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How to de-fret a bass

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by kewleb, May 31, 2005.

  1. kewleb


    May 18, 2005
    Liverpool, England
    I've recently bought a new bass guitar and my former workhorse bass is no longer favoured. However, I've been thinking about converting it to a fretless and was wondering if anyone could give me any advice on how to get the frets out and how I should fill in the grooves that are left behind. any advice would be most welcome :confused:
  2. look to the sticky is setup and do a search this has been beaten to death then dragged out of the ditch and beaten again
  3. hervetlse


    Jan 25, 2002
    france toulouse
    hello Kewleb, i just defretted my electro-acoustic bass, and it's the second bass i try to defret, the first one was a washburn fretted electric bass. Is it my skills that grew up? many people say that the best way to defret is to warm the fret with an iron 30-60Watts and then use a pliers facom 418, and i don't remember but, with the washburn i cut the wood around some of the frets and i used some woodpaste? (i don't know the word in english, in french it's "pâte à bois") to fill in the holes, and for the last one i used woodknife? (see my thread on "how to make a fretted electro-acoustic bass a semi-fretted one"), with it, i've done 15 frets in less than an hour, the critical part is when you begin to introduce the tool between the wood and the fret. Like you i hesitate on how to fill the holes, like say Silent method, there many threads on how to defret a bass and it seems that most of them, use some woodpaste? or superglue (cyanoacrylate glue), i suppose that i will use some superglue as the most important is to fill the fret entirely (without bubbles) and, the last time , on the washburn, i used some wood paste, but the wood paste don't react like the real wood to temperatures, humidity and so on, ( it seems that i have to rub down the washburn fretboard regularly because the woodpaste seems to expend, so that's why i suppose to avoid bubbles and so on, i will use some super glue. Hope it will help you a bit.