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Help! Buzzing G string...

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by nonsqtr, Dec 19, 2003.

  1. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    I think I've narrowed this down to the nut itself. Here the sitch: 5 string bass, the lower four strings are perfect, but the G string buzzes when I hit it hard in just the right way. If I "pop" it vertically, like when I'm slapping, the sound is fine, but if I yank on it like when I'm hitting the string really hard fingerstyle, it buzzes at the nut, kind of a flabby sound. It sounds like the witness point isn't quite making a good solid connection. Am I on the right track here, do I need to replace the nut? What specifically is the problem, does the groove have to be dug deeper, or is the groove "too deep" already? Is there any way to fix it without buying and installing a new nut?
  2. notabob


    Sep 20, 2003
    cincinnati ohio
    im not sure what ur headstock configuration and such is like, but...

    once i had the same problem but w/ an a string. i took it to mars or somewhere to get a new nut installed and apparently i had cut the string too short so it didnt wind around the tuning peg enough times. this caused it to buzz because the propper presure wasnt being applied behing the nut. try pressing down on the g string behind the nut and play it open. if your string is too short then it wont buzz anymore. if not...im not qualified to answer any further. if the strings too short then buy a new g string and dont cut it as short. hope all works out well for ya.
  3. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    Thanks notabob, that's a good idea. I tried your suggestion, and unfortunately it doesn't seem to fix the problem. The string still buzzes when I push down behind it. I can't push down very far, 'cause there's a headstock in the way, but I'm sure at least the back side of the string has some considerable vertical tension on it.

    So that would reinforce my opinion that it's the nut itself, or more precisely the way the little slot for the G string is cut into it. I'm wondering if there isn't some way to fix this by filling it, like maybe with a little dental cement or something, and then re-cutting it.
  4. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    You can use a mixture of super glue and baking soda to build up the notch. Just be sure to allow sufficient curing time before putting the string back in the notch.

    A quicker repair that works well is to just put a small piece of paper match in the notch under the string.

    Hope this helps.

    Harrell S.
  5. Gander


    Jun 5, 2002
    You might want to check your g string clearance at the first fret. Press the g string between the 2nd and 3rd frets. At the same time tap the g string on top of the 1st fret. If you get a thud, the nut slot is too low and could be the source of your buzz. If you get a ring when you tap it, you have clearance. I like a clearance of about the thickness of a sheet of paper on the g string. If you have to fill the slot as pkr2 suggests, it's a good idea to place a strip of masking tape either side of the nut to keep super glue off the headstock and
    fingerboard. Hope this helps.
  6. asian fish

    asian fish

    Mar 18, 2003
    I had the exact same problem, I just shoved a piece of paper under the string too.
    It works extreamly well.....
    Im looking in to how to fix it properly but you could probably just leave the paper there, it works that well.
  7. dougray

    dougray Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2002
    western maryland
    try a thicker guage G string,? good-luck