#1
Hey guys, been playing for my entire life but it's been a while since I got a new electric. Upon opening my Epi Plustop Pro today, when I bend the fret wire feels rough, and eventually the strings make a mark on the frets. I'm not sure if it's clearing the gunk that makes it feel rough or if the strings are grinding the frets, as I have had that happen to my Epi Special II.

Total noob question lmao. Unfortunately it has a crack in the neck BNIB so I'm replacing it tomorrow. Just want to make sure I keep it in good condition.
#2
What works for me is taking some steel wool and lightly rubbing it over each fret. This will remove any buildup and make the frets nice and smooth. I cant stress lightly enough, as too much pressure will put grooves into the fret wire. You will also want to be careful of rubbing over the fretboard, as it will mar the finish. You can tape of the fretboard around each fret to avoid any mishaps.
Hope it helps!
#3
Jason is right but I suggest you get some painters tape (masking tape) at the hardware store (I like the pretty 3M blue stuff) and some 0000 (very light) steel wool. Try a Home Depot or Lowe's if you have any nearby. Tape the fretboard leaving the frets exposed then lightly buff the frets. The tape will protect your fretboard so you can clean the frets without worrying about the scaring the fretboard. Once the frets are clean you can determine if the frets have any grooves in them that will need to be dressed with a fret file (hopefully not) or replaced (again hopefully not). Either way it is a good idea to just start by cleaning up the frets first and then see if you need anything more.
Last edited by Rickholly74 at Dec 26, 2014,
#4
I had the same guitar and the frets felt the same, however after a few hours of playing they smoothed out completely

that guitar is like falling in love with a stripper
Silmeria
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modded Squier Strats
#5
the steel wool is a good answer, but put tape over all of the pickups, the little flakes of steel can and will get into the pickup magnets very easy otherwise.

The green scotch-brite pads will work also and not have the metal flakes to worry about
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#6
There are also some nice "fret erasers" from StewMac that will polish your frets.

If you use the steel wool (use the FOUR 0's), you really have to protect your pickups. Those nearly-invisible shards of steel wool are attracted by the magnets into the coil wires. With exposure to oxygen and moisture, they will rust, and in rusting they expand up to 10X their original size and force rust crystal spikes into the coil wires. This can not only cause microshorts, but can also expose the copper wire to its own form of corrosion, which will ALSO produce spikes and force its way into neighboring coil wires, producing still more microshorts, eventually ruining the pickup and requiring a rewind.

Find a small piece of thick leather and follow the steel wool with a good buffing with the rough side of the leather. That'll have your frets smooth as glass, and bending will be especially slick.
#7
like everyone is saying polish the frets.

sand 400 to 2000 grit sand paper. You can skip some grits in between. Yes sand paper is used on frets by the way. Crowning we're using metal files so a itty bit of sand paper is fine. This I suggest if you've already got some sand paper laying around the house. Make sure to tape off the fretboard prior to doing this though.

0000 steel wool is great but fret erasers from stewmac or the micro mesh they sell the little pads are the best ideas. I go all the way up to 12,000 grit. I worked on at least 100 guitars with the same micro mesh pads. Acoustics to bass and I finally caved in and bought a new pack of micro mesh.

When working with ultra fine grits of sand paper or any micro mesh remember to wet the pads to get the best results.
#8
Quote by billyTheShears
I had the same guitar and the frets felt the same, however after a few hours of playing they smoothed out completely


This the guitar just needs some playing/bending and it'll smooth right out. It'll also gie you some practice doing it.
Moving on.....
#9
Thanks guys, I'll prob avoid the polishing unless necessary so I don't mess anything up. The new one arrives at GC next week.
#10
Quote by The Bacon Man
Thanks guys, I'll prob avoid the polishing unless necessary so I don't mess anything up. The new one arrives at GC next week.


Have them do it.

Seriously, ask them if they'll have their tech check the frets for level and polish the frets to make up for the inconvenience (and gas money) involved in returning the old one and picking up a new one. I'll betcha they'll be more than happy to.
#11
Quote by dspellman
Have them do it.

Seriously, ask them if they'll have their tech check the frets for level and polish the frets to make up for the inconvenience (and gas money) involved in returning the old one and picking up a new one. I'll betcha they'll be more than happy to.


We payed for a setup on the first one too, so I'm sure I can ask the tech to check the fret levels in the setup. GC usually has good service, although the setup was crap. Strings buzzing with the slightest strum, truss rod too tight, etc. I'd assume it was due to the mass volume of guitars the had for the holidays, and the fact my grandmother and mom were the only people who purchased it


I was debating doing it myself because I could do a better job imo.