Yamaha FG Refret
Updated: Oct 26, 2019
Yamaha are a long established Japanese manufacturer of all sorts of musical equipment,perhaps best known in Ireland for their guitars and pianos.They offer consistently good value and you cannot really go wrong with their equipment at any price point from beginner to professional.
Like BOSS they have long outsourced their entry and mid level production and the 90's Dreadnought we are looking at here was made in Taiwan as part of their long running and hugely successful FG series. In this case its a model FG411S (for solid top) VS for vintage sunburst,a little unusual as up until quite recently the majority of Yamaha FG's were produced in a natural finish.
Its had a hard life with a number of bashes and bruises and suffers from"Yamaha Blush" on the back,a finish issue of the 80's/90's which affected some of their guitars....possibly some off-gassing process in the poly finish causing the milky appearance that affected a lot of Yamaha's at the time,both top and bottom of the range.
Despite all this the quality of materials and construction means it still plays and sounds very nice for a mid-range solid top/laminate sides and back guitar.
The rosewood fingerboard is of surprisingly good quality,dark/red with tight grain and small pores,most likely Indian rather than the less specific species used today.
Thus it was easy to defret with no chip out and with a cleaning and very light rub down the board was ready to refret.A surprise was to see the fret tangs had been neatly nipped to allow a layer of either very thin binding or very thick finish hide the fret ends so I decide to do the same for the new frets precutting them close the lenght and then nipping the tang enough to fit into the board without protruding.
After the frets were ready the slot cleaning,fret installation and final fetting was straightforward and it's ready for the next 20 odd years...!