1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

any help with this?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Plaidcow, Jun 27, 2004.

  1. Plaidcow


    Jun 27, 2004
    I've been playing for a little over 3 years now as a hobbyist, and just recently replaced my first bass, a Fender Standard P-Bass, with a Standard J-Bass (the P was in an accident and got destroyed). I've only been playing this J since March, but all of the sudden, I get a terrible rattling sound from the strings when I play. This never happened in the nearly 3 years I played the P. I tried changing the strings and even tweaking the bridge a bit to try and get the strings off the fretboard some, but to no avail. Anyone got any suggestions as to what my problem may be and how I can fix it? Like I said I'm strictly a hobbyist, and a self-taught musician, so this may be something simple that I just never learned about.
  2. Did this happen just after a string change?

    A "rattling" usually points to strings that either aren't seating in the nut well and/or inadequate break angle across the nut to the tuners. You should be winding your strings from the top down to force the incoming string down at an angle that puts force on the string across the nut. That's why the Fenders have the string retainer on the D & G. The other possible cause is that the gauge of the string is narrower than the slot cut in the nut - to the point that it isn't held completely solid. That can cause the sound you're hearing also. Check this out and get back with us.

    Hope this helps
  3. Plaidcow


    Jun 27, 2004
    I went back and checked my bass out, and all the strings are wound down like you said they should be. However, I think the problem may be in the nut, where the strings don't really "lock down," but rather kinda sit in the groove. I kind of find it hard to believe that's the only cause of the problem, since the rattling started before I changed strings even. I'm assuming the best course of action would be to replace the nut now? My friend said I should get my bass set up, but I didn't really know what that entailed. He said something about it involving filing down the frets, so I thought I'd hold out on that for some more experienced advice rather than just have someone carve away at my baby.
  4. OK, where does the rattling come from? Headstock or the body area? How is the action on the neck? Is it in proper adjustment?

    A real setup might fix this if the tech understands it's there to begin with. Filing frets is only done if needed and that's usually when the frets are so worn that playability is affected. Normally a setup just gets the neck, nut, bridge, saddles, pup height, and string height correct.
  5. Plaidcow


    Jun 27, 2004
    the sound is definitly coming from the headstock, and actually sounds like it's from the first few frets. I took another look at it today, and it seems like the G string is almost sitting on the fretboard, which I guess would answer why there's a rattle when I play. So my next question would be how do I fix this? Like I said, I tried adjusting the bridge a bit, but to no avail.