fine tuners

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by olps, Dec 18, 2001.

  1. olps


    Nov 12, 2001
    What good would fine tuners have on a bass?? Because I use a bass with them often, but never use them.
  2. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    There is a theory that says you should use the tuners to tune the string length between the bridge and the tailpiece to exactly 1/6 of the string length from the bridge to the nut. The pitch on at least one string and sometimes two should be two octaves and a fifth above the fundamental from the bridge to the nut.

  3. Pete G

    Pete G

    Dec 31, 2001
    Northern Virginia
    Some years ago, when I had a fingered C extension put on my bass, the luthier put a fine tuner on the C string without my asking for it. His theory was that it could be used for small tuning adjustments in order to save the time and trouble of unclamping the "E" stop to tune the string as would normally be done.

    I've kept it on since then, and it gets the weirdest looks from luthiers, teachers, and other players. What they always say is, "I've never seen one of THOSE on a bass!" Other than the one on mine, I haven't either.

    Still, it is much easier to make small tuning adjustments with the fine tuner than it is trying to get an accurate tuning with the machine heads.
  4. Why just 1 or 2 strings? Is there an adverse effect to tuning them all to 2 octaves and a fifth above the fundemental?

  5. "Fine tuner" usually refers to something different than the moveable frets of an adjustable tailpiece. A fine tuner (common on the upper strings) actually tunes the playing length of the string, not just the length of string behind the bridge.

    Why would anyone with an ajustable tailpiece not tune all four strings? The tuning of an individual string behind the bridge has no affect on how the others sound. Also, two octaves and a fourth (not a fifth) is the most common, and on my bass at least, sounds best. A fifth sounded choked, and a third sounded too unfocused and mushy.