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Adjusting Intonation

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by j1422, Mar 19, 2009.

  1. j1422


    Jun 23, 2007
    When the open string is in tune, my A string is a quartertone flat at the 12th fret. I adjusted my saddle to be as close to the pickup as possible.

    This happened ever since I made a string change but it was just a change from two packs of strings; they were the same gauge and same make.

    The rest of my strings hold good intonation up the neck.

    Thanks for anyone who can help! :)
  2. allexcosta


    Apr 7, 2004
    Still have the old string? If yes, put it back and check if it's still out of intonation. You may have a bad string, even being new...
  3. j1422


    Jun 23, 2007
    Unfortunately it is long gone. Obviously strings are fairly expensive but is it likely that the problem is the string? Can a string cause the intonation to go out? If you say so I will believe it and go and get new stings, it's just that I've never heard of that happening.

    Thanks for the suggestion.
  4. allexcosta


    Apr 7, 2004
    Well... Only thing that crossed my mind after reading this:

    Edit - Try taking the string out and putting it back. A twisted string can sound awful...
  5. BZadlo

    BZadlo Supporting Member

    Mar 4, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    Tune the string to pitch using the harmonic on the 12th fret. Play the note at the 12th fret (on the same string). Adjust the intonation screw until the fretted note is at the proper pitch. If the fretted note is flat, loosen the intonation screw. If the pitch is sharp, tighten the intonation screw.
    Retune the string (using the harmonic) after you adjust the intonation and repeat the entire process until everything is in tune.
    Remember that tightening the intonation screw will flatten the pitch and loosening it will sharpen the pitch.
  6. j1422


    Jun 23, 2007
    That's the problem; when the string is sharpened as much as possible it is still a quarter-tone flat.

    I tried taking the string off and putting it back on but to no avail unfortunately.

    Edit: I changed strings and fixed it. Thanks for the help guys!
  7. I removed the bridge from a Fender 4-stringer a while back, in an abortive attempt to replace it with another one. When that didn't work, I put the old bridge and strings back on, and the G string, which used to intonate just fine, wouldn't intonate worth a damn, even with the saddle almost falling off the screw. Methinks I see a string replacement in my near future.


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