#1
http://www.premierguitar.com/articles/Understanding_Frets_and_Fret_Wear

I read this and panicked a little, because I play my guitar to the point where there's fret dust along the whole neck, and I've often tasted metal when I stick my head real close to my fingers. Does anyone know of what guitar frets are usually composed of, and if they are known to have small (or trace) amounts of lead?

I'm sorry to come off as paranoid or a health nut whacko, but I just wanted to be safe. Again, sorry to those who I have inconvenienced by posting.

Thank you!
#2
The amount of lead in fretwire is very small. Probably not something to worry yourself with.
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#3
Stainless steel is quite common.

Lead in fretwire would be a bad thing, because it would soften the alloy and make it wear faster, so any that's there would be an unintentional impurity. It would also appear quite dull, which again would be an undesirable quality.
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#4
Ever since electrocution by electric guitars got reduced, I think lead poisoning has become the number one cause of death for modern guitarists.

Also, tasting metal on your fingers is more likely to be from the strings than the frets.
#5
Quote by ultimate-slash
Ever since electrocution by electric guitars got reduced, I think lead poisoning has become the number one cause of death for modern guitarists.

Also, tasting metal on your fingers is more likely to be from the strings than the frets.


No, I meant that I can taste the metallic dust in the air when I hold my head really close to where I'm fretting - I've never actually tasted my fingers in that context. But I do apply an absurd amount of pressure when I'm playing certain heavier-style pieces, if that gives a better idea to how the scenario could arise. I'm sorry this has been a nuisance to you.

Thank you also slapsymcdougal and T00DEEPBLUE for your feedback
#6
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it's all just coming back
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#7
Quote by PenguinPalace
No, I meant that I can taste the metallic dust in the air when I hold my head really close to where I'm fretting - I've never actually tasted my fingers in that context. But I do apply an absurd amount of pressure when I'm playing certain heavier-style pieces, if that gives a better idea to how the scenario could arise. I'm sorry this has been a nuisance to you.

Thank you also slapsymcdougal and T00DEEPBLUE for your feedback

Are you Canadian by any chance? There's really no need to apologise, you didn't do anything wrong

Anyway, that makes sense I guess. Not sure what exactly you're tasting, but you're probably fine as far as getting in any lead goes. As mentioned above, even if there is any lead, it's going to be just a tiny fraction.
#8
Quote by ultimate-slash
Are you Canadian by any chance? There's really no need to apologise, you didn't do anything wrong

Anyway, that makes sense I guess. Not sure what exactly you're tasting, but you're probably fine as far as getting in any lead goes. As mentioned above, even if there is any lead, it's going to be just a tiny fraction.


It's good to have a few additional opinions on the topic. I was questioning what purpose the lead would have in the frets to begin with considering the conflicting properties of the element with the function and appearance of standard guitar frets, but I guess that got explained as well. I worry about a lot of things (as you can probably tell) and am something of a hypochondriac, but I'm just glad no one got angry - some forums are very orthodox about keeping out anything on the offbeat.

Also, I'm from Vermont
#10
You're probably pressing way too hard when you're playing guitar anyways, I would ease up a little bit.
#11
Guitar frets are typically made of nickel silver, which, despite what the name suggests, is made of copper, nickel and zinc. If that bothers you, wash your hands after playing guitar.