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...my aerodyne tele frets out on the high "E" string around the 16th-18th frets.

the E string is a 10, and i have raised the bridge saddle to try and compensate.

a fellow tele player says it is due to the 7.5 radius neck or fretboard.

is this problem fixable by a good luthier? should i be worried?

thanks in advance!

-david
 

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Your friend is absolutly right. The smaller the neck radius the more noticable the fretting out will be. 7.5 inches is a small radius. It's not a repairable thing just the nature of the beast. The only way to really beat it is with a bi radius fretboard. I will try to explain it like this. Fretboards sort of fall into two catagories. cylinders & cones. If you have a single radius you have a cylinder. If you have a bi radius , say 12 -16 radius you have a cone. Now to try and make my point if you were to take a round glass and put a straight edge straight up & down one side of the glass you would have complete contact of the straight edge the full height of the glass. Now if you were to hold that straight edge half way up the glass and rotate it left or right you would see how quickly most of the straight edge looses contact with the glass starting at the top and bottom of the glass and progressing to where you are holding the straight edge. Do the same with a cone and you will notice how much further you have to turn the straight edge before the straight edge looses contact with the glass. Now think of your strings as the straight edge and your neck/ frets as the glass. When you bend your strings you are doing the same thing as rotating the straight edge. The analogy would be that where the straight edge leaves the glass is where you fret out.

I hope that makes some kind of sense. .
 

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you could get the board re-radiused by a good luthier. costly though. fenders are notorious for having the neck poorly aligned when attached though hich often causes fret outs higher up the board, try this:
get a friend to loosen the screws while you hold the neck and body( loosen strings first of course). now pull the neck to where you want it and hold it tight as your friend screws it back on.
 

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fretting out

Have you checked to see if the neck is straight?
If the fretting out is happening around the 16th or 18th fret, you may be able to live with it. For what we are paying for guitars these days, they should capable of being adjusted so that they play correctly.
I would find a good guitar tech and have the instrument set up properly. You may be missing somthing.
 

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The only way to deal with it, is to change necks.. The thing about the 7.5" radius (Vintage Fender) is that it is good for chords, bad for bending. A larger radius, like 16" is great for bending strings, but harder to chord because the fretboard is flatter and you have to press a little harder to make the chord.

You might want to take a gander at http://www.warmoth.com/ to get an idea what is available in replacement necks.
 

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if the frets are tall enough you can have them re-radiused to about 9.5 without touching the fingerboard, actualy do-it yourself fret leveling...buy a 9.5 radius block with 220 grit sandpaper and remove any relief in the neck so that its flat using the truss rod, apply even down strokes from the nut all the way up, make a few extra passes from the 15th fret up for some relief, then re-crown., beats changing necks.
 
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gretting out

the cost of all of the above would likely far exceed the value of the piece...most fenders have vintage wire, which doesnt allow for much cutting... a total refret and planing of the board would be in order
you may one day decide to sell this and originality might play into its value....

I would suggest you simply go with a compound radius replacement neck... warmoth, usacg or someone of the like , maybe someone up your way...... theyre used on ebay all the time ,as are correct/close fender decals, most would never be the wiser unless you told them.
logo it, bolt it on ,and run 'er.

you might pay $150 u.s. tops if you do some looking.
if you want fancy wood you'll pay more....
keep it simple and you'll be happy in the end.
 

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You are in the same situation I was in awhile back. I LOVED my CIJ 52' RI Fender, but I grew to not like the 7.5 radius neck and the vintage frets. I had to decide whether to sell it and buy another Tele, or replace the neck.

In my case I stumbled apon an American Series Ash Tele from a guy I buy from in the States for a great price. It's basically the same specs but with a 9.5 radius neck and medium jumbo frets. It was a great deal, so I sold my CIJ and got the AmSe for only about $100 more.

Fender necks sell for a lot on eBay though. You could sell yours for enough to almost cover a replacement I'd imagine. That was the other option I had. If I hadn't come across that AmSe I would have gone that route.
 

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Yerffej said:
you could get the board re-radiused by a good luthier. costly though. fenders are notorious for having the neck poorly aligned when attached though hich often causes fret outs higher up the board, try this:
get a friend to loosen the screws while you hold the neck and body( loosen strings first of course). now pull the neck to where you want it and hold it tight as your friend screws it back on.
Hi Yerffej,

If you put a piece of metal srcreen (like from a window screen) in the neck cavity when you do this it will bite into both pieces of wood and it will stay put. Just don't let the ends of the screen poke out around the edges, or ouching will occur.
 

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question re fretting out

Here's another approach:

1. Not enough relief? Turn truss rod 1/8 turn counter-clockwise.

2. Relief is fine? Remove shim.

3. No shim? Sand working face of neck heel slightly with 320 on sanding block, and/or very slightly dig out bottom with neck pocket with fine file, in both cases concentrating on the interior of the neck pocket rather than the lip where the neck emerges. You ARE trying to angle the neck just a hair, in this scenario.

Peter
 

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It is true that the 7 1/2 neck will give some problems, but I have set up a number of them for guy's with no problems. As long as the frets are level and the radius of the bridge matches the neck or just a little flater you should be good.
 
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