Nut and Saddle Shaping Files, Set of 2 files

  • 20 Reviews
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Two files, four cutting surfaces! Refined in our own shops for smoother, easier nut and saddle shaping.

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Nut and Saddle Shaping Files, Set of 2 files

Item # 4556
In stock, ready to ship!


Total: $0.00
Quantity: 20


Two files, four cutting surfaces! Refined in our own shops for smoother, easier nut and saddle shaping.

This pair of specialty files is ideal for roughing-in and fine-shaping the delicate contours of string nuts and acoustic bridge saddles. Using the files in combination, you can quickly refine a rough-cut nut to a smooth shape, ready for final polishing. The narrow cutting width makes it easier to round the top of a nut or bridge saddle more smoothly and accurately.

Each steel file is 10" (254.00mm) long with a rubber-coated handle for comfort, and has two different 5-3/4" x 1/4" (146.05mm x 6.35mm) cutting surfaces. That's four cuts in all: Coarse, Medium, Fine, and Extra Fine. The narrow 1/8" (3.18mm) edges are smooth.

Both Nut and Saddle Shaping Files are included in the Essential Nut Making Tool Kit, which has all the basic tools you'll need for shaping, string-spacing, slotting and fitting string nuts like a pro.

Product Instructions

Making a Nut, Step-by-Step

Dan Erlewine, of Stewart-MacDonald's R&D Team, walks you through making and installing a new nut.

Ratings & Reviews

Nut and Saddle Shaping Files, Set of 2 files

  • Based on 20 Reviews
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Just What the Doctor Ordered

By Uncle Don from Woodstock, Ct
(Customer's Reviews) Saturday, November 17, 2012

"The Lone Star Special", a brand new, hand-made parlor guitar which I helped design and a friend built, looked great but sounded buzzy and was hard to keep in tune. The nut had not yet been shaped, so I ordered StewMac's Nut and Saddle Shaping File Set (4556) and went to work. Thanks to StewMac's wonderful on-line fix-it tips, I used an old credit card to protect The Lone Star's headstock as I filed away on the bone nut using both files. About 15 minutes later I was done. The nut was nicely shaped, there was no damage to the headstock or fingerboard, and my parlor guitar sounded terrific--buzz free and in tune. I'm not a craftsperson or builder, but I now have the chops and confidence to re-glue ukulele bridges and shape guitar nuts!! Thank you, StewMac!! A great File Set for shaping stringed instrument nuts.

Fast, smooth cutting files

By Greg Robinson - Guitar & Amplifier from Melbourne, Australia
(Customer's Reviews) Tuesday, September 18, 2012

These files work great with both bone, and the synthetic nut and saddle materials. Low chatter, very little cleanup needed.

useful but could be better

By Moriarty Guitars from Dublin Ireland
(Customer's Reviews) Saturday, September 08, 2012

The files are sharp and comfortable to use. They are 7mm wide on the cutting face. I would prefer if they were 9mm or 10mm so you could notch for a b-string on a saddle with one stroke; and a wider files is less likely to slip on the corners. Also the fine file is more than adequate. Roughing should be done on a much larger file and/or a belt sander.

Shaping files

By J. Wiseman from USA
(Customer's Reviews) Saturday, April 28, 2012

These things cut a bone nut down in a hurry and have it ready for polishing in no time.

Great Nut Files!

By Wilmer Gingerich from Jamesport MO
(Customer's Reviews) Saturday, December 17, 2011

Had to wait on these for a while because they were out of stock. It was definitely worth the wait! They make it almost impossible to screw up with the cool filing surfaces adjacent to smooth sides. Go, Stewart MacDonald!!

Quality tools.

By Jocko from Scotland
(Customer's Reviews) Sunday, June 05, 2011

Quality tools which work well. What more can you ask for?

Simply perfect

By John R from West Chester, PA
(Customer's Reviews) Saturday, April 23, 2011

These files have made working on my guitars fun again. Each side has a different grit, long and with thin rubber grip allows me to feel the drag as I sand nuts and wood. just a quality product.

Nice tool but necesary?

By Goodin from Knoxville, TN, USA
(Customer's Reviews) Monday, March 14, 2011

I got these files for shaping bone nuts for my first dulcimer build. i was so into the work that i forgot i had bought these, and used a piece of sticky circular 220 grit sandpaper mounted to the bench top instead, which worked perfectly. i imagine as i continue on with building i will use these files. they are very well built and cut with ease.

Really like these.

By Ryan Rua from USA
(Customer's Reviews) Thursday, December 09, 2010

I debated buying these but I'm really happy I did. I like all 4 cutting surfaces, the narrow width and long length give a lot of options as to how you can use these. I feel the files leave a nice surface if you are careful, but you can always smooth the nut or saddle with fine sandpaper if you want more polish. Considering that you essentially get 4 files out of this pair, they are also a great value.

Quality Files, But Maybe Different Application?

By Dr H from Earth
(Customer's Reviews) Tuesday, September 21, 2010

These are great files, but I found even the fine one a bit too aggressive for delicate nut and saddle shaping. Starting with a pre-radiused saddle, a couple of passes with one of these files removed almost too much material.

Perhaps better used if you're fabricating from scratch out of a block of bone, although I usually do that kind of rough-shaping with a Dremel. I'll find something to use these files for, but I think I prefer something like a diamond abrasive stick for the finer points of nut/saddle shaping.

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Shown on page 4 of our latest catalog.