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Can Fretted nut be used on a fretless?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by gapupten, Dec 31, 2004.

  1. gapupten


    Dec 29, 2004
    Sorry: I had this posted in strings by mistake..

    I Just got a used Mike Lull "fretless" bass (M4). The person I bought it from said that it was a fretted bass made into a fretless. He purchased it the way it is.
    My problem is trying to set it up for low action and I can't. The truss rod appears to work OK.
    I noticed that the nut is cut like many of my freted basses. In my fretless Pedulla, the bottom of the string hole is right on top of the finger board. In the Mike Lull, there is significant space (bone) between the bottom of the string groove and the fingerboard, a little less than a fret's worth.
    I am a little concerned with trying to mess with the nut on such a fine instrument. Mostly I don't want to do anything if I am missing something.
    A really good job was done in replacing the frets with what looks like maple strips. If I wasn't told it was done, I would think it as original. What I can't understand is why would someone do a fretless conversion without recutting (or replacing) the nut.
    I guess my question is this. Shouldn't there be virtually no significant distance between the bottom of the nut's string groove and the top of the fingerboard on a fretless?

    Driving me nutty.. Any ideas..? Thanks
  2. The nut should be cut lower. The height from slot to fingerboard should be equivalent to the distance between the string bottom and first fret of a properly set-up fretted bass.

    If you're feeling brave maybe you could remove it and sand down the bottom to lower it.
  3. gapupten


    Dec 29, 2004
    I looked around the board and found pretty much what you said. After doing that and figuring out the physics of the thing this morning, I had at the nut with my Dremel Tool. Very carefully removing some nut from the A and D string slots (the worst offenders). Its much better, but I really understand why a pro setup is worth it.