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Bad Neck, Nut or?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Quadzilla, Mar 25, 2005.


  1. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    I have a G&L L-2500 USA (if that matters). I have been working with a setup guy on this by the way.

    I get buzzing of the first 3 - 4 fretts of almost all strings unless we raise the action fairly high and put a fair amount of relief in the neck.

    The at that point the action is stil fairly low at the top of the neck (first few fretss) but sky high the further you go down the neck. If I lower the action much or take the relief out to flatten the neck, I'm back to buzzing on the first few fretts.

    The neck is fine with no buzzing anywhere but those first few fretts no matter what we do. Just those first few that buzz unless the action is high and/or substantial relief is added. Could the nut be too low? Could the neck be defective only at the top? This is driving me crazy as I like low to medium low action, not sky high. Setup experts help! :help:
     
  2. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    FYI - I also posted this in the setup forum. No answers yet and only 1 view. I don't think that the setup forum gets much traffic, so I'm posting it here as well hoping one of you can help! Anyway...

    I have a G&L L-2500 USA (if that matters). I have been working with a setup guy on this by the way.

    I get buzzing of the first 3 - 4 fretts of almost all strings unless we raise the action fairly high and put a fair amount of relief in the neck.

    The at that point the action is stil fairly low at the top of the neck (first few fretss) but sky high the further you go down the neck. If I lower the action much or take the relief out to flatten the neck, I'm back to buzzing on the first few fretts.

    The neck is fine with no buzzing anywhere but those first few fretts no matter what we do. Just those first few that buzz unless the action is high and/or substantial relief is added. Could the nut be too low? Could the neck be defective only at the top? This is driving me crazy as I like low to medium low action, not sky high. Setup experts help! :help:
     
  3. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    The nut would only effect the open strings. As soon as you fret a note, the nut is out of the equation.

    did you try to add alittle relief with out raising the action. Adding alitlle relief in the neck by itself will raise the action slightly.

    IME, it seems that the neck need to be shim.
     
  4. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Yep, tried the relief first, still buzzed, but not quite as bad. We then raised the action too and finally got rid of the buzz but now the action is too high further up the neck (12th frett, etc).

    I also don't have a ton of confidence in this setup guy, as he originally gave back to me the first time with a flat neck, low action, but with a good amount of frett buzz, so I don't want him to shim the neck.

    Is this something I can do myself? I'm pretty darn mechanically inclined. This is a G&L 6 bolt neck with the metal plate. It's possible that it may even have the old G&L neck tilt adjuster under the plate (some did). I've never had the neck off, but assuming that it doesn't have teh adjuster, would like to know if I can shim it myself and where to get shims. Thanks!
     
  5. karrot-x

    karrot-x Banned

    Feb 21, 2004
    Omicron Persei 8
    Sort of a dumb question, did you try other L-2500's to make sure that this isn't just the way the bass is made? My stingray has a lot of fretbuzz, it can be reduced but that's just how Stingrays are.
     
  6. Selta

    Selta

    Feb 6, 2002
    Pacific Northwet
    Total fanboi of: Fractal Audio, AudiKinesis Cabs, Dingwall basses
    If you could post some pics it'd help, but IMO, it sounds like your nut is cut too low. Either take it somewhere and ask them their opinion, or cut your own new one and see if it helps...new nuts can be had in a lot of places.

    Ray
     
  7. zcwilkes

    zcwilkes Supporting Member

    Oct 1, 2002
    Barboursville, WV
    Have you guys looked at your 5th or 6th fret? That's probably not it though. It would have to be pretty high to cause buzzing on all 4 of the frets before it. Sounds like the nut.
     
  8. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    Ditto for the nut. I don't agree that it may be how the bass is. Yes, some basses may more "buzz" than others, I know I had a Dean JBS and a Musicman Sterling that buzzed really easily, but that was all over the neck. If its just in one spot, its a setup issue. Have you tech take a look at it and you should be good.
     
  9. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    Did you discuss this with him? What did he say? Did he notice any buzz?
     
  10. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    It can't be the nut. The nut only effects open notes. As soon as you fret a note, the nut is out of the equation.

