Measuring Frets the Easy Way - WFret to the Rescue!

I just thought I would use the blog feature to pass on some of what I have learned building cigar box guitars.

If you are still using a ruler to measure where to cut the frets on your fretboard or neck you are working way too hard!

I measured and marked (guesstimated really since my ruler lacked the precision required for the job) the fret lines for cutting on my first cigar box guitar. I found it challenging to say the least and hoped I was accurate enough.

I discovered the WFret program (see link above) for Windows by Jonathan D. Whitney on the web and gave it a try. I will never measure by hand again. I have used it for 24", 24.8", 25", 27", and 30" scale length fretboards. You can pick a popular scale length from a list or be adventurous and enter a custom scale length in inches or millimeters and you can print a template. I tape the template to the fretboard and just cut on the lines; it couldn’t be easier.

Have fun


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Comment by Burt Philbrick on February 26, 2016 at 3:08am

This is excellent! Thanks for sharing. I built one fretless cigar box guitar and was looking into what I need for the next build to be a fretted model.

Comment by blharmon on January 16, 2016 at 7:56pm

Wfret installs and runs using the WINE windows emulator on a linux machine.

Comment by Greg Shipley on December 8, 2013 at 11:42am

Thanks Dan That is a great download.

Comment by Dan Sleep on December 7, 2013 at 2:38pm

Greg, just pick a big number like 22 or 23 and print it out. Mark the frets up until you run out of fretboard.

Comment by Greg Shipley on December 7, 2013 at 2:33pm

I am new to fretting and guitar building that said i have a 3 string guitar with a fret board 17" in length and i assume the scale length is the distance from the nut to the bridge so if i am right so far and this software asks how many frets what is the answer?

Comment by Mike Strehlow on November 15, 2013 at 2:32am

I've used this before but never tried to enter a fractional scale length that is not on the preloaded list.  I am trying to enter 12 7/8 (It's a long story) but I keep getting an error message saying the scale length is 0.  Any suggestions?

Comment by Kenny Hay on November 3, 2012 at 11:48pm

Fantastic toll many thanks for sharing it.

Opens up a whole new world of options.


Comment by Dan Sleep on September 25, 2012 at 8:11pm

Delbert, I have some PDF files that will print out a template for you, in some of the common scales. If you want to give them a try, send me a PM with your email address and I will send them to you.


Comment by Savage Mojo CBG on September 25, 2012 at 8:01pm

Looking for a printable temp.

Comment by Savage Mojo CBG on September 25, 2012 at 8:00pm

I can't find anything for mac!

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