Bad string?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by babsobass, Jul 24, 2021.

  1. babsobass


    Jan 10, 2009
    Milwaukee, WI
    I recently bought a set of Fender 9050MLs. After putting them on my MIM P bass I noticed what sounds like a slight buzzing sound from the E string. The other 3 sound clean. I can hear this acoustically and amplified. This is the first time this P has had flats as it has worn nickel rounds since I've had it.

    I'm going to check this out more thoroughly to make sure there isn't something else on the bass doing the buzzing (saddle, screw, etc.). But I don't recall ever hearing this before. Just curious if this sounds like I have a bad string here.
  2. Eddie Jones

    Eddie Jones

    Sep 18, 2019
    Sylacauga AL
    No, going to flats will sometimes necessitate a slight change in height of the strings due to tensions being different. A slight set-up will probably do the trick
    Lenny JG, tindrum, dbsfgyd1 and 5 others like this.
  3. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    You might. I had a bad E string in my last set of silencers. Never had one before that. It's like, broken. Like no tone, just wonky vibrations and rattling. It was so weird.

    Does yours sound like this?

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  4. Three basic troubleshooting steps:
    1. Loosen the E string to the point of being able to turn the ball end just to make sure it's not twisted.
    2. Make sure to set the witness point properly at the saddle. Also, make sure the saddle itself is sitting flat with the two screws at the same height.
    3. Make sure it's wrapped around the tuning post in a way the last wrap is as close to the bottom as possible in order to ensure proper break angle at the nut.
    If the above three don't do anything to eliminate the problem, it could possibly be a defective string. But that would be very rare considering they're made by D'Addario.
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  5. Lowendchamp


    Jun 27, 2021
    Shelton WA
    Hey is your avatar from the movie Heavy Metal?
  6. Eddie Jones

    Eddie Jones

    Sep 18, 2019
    Sylacauga AL
    Yeah, Hanover Fist
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  7. babsobass


    Jan 10, 2009
    Milwaukee, WI
    Yeah, it kinda does. Not so severe, but that same mechanical buzzy sound.
    JeezyMcNuggles likes this.
  8. babsobass


    Jan 10, 2009
    Milwaukee, WI
    I will give these a try. I know #3 is covered; I'm pretty careful to always wrap down to the bottom of the posts.
  9. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    Yeah. Like I got a bad G string a while back, different strings, that was just weak. Little bit of buzz I think, but really it was just like a dead spot. Except down my whole neck. Took it off, put the old one back one, and back to normal. That stuff happens.
  10. babsobass


    Jan 10, 2009
    Milwaukee, WI
    Well, I think that did it! I wasn't very scientific about it so I'm not sure what the exact problem was. I loosened the E string and made sure it ball was not under any twisting and was able to freely move it. All strings back up to tune, I established the witness points on all strings including the E. After doing these the issue was gone!

    If I had to say, I think the witness point was the problem. Another lesson learned on how to take care of a bass!
    thumpbass1 and michael_t like this.
  11. Matt O

    Matt O

    Feb 19, 2013
    The Mitten
    I recently sent back two sets of silencers, exact same issue. I mean, I’m a fan of fuzz bass and everything, but…
    babsobass and JeezyMcNuggles like this.
  12. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    What was weird was how the string even looked bad. Like all the wraps were kinds fused together, and chunky. A lot shinier than the other strings too. It was weird man. Sent all this to SIT, with the sound sample. No response. Nothing whatsoever. Mark bass sent me a new set of strings from Italy, and it got here in 4 days. 20210623_223611.jpg 20210623_223500.jpg

    SIT, not one response at all.

    And yes, the g string was also bad. The wraps on that one also look like they have the same problem as the E. It just wasn't half as bad as the E. But, it was also bad.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2021
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  13. drumvsbass


    Aug 20, 2011
    Strange bad string story...
    Normally my Zons are strung with TI rounds, but I though one afternoon that 'Hey I have a spare set of D'addario lights, let's put em on the fretless...'. Everything was going ok until I setup the A string. No matter how high I took the action, it buzzed everywhere, AND if I did a slide on that string it sounded like microtonal auto tune, almost as if I was hearing every little coil touchdown on to the fingerboard. The weirdest thing.
    mikewalker and JeezyMcNuggles like this.
  14. New strings, especially going from rounds to flats requires a proper setup.

    Could be a nut issue, could be a bridge issue, could be a neck tension issue with truss rod.

    You're just guessing until you set it up, then the problem should be easier to diagnose.

    Good luck,
    babsobass likes this.
  15. Id say try raising the string height slightly.
  16. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    Yeah, the character Zeks says it, not Hanover Fist, but still the best quote in the movie, "Look, man, if there's one thing I know, it's how to drive while I'm stoned. You know your perception is completely f***ed so you just let your hands work the controls as if you were straight."
  17. TomB

    TomB Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2007
    Does it occur only on an open E or all the time?
  18. Lenny JG

    Lenny JG

    Aug 3, 2019
    Are they round core?
  19. FYI...

    The OP's problem was gone as of post #10.
    DanDBassist, Lenny JG and TomB like this.
  20. I once killed a brand new string while installing it. Accidentally grabbed the middle of the string and was pulling to get the string through the bridge and lined up right and didnt realize until I looked down at my left hand that I had bent the string while holding it (was focused on my right hand - getting the string through the bridge and up over the saddle was a tight angle on that bass). I tuned it to pitch, but there was a little bump in the string. Had to replace it.

    Sometimes weird things happen that cause buzzes. Looks like the OP resolved their issue on post #10. For anyone reading this in the future, just try to isolate where the buzz is coming from to see what might be the issue.