Rolling fretboard edges

Discussion in 'Tech-Talk' started by BuffaloHound, Oct 20, 2020.

  1. jvin248

    jvin248 Senior Stratmaster

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    .

    Rolling with a screwdriver is more often used on maple necks with a finish.
    You need to use a smooth chrome Philips cylinder shaft, held at 45 deg by both hands, and scrub back and forth compressing the wood and finish. You are breaking the edge so it's no longer sharp, as if the guitar were played for a career on stage.
    You can sand the other unfinished fretboard materials.

    You'll see much more improvement on Squire necks because they are carved from the leading edge of the fretboard back. MIM/MIA will often have flat fretboard edges and start carving behind the glue line. This leaves more wood on the rear shoulders even though the width and depth specs of Squier vs MIM/MIA are nearly the same.

    .
     
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  2. Ruscio

    Ruscio Senior Stratmaster Silver Member

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    This is what I do, too, as long as it's un unfinished fretboard (e.g., rosewood, ebony). Works great, gives you complete control about how much you want rolled off, and smooths your fret ends a bit, too.
     
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  3. Cold Shot

    Cold Shot Strat-O-Master

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    I need to do this as well for my Squier CV 50's Strat. It has a one piece maple neck/board. Would the screwdriver method be best for me?
     
  4. lammie200

    lammie200 Senior Stratmaster

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    I would also consider beveling back the fret ends if you are going to roll the edges. If you don’t you may end up with the effect that you were trying to address. The fret ends will seem sharp and you won’t get the smooth edge feel that you were looking for.
     
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  5. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Strat-O-Master Silver Member

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    I do this on newer guitars.
    My oldies got rolled by playing.
    The cylindrical Phillips screwdriver shaft works great.
    Whip it back and forth between each fret.
    I can't imagine doing it on a finished maple neck and haven't tried.
    I assume it would crack/crumble the finish.
     
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  6. IronSchef

    IronSchef Senior Stratmaster

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  7. bsman

    bsman Strat-O-Master

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    I've done the screwdriver method on a couple of rosewood FBs with no issue, but am afraid to really do much of anything on a maple board because of the lacquer - I don't want to damage anything for the minimal gain you get from rolling the fretboard.
     
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  8. soulman969

    soulman969 Senior Stratmaster

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    I've done it with several maple necks but would advise filing any sharp or sprouting fret ends first. Once that's been done rolling the sharper edge back with the shaft of a screwdriver will often do the trick.

    Sanding is trickier on a neck that has a tint and finish sealer but it is another option.
     
  9. vid1900

    vid1900 Most Honored Senior Member

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    Yes.
     
  10. Paperback Rocker

    Paperback Rocker Do it or screw it.

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    I guess the people with 15k posts aren't as uninformed as you thought.
     
  11. eclecticsynergy

    eclecticsynergy Senior Stratmaster

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    I'm confused picturing this. If you keep it at a right angle - square to the fretboard - how does it round off the edge?
     
  12. Thrup'ny Bit

    Thrup'ny Bit Grand Master Curmudgeon

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    I think he means keep the razor blade upright, use it as a scraper, not like a spokeshave to cut.
     
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  13. BuffaloHound

    BuffaloHound Strat-Talker

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    Hey man.
    I’ve familiar with the blunt object rubbing on a fretboard tactic. I even attempted it years ago with a screwdriver shaft. I find it an effective—if clumsy/ugly—way to soften sharp edges on a guitar board. But I don’t think that method is going to achieve the results I’m after. See Olly White’s above photo for clarification.

    That said I did not harshly dig in to my guitar with that method. So if anyone here has produced the aforementioned results with a screwdriver shaft I’m all ears.

    I assumed Lammie200’s post was sarcastic because:
    A.) This is the internet.
    2.) I’ve seen people who suggest that approach lambasted on this forum in the past.

    I find your comment unproductive at best, and snarky/condescending at worst. But feel free to prove me wrong by adding something of value to this conversation.
     
  14. lammie200

    lammie200 Senior Stratmaster

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    You don’t know me but I wouldn’t speak about something that I know nothing about and I wouldn’t be sarcastic if someone wants help.

    If you have the touch of a gorilla then maybe the screwdriver approach is not for you, however you might also have issues using blades or files, too. One of the ideas behind the screwdriver approach is that with the right touch it won’t damage the finish. A blade, file, or sandpaper will remove the finish.
     
  15. BuffaloHound

    BuffaloHound Strat-Talker

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    But it feels like I DO know you...

    It’s almost like you’re a Strat Talk poster, with a fragile ego, who doesn’t read comments and posts passive-aggressive comments on threads. All the while having nothing of note to contribute.

    Furthermore, rosewood boards don’t have a finish worth protecting. But I’m certain you already know that my guitar fretboard isn’t maple because you read the thread, right?
     
  16. eclecticsynergy

    eclecticsynergy Senior Stratmaster

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    Thanks, I think you're right - he must've meant perpendicular to the length of the neck.

    I was thinking he meant perpendicular to the fretboard surface and just couldn't make sense of it.
     
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  17. lammie200

    lammie200 Senior Stratmaster

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    Not sure what I said to make you so upset. Other people had mentioned the screwdriver method as well and it doesn’t matter that you would be doing it on the unfinished edge of a rosewood board. I believe that the Musikraft website even mentions that that is the way they do it. Of course I might be wrong about that. You didn’t post a pic and I don’t believe that it was mentioned in your original post that you are working with an unfinished edge of a rosewood board. Good luck with whatever method you choose. I hope you get the results that you want.
     
  18. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Strat-O-Master Gold Supporting Member

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    We use 1200 wet or dry paper ( dry) and OOOO steel wool.
     
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  19. Esg877

    Esg877 Strat-Talk Member

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    Philip Mcnight has a video on this. I can't find it right now, but I remember he recommends going really slowly, using a manicure nail file, very soft... I'd be wary of overdoing it instead of underdoing it. As some said, you can always remove more, the opposite not being true.

    I never had this problem. Never felt the edges so sharp that it bothered me. Maybe I've been lucky... I had lots of guitars over the years, some bought online.
     
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  20. login

    login New Member!

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    It might sound a little odd, but before you do anything you've gotta have a clear image in your mind of what exactly you desire to achieve. For that reason alone you have to go and see the fretboard edge on a few expensive guitars (where the price reflects the amount of labor). Look at higher end guitars with no binding.
    Most of YT vids are about how not to do things. But it's always better to learn from someone else' mistakes. Never use the edge of a screwdriver. You are removing the wood, not smashing it down. You're adding years of playing to a cheaply made neck, helping it to be comfy, it's fairy easy to do, you just have to see where you're going.
    P.S. Scraping it with a razor is an idea only if you're good at it. You want an even result. Never hurry.
     
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