I had a top tech refret my G5120 with stainless steel frets

Discussion in 'Electromatic Gretsch Forum' started by Raccoon1400, Jul 20, 2021.

  1. Raccoon1400

    Raccoon1400 Electromatic

    Jun 22, 2015
    Ottawa, Canada
    There is a really great tech in my area. He does the best work of anyone anywhere near here. He does fret work with a plek machine and can frets much more level than almost all manufacturers. I had him redo a 70s Gibson Gospel a few years ago. His work is impeccable. (His name is Ian Weston, he's in Ottawa, Canada)

    I've played the Gretsch quite a bit over the past few years and the fret wear was getting noticeable. I figured if I was going to get it done, I'd get it done by this guy even though it cost double what a refret would normally cost. But the stainless steel frets feel great and will never wear again. Though I did this fully aware that it is still a 5120 not a 6120 and I was probably putting more than I should into it.

    I got a compton bridge at the same time so he could set it up with a proper bridge. I had him pin the bridge as well, and sand it to fit the body contour. I also ordered the reverend audio soft spring for the bigsby, and that makes the bigsby actually worth using with 11 gauge strings.

    I'd already upgraded the pickups to the TV Jones classics a few years ago.

    The guitar feels great! Though I'm starting to like thicker necks more, I recently got a PRS SE and Yamaha 335 copy with quite thick necks.
  2. Henry

    Henry I Bleed Orange

    Apr 9, 2014
    Sweet. I'm planning to get my Anni Jr done with stainless steel.
  3. Ricochet

    Ricochet Senior Gretsch-Talker

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    Same here, once I thin the herd down to the chosen few(less than 10 guitars) some will get upgraded with stainless steel frets. It’s an expense but not if they last 3 or 4 times as long.
    MTurner likes this.
  4. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Friend of Fred

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    I had my 1995 6120 refretted with Stainless last December. It’s incredible, and it’s awesome knowing it’ll most likely never need another refret.
  5. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    Congrats and glad your enjoying it . I miss my 5120
  6. dreamingGretsch

    dreamingGretsch Synchromatic

    Oct 12, 2010
    Melbourne, Australia
    Id probably do the same!

    heck, I did put an LR Baggs Anthem pickup, fret level, dress, crown, bone nut and bridge saddle, and a full pro set up on a Cort L300VF.

    sold it at a big loss, but it was the perfect acoustic guitar when I had it.
  7. Stefan87

    Stefan87 Country Gent

    May 20, 2019
    Brisbane, Australia
    Great work, sounds like your 5120 is a real machine now, have had stainless steel frets on a schecter and they are seriously awesome, wouldn't hesitate putting them on any of my guitars when they need a refret now.

    I'm not a fan of big necks but tried out a Yamaha revstar the other day and it's really nice and comfortable, Yamaha make a great product.
  8. mr coffee

    mr coffee Country Gent

    Oct 7, 2009
    I've got stainless frets on my Kiesels and on the Warmoth neck for my Dream Machine. I like them a lot, but man they're not easy to work with if you want to dress the ends! Stainless will eat tools. Still beating on my 5120 pretty regularly...

    NJDevil likes this.
  9. Raccoon1400

    Raccoon1400 Electromatic

    Jun 22, 2015
    Ottawa, Canada
    I'm thankful to have a tech who likes working with them and can produce such impeccable results. The plek machine makes things a lot easier.

    I have big hands, so that is a factor.
    mr coffee likes this.
  10. NJDevil

    NJDevil Country Gent

    Jul 9, 2014
    Commack, NY
    Nice going on having a Kiesel as I have come hear that they are phenomenal instruments. I want one really bad and have a few build ideas in mind. What pickups do you have in your's?
    mr coffee likes this.
  11. mr coffee

    mr coffee Country Gent

    Oct 7, 2009
    I've got a DC800 and a DC600, both are walnut body, walnut top, 5-piece maple thinner neck with birdseye fretboards, no markers except double diamond at the 12th, 6105SS, tung oil finish and black hardware all the way around. Both have the Lithium pickups, they're really versatile. Both times, I was floored at how great they turned out. I wouldn't hesitate to order another, Jeff and the crew are great - super to work with on speccing out your build, and generally good folks. As a matter of fact, one of these days, I need to get a DC700, same specs...

    NJDevil likes this.
  12. Robbie

    Robbie Friend of Fred

    Jun 17, 2013
    Sarnia Ontario Canada
    I wish your Tech was closer to where I live.

    The Tech I used for years was incredible with both guitars and amplifiers, world class. All of a sudden he hung it up and I’d like to find someone good.

    A good Tech is invaluable, hang on to him.
    Waxhead and Tony65x55 like this.
  13. Dana Rudd

    Dana Rudd Country Gent

    Nov 26, 2019
    Greybull, WY
    Sounds like you've made some great mods on your 5120. Enjoy it!
  14. Tony65x55

    Tony65x55 Gretschified

    Sep 23, 2011
    The 'Shwa, Ontario, Canada
    Ian Weston is a fabulous luthier and has been my go-to guy for quite a few years. The best guitars I have ever played have had his gifted hands laid upon the necks.

    You could not have picked anyone better...anywhere.
    Robbie and Raccoon1400 like this.
  15. Raccoon1400

    Raccoon1400 Electromatic

    Jun 22, 2015
    Ottawa, Canada
    If there is a better tech than Ian no mere mortal could ever notice the difference.
  16. Waxhead

    Waxhead Friend of Fred

    Aug 30, 2014
    Good one Raccoon :)

    Did you get bigger size frets than what was in it stock
    And where did you get them.

    I need to do a re-fret on my US made Strat
  17. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    Sandy Eggo
    yep stainless steel are perfect if you feel your guitar is just that little bit of 5% shy of perfect presence on the top end.. murder on an already bright guitar though. my 99' SSU was begging for it and I'm so glad I did fork out the dough, its complete and I dont have to worry about another refret prolly for my life's duration.
    Les Pedals, Waxhead and calebaaron666 like this.
  18. Raccoon1400

    Raccoon1400 Electromatic

    Jun 22, 2015
    Ottawa, Canada
    I got a bigger size than stock. We chose a fretwire he said is the size most electric guitar makers use now. I don't know where he gets it.
    BuddyHollywood and Waxhead like this.
  19. Axis39

    Axis39 Country Gent

    Jun 2, 2008
    Beaumont, CA
    My 5127 needs some fret work.... I've been contemplating going stainless, so I'll never have to worry about it again. I like the idea of a Plek as well.

    I'm a little bit of a haul form Ottawa. So, I'll probably look close to where I live (near L.A.). But, I am happy to hear you guys speaking so positively of the SS experience!

    My 5127 is one of the least expensive guitars I own. But, it's also my #1 stage guitar. It makes any amp sound better and played like butter for years. It is like home for me. So, no expense is too much. I will play that guitar until I can no longer play. That makes it my most valuable guitar, honestly.

    So, good on ya for not worrying about 'value'.
    calebaaron666 likes this.
  20. AZBrahma

    AZBrahma Gretschie

    Dec 18, 2020
    U haz Dream Machine?? :eek: Oh my....maybe one day. They have a modern one that still manages to be the real deal at Musicians Friend, but at 6k it is an impossible justification.

    I wish I had the same luck with Kiesel that others have had. My LONG experience with the company is riddled with serious problems with the instruments themselves. It's almost like every time they saw my name they said "Let's screw this one up!". But most are happy, and they can be very good guitars.
    mr coffee likes this.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.