Fender Stratocaster Guitar Forum



Warmoth.com Amplified Parts lacemusic.com seymourduncan.com


Go Back   Fender Stratocaster Guitar Forum > Main Stratocaster Guitar Discussion Forum > Stratocaster Discussion Forum
Forgot Username/Password? Join Us!

Notices

Stratocaster Discussion Forum The Strat-talk.com Fender Stratocaster Discussion Forum

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old July 5th, 2009, 10:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
The One
 
Goodkat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
Age: 32
Posts: 20,138
String buzz...

This is just me being curious, but I really want to ask everyone how do they put up with string buzz on their guitars.

I played the MIM Strat until I sold it in 2007. and since then I've been playing Yamaha Pacifica 120S fitted with Seymour Duncan SH-2 (Jazz) and SH-4 (Jeff Beck) pickups, which is a setup I'm using till I get a new Strat (hopefully KWS model; hopefully soon). Overall, it's a decent guitar, but what I really want is a Stratocaster.

I use 11 gauge strings (D'Addario 11-49) with high action: from 2mm on high E string at the 12th fret up to 2,9mm on low E string, and yes, you could say the action is pretty high, but this is what I really like. Neck relief is properly set. Frets are leveled fine. All this is checked by myself and a good friend of mine who is a guitar tech.

So, what's the trouble? When I start to play hard (I play the blues and I really like each note to stand out which sometimes means plucking really hard) I hear a buzz on 2nd and 3rd string.

Some people have no problem with this (either because they caress the strings really gently or because they simply don't care) but I've always felt it kills the tone (if only just a bit).

How about other guitars I've tried? Recently I tried MIA Deluxe Stratocaster and one of those PRS SE guitars (not sure what model it was exactly) and they had almost no buzz with relatively similar action. Other then that, pretty much all the other guitars I've tried (mostly in 700-1500 Eur. price range) had the same problem as my guitars.

So, how about you guys. What do you think about all this?

Goodkat is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 10:18 AM   #2 (permalink)
Strat-Talker
 
StratSvante's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Sweden
Age: 23
Posts: 147
It could be that some of the higher frets are taller and thats where the buzz comes from.. You also say that the neck relief is properly set, is it flat or does it have a little relief?

myself, I hate buzz so I do everything i can to avoide it..
__________________
3 pickups are better than 2 right?
StratSvante is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 10:34 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
thaus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: London Canada
Posts: 9,949
If you have had it checked out by a tech, you should be able to play buzz free for the most part. The bass strings oscillate a whole lot more than the others and when one really digs in, you may get buzz unless your action is super high. I would get the frets checked thoroughly above the 12th fret and also dial in more relief. You should be measuring the relief at the 17th fret...........a tiny amount makes a HUGE difference.......sometimes, taking some relief away will actually help matters if the problem lies above the 12th fret! Experiment a bit.........
thaus is offline   Reply With Quote

Sponsored Links   #
Sponsored posting
 

Old July 5th, 2009, 10:54 AM   #4 (permalink)
The One
 
Goodkat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
Age: 32
Posts: 20,138
@StratSvante:

Neck has a slight relief (a slight bow if you will) so I'd say (again) it's set properly. You're right about tall frets, but that was taken care of long time ago. Too much neck relief and some tall frets caused problems from 12th to 22nd fret, but, as I said, it's been taken care of quite some time ago.

@thaus:

I have very little trouble with bass strings (knock on wood!). The 2nd and 3rd string buzz from 5th to about 11th fret.

BTW, I'm not sure I understood what you meant about checking the relief at 17th fret? The numbers I mentioned in my first post were the measurements of the string height above 12th fret.

And, yeah, I really like to dig in. But ... it's called dynamics in my book: when you play something that has a feel to it, you pluck the strings moderately; when you play a harder, faster tune with a lot of energy - you dig in.

EDIT:

Actually, I experimented A LOT with the setup of my guitar, so ... "a bit" is probably not something that would help me ... one bit.

