I just purchased a 1983 Music Man Stingray bass from Bass Central in Florida without getting to play it first due to being states away. Needless to say, I was a bit nervous as it wasn't a cheap investment. It's a beautiful bass with an ash body in natural finish. The neck is straight, the truss rod works and it all looks correct for it's year minus the control knobs and pickguard that are clearly not original. Structurally the bass is awesome and a keeper and I was stoked about the bass… until I started playing it... Upon closer inspection I noticed the G string was considerably lower in the mix (lower output) and lifeless, meaning it was very muted in the high end. This was not an acceptable problem for the money I paid for this bass. I really wanted to love this bass but this could be a real deal breaker if this issue couldn't be solved. I started digging deeper to see why the G string was so bad and decided to take the strings off to access the pickup. I noticed the bass had an unmatched set of bass strings and the G string was not like the others. In my head, I was singing, "One of these strings is not like the others.", I remembered from watching Sesame Street when I was a kid. Lol! The E, A and D looked to be a set of DR Pure Blues strings. The ball end of the G was green colored (D' Addario maybe?) and the others brass. My first thought was to do the whole, "raise-the-pickup-to-get-the-pole-pieces-closer-to-the- string-solution" but this did very little, not to mention, it was already pretty maxed out. "Is this why the owner sold the bass?" I pondered as I questioned my sizable purchase! Did I just buy a problem? I pressed on. Next, I took the bass apart to check the pickup, preamp and anything else that looked suspect. Nothing looked off to me. I used a small screw driver and tapped on the pole pieces and listened to the tap sound to see if output was different between strings. I also listened to treble response and they all seemed to be pretty equal. This was a good thing and the pickup seemed solid and totally balanced and functional. I then changed out the op amp since I had one laying around from a previous repair I did on a buddies '79 Ray and it had no effect on the G string at all. I started thinking about it and it dawned on me that if the G string is made from different materials and is less magnetic than the other strings, it's going to present as having a weak output compared to the other strings. I had my 15 year old daughter help me do a magnetic experiment and we took a magnet to see if the G string seemed less magnetic than the others and it was definitely less magnetic. Was this the core root of my problem? Not quite, as I would soon discover. I bought a new set of DR Blues in 105-45 and installed them. I played it and the G string was very close to being as strong as the other strings and I thought I solved the problem. I played the bass further but I still was not impressed with the G string's clarity; the output seemed better but the tone was still lacking high end. Hmmm... I started google searching "weak G string on Music Man Stingray" and discovered that this is a fairly common problem and saw that many MusicMan owners have been plagued with the dreaded “weak G string” phenomenon. Some have actually sold there basses as they could not come to grips with an instrument that didn't have a balanced output and tone on all strings. This was not acceptable to me either so I pressed on. As I searched TB and the many threads on the subject, I found many solutions addressing the problem from many different angles and none of them made sense to me. Some went so far as to suggest changing your playing technique when playing the G string. Really? What then is the solution I came up with? I noticed that the pickup position in relation to the strings was not even at all. In other words, looking straight at the face of the bass I could see that the A and D strings were fairly centered over their respective pole piece but the E and G were off to the edge. In fact, the G string was the closest string to the edge of the pole piece. The G string was to the left of the pole piece and needed to move to the right or treble side to get closer to center. The basis of my discovery is, that magnets are much like microphones and have a magnetic polar pattern or invisible field space so to speak. Moving the string to the edge of the magnet is like moving your mouth away from the center of a microphone; the output and tonal response becomes compromised the further away from center you get. As I started looking at as many Stingray pictures from the same era I could find, I noticed that the vast majority suffer from this manufacturing flaw. The pickup pole pieces on the G string are really close to the edge of the magnet! How did this get overlooked? Solving the problem with as little invasiveness to the bass was high on my priority list since it's a vintage bass. "How do I get the G string more centered over the pole piece and not effect the position of the others?" I pondered. Everything seemed so fixed that I scratched my head for awhile. Moving the pickup was not an option nor was moving the bridge as this would require major surgery. The solution? I realized the saddles are all independent of each other and I decided if I could put shims between the bridge saddles, I could nudge the G string closer to the centerline of the G string pole piece and not disturb the other strings. Actually, I put a .030” brass shim, about a 3/8” square between the A and D string saddle. Then I put a .020” shim between the D and G string saddle. Finally, I put a .010” shim between the E and A string saddle. The combined amount I was able to nudge the G string to the center of the G string pole piece added up to right around .060-.070”. This is a huge amount in magnetic terms and the field that hovers invisibly over it! I then measured the centerline from string to string at the saddle and the E and A measures .760”. The A to D measures .775” and the D to G .770”. This amount is barely percievable to my right hand and it has made ever string closer to the center of their respective pole pieces. Did it work? You're damn right it did! Problem solved! Every string is balanced and the tone of the G string has all the output and treble response of the other 3 strings. Thank you Jesus! I made no invasive alterations to the bass and it is almost perfect. The only thing that became a bit of a problem is the angle of the string where it anchors at the tail of the bridge is more extreme and the G string wanted to slip out of the saddle groove so I filed a bit of a notch on the G string saddle it works perfectly! I hope this is becomes helpful to others that have written off your prized MM bass because the G string was not consistent in output and tone with the other strings on your bass. It’s so simple, but so easy to overlook and underestimate the position of the string over the pole piece and it's affect on output and tone. Magnets really are like a microphone and have a magnetic polar pattern they send out and to get maximum output and tone from the individual strings, the string to pole piece relationship cannot be underestimated. The strings must line up as close to centerline of the magnet as possible; at least on the Music Man Stingray bass that is. IMHO. Now I’m going to go play my newly acquired ’83 Music Man Stingray bass and bask in all it's tonal glory on all four strings! Blessings, Ryan. P.S. If anyone is interested in this thread, I'll happy to post some pics to show the before and after results.