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Intonating Eastwood EUB-1 fretless

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by tema_79, Jul 30, 2012.


  1. tema_79

    tema_79

    Mar 28, 2012
    Hello.

    I'm having troubles when trying to intonate my Eastwood EUB-1. I do this by tuning the pressed note to octave harmonic on each string (at the position of the 12th fret), but pressed notes remain sharp, now matter how far I move bridge saddles from the nut. I got pretty close on E and A but at the cost of compressing the saddle springs completely and getting a pronounced buzz in the lower register of the neck. Raising the action helped, but fatter strings deformed on the saddles to the degree of exposed cores (which in turn didn't help the tone).

    Do I have some other options, or it is better to leave it at initial state? I've just got a fresh set of flat-wound strings and don't want to screw it. My guess is that the nut action is higher than it should be, and pressing the octave deforms and stretches a string too much, resulting in sharp note. Is my theory plausible?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    IME, your theory is plausible. I play DB and fretless primarily, and excessive string height can definitely cause problems with intonation. I typically look for slightly more fingerboard relief with fretless basses than I do with fretted basses, but that may be because I prefer a clean fretted sound without the buzzing of the strings against the fingerboard often called mwah.

    FWIW, my counsel is to get the instrument set up for optimal playing before you worry about intonation.
     
  3. Stilettoprefer

    Stilettoprefer

    Nov 26, 2010
    Yes. You'll want the nut pretty much level with the fingerboard, IME. And make sure that the break angle over the nut is sufficient.
     
  4. tema_79

    tema_79

    Mar 28, 2012
    Jazzdogg, Stilettoprefer
    Thank you guys. I was suspicious, since nut slots on EUB-1 looked quite like on my fretted Fender neck. I think of the way they make EUB-1 - it is just "unfinished" version of its fretted brother, EEB-1, with the same nut action.
     
  5. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    I cut the not slots until they are about the thickness of a playing card (.010") above the fingerboard.
     
  6. tema_79

    tema_79

    Mar 28, 2012
    Thanks. Just found a guitar tech, thou have no idea of his qualification. Think I'd leave a set of files as a secondary option.
     
  7. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    Before you allow him to do any work on your bass, tell him what you expect, and ask him exactly what he intends to do. If you can't clearly explain what you want, you can't expect him to deliver; if he can't outline a plan of action that makes you comfortable with his ability to do the work, take your bass to someone else.

    If you give him a chance to work on your nut, tell him, in advance, that if he screws up your nut, he will not be paid, and you'll take your bass to someone else. Nuts are easy to replace. So are guitar techs.

    Don't allow anyone to make any irreversible changes to your instrument until they've earned your trust. :)
     
  8. tema_79

    tema_79

    Mar 28, 2012
    Jazzdogg

    Had a talk with a man, seems he knows what he's doing. He's actually not a guitar technician by trade, but a stage engineer in local university theatre.

    And, AFAIK, he's not that easily replaceable, he's the only person in our town who works with guitars on a regular basis.
     
  9. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    Good luck! :)
     
  10. tema_79

    tema_79

    Mar 28, 2012
    Thanks.
     
  11. mongo2

    mongo2

    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    On fretless or DB I've always intonated by ear on the fly. I thought that's pretty common, both of my sons were taught to do that by their instructors.
     
  12. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    It's a lot easier to do when the bass is set up properly. :)
     
  13. tema_79

    tema_79

    Mar 28, 2012
    Yeah. But in my case there is ~1mm string clearance at the nut. Got to setup it anyway.

    BTW, my English is probably not without flaws, what do you mean by "intonate" - play-in-tune? In this post I originally meant a part of setup procedure.
     

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