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trapezoid fret inlay


marnew

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I have not handled this issue before, but here is what I think...

 

If the inlay is lifting away as you put it from the fretboard, then if you can glue it down, use wood glue. I am not sure if a highly adhesive glue would be wise here (i.e. "crazy" glue)... To "level" it out, you may have to start scraping with razor blade to make sure that there are no edges of the inlay that can be caught by a string of felt by your fretting hand when playing the instrument. And when I mean scraping, I am referring to the process employed to say "clean" the fretboard as some YouTube videos feature cleaning a rosewood fretboard for instance. Be careful not to scratch fretboard and not to mess with the fretboard radius.

 

If you have luthier around, this might be advisable to discuss what needs to be done to handle the situation. I am sure you are not the only person in the world to have this issue. Essentially saying that an experienced individual might know the best course of action. Nonetheless, if you are pretty handy and not afraid to take a chance on the fretboard, glue it down and scrape it until the fret becomes able to be used without obstruction.

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I had this happen on my les paul standard. I took it to a local luthier and let him fix it. I believe he pulled the inlay out, cleaned the old glue out, and re-glued the inlay. Not a terribly tough task as i understood it but at the time I was pretty nervous about doing work like that myself.

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I'm DIY and used thin CA glue with rosewood particles from sanding. CA wicks in between the inlay and hold it down till the CA dries (spray accelarent if you have one). Then used a file and also 600 sandpaper to level it...fairly easy process.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Without seeing it, this is hard to answer. But might it be that the fretboard has dried out some and is shrinking away from the inlay - as opposed to the inlay lifting itself up?

 

I'd be reluctant to start hacking away at it myself and putting glue in there etc. I'd seek advice from a luthier before risking making it worse myself. [scared]

 

I have owned a lot of Gibsons over the years, some for many years (one for about 30 years) and have never seen this happen so would just urge getting the advice of someone who works on guitars for a living before trying to fix it myself.

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