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About time for me to chime in, I think.
>> what would be the 'correct' way to go about removing the frets...?
>>if you don't have the correct tool the freboard will rip.
> or file down the frets to just leave the tang, this stops the
> possible problem of the neck shape going peculiar when ripping
> the frets out changes the tensions
Going back to the start of this thread: I too, like Roberto, have a cheap
imitation Fender (though mine is a Tele, despite what the man in the shop
said (Strat) - perhaps that's why they were going out of business) from
which I removed the frets. That was about twenty years ago now, so I don't
remember exactly how it was accomplished, but it probably bordered on the
Neanderthal. I filled in the slots with plastic wood.
> also consider painting fingerboard with epoxy paint (like
> Pastorius) to
> stop it wearing away
I painted mine with Tremclad (r) rust-proof paint. It gave a fairly smooth
surface (not that it matters for the kind of stuff I do), and there's not a
speck of rust on that neck ;-).
The beast can be heard in both fretless and fretful versions on my LP