Fret Saw MOD! Make Your Own Depth Guide With These Simple Steps

Bob G. of New Baltimore, MI bought a C. B. Gitty fret saw along with a fretting miter box kit, and came up with a simple way to add a depth guide. 

He cut a piece of acrylic and bolted it to the saw to consistently regulate the depth of cut.

This mod prevents the saw from digging too deep in the fretboard, leaving just enough of a groove to fit the fret slots.

Here’s how Bob did it:

Parts Needed

  1. C. B. Gitty Fret Saw 
  2. C. B. Gitty Mitre Box Kit (3 options from which to choose)
    1. Deluxe Fretting Miter Box Kit
    2. OrCigar Box Guitar Fretting Miter Box Kit
    3. OrFretting Miter Box Kit for Guitar Necks & Fretboards up to 2.5-inch wide
  3. A strip of acrylic, plastic or thin plywood, 1/4-inch thick x 8-inch long x 1 1/16-inch high
  4. short bolt with wing nut & washer

Bob's Instructions

"I cut a piece of acrylic and bolted it to the saw to consistently regulate the depth of cut. Works fine! 

The acrylic depth stop is 1/4-inch thick plastic, so it rides against the top edge of the Gitty Miter box. 

I tried to drill another hole in the saw blade for stability, but the blade is tempered so can't drill through it.

The 1/4-inch plastic hits against the metal reinforcement crimped on the top of the saw. 

As long as I keep the wing nut tight, it keeps the plastic against the blade.

The plastic is 1 1/16-inch wide, so it is about the right depth for frets on 3/4-inch stock.  

If I want to cut frets on a 1/4-inch piece, I just shim under the piece with a 1/2 X 1 1/2-inch strip (of wood) from Lowes."

Fine Tuning

You can "fine-tune" the depth with shims from business cards or 1/16-inch hobby plywood from Hobby Lobby or Menards. 

You can also cut different strips of depth guides for various thicknesses of necks.

Graichen says, "I have built 11 CBGs in the past 3 months. I can't stop."  

He currently sells his cigar box guitars (and even some cigar box pinhole cameras!) on eBay.

3rd Mar 2016 Shane Speal

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