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Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by SweetBabyJames, Dec 30, 2006.

  1. Hope i'm in the right place for this! I went to garywillis.com to learn about intonation and how to adjust. My question is, if my strings are in tune with a tuner (Sabine) and i go to the 12th fret, the tuner reads that the strings are higher than open, is that sharp ? I tried the Gary Willis instructions, but everytime i go to the 12th fret, it reads the same, even after adjusting. Anyone know what the problem is? :help:
    Thanks, SweetBabyJames
  2. Scottgun


    Jan 24, 2004
    South Carolina
    To clarify, you are saying that even after moving the bridge saddle forward and back there is no change in the 12th-fret pitch, right? You are fretting the 12th note and not just playing the harmonic, right?

  3. Thats right. I'm sure i'm doing it right. A phillips screwdriver, moving the saddle , no change. I did have to retune after i adjusted it, but when i fretted the 12th, it was the same. (higher on my tuner) Also, i'm not sure if this matters, but i'm tuned down to D# (from an E) to acomadate my singer. So when i tune, the E string reads D#. The others are also tuned down as well. 4 strings.
  4. did you retune the open string after you adjusted the sadle?
  5. Yes, i retuned. I'm confussed about all this. It's too much like rocket surgery! LOL
  6. prsbass


    Oct 13, 2006
    I've noticed that sometimes when you turn the screw it just turns out because the string is tight on the saddle not letting it move.
    Check to make sure the saddle is moving. Sometimes things are so out it can take a few turns too.
  7. Scottgun


    Jan 24, 2004
    South Carolina

    +1 I recall this now. If I was tightening the saddle would move by virtue of the threads pulling it back. When loosening the saddle would just sit there and I had to pull the saddle manually to its new position. That is, when tightening the bridge moves while the adjustment screw stays in the same place. When loosening, the string holds the saddle in place and the adjustment screw moves out the end of the bridge.
  8. And that would make sense since he should be trying to move the saddle back to make the pitch lower. That'd be a nice easy fix!
  9. you scale length might be too long too, if you move the saddles up (closer to the nut) as far as they go and you dont get an E, maybe try moving the bridge....
  10. deaf pea

    deaf pea

    Mar 24, 2005
    Cuernavaca 1 hr S Mexico City
    Seymour Duncan/Basslines SMB-5A Endorsing Artist
    some of you guys aren't reading good OR are too messed up (it's New Years Eve, oops, Now it's 2007!!!) . . . the OP said that the fretted note at the 12th fret is HIGHER than it should be. That means he has to lengthen the string = tighten the saddle screw, move the saddle further away from the nut. OK?

    BTW, OP, don't mess with the mounting location of the bridge just yet . . . you need to BE SURE of what you're doing . . . you could really **** things up. Good Luck!
  11. My mistake, i thought he said he was getting D# at the 12th with the E string tuned to E, my bad, yea, move the saddles as far from the nut as possible and see what happens
  12. Scottgun


    Jan 24, 2004
    South Carolina

    OR we are just making a general comment about making sure the saddle is actually moving somewhere when the screw is turned. It is fairly understandable in loosening (hence the example) but I suppose it is somehow possible in tightening as well.


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