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Fretting & Bone Nut Making – Combined


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Enroll now.  Early registration discounts are subject to expiration.


New frets are taller than the old frets and generally it’s considered a dramatic tonal compromise to shim up an old nut to achieve the correct string height. A hand made bone nut is the best option and solution to follow a re-fret.

Brand new frets with a properly fitted bone nut will upgrade the playability, tone, and clarity of even the most humble instrument. The results are truly stunning!

Learn how to execute a professional quality re-fret and hand carve and properly fit a custom bone nut for any fretted instrument. Then do the job on your own instrument in this course.

This skill is a must for the guitar builder or guitar repair technician.

This workshop is also ideal for the musician or roadie, or anyone interested in working on stringed instruments.

We’ve bundled our Fretting  Course and our Bone Nut Making Course to help you learn and get the job done right —with significant savings.  These courses are also a part of our Guitar Technician Program!


  • Materials

    Students are encouraged to bring their own instrument to work on for their course project in this class.

  • Classroom

    Class size is limited to 8 students.

    Course is taught in a professional guitar service shop equipped with 8 individual workbenches stocked with specialized tools necessary for the course work.

  • Fee

    Course fee includes instruction, reference materials, use of a workbench and all shop supplies necessary.

    Please note that all registrations are final and non-refundable.

    In the event that a student cannot attend a class, written notice must be given in advance to receive a credit to be used on another tuition.

    Valid credit may be transferred to another course date, or to another student, if so desired.

  • Workshop Safety

    While we make every effort to keep the CSGM workshop clean it can be dusty and at times noisy. We recommend hearing, respiratory, and eye protection be used when working in the shop. We have this safety equipment available for use or purchase when in class and it is the students responsibility to exercise diligent use of these safety measures.

  • Instructors

    Ian Schneller read bio

  • Location

    1240 N. Homan Ave. in Chicago, Illinois 60651   Map

  • Registration

    Register online, in person, or by phone: 773.489.483 . Cash, credit card or a personal check are accepted. Registrations are final and non-refundable. Payment credit is transferable.


This hands-on training course presents comprehensive lectures and demonstrations of the techniques required to execute a professional quality re-fret and hand carve a custom bone nut for any fretted instrument. The instructor will address all types of fret jobs, including bound and unbound boards, finished vs unfinished, different wood types, fret sizes, playing styles and the pros and cons of various tools.

Students will observe each step of a re-fret and bone nut making and installation, then execute the process themselves on their own instrument with guidance from the instructor. If the student is unable to bring their own instrument to re-fret please contact us in advance to arrange for the school to provide one for use during this course.

Note: Rosewood or ebony fret-boards are recommended for a first re-fret. Finished boards (like maple) are possible, but less suitable for a first refret within the context of the class.


Fretting Topics include:

  • Instrument assessment
  • Nut and fret removal
  • Fretboard and slot preparation
  • Binding considerations
  • Fret selection
  • Fret cleaning
  • Fret rolling
  • Fret measuring and cutting
  • Fret installing and gluing
  • Fretboard clean-up
  • Fret leveling
  • Fret beveling
  • Fret crowning and polishing

Bone Nut Making Topics Include:

  • The correct use of specialty files.
  • How to properly fit any style of nut.
  • Methods for polishing bone to a marble-like finish.
  • The correct method for laying out string spacing for any neck.
  • Material selection – distinguishing between real bone and imitation.
  • Era-correct shaping styles for matching the aesthetic of vintage replacements.
  • Tooling for the home workshop.