And ... using the pick from my avatar probably doesn't help either.
Goodkat is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 11:09 AM   #5 (permalink)
LeftyStrategist
 
AllroyPA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Philadelphia
Age: 45
Posts: 7,608
That pick hurts my fingers just looking at it ~!
Pick of choice Med (approx .75)

Last edited by AllroyPA; July 5th, 2009 at 11:53 AM.
AllroyPA is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 11:36 AM   #6 (permalink)
The One
 
Goodkat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
Age: 32
Posts: 20,138


This is probably the coolest reply I've seen in a long time. You really cheered me up.

Yeah, the pick is a bit hard, but the tone is really, really good. It has just the kind of attack I want.
Goodkat is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 11:37 AM   #7 (permalink)
Senior Stratmaster
 
Jefro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Canada.
Posts: 1,165
One thing I always ask is it buzzing throu the amplifier or is it simply acoustically ?

Lots of people complain about acoustic buzz/rattle which to me doesn't matter since it wont ring throu on the amplifier.
Jefro is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 11:45 AM   #8 (permalink)
The One
 
Goodkat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
Age: 32
Posts: 20,138
Yes, that's the usual question and I probably should have written this in the first post: it's only heard when guitar is not played through the amp. I would guess that if you hear the buzz through the amplifier, the action is really, really, really, low.
Goodkat is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 12:57 PM   #9 (permalink)
Strat-Talk Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Minneapolis, MN USA
Age: 35
Posts: 65
A couple of thoughts:
-If uneven frets were taken care of "some time ago" it may be time to have them dressed. Frets can rise seemingly at their own will, and fret wear in the lower frets can exacerbate problems further up the neck.

-It may just be a matter of your playing style and the fretboard radii of the guitars you've tried. The Am Deluxe and the PRS should have pretty flat fretboards and relatively beefy frets. I'm not sure about the Pacifica, but different fretboard radii and frets will react differently to the same pick attack.
__________________
[I]There's only two things in life that make it worth livin'
That's guitars that tune good and firm feelin' women...[/I]
fretbuzzard is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 01:04 PM   #10 (permalink)
LeftyStrategist
 
AllroyPA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Philadelphia
Age: 45
Posts: 7,608
Another querstion would be do you tune to standard, or are you tuned down any steps ?
AllroyPA is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 01:35 PM   #11 (permalink)
Strat-O-Master
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Minneapolis
Age: 51
Posts: 951
The neck on my MIJ Strat became too straight. When I bought the guitar the bridge was screwed down to the deck and no buzz. When I had the bridge set to float, I suddenly had terrible fret buzz (acoustically, not through the amp). The luthier ended up steaming the neck to get some relief to it. When I got it back it was mostly buzz free, except I can still get some buzz on the low E string if I'm a little sloppy fretting on barre chords at the fifth and seventh frets. It's forced me to be more precise.
Lobotomy Boy is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 07:04 PM   #12 (permalink)
The One
 
Goodkat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
Age: 32
Posts: 20,138
Fretbuzzard, Pacifica has a 13.5" radius neck and frets are medium jumbo. Frets were checked couple of weeks ago and they were fine.

The neck on American Deluxe isn't particularly beefy IMO but the neck on PRS SE is.

@AllroyPA:

It's a standard tuning, not even half step down.
Goodkat is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 10:10 PM   #13 (permalink)
Strat-Talker
 
firesgt911's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Cali
Posts: 483
Could be the .11's. maybe? The heavier gauge may be yank'n on that neck causing the buzz.

Before I raise the action, I always adjust the neck and check the nut. Larger gauge strings don't always sit well in the nut.

When I had some buzz on my semi-hollow body, I could hear it through the amp, so I raised the action a hair higher than I really like, buzz went away. On my strat, I have a little buzz unplugged, but not at all through an amp, so it is fine by me.
__________________
Damn you Mike Matthews!!! And your glorious Big Muff!
firesgt911 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 5th, 2009, 11:45 PM   #14 (permalink)
Strat-Talk Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Minneapolis, MN USA
Age: 35
Posts: 65
Well...
If the frets have been leveled and the setup is good--the relief is appropriate, the nut is well-cut, no "ski ramp" from an overly-bowed neck, etc.,
If the buzz is definitely coming from the frets and not from a loose screw anywhere,
If the buzz gets worse the more you dig in, and you like to dig in...

