Price list – Maintenance and repair services
An exact estimate of maintenance and repair costs will be given after seeing the instrument.
All work contains 100% satisfaction guarantee!
Guitar setup and trimming
Bone nut fabrication
A factory-made plastic or nylon saddle is the most typical reason for tuning stability issues. Plastic is simply too soft for this use and the strings tend to get stuck in the material. When bending the string the string doesn’t glide back as intended and the pitch will remain sharp.
A bone nut can be made from whitened or yellowish unwhitened bone that fits particularly well in vintage-style guitars.
Other materials that work well are Tusq black / white and grey graphite or brass.
The fret leveling is done in a special jig where the guitar is attached securely.
The neck will be adjusted to be as straight as possible under string tension and in desired tuning, then the dial indicators will be reset to zero.
When the strings are removed the neck can be manipulated exactly to the same tension as it was prior to the string removal. Thus, fret leveling will be performed under simulated string tension so that the frets can be filed down only as much as necessary. Thanks to the precise fret filing work done in the jig, the strings can be adjusted lower than normal without any unwanted fret buzz.
Fret leveling - fall-away
So called fall-away fret leveling will be performed from the 12th fret upwards, increasingly filing out more material towards the last frets. This is highly recommended if the string bends in the upper frets “die out”, meaning that the sound will get muted because the string will hit a fret in front of it because the fret profile is too high.
This issue is very common, especially so with the vintage style fingerboards with a 7.25” radius.
The same problem appears also with set-neck guitars where a strong tension is directed to the body and neck joint, resulting in problems with string bends from 10th fret upwards. Often a curve is formed on the fingerboard section that’s situated above the body starting from the neck joint. This is especially typical for Les Paul guitars.
A rough estimate would be that every second modernly produced Les Pauls (starting from the mid 70’s) have this issue, more or less. The thickness of the neck, quality of the wood, string tension and changes in humidity affect how big of an issue this will be.
In the worst case scenario the fingerboard needs to be sanded straight and the neck inlays removed for the duration of the sanding.
Due to the fact that the fingerboard curve will only form under string tension, it’s critically important to perform all corrective procedures (fret leveling, fingerboard straightening) in a jig, under simulated string tension.
Fret replacement, unlacquered fingerboard
(SS-frets + 100 EUR)
An unlacquered fingerboard is typically made of rosewood or ebony. The surface is finished with oil.
At first, the old frets will be removed. For this job I use an instant soldering iron that heats the fret up in just a couple of seconds. First the fingerboard will be dampened around the fret using oil and water. When heating up, the water and oil will help loosen the fret and this helps to avoid chipping any wood off the fingerboard.
After that the straightness and potential wear of the fingerboard will be checked and the possible need for fingerboard sanding determined.
The fret slots will be cleaned and cut to correct depth. The slot depth will be measured with a calliper. The selected fret material will be bent to the correct radius with a tool designed for the job. The bent fret wire will then be clipped to correct length snippets and the frets will be installed into the fret slots with a purpose built pressing device, not by hammering them in! A fret that’s installed with a fret press will sit into the neck profile perfectly. The job will be carried out using a tool that corresponds to the neck profile at hand.
To secure a well lasting installation the frets will be glued into the fret slots either by using superglue, epoxy or hide glue. The excess of the fret will be cut off and the fret ends filed to the correct angle. The frets will be leveled by sanding and filing the fret ends round. Lastly, the frets will be polished.
Fret replacement, lacquered fingerboard
(SS-nauhat + 100 EUR)
When removing the frets from a lacquered fingerboard, it’s impossible to avoid lacquer chipping.
The job description is largely the same as with the unlacquered fingerboard but a touch up lacquering will be required to fix the lacquer chipping. Sometimes it’s best to spray the whole fingerboard again. This will be agreed with the customer case by case.
Fret replacement, bound fingerboard
Guitar electronics work
Pickup wax potting
45 EUR / pickup
Extra pickup +5 EUR
The inductor wire might start to vibrate in an unpotted pickup.
If the guitar starts to feedback and howl uncontrollably especially in high volume situations, your pickups might be in need of wax potting.
The wax potting will also protect the very sensitive inductor wire.
The wax potting is performed by sinking the pickup into a mix of beeswax and paraffin wax.
The wax mix will be heated up to ca. 60 degrees Celsius and the pickups are held in the solution as long as bubbles stop surfacing. It’s very important not to allow the temperature to rise too high, hence the wax mixture will be heated in a pot equipped with a thermostat.
Shielding includes lining of the pickguard’s pickup and potentiometer routings with aluminium / copper foil.
The problem with single coil pickups is their propensity to electrical interference. Every pickup contains thousands of turns of thin inductor wire that acts like an antenna receiving interference signals from other electrical devices, for example from fluorescent lamps. The resulting undesirable 60 cycle hum can be almost entirely avoided with proper pickguard shielding.