Which Stew-mac Crowning File To Buy?

Discussion in 'Project Depot' started by tobijohn, Mar 16, 2019.

  1. tobijohn

    tobijohn The Great Enabler Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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    OK, now that my business is sold, in a few more weeks I'll finally have some time to focus on projects and start posting in the "What's On Your Workbench?" thread. I've got several guitars that will need fret levels and recrowning so the question is do I want the Original Z-file or the Centered Z-file? The video was enough help to know that I don't want the Safe Edge Z-file. I'm leaning heavily towards the centered one but would like to hear other's opinions, especially if you have experience with any of them. TIA...
     
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  2. tobijohn

    tobijohn The Great Enabler Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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  3. backinit

    backinit Well-Known Member

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  4. tobijohn

    tobijohn The Great Enabler Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Thanks, that one actually looks more versatile than the Stew-Mac files. So I take it you're satisfied with the quality and functionality of the one in the link you've posted? This is new ground for me as most of my previous experience is pickup/wiring upgrades and dressing sharp fret ends...
     
  5. jtcnj

    jtcnj Well-Known Member

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    If @backinit is happy with the performance of that I would go with it.

    Otherwise, I would recommend the Hosco brand ones available at Philadelphia Luthier, among others.
    I have the medium and the wide and they have worked very well.

    https://www.philadelphialuthiertools.com/luthier-tools/files/fret-crowning-luthier-file-medium/
     
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  6. backinit

    backinit Well-Known Member

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    It's very good for the money spent. It may not last as long as the stewmac file, but look at the price of it. It doesn't remove a ton of material , but I like that. All you want to do is shape the shoulders of the fret a bit.
     
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  7. jtcnj

    jtcnj Well-Known Member

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    it is easy to go to far; as the flat plateau of the fret is filed, that flat area will become narrower and narrower.

    STOP at a very thin line or you just went too far and that fret is now not as tall- screwing the pooch if you leveled the frets first.

    Good light and moving your head around your viewing angle a bit until you find as sweet spot that give the best view.
     
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  8. PsychoCid

    PsychoCid Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations! Heres to you getting enjoyment from your new found free time :)
     
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  9. TeleMan59

    TeleMan59 Well-Known Member

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    Yes. Very easy to go too far with many of those files. I switched to just using a triangle file and a stew mac fret guard to protect the fingerboard. You get the hang of it quickly. Old school method.
     
  10. rrobbone

    rrobbone Well-Known Member

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  11. Fat Jack

    Fat Jack Well-Known Member

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  12. dearlpitts

    dearlpitts Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    I got a whole fret fileing kit from wish, cheap stuff but looks like it could work. But i have been just to scared i will miss it all up So not even tried yet. Keep watching these type threads snd youtube to learn.
     
  13. tobijohn

    tobijohn The Great Enabler Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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    That's why I was leaning toward the Stew-Mac files as from the video, I got the impression that it would be pretty difficult to do that. I've got way too many projects and by nature, not enough patience dealing with inanimate objects to have to do the same thing over again. Plus there's the added cost of replacing the windows I throw these things through out of frustration...:)
     
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  14. jamdogg

    jamdogg Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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  15. Partscaster

    Partscaster Well-Known Member

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    I like the bent handled, round channeled diamond file. Medium and large.
    Dont like the idea of a v-shaped channel.
    Only have done one neck, and it came out great, carefully leaving thin wisp of uniform marker line across center of frets.
    I went slow and kept my knuckle head focused.
     
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  16. tobijohn

    tobijohn The Great Enabler Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Do you recall where you got them from?
     
  17. Partscaster

    Partscaster Well-Known Member

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    Last edited: Mar 16, 2019
  18. Partscaster

    Partscaster Well-Known Member

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  19. Partscaster

    Partscaster Well-Known Member

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    ^


    I see them on amazon
    I think I bought one for medium fret wire, and then bought a large one, and used the large.
     
  20. stormin1155

    stormin1155 Well-Known Member

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