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Fret size

Hi all!

I'm building a gypsy guitar, so I'm wondering what fret size do luthiers usually use for gypsy guitars. It will be an oval hole, but I'll try to suit it for rhythm playing as well, so i guess some kind of medium frets will be ok. What is your opinnion on this?

Cheers,
Zvonk
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  • HCQHCQ Northeast NJ✭✭✭
    edited August 2018 Posts: 218
    I just had my Dell Arte refretted. A similar fret size was used - Jescar 51 x 101.
    HCQ
  • BonesBones Moderator
    Posts: 2,947
    Interesting question. I used StewMac's 'medium-tall' fretwire on my last build.

    https://www.stewmac.com/Materials_and_Supplies/Fretwire/StewMac_Medium_Fretwire.html

    I got a bulk pack of it from a friend who was retiring from lutherie so I thought I would use it since with the tall (.050") crown I can do more fret re-dressings over the years before I need to pull them and refret. But the jury is still out in my mind about using the tall crown. I tend to fret notes with my finger right next to the fret and especially with the B and high E strings I was noticing that I liked the tone better if I put my finger just a bit back away from the fret itself and I'm not sure if the tall crown is what was causing that. Anyway, has anyone else had that experience with the tall crown fretwire?
  • altonalton Keene, NH✭✭ 2000 Dell'Arte Long Scale Anouman, Gadjo Modele Francais, Gitane DG-330 John Jorgensen Tuxedo
    Posts: 109
    I just had my Dell Arte refretted and the luthier used Stew Mac wide/medium (.103"x.046"). It had fairly short frets originally, and I have come to like the larger frets on another GJ guitar that I have, so he measured the size and matched it. The guitar plays much better now and sounds "cleaner" - that's the best way that I can describe it.
  • psychebillypsychebilly Kentucky, USA
    Posts: 40
    My GJ fiddle has EVO gold frets...narrow & tall...wears well, better intonation, and the 'tallness' lets me really grab a bent note...
    Creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.
  • The good side to tall frets is they keep you away from the fretboard itself unless you push hard

    Ifi you push the string to the fretboard with tall frets the intonation goes away.
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • AndyWAndyW Glasgow Scotland UK✭✭✭ Clarinets & Saxes- Selmer, Conn, Buescher, Leblanc et.al. // Guitars: Gerome, Musicalia, Bucolo et. al.
    Posts: 372
    I was surfing around for GJ guitar fretwire size recommendations and saw a mention of Jescar Gold EVO 57110 [0.057" high x 110" wide ]
    [-much wider & taller than the frets on both of the old Sicilian guitars I may use it on.]
    |\ _,,,--,,_ ,)
    /,`.-'`' -, ;-;;'
    |,4- ) )-,_ ) /\
    '---''(_/--' (_/-'
  • BonesBones Moderator
    Posts: 2,947
    Hey Jazza, yeah that makes sense and I do need to work on using a lighter touch.
  • zvonezvone New
    Posts: 7
    Thank you guys, it will be a helluva guitar!
  • My friend Rob Cheremy actually gouged out the frets on his guitar so it has very quick response and it is very easy to significantly alter intonation.

    Talk about a light touch and major control. No 1 jazz guitar call in our town.
    The Magic really starts to happen when you can play it with your eyes closed
  • vanmalmsteenvanmalmsteen Diamond Springs ,CANew Latch Drom F, Paris swing, Altamira m30d , Altimira Mod M
    Posts: 258
    A few of my guitars are scalloped like that. Way easier on my fretting hand being that My fingers are never smashing into the fretboard. John McLaughlin always did that to his guitars
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