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Rrrrriiiiiippppp!

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by HeavyDuty, Sep 2, 2001.


  1. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Tonight, I finally got around to yanking the frets out of my second Steinberger Spirit.

    It actually went very easily, with no need for heat or special tools. After some experimentation, I simply used a small screwdriver to gently pry the end of each fret up, and then gently slid the screwdriver blade under the fret next to the tang. Removing all the frets took less than an hour, working slowly and carefully. I experienced no chipping, crumbling or splintering.

    As it turned out, my frets had no evidence of glue. But, I found that I needed to score the edge of the fretboard at each tang, because my Steinie has a poly finish on the side of the fretboard.

    After a quick hand sanding with 320 grit to take off the worst of the high spots so I could test it, I slapped a fresh set of Status Graphite "Hot Wires" flatwounds on the thing, and off I went. Sweet!

    Next step: to clean up the fret slots and CA in strips of .020 styrene. Sand the fretboard to true it up, reseal the edges of the board with more CA, and shazam - cheap headless fretless!
     
  2. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    This might be an insane and odd idea...

    But it was just a random though I just had.

    If you left the holes in your neck, where your frets were, wouldn't it then make intonation clearer and slightly easier?

    Like, if you pressed it down in the register where your fret was?


    Just a though I just got. I didn't think it out before posting it, so if it seems retarded or whatever, sorry. :)
     
  3. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    Fill in the frets. The holes will cause structural problems in the fretboard, and will make the fretless playing sound strange. FILL IN THE SPACES.
     
  4. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Definitely. I already detuned the strings after my "test drive", due to fears that I'd keystone the fret slots.
     
  5. Bass Guitar

    Bass Guitar Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2001
    Good job! I would be interested in seeing a pic of the finished product, if you don't mind.
     
  6. :D yes, please post a pic of this if you can :D
     
  7. steinbergerxp2

    steinbergerxp2 Guest

    Jul 11, 2001
    I don't know what kind of fingerboard you have, but you might find that some birch model plywood is more the same hardness than a plastic filler.

    Don't forget to redo your side marker dots.
     
  8. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    It's rosewood. I'm using styrene based on discussions with a local luthier - birch isn't a bad idea, though.

    Redo the side marker dots? I'm missing something here (this is my first fretless) - what do I need to do differently?
     
  9. Newsted

    Newsted

    Jun 24, 2001
    Greece(athens)
    i have done the same thing in my RBX 260 but the bass is destroyed the sound was dead.
    i have also cut the bass in my own shape.
    is an old and cheap bass but good i dont why i have done that but i hate this bass not or the sound but in the character is talking too much:)
     
  10. Since your bass was a fretted model, the side markers are positioned between the frets to relate to the next highest fret. In fretless models the side markers are positioned at the point of intonation for each of the positions. You put your fingers on the markers for intonated playing.
     
  11. Bass Guitar

    Bass Guitar Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2001
    Actually, I have defretted 2 basses, and you don't really need to move the side dot markers as you can see the fretlines anyway, even if you fill up the holes with a dark filler.
     
  12. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Ahhh! As I said, I don't have a "real" fretless.

    I'm going to try it without moving the side markers. My fret lines are visible on the end of the fretboard, so I think I'll be OK. If not, I'll have to figure a way to move 'em that looks good.

    Adding them isn't the problem, it's the covering of the old ones.