From rich-kar–(at)– Thu Nov 20 11:26:00 CST 1997
Article: 211418 of alt.guitar
From: rich-kar–(at)–
Newsgroups: alt.guitar,
Subject: Re: Gibson Frets
Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 04:58:46 -0800
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Sam Chambers wrote:
> I’ve been looking at a few Les Pauls lately, specifically an LP Classic and
> an LP Custom. Both are used, but 1997 models in like new condition. I
> noticed that the tops of the frets are wide and flat – they don’t seem to
> have much of a crown at all. The frets are plenty tall enough, but with a
> flat top, they feel more like speed bumps. This is very unlike my former
> LP Standard, a 1974 model.
> Is this a “normal” thing that Gibson puts out of their factory, or has some
> knucklehead filed the frets flat? Wouldn’t having such flat frets cause
> the guitar to have very poor intonation? What would you expect to pay a
> professional to (re-)crown the frets?
> Thanks,
> —
> Sam Chambers
> sam.chambers”AT”

During the 60’s Gibson offered the Fretless Wonder frets on the Les Paul
Custom. These were flat frets. They were no more, or less, a problem
to set the intonation due to their flatness.

Not all frets are produced with the same shaped crown. Frets through
the years have gone through their changes depending on what became
popular at the time. From the Fretless Wonder to 6100’s, and from thin
to wide frets. Things way have changed but that doesn’t mean that it
didn’t work back then.

Any fret is going to develop a *flat* from normal usage. If you use the
whole neck to evenly wear them flat. Intonation is not that much of a
problem. No more than setting the intonation on a Gibson having Fretless
Wonder frets.

Since the proliferation of the Crowning File!, there has been More Fret
Metal REMOVED by It!, than That Done by the Playing of the instrument!

Find an Old Time Luither who crowns frets the old way and doesn’t use
the fret crowning files. That way you will have good intonation and not
have five years of fret metal laying on the work bench.


Rich Koerner,
Time Electronics.


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