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My first build is a banjo ukulele based on a rectangular cookie tin. I want to fret it, because I want to use this instrument to learn to play the uke.
I originally planned to do zip tie frets, but my test runs reveal that they are wide, don't lie flat, and are just plain ugly. I've read some threads on CBN about fret alternatives, and given several ideas some thought. I don't want to buy fret wire because I'm cheap. :-)
I have some 18ga wire, and I'm thinking about spiraling it around the neck. I'd make V-shaped grooves on either side of the fingerboard at the proper position, so the wire would lie flat across the board, but would run diagonally across the back of the neck to the next fret.
Has anyone tried something like this? I can't imagine I'm the first to think of it. Pros? Cons?
Thank you all for your advice and suggestions. I've completed my uke (well, almost. Need to build a taller bridge) and there are photos here:
Here's a bonus pic of the back of the fretboard:
Looks neat, well done.