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Brass nut: How much space to leave on the sides?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by fretlessman71, Jun 30, 2013.


  1. I am replacing a nut and want to buy as much width at the nut as possible. I've broken plastic and bone nuts before at the low and high string slot, so I will go with brass (I have steel frets, so I'm not worried it will be too bright).

    How much space can I get away with leaving on the outside of the nut (e.g., between the E string slot and the edge)? I figure since it's brass and much more difficult to break I can get pretty close...?
     
  2. I think 1/8 inch is about normal. Just because I follow that taper all the way down the neck. With a metal nut you could could get a couple millimeters closer. I place the lowest string a little closer to the edge than the highest string...hope this helps!
     
  3. So 1/16" clearance on either side would be pushing it, even for a brass nut that won't break?
     
  4. Slowgypsy

    Slowgypsy 4 Fretless Strings

    Dec 12, 2006
    NY & MA
    If you want to file the nut slot for the E and G strings, and leave about 1/16" from the edge of the slot to the edge of the nut, you'll be fine as far as the brass nut is concerned. However, you might find that the E and G strings now ride a bit too close to the edge of the fretboard.
     
  5. That's cool - the guy who installed my steel frets left the shoulders quite proud. (I think he was tired of filing them. ;) ) Thanks for the help guys!