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skilsaw

Total Rookie question.

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Nibs are what makes life worth living.

Seriously, it was a Gibson thing where they'd put the frets in, put the binding on standing up proud and then shave away the binding on the area in between the frets, leaving the fret ends covered. For whatever reason, that covering was called a nib.

It was very distinctive and there was never a problem with sharp fret ends.

On the downside, it was more labor intensive and some people would have problems with the high E string getting caught in a nib which was sticking up instead of being flat with the fret end.

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A nib is the business end of a fountain pen.

 

Good nibs are extremely well designed conductors of ink.

 

[biggrin][thumbup] [thumbup]

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Nibs were plastic ends on the frets used to avoid properly dressing the fret ends. Most guitar companies abandoned this idea decades ago. Last year Gibson stopped using them and started ending their frets correctly. The company immediately went bankrupt as predicted by this very forum and Henry J. moved into the Nashville Rescue Mission down town.

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This picture of a 2011 Les Paul Standard (pictured in a Custom case for better contrast) may show that the fret wires are cut at the inner edge of the binding and finalized by projecting ends of the binding:

 

QK_FB_8_zpsef809c25.jpg

 

These parts of the binding overlapping the wire ends are called "fret nibs" or "fret nubs".

 

As Steve pointed out in post #3, the binding originally includes the fret wire height and is shaved down to fretboard level between the fret wires respectively 1st fret and nut as well as last fret and fretboard end. This is a rather costly process because it is done all by hand.

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Hello!

 

In reference to Capmaster's picture of His beautiful 2011 Standard, please note how nibs were done on earlier Gibsons:

 

HPIM5650_zpsqy8a59lw.jpg

 

Nibs are formed only from the white part of the black-and-white multiply binding.

 

Cheers... Bence

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Note the volute in the above picture....... [confused][biggrin]

 

Where the neck becomes the headstock below the nut.....well maybe you knew that one..... [biggrin] [biggrin]

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Note the volute in the above picture....... [confused][biggrin]

 

Where the neck becomes the headstock below the nut.....well maybe you knew that one..... [biggrin] [biggrin]

 

NO Gibson is complete without one! [tongue]

 

;)

 

Cheers... Bence

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Hello!

 

In reference to Capmaster's picture of His beautiful 2011 Standard, please note how nibs were done on earlier Gibsons:

 

HPIM5650_zpsqy8a59lw.jpg

 

Nibs are formed only from the white part of the black-and-white multiply binding.

 

Cheers... Bence

Wow.. those are some of the flattest frets ive ever seen...

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Wow.. those are some of the flattest frets ive ever seen...

 

This is the "fretless wonder" style. My 1978 S-G Standard and my Frank Zappa "Roxy" SGs came that way, too.

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This is the "fretless wonder" style. My 1978 S-G Standard and my Frank Zappa "Roxy" SGs came that way, too.

Yeah ive heard about them but don think ive ever seen that pic before....

 

It kinda goes against some of the methods normally used.. Because not only are they flat but really wide... When I do fret crowning I file down the sides of the frets so the very top is a slim as possible and the string makes only a small amount of contact with the fret...

 

Maybe I will try something like that next time just to see for myself... Do you have to fret any differently or use a different technique with them? Id imagine you would have to have a fairly light touch?

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It's rather the opposite, they call for a little more force to avoid buzz. I guess this is due to the wide crown meaning less force per square. I feel definitely lots of wood respectively inlays under my fingers. In contrary, my only guitar with super jumbo frets, a Fender Telecaster with set neck from Indonesia, requires very soft fretting, otherwise pitches would go sharp. Except for bendings I never get in touch with her board! [biggrin]

 

A serious shortcoming of super-flat, wide frets is that dressing is practically impossible. Any significant fret wear calls for refretting. My 1978 S-G would have been a case for that already in 1982 when I bought her used, but I wore the frets just a little bit more since then within a fair multiple of playing time compared to the first owner. I'm a bit reluctant to have it done since either the nibs would be lost, or preserving them would cost me an arm and a leg... [unsure]

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Funnily enough I was just thinking that.. that they don't leave much room for ware... Youd have to at least make sure you use a nice hard metal type for them...

 

 

Hmm....

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A renowned luthier in Munich told me in 1986 that the problem is chamfering the razor-sharp edges after levelling without marring the fretboard. In 2014 the luthier at Thomann confirmed that. He added that it's already critical when doing it for the first time after refretting.

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Hello!

 

First it felt like playing a violin. I had to look at my hand. It was easy to miss a fret. Once I got used to it, I feel it very comfortable to play.

 

Cheers... Bence

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