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string buzz and low action.

Discussion in 'Tech-Talk' started by cappei, Jan 3, 2018.

  1. cappei

    cappei Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    29
    602
    Jun 24, 2017
    Quillota, Valparaíso, Chile
    So i've been messing roun' with the truss rod on my guitar, I like reaaaally reeeeeeeeeaaaally low action.... so I put it down. But i just can't seem to find the right bow for the neck to avoid buzzing. Mainly from the 3 to - 12 fret

    Is to much relief? to lil'? what da' hell. I keep trying to doin' it and is frustrating and scary as ****.



    help
     

  2. Miotch

    Miotch Senior Stratmaster

    Age:
    57
    Jun 28, 2011
    ok
    Hard to tell from the photos, not seeing it in person. Every guitar is a bit different, but in general, mine have very slight relief that is just discernable looking down the neck. Pics seem to show a bit more relief than I like, but it is just impossible to tell.

    Have you had the frets leveled and dressed? If not, you should. If you have and the job was well done, you are going to have to readjust truss and bridge until it is good enough. I've played people's guitars that have the action so low there is simply no way to get around some buzzing. And then I've also played a friend's '74 LP that seems impossible to make buzz even if action is a hair breadth off the frets (that one is an oddity, though, and created an early impression on me that I've never been able to duplicate with any instrument I've ever owned).
     

  3. heltershelton

    heltershelton ASKED TO LEAVE THE STAGE Strat-Talk Supporter

    Jun 5, 2013
    Not Florida
    let me tell you a secret or two.
    dimebag had high as hell action. you ask how i know? ive played his shi&.
    high action doesnt make you slow. malmsteen has high as hell action.
    higher action makes your guitar better. trust me.
     

  4. cappei

    cappei Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    29
    602
    Jun 24, 2017
    Quillota, Valparaíso, Chile

    really? ive been tryin' to lear a malmsteen song. A long shot since Im nowehere that fast, but still ... wanted to expand my limits, took me a whole day to "lear" 20 secs of far beyond the sun, and im practicing on speed now.

    At first high action was killing me, put it lower and helped. So is that a cheap solution? shoul I lear to play fast with high action?
    Is there a problem with my technique?
     

  5. heltershelton

    heltershelton ASKED TO LEAVE THE STAGE Strat-Talk Supporter

    Jun 5, 2013
    Not Florida
    low action will give you ***** tones. higher action will give you growling awesome tones.
    practice with higher action, alot, and youll get good playing higher action. after awhile its a piece of cake. please trust me on this.
     

  6. heltershelton

    heltershelton ASKED TO LEAVE THE STAGE Strat-Talk Supporter

    Jun 5, 2013
    Not Florida
    my guitars are set with the action so high most people dont want to play them .....ive jammed with some people from this forum.....just ask @amstratnut .
     
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  7. AndSomeone

    AndSomeone Strat-Talker

    Age:
    38
    150
    Jan 2, 2018
    Santa Monica
    Hard to tell exactly by pics, but to me it also looks like a little to much relief. There’s a quick rule of thumb you can test “standard” if neck is ok and from there you can adjust.

    1
    Put a capo on your guitar’s neck at the first fret.

    2
    Holding the guitar in playing position on your lap, with the body perfectly perpendicular to the floor, use a finger on your right hand (for right-handers) to fret the low-E string up the neck at the fret where the neck joins the body.

    3
    Slip a 0.010-inch feeler gauge into the gap between the bottom of the low-E string and the top of the 8th fret (or whichever fret is half way between the capo and where you’re fretting the string).

    Most techniques recommend an average gap of around 0.010 inch, although some playing styles might like a little less, some just a little more. The appropriate gauge should slide in easily between string and fret but without any further gap between them. (If you don’t have any feeler gauges, the average business card usually works for a rough estimate.)

    4
    Repeat Steps 2 and 3 with the high-E string.

    5
    If you have considerably less or more gap than desired, adjust your truss rod.

    It’s also depending on your guitar of course I have a Strat that I can get crazy low action on but personally I don’t like it to low, I used a long time ago.

    Also you might wanna check if it still buzzes through an amp cause sometimes it’ll buzz unplugged but it won’t translate to the amplified signal (the buzz itself).
     
