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Fretless buzz at 5th fret "D" string

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by kirkdickinson, Dec 17, 2012.

  1. kirkdickinson

    kirkdickinson Supporting Member

    I have a Michael Kelly Dragonfly fretless. When I got it the guy at the store set it up for me. I told him that I like very low action.

    I like it but there is buzz that I can't control by changing finger pressure when I play the G at the 5th fret position on the "D" string. Buzz is strong at that one place, also weak at Ab, but I can control that by firmly fretting with the less meaty part of my finger.

    I can't figure out if this needs more relief or less? If it was buzzing before the 5th, I would think, more relief and if it was buzzing in the middle, it would need less.

    Which is it? Or does it need higher action.

  2. FretlessMainly


    Nov 17, 2010
    If it's just that one spot, relief doesn't sound like the answer to me. It's possibly a slight inconsistency in the plane of the fingerboard just bridge-side of the note G (and Ab). You might try a bit of 0000 steel wool to see if you can even out the board, but you can get yourself into trouble pretty quickly if you over-do it or if the problem is something else.

    I'm not sure what type of bridge it has, but if you can raise the action just on the D to see if the buzz goes away, that might pinpoint that it is a discrete high point on the board. If you have to raise the whole bridge, so it be it - it's just a trouble-shoot. If you don't feel comfortable doing it yourself, if it is just a small area that needs taking down, it should be a fairly easy and inexpensive job for a good luthier. Depends on whether the board is finished too.
  3. Are the inlays loose? I own a Dragonfly and while I marvel at the beautiful inlays your post leads me to ask...
  4. kirkdickinson

    kirkdickinson Supporting Member

    I haven't noticed any loose, I will examine it closer.