Vintage Refretting With Bar Frets

Vintage Refretting With Bar Frets

Getting vintage-nerdy with bar frets…

I only get a few bar fret jobs a year here. And, when I’m levelling them, I generally thank the fret gods for that fact. Bar frets are a bit different to modern frets but, if you’re playing, dealing, or repairing vintage instruments, you’ll likely come across them from time to time. 

So, let’s get to know them. 

Setup a Compound Radius Guitar

Setup a Compound Radius Guitar

While most guitars have a single radius along the length of the fingerboard, a compound radius instrument has a radius that gradually increases/flattens as you go further up the neck. 

Some players find these a godsend but they do require some different methods to set them up and to perform fretwork on them. 

Offset Fenders: Curing Bridge Buzzes and Rattles

Offset Fenders: Curing Bridge Buzzes and Rattles

What we generally refer to as the ‘offset’ Fenders (Jazzmaster, Jaguar, Mustang, Jag-Stang) can sometimes be a quirky bunch and one of their more common annoyances is the bridge. 

Often, notes can suffer from a lack of focus and sustain. Strings can ‘jump’ from their slots if played even a little too hard, and the bridge itself can be buzzy and rattly. Sometimes you’ll even have saddle height screws vibrating loose and rattling, or even falling out. 

Locking Nut String Retainer Bar Adjustment

Locking Nut String Retainer Bar Adjustment

You know the string retainer bar? Also known as the ‘dammit-I-forgot-to-put-the-string-under-it bar’. 
It’s that little thing on the headstock, between your nut and tuners. The strings install under it. 


You’ll find them most often on guitars with locking tremolo systems like Floyd Rose and Ibanez Edge bridges, and, on these instruments, it's important that it's properly adjusted.