Fret buzz on my Strat after changing to 8 gauge strings.

Discussion in 'Tech-Talk' started by othmane, Apr 15, 2021.

  1. othmane

    othmane New Member!

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    Hi, recently i broke the high E string and i really wanted to try 8 gauge (the guitar is 3 weeks old brand new and it's the first time i changed the strings) after doing so I noticed some slight fret buzz, after asking some people on the internet, a lot of them said that the neck should be loosened and i should do so by making a truss rod adjustment,(keep in mind : there is no guitar experts or luthiers in my City so i have to fix this problem on my own and i have 0 experience, but i watched a lot of videos about this topic and i know what to do/not do when adjusting the trus rod or the action) i'm just too scared to do it. Should i adjust the truss rod ?
    Please if you have any tips tell me
    Thanks.
     
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  2. henderman

    henderman Dr. Stratster

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    welcome! the 8's are pulling less on the neck than the 9's or 10's that were likely on the guitar before so yes, you need to loosen the trusss rod a tad to add relief.
     
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  3. othmane

    othmane New Member!

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    If i switch back to 9's will the buzz go away ?
     
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  4. heltershelton

    heltershelton Vivamus libero Vivamus duris

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    a quarter turn.... that's it. then let it sit awhile after you retune.
     
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  5. henderman

    henderman Dr. Stratster

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    if the guitar did not buzz before and you put the same gauge of strings it had then it will be back to normal.

    thicker strings pull the neck forward more and thinner strings pull it less. the truss rod is to adjust for that.
     
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  6. othmane

    othmane New Member!

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    Thank you so much
     
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  7. AJBaker

    AJBaker Strat-Talker

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    Try to work out how much relief your neck has, i.e. how much it's bending under the force of the strings. (It's like a bow and arrow: the more you pull, the more it'll bend. Heavier strings pull more than light strings).

    First way: eyeball it.
    Hold the headstock by your face and look down the neck at different angles. Can you see the neck bending? Or is it fairly straight?


    Second way: string as a straight edge.
    Put a capo at the first fret, or hold the thick E-string down with a finger (this is to take the nut out of the equation). Next, fret the guitar at the 12th fret, and look at the 6th fret. Is there a gap between the top of the 6th fret and the string? That gap is the amount of relief your neck has.

    I usually aim for a tiny bit of relief. If it's touching, the neck is probably too straight (but that can also work).
     
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  8. Hal Nico

    Hal Nico Senior Stratmaster

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    As per other posts reset the neck relief. Plenty of videos to help :)

    https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=setting+stratocaster+relief
     
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  9. Cerb

    Cerb Anti conformist reformist

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    As previoysly stated, just a quarter of a turn, perhaps not even that much. You can't really break anything unless you go absolutely bananas with larger tools and use a lot of force. It can be intimidating but it's not rocket science.

    I use 008-038 strings on all my guitars (except one) and i love them. The one that I still use 009-046 on is a 1986 Burny Les Paul and the reason is that even with the truss rod fully loosened, the 008-038 strings don provide enough force to give the neck enough relief.
     
  10. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Most Honored Senior Member

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    As others have said, going to lighter strings puts less tension on the neck, causing the neck to bow convex (backwards,) which will cause rattle.
    After adjusting the truss rod as others have described, you may also need to either adjust your picking attack (pick lighter,) and/or bump the string height up slightly - this is because the thinner strings will have a wider vibration field (because they are looser,) and may still contact the fret if picked too hard.

    That is kind of the whole dance you play with string gauges - you may gain in some areas but you will give up in others - it's a matter of finding what works with your specific playing style.

    FWIW, I've played everything from .008's to .013's, and have settled on .010-.046 as my standard.
     
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  11. jbylake

    jbylake Fabulously Famous Nobody Silver Member

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    When I get a guitar set-up done, I get it for a specific gauge of strings, e.g., ,009-,042's. If one particular guitar uses 10's, I get it set-up for 10's. A lot of guitars, in my experience anyway, like to be set-up for the gauge of strings that they're going to be played with. If you know how, and do your own set-ups, should be no big deal.
     
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  12. dirocyn

    dirocyn Most Honored Senior Member

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    Lighter strings vibrate with greater excursion, so they often need a little more height above the frets. And as others have mentioned, they have less tension so the neck may bend forward a little less.

    Check the relief first--with a capo on the first fret and a finger on the last one, you should be able to see daylight between the string and 6th fret--or check with a feeler gauge to ensure you have the right amount of space there. I just use a standard business card.

    Once relief is right, if it still buzzes you may need to raise the saddles. Shouldn't take much, just raise until the buzzing is gone with your normal touch.
     
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  13. Bob the builder

    Bob the builder Most Honored Senior Member

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    Don't be scared.
    You won't screw anything up that can't get reversed if you take it 1 step at a time.
    Learn your git & find out where you like it.
     
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  14. Willmunny

    Willmunny Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    +1
     
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  15. jbylake

    jbylake Fabulously Famous Nobody Silver Member

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    Yes. After all of these years, I can't believe I never took the time to learn how to set mine up, or do anything, except I changed out some tuners for locking tuners once. Learning to do your own set-ups can save you a bunch of money if you have numerous guitars. Ask me how I know....:D
     
  16. othmane

    othmane New Member!

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    i tried to adjust the truss rod counter clock-wise to loosen it but it's way to tight to turn i put some pressure and i heard a little "click" and stopped, idk if it's because the first time i'm doing it. Is it normal for the truss rod to be tight and is it okay to put pressure on it when trying to loosen it ?
     
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  17. Cerb

    Cerb Anti conformist reformist

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    Counter clockwise looking from the headstock towards the body, or the other way? Think of it as a regular nut that you screw onto a bolt. Screwing it on tightens the truss tod and straightens the neck. Screwing it off does the opposite.

    Some tightness and resistance is normal and if you've never used it before, so is the little click. You'll have to use significant force to destroy it using a regular hex key.
     
  18. othmane

    othmane New Member!

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    The guitar is 3 weeks old and it's the first time I'm adjusting the truss rod, i got scared when i head that clicking sound and immediately thought i snapped it.
     
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  19. othmane

    othmane New Member!

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    i turned it this way
     

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  20. Hal Nico

    Hal Nico Senior Stratmaster

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    I've adjusted truss rods and they do sometimes click/creak as the rod moves so yes it can be normal.
     
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