Fanned fret and Buzz Feiten

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Mr M, Mar 25, 2002.

  1. What do you think about fanned fret system which lets to have longer scale length on lower strings and shorter on higher?

    What do you think about Buzz Feiten's system? Is it true that if for example one has an accident and has the neck hit somewhere and as a result some problem occurs for the tuning, one can't adjust intonation himself and can even have to send it back to the factory for adjustement (supposing there are not lots of local luthiers familiar with the system)?
  2. dhuffguitars

    dhuffguitars Luthier/Bass Wanker depending on your opinion

    Sep 18, 2001
    I personally think Ralph Novak's Fan Fret system is great. I would use them on my basses, but they seem to be a hard sell. I plan on incorporating it on a couple basses within the next year to see what kind of response they get. The only downside is you can't go to your local music store and buy strings generally.

    As for Buzz Feiten's system, I haven't had a chance to get to involved with it. I am as curious as you on how user friendly the bass is. I hope to here from Mr. Tobias on this one, I think he has the most knowledge on this topic.

    Thank You,
    Darrin Huff
  3. trainyourhuman


    Apr 12, 2000
    I have loved the novax basses that I have played, although I found them to be a bit extreme. I think that you could use a shorter B string length for the sake of playability without sacrificing tone. I guess what I am saying is that my ideal B string length would be somewhere between 35 and 36 inches. I believe Acacia has made some basses with variations in the "fanning" of the string length.

    I also love the Buzz Feiten idea, and have loved every MTD that I have played with the Feiten system in place. I feel that it really clears up the upper registers on all the strings, and also improves the string to string balance in tone and feel, IMO. I am also very interested in what the pros have to say about this one.
  4. michael tobias

    michael tobias MTD

    Mar 21, 2002
    The statements about BFTS are not correct, you have been misinformed.

    For bass, the system is very simple. Anyone who has a BFTS equiped bass should own a Korg DT7 tuner. it has the offsets burned into the chips and is easy to deal with in setting the intonation. In addition it is one of the most accurate small tuners available.

    While it is true that there area licensed BFTS techs, once the system is on your bass, you can do the intonation yourself and tuning is regular in every other way. Tune to pitch as normal and only the intonation is different.

    This does not have to be a big deal.....every MTD bass now comes with BFTS. I think the advantages outweigh the small inconvenience.... being in tune is really good!

    Best regards,
    Michael Tobias
  5. adrian garcia

    adrian garcia In Memoriam

    Apr 9, 2001
    las vegas. nevada
    Endorsing Artist: Nordy Basses, Schroeder Cabs, Gallien Krueger Amps
    Amen!! Thumbs up for the Buzz Feiten System-
    it is hard to explain, but i own both standard and BFTS basses and everything is just cleaner with the BFTS- it is sometimes a subtle difference, but it really has to played to hear it. On my new 6 string that some guy named Mike made,:rolleyes: it really shines, everything is very even.:)
  6. Balor


    Sep 24, 2000
    Montréal, Québec
    But the big question is... how does it work? is it the fret placement, bridge... what is it?
  7. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin Inactive

    Dec 11, 1999

    It is a combination of ny placement and intonation offset. I an hardly wait to get my new MTD with BFTS.

  8. First of all thanks for the replies, I believe that BFTS has something to offer as some top builders as Mr Tobias choose to use this system, as well as some top players.

    I'd be grateful if you can enlighten me on the difference in the intonation issue.

  9. hujo


    Apr 18, 2001
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Sorry, but what do you mean with ny placement?
  10. He probably means nut placement. If I remember, the nut is placed a little bit closer to the bridge when using the BFTS.
  11. adrian garcia

    adrian garcia In Memoriam

    Apr 9, 2001
    las vegas. nevada
    Endorsing Artist: Nordy Basses, Schroeder Cabs, Gallien Krueger Amps
  12. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    That's supposed to be "nut placement."

    The BFTS involves moving the nut towards the first fret by a small amount and saddle adjustments that are a few cents above or below "perfect intonation" at the twelfth fret. In other words, you don't set the saddles so that the fretted 12th fret note is perfectly in tune with the harmonic.

    That's it.
  13. Thank you Cristopher!
  14. If you want to understand why moving the nut a bit towards the bridge helps tuning problems, read Stephen Delft's article on the compensated nut.

    The best place to see that is here, at the incomparable MIMF.

    It seems to me that a compensated nut is more of a standard tuning fix than Buzz Feiten's system, as you don't have to have a special tuner and don't have to shift the first fret nutwards. I'm going to have this done on my twelve-string guitar as soon as I can afford it.
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