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  8. AndSomeone

    AndSomeone Strat-Talker

    Age:
    38
    150
    Jan 2, 2018
    Santa Monica
    J.mascis has crazy high action he says that people think his guitars are set up for slide.
     
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  9. stratomatt

    stratomatt Strat-Talker

    256
    Sep 23, 2010
    San Diego
    Regarding string buzz... You may want to see if your frets are level. You can't tell by looking. You would need a "fret rocker" tool. Check the StewMac site if you're not familiar with it. Then make your own out of some cheap aluminum bar available at most hardware stores. You need 3 different sizes. Basically you are putting the flat edge of a piece of metal on 3 frets at a time. If it doesn't rock, those 3 frets are level (the outside 2 anyway). If it does rock, they are not all level. The trick to using this tool is getting your neck perfectly flat.
     

  10. guitarface

    guitarface Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 11, 2012
    New York
    I say as long as you can't hear the buzz through the amp, go as low as you like.
     
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  11. cappei

    cappei Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    29
    602
    Jun 24, 2017
    Quillota, Valparaíso, Chile

    so I get relief if I turn oposite to the tuners, and get tension if I turn towards the tuner? Or in other words, let's say the guitar is layin' flat on a table with the low E towars me and the high E towards the wall, If I turn the truss away from me i will be relieving, and towards me tightening?
     

  12. heltershelton

    heltershelton ASKED TO LEAVE THE STAGE Strat-Talk Supporter

    Jun 5, 2013
    Not Florida
    slow down....please....i cant tell what the hell youre talkin about.. you always want a little "bow" on your neck. people call that relief. if there is too much, and its lookin like you can pass a ferrari under the strings at the 9th fret, then you need to turn it "clockwise"....but only do a quarter turn. if you cant fit a quarter under the strings at the 9th fret, you need to turn the thing counterclockwise....no more than a quarter turn. (at a time...if it still aint right a few hours later, turn it another quarter turn and let it sit for awhile)
     
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  13. AndSomeone

    AndSomeone Strat-Talker

    Age:
    38
    150
    Jan 2, 2018
    Santa Monica
    As heltershelton said, just have patience and do small steps.
     

  14. West Coast Idea

    West Coast Idea Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    59
    719
    Mar 10, 2017
    Out on the Range
    When sighting down the neck from the headstock :

    "Righty tighty, lefty loosy"
    (Clockwise, counterclockwise)
     
    cappei likes this.

  15. Johnny Danger

    Johnny Danger Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    36
    580
    Aug 28, 2017
    Denton, TX
    I'm surprised no one else has said this, but neck relief adjustment is separate from action adjustment. Someone already recommended the .010" feeler gauge to set relief. Once you do that, set action at the 12th fret using saddle adjustment. Then intonation.

    If you still get fret buzz, you probably need a fret level. Go find a good luthier and he can do the fret level and full setup if you're not comfortable. My MIM Strat had a crazy terrible fret job and nothing I did made it right until I took it to a pro.
     

  16. cappei

    cappei Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    29
    602
    Jun 24, 2017
    Quillota, Valparaíso, Chile
    this is what I mean, people always talked bout' clock or countreclock and I didn't get it since I work with my guitar lying flat on a table :p
     

  17. cappei

    cappei Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    29
    602
    Jun 24, 2017
    Quillota, Valparaíso, Chile
    yes, I speak a lot and write a lot ... got issues :oops:
     

  18. Thrup'ny Bit

    Thrup'ny Bit Grand Master Curmudgeon Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    59
    May 21, 2010
    Sheffield, UK
    How do you know which way to turn the screws to loosen the strap buttons, scratchplate or the bridge? The truss rod works the same way.
     
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  19. amstratnut

    amstratnut Peace thru Music. Strat-Talk Supporter

    Dec 1, 2009
    My house.
    Yeah, it was too high for me.
     

  20. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier-A-Holic Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    42
    Apr 19, 2014
    Windsor, Ontario, Canada
    How about some videos to guide you step by step....

    1 - truss rod



    2 - action height


    3rd is intonation but skip that step for now, we're hunting down buzz....

    If after doing those 2 steps according to the videos, you still have a low of buzz...it means either it's poor technique or your frets aren't level....
     
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