Here is a way to accurately, precisely cut fretboards and fingerboards for scales of any length you choose!

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A durable aluminum notched-edge Fret Template with precision less than four cents (four hundredths of a semitone) at any scale length, at modest cost.

Used the template yesterday and it's a treat. I figure that with layout and slotting time, it saves me about an hour's time per board. – Larry Davis, Davis Guitar Works

Design Options

  • Choose one or two scales.
  • Specify scale in either metric or English system
  • Choose scales originating either at a Zero Fret or a Nut (the difference seems small, but we're all about accuracy).
  • Specify any number of frets (24" nut-fret distance MAX)
  • Diatonic or Chromatic fret pattern
    • For Diatonic Patterns, see Blank-off Clips, which are a great aid in using a chromatic pattern to get extra frets
  • Designed for use with a variety of slotting systems, or on the table saw:

Fret Template Kit:

  1. Precision custom-cut 1-1/2"x1/8" aluminum bar slotted on one or both edges, with chromatic scale lengths of your choice, up to 32" scale length (Also available in 2" width bar)
  2. #4-1/2" screws and counter-sunk holes for mounting (or use double-sided tape)
  3. Printed Certificate of Accuracy, detailing error (slot placement deviation in .0001"/ .01 mm, and pitch error in cents)

Options

  • Blank-off clips for use with Diatonic Scales. These ride in relieved pockets (so their surfaces are flush with the sides and edge of the template). For makers of diatonic instruments (especially mountain dulcimers), these reside at all the "extra fret" positions, to keep the guess-work out of using adding extra frets to diatonic scale pattern.
  • Locator Pin.
    • .0625"dia x 3/4"L ground precision steel pin for use in designing a table saw setup
    • Luthiers Merchantile Fretting Jig Pin, designed for Bear Meadow Templates (required for the LMI Manual Slotting System)
A Tool for Cutting Frets
Any Scale Length
Superior Accuracy • Documented Precision