Fender American Original 50's Stratocaster Re-fret

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by Rickenbacker1953, Jun 8, 2021 at 1:57 PM.

  1. Rickenbacker1953

    Rickenbacker1953 Strat-Talk Member

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    My Original 50's Strat Frets were pretty uneven from day one . With all the originally leveling , they have worn out faster then usual . Especially from 10th-12th -19th .

    Has anyone re fretted this guitar or one with Similar Frets . I normally play 6105 & that's what I was told these are , But no way are they as High or as wide .

    Curious if anyone has re fretted a Re-issue or Older Strat that started life with smaller frets. That now has larger 6105's ? What was your result ? Thanks
     
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  2. Intune

    Intune Senior Stratmaster

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    Yeah I wondered that too. Those stock are narrow/tall frets. So is that equal to a 6105 fret? Would be good to know actually
     
  3. atomicmoondog

    atomicmoondog Strat-Talker

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    Fender narrow tall frets are .054" tall and .094" wide.
    6105 frets are .047" X .095”, so they’re close.
    I put new frets on my AO 60’s Tele, except I put Stainless .045” X .104. I also changed the fretboard radius to compound 9.5” to 14”. All done on a PLEK. So, I did something very different. The guitar is an absolute joy to play now and I should never need another refret.
    The key, on any refret, is the luthier doing the work.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Voxman

    Voxman Strat-Talker

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    I had the same issue with my AO 50s, uneven frets.
    It's a shame that Fender is putting out expensive guitars that need fretwork.

    I had several EJ strats that had bad necks too.
     
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  5. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    I’ve done this hundreds of times. If you are restoring a vintage guitar it’s a little bit important to use the original size wire but only if you are selling it. SRV used huge frets on his 59, so Put the wire you like on it.
     
  6. ido1957

    ido1957 Senior Stratmaster

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    Just had 3 Strats refretted with StewMac 105 (assume that's the same as 6105). EC, Elite and 78 Hardtail.
    All of them were worn out and either full of divots or just too low. All of them had different types of original fret wire.
    They all play incredibly better with new frets, for me it was like getting a new version of each guitar.

    My EC was done first and it had the smallest original frets. I was leery when I first got it back thinking wow these are big!
    But that lasted only a few seconds once I actually began playing it. That convinced me to get them all done by the same guy.
    And they are SS frets, so in theory I will die before they wear out lol.
     
  7. jayaitch

    jayaitch Strat-Talker

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    ‘56 AV I had refretted with “vintage tall.”
    Slightly wider, but much taller than vintage spec frets that were on it. They definitely seem smaller than 6105 but definitely bigger than the original frets. I was trying to keep how the thing sounded with the small frets, but be able to grab the neck better, get a little more traction so to speak. I think these did the trick
     

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  8. EC Strat

    EC Strat Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    Did the same with my EC. Those vintage frets were sooo tiny - I wore through mine in 3 years (don’t have a lot of guitars). Refret with SS Jescar .047x.106 and it’s a completely different player now.
     
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  9. Rickenbacker1953

    Rickenbacker1953 Strat-Talk Member

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    Yeah I agree . My AO Strat is my current worker . The paint cracked so much it came of in big sections . Plus it flaked constantly . I ended you with a heavy relic Body inside of 2 years . LOL . With a WHite neck it looked terrible . So I re-did the neck in Amber .
     
  10. Rickenbacker1953

    Rickenbacker1953 Strat-Talk Member

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    How did they get the radius flatter ? My Board is Maple . Since you know how these AO's play . Do you think SS frets made your neck any faster ?
     
  11. atomicmoondog

    atomicmoondog Strat-Talker

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    The fret board was re-milled. In my case the PLEK machine re-milled the neck, but it can be done by hand. It just takes a very small smidge of fretboard material off. Is it faster? Hmmm, I don’t know what that means, but the compound radius is more comfortable to me when I play higher on the fretboard, and I can lower the action a little bit without fretting out on bends. As far as SS frets goes, I find them to be smoother. Like glass. It’s like your frets are always polished (and the don’t wear out, at least for me).
    A great luthier is key, as I mentioned previously.
     
  12. sadmoodyfrazier

    sadmoodyfrazier Senior Stratmaster

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    THIS IS ABOUT WELL KNOWN FENDER QUALITY! :D:D:D 2000 euros guitar... this is so funny.
     
  13. henderman

    henderman Most Honored Senior Member

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    the size fret you like in stainless is the answer in my opinion.

    i can not wait to do my other 2 electrics after doing my #1 of 20 some years in stainless.

    i will never refret any of my guitars with regular frets again unless it is vintage/valuable.
     
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  14. Rickenbacker1953

    Rickenbacker1953 Strat-Talk Member

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    Typical Fender regardless of Inflation .
     
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  15. joesatch

    joesatch Strat-Talker

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    had a bear of a neck on a new EJ strat. So many frets were uneven, using the stew mac fret rocker there were high spots all up and down the neck
     
  16. Fenderbaum

    Fenderbaum Strat-Talker

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    No issue going up in size on frets if its rosewood board.
    Lacquered maple neck can be trickier maybe. I did one once, but it was a neck i sanded off the fretboard finish.
     
  17. Cali Dude

    Cali Dude Senior Stratmaster

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    Same with my Buddy Guy USA signature Strat. I had it refretted after 8 years. I went with vintage tall frets. I like it much more now. It's definitely easier to play now.
     
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  18. Rickenbacker1953

    Rickenbacker1953 Strat-Talk Member

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    Here is my Strat . I'm thinking Relic's and SS Frets probably would look out of place
     
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