Then you will have to either raise the action more or live with buzzing. As you mentioned in your first post, higher action can mean better tone, so this isn't necessarily a bad thing
__________________
[I]There's only two things in life that make it worth livin'
That's guitars that tune good and firm feelin' women...[/I]
fretbuzzard is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 6th, 2009, 12:59 AM   #15 (permalink)
The One
 
Goodkat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
Age: 32
Posts: 20,138
@firesgt911:

No, the 11s are certainly not the part of the problem (as they never could be) - they are the part of the solution.

@fretbuzzard:

Are you trying to convince me to live with some fret buzz?
Goodkat is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 6th, 2009, 02:47 AM   #16 (permalink)
Strat-Talker
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: swnw
Posts: 276
If you do bendy blues with the 2nd and 3rd strings, you could have dug yourself a low flat spot on the frets in the middle of the neck, and then the end of the fretboard where it mounts to the body is too high compared to the dip and buzzes, especially if you are setting string height from the low place in the middle. Even if the neck ends up perfectly flat, you might benefit from having some 'fall away' sanded into the frets 16-21 (like some acoustics do) so the dusty end has more string height so they don't fret out when you dig in, without making all the action higher.

I'm still trying to figure out a clever way to find out which frets cause the buzz when it's all over the string. I think I had a tapping method for high frets to make the high fret sing it's note, but then I either forgot it or it didn't work too good. Like chalk on the frets and the buzzing rubs it off or something...
busted-e-again is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 6th, 2009, 03:38 AM   #17 (permalink)
The One
 
Goodkat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
Age: 32
Posts: 20,138
That's a good point, but it's not the case with my guitar. Yes, I do bendy blues, but I've not dug a "hole" ... yet.
Goodkat is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 6th, 2009, 04:58 AM   #18 (permalink)
LeftyStrategist
 
AllroyPA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Philadelphia
Age: 45
Posts: 7,608
Quote:
Originally Posted by busted-e-again View Post
Like chalk on the frets and the buzzing rubs it off or something...
Yea, change the strings and snap a blue line down the biatches ! LOL
Maybe your nut needs to be shimmed a touch taller
AllroyPA is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 6th, 2009, 05:05 AM   #19 (permalink)
The One
 
Goodkat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
Age: 32
Posts: 20,138
Why the nut guys, I don't hear a string buzz on open strings?

I'm having some trouble with 3rd and 2nd string (second string really buzzes just a little) when fretting notes from around 5th to ... say ... 14th fret.
Goodkat is offline   Reply With Quote

Old July 6th, 2009, 05:05 AM   #20 (permalink)
LeftyStrategist
 
AllroyPA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Philadelphia
Age: 45
Posts: 7,608
Try this, take a screwdriver and wrap your polish rag around it from the base of the neck slide it up your fretboard under your strings up to the first fret raising your strings up off your nut. Then take a low tack piece of thin tape and place it over your nut, this will raise the action at the nut just a touch, play it and see if it helps the buzz. If it does then shim under the nut would be your answer. This is a temporary thing, I am not recommending you play with tape on your nuts ... LOL
AllroyPA is offline   Reply With Quote

Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
String Buzz CHEEZFREEK57 Tech-Talk 3 June 20th, 2009 12:24 PM
The Famous Buzz A Future Legend Stratocaster Discussion Forum 15 December 31st, 2008 09:28 PM
Two String Guides, G string dropping out of tune Bloodtoes Stratocaster Discussion Forum 0 November 4th, 2008 04:51 PM
Hum and Buzz foggycoast Stratocaster Discussion Forum 41 August 7th, 2008 07:12 AM
Where's The Buzz? Doug Ferguson Amp Input - Normal or Bright 4 August 4th, 2008 12:07 PM

Untitled Document

Untitled Document

» Recent Strat-Talk Discussion
Sale or Trade 1992 MIK Squier Strat
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.2



 


Design by: vBulletin Skins Zone
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.3
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 RC 2


The words Fender®, Telecaster®, Stratocaster® and the associated headstock designs are registered trademarks of the Fender Musical Instruments Corporation.
Strat-Talk.com is an independent, member supported forum and is not affiliated with Fender Musical Instruments Corporation.
© 2007 All rights reserved.

Strat-Talk.com is not responsible for the content posted by private individuals on this website. The views expressed herein are solely the opinions of the individuals that produced them and not necessarily the views of the owner of this website.