How to deal with an uneven High Fret?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by syscokid, May 19, 2017.

  1. syscokid

    syscokid Well-Known Member

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    On my 2002 SG Special Faded with the Moons, that I rescued from a Fratboy about 6 months ago, I just discovered the 4th fret is a wee bit high. But only on the outer strings, and each E string has a slight buzz off the 4th fret when I'm holding down the strings at the 3rd fret. A very short straight edge, like a fret rocker will rock over that 4th fret on the outer section of the fret but not in the middle.

    I can see gaps in those relative areas:
    High 4th Fret (1).JPG

    On the treble side, I can slide a .006 feeler gauge in that gap:
    High 4th Fret (2).JPG

    I don't see anything unusual at the tang on the treble side:
    High 4th Fret (3).JPG

    On the Bass side, I can slide a .008 feeler gauge in that gap:
    High 4th Fret (4).JPG

    I'm not sure if I want to, or it's worth the trouble to correct this. But if I did... How would any of you Masters go about it?
     
  2. Dave Johnson

    Dave Johnson Well-Known Member

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    The easiest and most foolproof way would be to raise the bridge a wee bit.
    If lower action is a concern then I'd try to tap the next highest fret ends down a bit & see if it helps first.
    Any kind of leveling would involve material removal & recrowning.
    A polishing of the next highest fret to the buzzing one may help too without being too destructive if tapping it down didn't help.
     
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  3. syscokid

    syscokid Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Dave! I gave up on expecting a response to my little dilemma here. I quickly became impatient, and the very next day I brought this SG to the local guitar shop where they do repairs, too. Joe, owner and repair dude, showed me how that fret will still move down with some hammering. He then injected superglue and forced each side of the lifted fret down for about a minute. It held and it was much better, but not perfect. Joe also added some relief to the neck, because there was practically no relief in the neck to start with. He suggested that any high spots left could be safely filed or sanded down. Which I did as carefully as I could, even without properly dedicated tools. To my surprise, it turned out really good.
     
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