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First post... problem with bass...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by metron, Sep 16, 2003.


  1. metron

    metron Fluffy does not agree

    Sep 12, 2003
    Lakewood Colorado
    Hey everyone! Im new here and this is my first attempt at starting a thread. Im having a problem with my relatively new MM Stingray4. I have a serious string rattle thats across the entire E and A strings at every fret (its not noticible on the D and G strings). Its being amplified so I cant record with this bass. I cannot tell where it is coming from. When I put me ear next to the nut it sounds like its coming from the bridge and when I put my ear next to the brige it sounds like its coming from the nut. I like to think Im fairly knowledgable in setting up the instrument as Ive done it myself for years. I have tightened everything on the bass to make sure there are no loose screws. It is definitely not the string buzzing on the frets. I have eliminated all the simple things and I cant for the life of me tell where its coming from or how to get rid of it. I have used a few different types of strings since the problem started so that eliminates having a bad string or two. Thanks in advance for suggestions or comments!

    Jon
     
  2. jdombrow

    jdombrow Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2002
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Have you taken the strings off while searching for the rattle or buzz? Is your truss rod loose (or broken)? A wire rattling against the inside of the body? Think of every component on and inside your bass, and eliminate them one at a time.

    You could try the old auto mechanic's method. Take a screwdriver and place the end of the handle against your ear. Then place the tip of the screwdriver in various places on your instrument to see if you can isolate the rattle. You should probably wrap the tip in tape, or use some other method to avoid scratching to nicking the wood. Maybe use a wooden dowel instead of a screwdriver.

    Good luck,
    JD
     
  3. metron

    metron Fluffy does not agree

    Sep 12, 2003
    Lakewood Colorado
    Actually thats a good idea to take off the strings, havent tried that yet. It seems as though its the entire string rattling from end to end but no particular place in between. I thought it might be the truss rod rattling... Thanks for the suggestion!

    Jon
     
  4. Does the stringray have a string guide over the D and G? If it was the truss rod, I'd have thought you'd have noticed the rattle on all four strings. The Stringray, like Fenders, doesn;t have a raked back headstock, so the strings don't pass over the nut at a particularly sharp angle.

    How many string windings are there over the post on the E and A? If there's too much string, then the angle won't be sufficient to exert any real pressure on the nut and the string will rattle.
     
  5. Did this problem just suddenly appear out of the clear blue for no apparent reason? This isn't one of those situations where you had the bass shipped from Alaska to Cuba or something, is it?
     
  6. metron

    metron Fluffy does not agree

    Sep 12, 2003
    Lakewood Colorado
    Thats a great point. There is a string tree over the D and G strings. I checked to see if they were vibrating by holding my hand over the strings between the nut and the posts and it did not stop the rattle. Also I was thinking if that was the problem it wouldnt rattle on a fretted note but it does. I tend to use a lot of winding on the tuning posts but it always goes down to keep a good angle over the nut. Thanks for the suggestion!

    Jon
     
  7. metron

    metron Fluffy does not agree

    Sep 12, 2003
    Lakewood Colorado
    lonote49: no it didnt start suddenly doing this. maybe a few weeks after i bought the bass. i replaced the strings because i thought it was a loose winding on the E. it went away (mostly) but as the new strings got some play on them it came back. i have changed the strings again since then with a different brand and the same thing happened!

    Jon
     
  8. In that case, I would tend to agree with what hstiles says in the post right before mine. I've had that happen and it is exactly as you described.
     
  9. Mud Flaps

    Mud Flaps

    Feb 3, 2003
    Norton, MA
    How many centimeters off the fretboard are your strings?
     
  10. Figjam

    Figjam

    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    centimeterS? plural?
     
  11. metron

    metron Fluffy does not agree

    Sep 12, 2003
    Lakewood Colorado
    I adjust my action to probably less than half a centimeter. Actually I use mm scale steel ruler for measurements and lately I have been using feeler guages to get my string height very accurate. My action is such that its low but high enough that it doesnt buzz against the frets even when I dig in or slap. I am absolutely 100% certain its not the strings buzzing against the frets. :meh:
     
  12. is it the bridge saddles?
     
  13. metron

    metron Fluffy does not agree

    Sep 12, 2003
    Lakewood Colorado
    nah the saddles are solid. i set their height and make sure they arent crooked because that may have been the problem. i thought it was the saddle springs at first but when i hold my hand across them while the string is audibly rattling, it doesnt go away. im starting to think it might be a loose truss rod... :confused:
     
  14. What would happen if you removed the strings, put some masking tape (or whatever) on the tuners and bridge so they wouldn't rattle, and shook the instrument? I'd think you'd hear the trussrod rattle, don't you? I think a loose trussrod, though, is kind of a remote possibility.
     
  15. metron

    metron Fluffy does not agree

    Sep 12, 2003
    Lakewood Colorado
    yeah your right it should rattle when i pick it up i would think but it doesnt do that. this is a real bummer. the bass is solid and doesnt rattle when shaken. its the strings themselves rattling because the sound is being amplified. i cant pinpoint the source because the string rattles from end to end. the only way i can describe it is that it sounds like the saddle springs buzzing but its not them... :(
     
  16. Have you looked at the bridge, and made sure it wasn't the springs raddiling against that Intonation screw? (assuning MM basses have bridges that have springs)
     
  17. metron

    metron Fluffy does not agree

    Sep 12, 2003
    Lakewood Colorado
    yeah thats what i meant when i was talking about the saddle springs buzzing. i can hold them down and i still get the same rattle. its so odd and its source is undiscernable. im going try to fix it myself still but much longer and im going to call EB....
     
  18. Does this happen only when you hit the open strings or does it happen when you fret them, too? Are your new strings a smaller gauge than the ones you removed?
     
  19. metron

    metron Fluffy does not agree

    Sep 12, 2003
    Lakewood Colorado
    lonote:

    the buzz occurs at every fret on the a and e strings and at the open string. there is no difference in the volume of the buzz at different frets also. the string guage i use now is lighter but its made no difference. i had EB slinkies on it originally and i tried rotos (a little heavier) and i put the EB strings back on. i did adjust the action for the difference in string guage though...
     
  20. Josh Curry

    Josh Curry

    May 29, 2003
    Frisco, TX
    Here's a very odd idea. I had this happen to me on a bass once. The string itself was rattling. This can happen if the windings come loose just the slightest bit and seperate from the core. I know it sounds weird, but it happends. This is definitely a problem if you're one of those guys who clips your string before bending the end to wrap around the tuner. The force exerted on the winding just before it splits can actually run the length of the string and cause it to seperate from the core. It's not even noticable at first but you'll notice an audible rattle when it's played. This would explain why you can't tell where it's coming from, because it's coming from the entire length of the string. You can test this theory by taking the string off and winding it on a different bass that you know never rattles.

    Just another idea to make you guys think, hehe :)