Fret bubbling

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Fret bubbling

Postby (thevince) » Thu Apr 29, 2021 3:35 am

My 2004 330 has bubbling near the frets. Is this any long term concern? It does not seem to impact playability.

There is a 4003S for sale locally I am considering that has a similar issue. If it's no major concern, I may get it!

Thank you.
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Re: Fret bubbling

Postby (scott_s) » Sat May 01, 2021 12:54 am

For what it's worth, I also have a 2004 330, and it has some finish lifting at the frets, too. My understanding is that this is normal -- metal, wood, and finish all expand and contract at different rates, so they tend to pull apart over time. You can see a bit of it here and there in the Bacon and Day book, as well as the little poster that comes with Rickenbacker instruments!

Durability-wise, I figure we're no worse off than guitars with rosewood boards that are unfinished in the first place. But aesthetically, it *would* be nicer if they didn't do that at all. ;)
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Re: Fret bubbling

Postby (jdogric12) » Mon May 03, 2021 8:40 am

Yep, looks normal.
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Re: Fret bubbling

Postby (farace) » Mon May 03, 2021 12:09 pm

My 2015 4003FG had the finish lifting from the frets, much worse than that, and with the intercession of the local dealer where I bought it, it went back to Ric for refinishing, so I guess they agreed that it wasn’t right. It still has some, if you look, but nowhere near what it had been.

(N.B.: Along with the refinish came new stickers (which were removed promptly upon its return) and new strings.)
--Bob

2015 4003 FG
1992 4003FL FG
1983 4003 WAL

Gone (stolen) but not forgotten, 1978 4001 WHT
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Re: Fret bubbling

Postby (thevince) » Fri May 07, 2021 3:39 am

Thank you for confirming! I'm not worried anymore about this.
And I did end up getting a 4003S this week, which fortunately did not have this issue at all. :D
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