Refret Saws

youtube LO4sKlRCP5Q


Dan Erlewine demos his gap-toothed saw for cleaning and modifying guitar fret slots.

Video Transcription

[on-screen text reads: Refret Saws]

Dan Erlewine: The Refret Saws are to clean fret slots during the fret job after the frets have been removed. There's three different sizes of blades from 15 thousandths to 20 to 25, and the blades are very short with teeth that cut on a pull stroke and a push stroke. The pull stroke is the away side from me, you pull towards you to cut and clean. You can deepen a slot with these or just clean out the dirt. What makes these saws special and different from a fret slotting saw, this is to cut slots on a new fingerboard, is a big saw like this one when you drop it down into the slot on a radius board, the teeth will be up and exposed on the edges. As you saw, you can actually make marks that will show after you're done fretting or even widen the fret slot.

That's why we came up with the Refret Saws. They really excel on a bound fretboard. You can see where a full size fret saw would ruin the binding if you tried to deepen this slot or clean it out. I've seen lots of them where people did that. These are the only saws that can drop inside and both clean and deepen.

Refret Saws have a lot of other uses besides fretting

Now, I can also widen a slot by pulling on a slight angle like that. This is a pull stroke, and here's the push stroke, and then rolling it down into the slot as I go.

Sometimes I might be working on a bridge job where there's splits through the bridge pin holes. You'll see that a lot. With a short saw like this and a sharp blade I can saw in between the holes themselves and make a tiny little slot and inlay that with ebony, where before I used to always have to do this with a Dremel tool. These little saws have a lot of other jobs besides fretting. Refret saw is a great tool.



Dan Erlewine

Guitar Repairman and Builder

Related items