GUITAR FRET PRESS / GUITAR WORKSTATION
The Guitar Fret Press / Workstation comprises of a Press System and Guitar Workstand.
There are 3 versions available.
The following is a guide for comparison and application of all 3 versions. For specific details of each version, please use the above links.
1) Acoustic Guitar Workstation.
2) Set Neck / Through Neck Guitar Workstation.
3) Universal Guitar Workstation
The workstation is designed to fret all positions on a guitar in a single set up.
When used as a complete fret pressing system, the workstand and press unit are interlocked together. The interlock allows the guitar support jig to slide through the fret press keeping the guitar neck centrally underneath the press. Two circular clamps are provided to lock the jig in position.
Using the press will require some degree of manual handling due to its weight and size. It is designed for semi-professional use and will provide consistent fretting.
Robust in construction, the design provides good utilisation of workspace. The slim workstand base (70mm wide) and raised guitar support areas keep the guitar above a dusty work bench whilst leaving plenty of room for placing of tools around the workstation.
The strong rigid framework of the tool is manufactured from oak, stainless steel & aluminium.
The guitar workstand features separate supports for the guitar neck and body. The neck support is covered with 3mm thick neoprene rubber and includes a removable cork mat. The cork should be utilised for guitars with fine or vintage finishes but is not essential for early stages of guitar building or semi-finished guitars.
When using the press, the guitar neck must sit flat along the length of the neck support. To achieve this the guitar body support height is adjusted until the neck is level with the support.
The workstand can be used independent of the press for every day tasks including, fret levelling, crowning, guitar setup, and general repairs/maintenance/cleaning.
A sturdy central neck clamp has recently been added to the design and this provides stability for the instrument and prevents sideways movement and unseating of the guitar from the jig. The clamp jaws have soft contact pads and can be raised/lowered to suit individual application. Two thumb-screws lock the height and central position of the unit. The clamp jaws are sprung open and clamped via a thumb-wheel. The clamp jaws can also be used to spread the strings.
Each version of the workstand is also available for purchase as a separate item from the webstore.
1. Acoustic Guitar Workstand.
3. Universal Guitar Workstand.
1) Acoustic Guitar Workstand
2) Solid Body Guitar Workstand
3) Universal Guitar Workstand
BRIDGE FRET PRESS - ALL VERSIONS
The bridge press is substantially constructed and comprises the following main components:
Aluminium Base with rubber feet.
Oak Base Extension for sliding workstand.
Oak Base Frame with interlock and clamps for work-stand.
Aluminium uprights for height adjustment and locking of bridge press position.
Stainless steel cross beam with central fret press module.
BASIC OPERATION OF THE PRESS
The workstand with guitar secured onto it, is transferred through the bridge press. The cross beam is lowered to pressing height and locked in a permanent position. The fret is aligned underneath the press insert by sliding the workstand left or right. Operation of the press is made via turning the top centrally positioned handle. The workstand is easily positioned between frets and can be locked in position using the two circular clamps.
POSITIONING THE BRIDGE / CROSS BEAM HEIGHT
The protective rubber strip is placed on the fretboard and the cross beam is lowered until the caul rests on top of the rubber. The beam is locked in position.
SOUNDBOARD PRESS UNIT - ACOUSTIC PRESS OPTION
The majority of frets for an acoustic will be straightforward. When close to the soundhole, extra measures to avoid stress on the unsupported fretboard portion are needed.
The soundboard press unit is used for pressing frets over the guitar body. The unit has rubber grooves on the underside that enable it to be used over fretted and unfretted boards.
The soundboard press unit is clamped in position using the bridge press unit. A flat clamp caul is fitted to the main press screw for this purpose.
As the objective is to avoid structural damage, small adjustments are necessary when using the support and the fretting process is slower for this area.
SOUNDHOLE BRACE SUPPORT – ACOUSTIC PRESS OPTION
Light back pressure is applied to the underside of the instrument brace by turning the top adjustment thumb-nut.
Correct use of the unit will ensure that compression is self contained and deflection of the soundboard wood is minimal.
Please note that the effective support will decrease for frets that are further away from the soundhole. It is essential therefore that the fret slots are cut to correct depth and cleaned out if necessary using a suitable tool to reduce deflection and to avoid any overstressing of the instrument. The system now includes a rubber mat for protecting the soundhole and rosette.
FRET SLOT & PREPARATION
1) The fret should be pre-bent to the radius of the fretboard.
2) When viewed from above, the fret should be straight and not twisted.
3) Ensure correct tang/slot fit.
4) Ensure the fret slots are free of any dust or obstructions that would prevent the fret from seating.
The press utilises a manual lever and screw mechanism. If the frets do not seat fully or excessive force is required then the fret tang width and slot condition should be checked and remedied. This is a useful check/control of fret insertion force (and helps to guard against subsequent wood compression which can accumulate along the board and cause back bow).
With the above satisfied, the frets will be pushed perfectly home!