• Guys, we've spent considerable money converting the Les Paul Forum to this new XenForo platform, and we have ongoing monthly operating expenses. THE "DONATIONS" TAB IS NOW WORKING, AND WE WOULD APPRECIATE ANY DONATIONS YOU CAN MAKE TO KEEP THE LES PAUL FORUM GOING! Thank you!

Stainless frets after 6000 hours of playing time


Jun 10, 2015
I thought you guys might like to hear about the fret wear on my Strat that has Jescar stainless frets. I have about 6000 hours of playing time on these frets. The frets are the largest that Jescar makes (model 58118-S), which are .058" tall and .118" wide. I had these frets installed in January of 2016. I play from 3-4 hours every day and only miss playing my guitar 2 or 3 days a year. I have other guitars but this Strat gets played 90% of the time. A conservative estimate is I'm putting over 1000 hours per year of playing time on this Strat, so about 6000 total hours of playing time on the frets over the last 6 years. I also wipe mineral oil on the strings and the back of the neck before I play to reduce hand friction. I imagine the mineral oil may also reduce wear on the frets to a slight degree. I use D'Addario Nickel Wound 10-46 strings. I am an aggressive player and tend to wear out standard frets in about a year or about 1000 hours. I hope these details help in understanding the variables.

I just had the second fret level done due to fret wear. The first fret level was done about 3 years ago. So I am needing a fret level about every 3000 hours. The frets started out new at .058" tall and after the second level the frets are now .049" tall. I start having occasional issues bending strings when the frets get below .050, so it won't be long before I'll get it refretted. Based on my experience with standard frets versus stainless frets, I would say you'll get about 6 times the life out of a set of stainless frets over standard material frets. I hope this information helps people when it comes time to get their guitar refretted.

If you want to hear the guitar and my playing style, here's a Hey Joe cover:

Here is the guitar:



Active member
Feb 16, 2012
Wow that's a different guitar. Is it a Clapton neck on an American Standard body?

Glad your frets are holding up. I have a really light touch and have had one guitar refretted in my 30+ years of playing. I own one guitar with stainless frets, a Music Man Cutlas, and it plays really smooth. I'm more impressed that after 6000 hours of aggressive playing the fretboard and body of that guitar look brand new. My EC neck (I think I bought mine in 96) is showing some wear on the back bigtime.

thin sissy

Well-known member
Jan 2, 2006
After I had my first vintage LP refretted with stainless, there was no going back to regular frets. Glad to hear yours are worth it too!