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Finger Buzz

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(@bigstu)
Eminent Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 18
Topic starter  

an annoying problem. Got a new squire strat, I love it but it seems to rattle a lot even when not fretted (not fret buzz) no idea where it's coming from.
but the main problem is that I just can't seem to get the action right. To stop the G & D strings buzzing at the higher frets I need to raise the action at the bridge on those strings especially but now I find that the action is so high that when I fret the notes the strings buzz against my fingernails & sounds awful. I have larger than normal fingers I guess but it's very frustrating, I really struggle to fit my fingers in the higher frets. I don't have this problem on my acoustic I guess coz the neck is slightly wider. I've followed every step on Nil's page for setup & just when I think I've got it ok the G & D buzz really badly from about fret 12 up. I've tried the truss rod too. I've tried other sites as well coz it's all in 4/64 inch etc & I have no idea how big that is, it's all mm here in Aus.


   
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(@wes-inman)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5582
 

Well, if it's brand new, return it for a replacement.

I started to say someone may have put a shim underneath the neck to tilt the neck down at the headstock. But if it's a brand new guitar this is very unlikely.

When a guitar buzzes up high on the fretboard that is usually a sign that there is way too much relief in the neck. The neck is up-bowed like a smile. So when you depress the strings in the middle of the neck, they touch frets higher up the neck.

Look down the neck on the bass string side from the headstock toward the body. The neck should look fairly straight with maybe a small up-curve around the 3rd fret. This is normal. If the neck looks very curved then there is too much relief, you need to tighten the truss rod. Loosen all the strings, turn the truss rod maybe 1/8 turn and retune to pitch. You will notice this will bring the action down. It may take several adjustments before you get it right, and you need to give the neck a little time to settle between adjustments.

You don't necessarily need tools to determine the relief and action. With the 1st and 14th frets depressed you should have about the thickness of a matchbook cover at the 7th fret between the fret and bottom of the string. This is about .020" approx.

It is also possible that the truss rod is far too tight. This forces the headstock downward, so your neck looks like a frown. But this usually causes fret buzz in frets 1 through 5. If looking down the neck it looks too straight or there is a down-curve around the 3rd fret this is your problem.

Here is a good site that has pics to show what I am talking about. Look about halfway down the page.

http://www.athensmusician.net/archive/2001-05-01_geneimbody1.shtml

If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis


   
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(@bigstu)
Eminent Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 18
Topic starter  

Thanks Wes, it seems to be a bit better now, but still higher than I'd like but maybe I just have to get used to it. It's playing well though so that is the main thing.


   
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 Nils
(@nils)
Famed Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 2849
 

I've followed every step on Nil's page for setup & just when I think I've got it ok the G & D buzz really badly from about fret 12 up. I've tried the truss rod too. I've tried other sites as well coz it's all in 4/64 inch etc & I have no idea how big that is, it's all mm here in Aus.
I thought I had it in Inches and Metric. Did I miss something?

Nils' Page - Guitar Information and other Stuff
DMusic Samples


   
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(@greybeard)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 5840
 

25.4mm per inch. 4/64 is the same as 1/16, so divide 25.4 by 16 which results in 1.6mm (1.5875 to be accurate).

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in any dictionary?
Greybeard's Pages
My Articles & Reviews on GN


   
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(@bigstu)
Eminent Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 18
Topic starter  

yeah sorry Nils, you're right. I was actually looking at another setup site when I wrote that.
It's still not the way I like it. I must say I don't like that floating bridge at all. It seems as though every time I think I have it right it's either out of tune again because of the bridge or I'm getting buzzing somewhere else on the frets the next time I pick it up. I have another electric that I've been setting up for over a year or so without these problems this one is just driving me nuts. It was perfect when I got it but I put on slightly heavier strings & it's just thrown the whole thing out of wack.

Also slightly off topic- are squires or strats known for rattling? I'm sure I've read that somewhere. It's a very high pitched rattling (not buzzing) even without fretting any strings.


   
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