts: 21
I have done about 7 fret boards, and I read a while back guys leveled wt. weights hanging on the neck to somehow level like the strings are on. First how do you do it like that and what are the benifits. 2nd and heres my big question if the strings are on a guitar and a magic sanding flat board level the frets ,would it not touch at the 1st and say 14 fret, because of neck relief , and if I leveled the board flat would I not sand the neck relief away. Do you see were I'am going with this. Also they sell stuff on ebay to level the frets wt. the strings on, so I keep hearing stuff like this. I hope you can understand whats rattling in my brain and please anybody chime in lets talk leveling wt. tension...............Thanks L.B.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 10:05 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 03, 2010 2:14 pm
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Location: Creedmoor, NC
The idea is to remove the neck relief to get the FB perfectly flat then any variances in height are caused by the frets. You then level all the frets so in theory you have a perfectly level FB and frets then when you string it up the tension will put relief back in the neck at which time you adjust that relief to the correct setting with the truss rod. If you have no truss rod it is a different process.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 10:14 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2006 7:09 pm
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Location: Hegins, Pa
I have been doing this a long time. To get the best fret plane available you need to have the fretboard trued to that guitar that it belongs to. There is a lot of information on the web , not all of it accurate. That is one drawback to the web.
There are many ways to true the fret plane. My technique is one I picked up about 3 years ago from a friend that made the most playable guitars I have laid my hands on. This is the way I do it now.

I set the neck and then true the plane to the top. I had showed this on here a while ago.
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=6174&p=30965&hilit=neck+plane#p30965
This is part 1 where you have to get the neck correct , then you can attach the fretboard. I then clamp the neck into the joint. On a dovetail I may use a paper shim to get it locked in. Then I gently sand the fret board true. I then fret the guitar. When the neck is attached is When I go to do a final dress I will support the headstock apply about a 10 lb weight on the shoulders and get the frets as level as I can with a truss rod adjustment, then do my final dressing crowning and polish.
The more inaccurate the neck , the more you have to work to get the fret plane dead true. Fretting is all about prep.
When I go to do a final dress I will support the headstock apply about a 10 lb weight on the shoulders and get the frets as level as I can , then do my final dressing.

Now the only thing that I may change will depend on the truss rod

An nonadjustable rod as in old martins will require a compression fretting and I do that on the guitar after finish.

On a 1 way adjustable rod I will adjust the rod a bit so I get about a .010 back bow and true the fretboard with the rod under tension so I can adjust the neck forward if I have to.

On a 2 way I do it is I just described.

I believe that dressing the frets under a string load is difficult as you have the strings in the road. Using a weight to apply a stress on the neck brings the truss rod into tension so that you are not in a neutral position. This is also a good way.

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Blues Creek Guitars Inc
Authorized CF Martin Repair Center
Board of Directors of Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans
http://www.bluescreekguitars.com


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 11:03 am 
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Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 8:27 am
Posts: 21
Thanks guys, I'am so glad I asked this, John I remember you saying this a while back but I never got it, were to put the weight, on the shoulders, you mean right on the head stock. I,am having trouble finding the old posts. The first 5 guitars I freted the board first and then glued to the neck, but this time I wanted to try something different. I,am going to fret it while on the body, also it is a bolt on. So to put 10 lbs on the head stock to make the 6th.7th ..frets bow up ? ....Hope I'am not driveing you nuts asking again...L.B.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 12:18 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2006 7:09 pm
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Location: Hegins, Pa
On the shoulders of the guitar body. his flexes the neck about the same as the applied string load. Then you adjust the neck flat. You want to get the truss rod in tension so you know how the neck is moving under stress.

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John Hall
Blues Creek Guitars Inc
Authorized CF Martin Repair Center
Board of Directors of Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans
http://www.bluescreekguitars.com


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 4:39 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 8:27 am
Posts: 21
Thanks for the help John, I guess I never saw it that way. Might be a good idea for a u-tube spot cause I hav'nt seen anyone do it like that. It would be nice to see how a guy who has done a lot of ne cks gets to work on them. This is the one part of building I would like to get good at. no one else is teaching like this, can't wait to try it, soon almost done F.P ing wt. hard shellac....again thanks for the help........L.B.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 4:41 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 03, 2006 7:09 pm
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Location: Hegins, Pa
we are here to help

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John Hall
Blues Creek Guitars Inc
Authorized CF Martin Repair Center
Board of Directors of Association of Stringed Instrument Artisans
http://www.bluescreekguitars.com


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