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defrettting my bass (pics inside)

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by kirbywrx, Nov 15, 2003.


  1. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    Welll i decided that id de-fret my lil old ashton AB705 5 string bass.

    I think i went overboard with the masking, but hey, its better to be safe than sorry. i masked half the body. i cut a groove next to the frets to help with the pulling out. after heating the frets up with mums iron, i decided i would start at the 24th fret, because thats the fret i use least, and if i botch the job up and stop half way through, its not going to matter too much. with a bit of damage, i finally got the 24th fret removed. i ended up getting one of my old mans fancy tools, and yanked them out with that. not a screw driver in sight :D i dont think there was much glue holding them in, but the teeth were a hell of alot bigger than i had expected. i pulled them out slowly, but it wasnt slow enough, there were a few little bits of wood pulled up. actually there were alot.

    after i had got all the frets out, i gave it a sand and tried to even up the fretboard. i tried as hard as i could to maintain the shape of the neck, and i think i did it pretty damn well :cool:

    anywhos my old man is going to get me some rosewood gap filler and polyeurathane from his wrok soon, so ill keep yous posted on how i go after that.

    heres a pic of the bass all taped up ready to go. hey, its better to be safe than sorry :)

    [​IMG]
     
  2. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    Heres a blurry pic of the frets hanging out :)
    [​IMG]
     
  3. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    last one..the fret board all sanded and ready to be finished. it looks much much redder for some reason :meh:

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Good job man!

    let us hear soem clips when yer done!

    also, how comes you masked up the body? incase of any falling frets?
     
  5. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    I masked the fret board in case of any splinters that would come up as i took the frets out. if i noticed any, id just put a bit of glue under the chip and lay the tape back down.

    i masked the body because im gunna be working over a shiny bass with lots of tools. if i drop a pair of pliers on the body, a chunk of wood out of a green bass is rather noticable. and its just to prevent any scratchs ect.
     
  6. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    Well the gap filler is in. its a redish kind of color. i was rather 'sloppy' with the filling, but it can be sanded off.

    Numero uno: (sorry about the blurryness)

    [​IMG]
     
  7. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    and a blurry close up.

    [​IMG]

    in the end it should be a rosewood fretboard with (what looks like) red gum filled slots. tomorrow i shall give it a sand or two, and then a coat in polyeurathane. so far it hasnt been as hard as i thought it may be, but we will soon see how i went. the thing im scared of most is stuffing up the convex shape of the neck by sanding it too much :meh:

    [EDIT] Does anyone know why the fretboard was much redder, almost orange, after i had sanded it, and today, its pretty much gone back to its normal color. Anyone know why, because i dont :) :confused:
     
  8. looking good
     
  9. maybe when you sanded it, you took off an "aged" layer.

    leaving it to settle over night it will have gained dust and things, i guess.
     
  10. Lewk

    Lewk

    Oct 19, 2003
    WHere can i get hold of that gap filler? (UK) i could seriously use that for the new fretless i'm getting with the groove on the fingerboard underneath the G string near the body.


    tantalising.
     
  11. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    my dad got it from a mate at work, but you cdan just buy it at any hardware store. its just regular gap filler.
     
  12. nice work on the defretting job man...im liking your progress...the defret pic is nice...if you come across any trouble with the neck id suggest buying an ebony neck to go to it...ebony neck is a nice smooth feel and goes well with playing fretless...and if you really wanna make your bass sound "waahy" and "growly" etc. id suggest to make your bass hyperactive...like a zon styled hyperactive...GGGGREAT tone is always trusted with hyperactive pickups:bassist: so yeah man good work on the job...what kind of amp and cab are you using for your rig?
     
  13. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    A Peavey TNT 115BW...15 inch speaker, 150 watts ;)
     
  14. Henrik

    Henrik

    Nov 24, 2003
    Denmark
    "after heating the frets up with mums iron, i decided i would start at the 24th fret"

    why did you heat it?
     
  15. Ívar Þórólfsson

    Ívar Þórólfsson Mmmmmm... Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2001
    Kopavogur, Iceland
    To loosen up the glue which helps to hold the frets.
     
  16. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    It aparently also heats up the frets, makes them expand, which makes them looser. bleh, either way they came out.
     
  17. Wait, you took a iron, clothes thingys that mum's used to "iron out" shirts, placed it hot on the fret, then pulled it out?
     
  18. Hey kirbywrx,

    Cool thread, thanks for taking the time to show pics and tell the story. :)

    I think the reason the fretboard 'turned orange' whe you started sanding:

    When some types of darkwood get wet, they turn darker. The fretboard, before sanding it, probably had a finish on it that (even though the finish was dry to the touch) made the wood look 'wet'. Does that make sense?

    ... therefore, darker than if the wood had no finish. When you sanded the fretboard, you removed the finish which took the dark, 'wet' look away.

    I guess.
    :confused:

    Anyway, thanks for sharing, anxious to see the finished product. :)
     
  19. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    yup :)

    Ive put 3 coats of polyeurathane on the neck, so one more tonight, and this time tomorrow ill be putting the strings on her! should i sand the nut or what? i cant decide.
    Cheers
    -Kirbo
     
  20. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    well its all done! im finished! i put my old stock yamaha strings on and she sounds good! i though it wouldnt sound this good but hey, i was wrong. the red gum fillers dont stand out as much as i thought they would, but it looks good. heres a pic:

    [​IMG]