Fret Tang Nipper

  • 61 Reviews
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Undercuts fretwire so the fret ends fit over neck binding.

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Fret Tang Nipper For medium fretwire

For medium fretwire

Item # 1626
In stock, ready to ship!


Fret Tang Nipper For wide fretwire

For wide fretwire

Item # 1649
In stock, ready to ship!


Total: $0.00
Quantity: 20


Undercuts fretwire so the fret ends fit over neck binding.

Undercuts fretwire cleanly.
There's gotta be an easier way to trim the ends of the frets to fit over the neck bindings, right? Our friend Bill Collings (of Collings Guitars) had an idea that inspired us to produce this simple and precise tool. It's become a repair shop favorite. It does an outstanding job of undercutting fretwire to fit over neck bindings, speeding up fret jobs on bound necks, and helps save the lacquer finish at the edges of the fingerboard. Just insert the wire to the desired depth in the guide notch, squeeze the handle, and the wire is quickly and cleanly undercut. No bending or crimping!

The Fret Tang Nipper is useful for unbound fingerboards too. Try nipping the fret tang to length before installing the fret. Now you'll only need to cut and file the overhanging crown, and the fret will be less likely to twist and unseat.

#1626 is for medium-width fretwire, .075" to .095" (1.90mm to 2.41mm)

#1649 is for wide fretwire, .100" to .120" (2.54mm to 3.05mm)

The Fret Tang Nipper is 6" long (152.40mm), including 4" (101.60mm) rubber-sleeved handles.

Not recommended for stainless steel frets.

Ratings & Reviews

Fret Tang Nipper

  • Based on 61 Reviews
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By TisDale Custom Guitars from Renton, WA, USA
(Customer's Reviews) Sunday, April 14, 2013

I used to do this by hand and it would take forever. You can safely and perfectly nip your entire fretboard in about two minutes. If you do a lot of bound fretting, dont even hesitate to get one.

Fret tang nipper

By MJF from Australia
(Customer's Reviews) Friday, April 12, 2013

This is a real time saver. Very easy to use . Cool tool.

Essential Tool

By Amos & Sons Guitars from Long Island, NY
(Customer's Reviews) Friday, January 25, 2013

If your fret work requires cutting back the tang then this tool is a must have. We've tried other brands and methods but for us nothing beats this tool.

Fret tang nipper, YEAH!

By edwinson from Birmingham AL
(Customer's Reviews) Wednesday, January 02, 2013

I LOVE this tool. As an artisan's prerogative, every fretboard I make is bound and purfled--I just like that look, and so do my clients. I've been using the fret tang nipper tool for over a decade, and can't imagine life without it. I can under-cut the tang to the precise width for each fret slot, and 99% of the time, no further filing or dressing is needed. Over the years, I can't imagine how much time this tool has saved me. It's so quick, precise and easy.

Great tool

By Jorge Cervantes from Chihuahua Mexico
(Customer's Reviews) Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Excellent tool, you got a nice fretboards, cut clean and fast fretwire...

Time saver

By Rob Hodgson, Wallash guitars from Derbyshire, England
(Customer's Reviews) Monday, October 08, 2012

Nice and sturdy tool, shame it cant do all sizes of wire but if you do alot of re-frets, then this will save you so much time, clean cutting and simple to use.

Great tool!

By Midnight Lord from Ottawa
(Customer's Reviews) Thursday, September 13, 2012

Yes, you can buy similar tools on the Internet, but by the time it ships (more expensive and longer) and the gambling on whether you will be able to slot it properly for the fret, it makes more sense to simply order it from StewMac. The tool will not disappoint you and makes a nice, clean cut. All this coming from a guy who enjoys more to build jigs and tools than instruments. If you need it, don't think twice - simply buy it.

Nice tool. Very useful

By markgrant from tennessee
(Customer's Reviews) Sunday, September 02, 2012

Used this on some narrow and medium fretwire for an F-5 mandolin. It worked great even on the narrow wire( you have to be very careful and take your time to keep from bending it). I purchased the nipper for medium but it works for my wire sizes. A good tool, would like the price to be more reasonable.

Expensive...but impressive

By Ian Verner from Sydney, Australia
(Customer's Reviews) Sunday, August 19, 2012

Was reluctant to buy due to expense but works like a dream, made my first bound fret job so easy and so quick. once you get the hang of it the cut is very clean

Easier than using a file

By James Murphy from Plymouth England
(Customer's Reviews) Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Yes you can use a file to take off the tang under a fret end. However this tool makes it much easier. Essential for bound fret-boards but also allows fret ends to be filled with stick shellac on unbound fret-boards to give a seamless finish.

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