Kevin Chilcott

Luthier

REPAIR & MAINTENANCE

  I originally started this section, December 2002, but will add new pages whenever possible.

Please Treat this Section as Incomplete.

The Blue Hyperlinks will take you to the various sections

 

REPAIR

Top Nuts   .   A 'Fret Job'   .   Re-Frets  .  Electrics

'Touching in' - Damaged Bodywork & Lacquer

Repairing or Replacing Damaged 'Inlays'

Repairing Damaged Fingerboards

Repairing Nail-Gouges

'Plugging' and Re-Drilling

 

MAINTENANCE

Hardware Maintenance   .   General Maintenance

Intonation   .   Re-Polishing   .   'Setting-up'

 

'ADVANCED' REPAIRS

Repairing Broken Headstocks

Replacing Banding and Purfling

Replacing Fingerboards

Replacing Necks

Re-Spraying

 

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Please Click on the Links below for Detailed Information.
These Pages may take a while to download as they contain Pictures.

There is a lot of 'ground' I'd like to cover..... if possible.

 

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A 'Fret Job'


First I'm going to show you what is involved in doing a 'Fret Job'.....
..... a '
Fret Job' is when the frets are 'dressed' or 'stoned' to level them over 
after either : - 
use, or in some cases new guitars that may have uneven frets.
After this stage, the frets have their
edges re-beveled, the frets are then 
re-profiled
and then polished.
I'm going try to incorporate some
pix to help you to understand the process.

'Fret Jobs' can be done with just a few
specialist hand tools 

A "FRET JOB" ON A NATURAL FINGERBOARD..... 'ELECTRIC'

A " FRET JOB" ON A LACQUERED FINGERBOARD..... 'ELECTRIC'

A FRET JOB ON AN ACOUSTIC GUITAR

The Tasks have to be approached slightly differently for both Natural Wood fingerboards and Lacquered fingerboards. As I've got a few pix to hand..... I'm going to start the section on the Electric types first.
If you read through both 'Electric' Sections for Natural and for Lacquered types you will see the differences in approach for each.

Acoustic Guitars can be a bit more
tricky !


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New Top Nuts


Essentially, there are 3 types of Top Nuts - listed below.
Making them can be pretty tricky and can take a while. They have to fit perfectly, and the grooves for the strings have to be very precise
There is a huge variety of materials available these days..... plastics, bone, graphite and bone substitutes etc. They also now come in a variety of colours..... from the more standard White, through shades of Cream to Black.
Some of these materials are lubricated or have 'slippery properties' so there is less friction - helping the guitar to stay in tune. 
I will try to get some pix organized showing the different sorts of materials available.

Top Nuts can be made relatively easily with just a few specialist hand tools.

MAKING A NEW TOP NUT..... F*-Style Electric.

MAKING A NEW TOP NUT..... G*-Style Electric.

MAKING A NEW TOP NUT..... M*-Style Acoustic.

REPAIRING TOP NUTS.


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Re-Frets


Re-frets (done properly) are complicated jobs and have to be approached very carefully.
It's not just a question of 'whipping out' the old ones and 'banging in' the new ones. 
Once the job has been started it has to be finished and to do the job should be quite a commitment, usually with all sorts of little problems along the way. 

Re-frets require quite a few specialist tools, some needing custom modifications.

Please note..... 
It is not common knowledge that there are different types of hardness / softness of fretwire, apart from different widths and heights.
Some can be reminiscent of butter... and I'm not joking. Some is so soft that a player will start making grooves in it within a few weeks and another re-fret will be needed very shortly. This type of wire could be put in by anybody, including my 11 year old daughter, with about 30 minutes instruction..... it is that easy. Beware !
Some wire is so hard that it can last 20 years of constant use. This wire is very difficult to put in correctly... which is where the skill comes in. If you are thinking about having a re-fret you must be specific on the type of wire you require when you ask for the job to be done by somebody else.

A RE-FRET ON A NATURAL FINGERBOARD..... Electric.

A RE-FRET ON A BOUND FINGERBOARD..... Electric

A RE-FRET ON A LACQUERED FINGERBOARD..... Electric.

A RE-FRET ON A NATURAL FINGERBOARD..... Acoustic.

 

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RESTORATION

REPAIR & RESTORATION

RETRO-FITTING & CUSTOMIZATION


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