    De-Ju-Vu. :)
     
  11. Selta

    Selta

    Feb 6, 2002
    Pacific Northwet
    Total fanboi of: Fractal Audio, AudiKinesis Cabs, Dingwall basses
    My bad, I can't read... I thought he meant it was buzzing on the 1-4 frets when he hit an open note... not that it was buzzing when he was fretting 1-4.

    Ray
     
  12. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    No prob. I'm assuming he menat that it's the fretted note. LOL :)

    Also, it could be that the frets need to be dressed/leveled. There could be a high fret.

    I hate following a thread when it's double posted.
     
  13. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    Georgia
    +1 on the need for a fret leveling.
    The only other thing it could be would be an actual hump in the finger board (which would require that the neck be de-fretted, leveled and re-fretted).
     
  14. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Thanks for the responses guys. To answer the question, yes, it's only when I frett a note (hold down strings on no 1, 2, or 3 fretts). Open notes are ok.

    I probably need to find a good local luthier/setup guy in one (I'm in the Baltimore/Metro area) to really go over my bass. There is little frett wear from what I can tell, but one might not be level, etc.

    Now that we have the action set pretty high with some moderate relief in the neck to stop all buzzing, I'm going to try and take some of the relief out this evening and see what happens (leaving the action where it is).

    If that does not work, then I'll be looking for a local expert. Anybody know somebody in my area (I'm in the N.W. burbs of Baltimore)?
     
  15. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Honestly, he is an a old timer and (late 70's prob) and his hearing is not that great. Plugged into an amp, the buzz is not a noticble as when done acoustically. I even had to speak loudly just for him to hear me. Good news is that he only charged me $25 for the setup and he spend a lot of time with it. I feel bad asking for my money back, so I'm going to leave it at that and move on to somebody more experience. Just need to find that guy locally

    Ohj, sorry about the two threads. I should have put it in the bass forum to begin with as this forum has little traffic. I guess I can ask the admin to delete one of the two.

    If I can't find somebody good locally, I could always ship it to NY (hint hint)! :D :smug:
     
  16. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Double posts are against the rules. This should be in Setup. Normally, I would just delete the whole thread. Since there are some quality responses, I am moving it to Setup, where it belongs. Joshua can decide what to do with the duplicate there.
     
  17. It's not the nut, the nut effects only open strings. Have you checked to make sure the frets are level?
     
  18. glnflwrs

    glnflwrs

    Jan 25, 2005
    Hesperia, CA
    Quadzilla,
    Have you or the tech checked the frets for being level? You needa a small, very straight edge that will span three frets only. Move it fro 1-2-3 to 2-3-4 to 3-4-5 frets. The straight edge should sit squarely on all three frets and not wobble on on on. If it rocks back and forth on one fret then that fret is too high in relation to the others.

    Also, are you sure the buzz is coming from the string and not, say, a loose tuner knob or bezel?

    Just a couple of $.02.
     
  19. glnflwrs

    glnflwrs

    Jan 25, 2005
    Hesperia, CA
    BTW, frets.com has a pretty extensive setup section and delves extensively into fret buzz.
     
  20. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Well, I'm 110% sure that it's coming from the strings. I took the whole neck off last night and tried shimming the rear of the neck. It just seemed to make things worse and introduce new issues. I took the shim out and then went at it again.

    I have all of the strings as low as they can be before buzzing under hard plucks. I have the neck with some relief, prob a little too much as the action still is too high for my tastes in the upper registers, but the action is nice and low for the first 5 or 6 fretts. When I flatten the neck out, I have to crank the action up pretty far to get rid of the buzz and then the action is just too damn high.

    I examined the fretts better last night and there is more weat than I though on the first 3 or 4 fretts. There is certainly some un-eveness about them. I just hope they don't need to be replaced. I think that I need to go to a pro now. I went on G&L's site and find a dealer fairly close to me and they claim to have a great in-house setup guy. I'm going to head up there.

    To end this I have just one question. Should the action be significantly higher in the upper fretts (12 +) than the lower ones (especially 1 - 6 where the action is ultra low). Sucks going from nice, killer low action and then moving up the neck to high action. Good news is I have NO BUZZ now, but I'm just not happy with the way it is.... Thanks!