Fret Work Step-By-Step

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By Erick Coleman with Dan Erlewine
New tools, techniques, and color photos! The updated 2nd edition of the world's most popular fretting instruction manual.

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Fret Work Step-By-Step

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By Erick Coleman with Dan Erlewine
New tools, techniques, and color photos! The updated 2nd edition of the world's most popular fretting instruction manual.

Updated 2nd edition: more tools, new techniques!
Published by Stewart-MacDonald. The most popular fretting instruction manual in the world, a best seller since fretmaster Dan Erlewine wrote it in 1994! Our new updated 2nd edition reflects lots of innovative tools and techniques that have come along since then. We reworked it from the ground up, with colorful photos and revised text that demonstrate clearly how to tackle all kinds of fret work. Simple jobs and tricky problems are shown and explained from start to finish. Learn the right way: gain the confidence to do your own fret work on new or old guitars, maple necks, bound necks—any instrument that comes in your door.

Chapters include:
Tools and supplies
Working with compound radius fretboards
Simple fret leveling and dressing
A basic fret job
A partial refret job
Fretting nonadjustable necks
Refretting a bound neck
Fretting Fender maple necks
Fretting Fender laminated fingerboards
Martin bar fretting
Fretting an unattached fingerboard
New technology: the Plek machine
Final setup

100 pages, softcover.

About the authors:
Erick Coleman: repairman, tech support guru and author. Erick answers every kind of lutherie question from Stewart-MacDonald's customers. His background includes years of traveling as a rock guitarist, which is when he started doing his own repairs. He learned from Dan Erlewine's videos, then in Dan's shop. Making a career of guitar repair, Erick is now a technical support expert for StewMac.

Dan Erlewine is a well-known guitar repair veteran and author of bestselling videos and books on repair. His DVD series on instrument repair includes a dozen volumes as of this writing.

Erick and Dan are regular contributors to our Trade Secrets E-mail Newsletter and to Stewart-MacDonald's product research and development.

The basic tools to get you started
Fret Work Step-By-Step is included in our Essential Fretting Tool Kit, a set of the seven fundamental tools you'll need for accurate fret work.

Ratings & Reviews

Fret Work Step-By-Step

  • Based on 21 Reviews
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Basics +

By unluthier from NC
(Customer's Reviews) Saturday, March 01, 2014

There are so many details that have to be learned and discovered, and this book reveals many I would have had to learn the hard way, if at all. Great manual!

Great book for a beginner

By bzarembareal from Canada
(Customer's Reviews) Saturday, March 01, 2014

This book seems to cover everything a beginner may need, and gives a good understanding of fretting concepts

Fret work step by step

By michaelht1 from Northwest Montana
(Customer's Reviews) Saturday, January 04, 2014

incredible amount of information, as a total novice it provides full understanding that allows for someone new to follow the instructions and examples, comprehensive and well written

Don't Fret

By Hosner Guitars from Science Hill, KY
(Customer's Reviews) Saturday, January 04, 2014

I owned the first edition. Gave it to a friend. Now I own the new one. It's a must for beginners and a great reference for any level guitar geek.

good stuff

By guitarcliffy from Elmira Oregon
(Customer's Reviews) Thursday, December 26, 2013

good book lots of info fit my needs to a tee


By Carlos Giron from Ny
(Customer's Reviews) Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Great book, introductory, but still leaves you with some questions, beginner, should to add some more.

info overload...

By T Jones from Chester, MT
(Customer's Reviews) Thursday, June 27, 2013

Lots of info for fret work... Some good tips as well... some very extreme examples of a few jobs.. Not every tech will encounter some of these but good to have a reference..

an excellent book for the novice & experienced repairman

By larry riedell from grafton, wisconsin
(Customer's Reviews) Wednesday, October 10, 2012

a lot of good info in this book. very helpful for doing high quality fret work


By micheloderso from Bischweier, Baden-Wuerttemberg, Ger
(Customer's Reviews) Wednesday, October 03, 2012


I would like to have in german. Is it possible to get it translated?
Thank you for the best shop for guitarbuilder!

The Perfect Starting Point

By axe fixr from Richardson (Dallas) Texas
(Customer's Reviews) Thursday, May 10, 2012

If you've wanted to do your own fret work, but were scared, jump into it feet first after getting this book. This will be the MOST IMPORTANT tool you can use to start with. I got it separately, but it's FREE with the Essential Fret Kit. That is the way to go. Lots of clear and detailed pictures, (I like that), and concise instruction.

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