View Full Version : Fretboard binding question

01-19-2014, 07:29 AM
I am thinking of binding a fret board for my current project. I was wondering if I should subtract the thickness of the binding for both sides and reduce the taper of the fret board by that amount? or are bound fret boards a bit wider? I am sure I can do it both ways, but wanted to know which way is most common. Sorry it this is a silly question, but figured I would ask before I ruin a fret board.

Thanks in advance,


01-19-2014, 09:59 AM
Binding doesn't change the taper of the fretboard. It doesn't have to change the width either, if you are happy with he original dimensions. You had it right the first time---subtract the binding width from the fretboard, then bring it back with the binding. You'll have to nip (or otherwise shorten) the fret tangs, too. Be careful not to get the fret slots filled with glue during the binding. Its a bear to get out once it dries.

01-19-2014, 05:21 PM
Thank your for taking the time to answer my question. I know the answer may have been obvious to some. But as a hobby builder, the opportunity to talk with professionals is worth its weight in gold.

Thank you, Thank you,


01-20-2014, 02:46 AM
I personally have a dislike for bound boards, so offer up the option to you of undercutting the tang end and filling the voids created by the fret slots. A clean fret board with no obvious binding and no fret ends or slots visible is my preference.


Beau Hannam Ukuleles
01-20-2014, 03:56 AM
If you have a full width FB and you want to lessen its width to add binding (to make it full width), there is no need to take from both sides-

You can subtract both binding widths from only ONE side.- you'll need a new center line of course.

01-20-2014, 10:13 AM
You can subtract both binding widths from only ONE side.- you'll need a new center line of course.

Unless, of course, it's a radiussed fretboard! ;) ;)

01-20-2014, 10:37 AM
I have a router jig with toggle clamps at both ends, for final cutting of the fretboard sides, both for bound, and unbound fretboards. Pete taught me the basic technique, and I believe you can find it on one of his videos. I mark the centerline of the fretboard blank at the ends, before sanding the compound radius, then line these marks up on my radius fretboard jig, trimming excess on the bandsaw, and clean it up to final dimension on a pattern router. The centerline marks line up with my compound radius jig, and the fretboard jig. The fretboard jig is made to work with a neck taper profile jig, so everything just lines up nicely, no risk of having an awkward taper to the fretboard binding if something does not line up.

01-20-2014, 04:52 PM
Thanks for the info Chris. Ill check Pete's videos for it.