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Someone gave me a Fender style neck and I want to make a 6 string slide/resonator with it. The frets are worn out and I plan on just pulling and replacing with ... something. Maybe a holly or maple veneer cut in thin strips, white plastic, aluminum, or even something a little more decorative. Looking for ideas. Has to be something thin enough that I can slip it into the slots and soft enough for me to sand it flush. I know sometimes people mix ground up stuff with epoxy, would a white chalk + epoxy work?
I did this on a squire strat. neck. I used Elmers wood filler. comes in a 3.25 oz. squeeze tube.Home depot.I used white.Just tape on both sides where you remove fret wires.so filler dosen't get all over frett board.let dry and sand it down. mine came out good. good luck.
Interesting, I thought wood filler might be too soft.
You might want to actually make your filler a contrasting color with the fretboard so that they can give you an idea where the note you are looking for on your now fretless instrument should be. Can get iron oxide pigment and mix it in with your glue & fine saw dust filler mix to come up with a good contrasting color (assuming your fretboard is light to medium in coloration. Otherwise, white glue with light wood saw dust should provide a good conrtrasting color with dark fretboards. As Bizzaro recommends, tape both sides of the fret to minimize the "mess", can use a good quality blue masking tape. Be sure to score the edges of the tape with your thumb nail to make sure no filler gets under the tape. Then, after it has dried, sand the fretboard and apply some finish; maybe 2 or 3 coats of polyurethane.
Also, re-freting with real fretwire is another option, unless you want a fretless instrument. If you never have worked with fretwire, you may feel intimidated by the experience, but it's not that difficult.
Of course if you keep the frets or make the frets a contrasting color that I suggest, you will have to use the same scale length of the original instrument when you make your new one. Best to try to make your sound box pretty big (long) so the bridge will be away from the edge of you soundbox.
A fretless with contrasting color 'frets' is exactly what I had in mind. The fretboard is actually rosewood and I'm just brainstorming materials that would give a nice contrast.
I've used veneer successfully. http://skeesixcbgs.com/page/2/ Scroll down to Little Purple Travel Bass.
Did you cut your own strips? I have some holly but I'm wondering how to make thin slices to fit the slot. Maybe try cutting a thin slice on the tablesaw then scraping it down to fit.
Yes, just buy some veneer. I have a pack of generic veneer from Hobby Lobby I think. It comes in handy for all sorts of stuff. If the veneer isn't quite thin enough, you can sand down a bit more.
I think you will go mad trying to make your own veneer.
What about the low gold fret wire. Then sand down a bit. Might be a nice contrast.