SS vs Nickel/silver frets on ESP

Discussion in 'Extended Range Guitars' started by Two Panthers, Apr 28, 2020.

  1. Two Panthers

    Two Panthers B8 Bomber

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    If the guitar has only nickel silver XJ frets and i cant get SS, do you think using EBMM nickel sets, like the one mentioned, skinny top heavy bottom, will be soft enough not to damage the frets?

    I know SS is mostly to make playing cleaner and to have no wear, and i wish i had the options, but how can i minimized wear on a 4K signature ESP CS?

    Which strings would be softest against either SS or nickel?

    Thank you for help
     
  2. Empryrean

    Empryrean Plucks strings

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    if fretwear is a major issue maybe give flatwounds a try?
     
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  3. trem licking

    trem licking SS.org Regular

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    Yes, nickel wound strings will wear less, on the wound strings. All plain strings are steel. Fret wear isn't an issue unless you play the hell out of the guitar and have a heavy fretting hand
     
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  4. Estilo

    Estilo SS.org Regular

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    It can actually be an issue if you live where there are no qualified luthiers. Where I live there is a shop which does amazing simple setups, but they will not accept guitars which have been refretted by local luthiers.
     
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  5. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Cupronickel frets (i.e Nickel Silver) will wear under the 3rd string (or whatever the thickest plain steel string is) faster than under any of the wound strings regardless of whether you use pure nickel wound, nickel steel wound, or stainless wound strings. It's not as though having one part of the fret worn down to nothing is any better if the other half is less worn, right?

    So it makes zero difference. None. Zilch.

    Just use whatever strings you like the best. If your frets wear out. you will have to replace them. If there are no local trusted luthiers, then you will have to pack your guitar and ship it somewhere or else replace the neck or guitar with a new one when the time comes. And when you do replace them, maybe you can consider SS frets, despite what some nay-sayers say. I've had some SS fretted guitars since the late 1990's and played them like nuts, and the frets show zero signs of wear. My Ibanezes, which I bought around the same time, on the other hand, have almost all had to have been refretted at some point.
     
  6. Two Panthers

    Two Panthers B8 Bomber

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    You are absolutely right, spot on my friend
     
  7. Adieu

    Adieu SS.org Regular

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    It'll still take you years... if you EVER manage to wear em out
     
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  8. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Yes, but it depends on how much you play. 5 years of heavy playing on standard fret material equates to something like 45 years on SS, depending wildly on the quality of the metal, too.
     
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  9. Two Panthers

    Two Panthers B8 Bomber

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    You know, the ONLY critique I have is why they went with nickel after the 2016 FLUENCE upgrade from the dual 808s...

    I mean its a custom shop ESP, they should’ve, the only reason they gave me when I called about ordering my B8 is why, and they said Stefan didnt request it so they didnt do it....i mean is it that much more really ESP? They definitely make you paid a pretty penny for CS japan

    It just confuses me, its a 2018, didnt boutique guitras standardize the SS for few years?

    Weird.....

    Anyway, youre right, I’m not a “white knuckle” presser, low low shred action so I barely touch the frets honesty....

    Just my one critique for an other wise perfect guitars, in fact i gave it a 9.9 because of that lack of SS

    BTW, i know bostjan you are right a bout wear in terms of pressure applied, but what strings besides the EBMM set 9-80 is a “softer” set to try with similar gauge
     
  10. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Going with a wound third reduces wear, but you might hate the tone. Generally, a lighter third string also eases wear, but, overall, variations in string manufacturing probably have more effect on fret life than dropping a thousandth of an inch.

    Not all frets are the same, either. The cheapo frets on my Deans seemed to hold up better than the frets on my nicer Ibanezes. Maybe the cheaper material is a little harder.
     
  11. Adieu

    Adieu SS.org Regular

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    Here's a thought: they didn't want em

    SS is popular with small hopeful builders BECAUSE no one knows or trusts them.

    ESP, otoh, is pretty much the biggest most trusted name out there, and you know their frets don't rot to sh!t or get gouges just from looking at them too hard like cheapo fretwire from dodgy suppliers.
     
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  12. Two Panthers

    Two Panthers B8 Bomber

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    Honestly, as crudely as you put it, that is a GREAT f’n point.....actually, probably the most damn on point thing i read about it.....thank you for the bluntness

    I also, havent seen flatwound in a nice set....I have bought a few elixir, and I like them. But i dont think they’d work on an 8 string
     
  13. redkombat

    redkombat Tree Whore

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    I am super heavy handed and have only worn out the frets on my first guitar. they were a crappy alloy way worse than any modern guitar. the average nickel alloy fret isn't going to wear out within 10 years regardless. I actually prefer non ss frets as they wear out strings slower. to each their own but having to pay for a new fretjob on a $4k guitar after having it 10+ years isn't bad just an investment.
     
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  14. Spicypickles

    Spicypickles Sweeps & Mops

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    I do a shitload of bends and what not, and while I don’t need to refret my guitars, I’ve definitely worn VERY noticeable flat spots into certain areas requiring a level, and I’ve achieved that in only a few (3 or so) years. I’ve done that on 2 ltds.
     
  15. Andromalia

    Andromalia Pardon my french

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    If you're considering this from a financial POV, it doesn't matter: if your frets don't wear... your strings will instead, so you'll endup having to change them more often. Buy a guitar you like.
     
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  16. Jonathan20022

    Jonathan20022 Engineer

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    It's crazy how people fawn over Stainless Steel and are willing to spend hundreds more, or even thousands to get a guitar with them instead of playing a guitar with nickel frets and pay a good luthier $60 every half decade. That is if they even wear the frets down at all, this is such a non-issue in the guitar world. Stainless is great, but guess what Charvel Model 6 guitars don't come with them because they're old as shit, I'm not going to pass on the guitar because of fret material :lol:

    Btw OP, string material matters but nickel on nickel is going to have pretty low impact, I wouldn't worry unless you're using stainless steel strings.
     
  17. Two Panthers

    Two Panthers B8 Bomber

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    You guys are all right, and Adieu really put it simply lol
     

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