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Maple fretboard a problem?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Excelite, Nov 10, 2005.

  1. Excelite


    Mar 18, 2005
    Near DFW, Texas
    Well lately I've been really trying hard to sell my Fender Active P-bass Deluxe, but today I ran into a cab/head that I would almost rather have than a new bass. So, if I do decide to keep this bass, I want to fix the "problem" I had with the bass in the first place.

    To me it seems like there is a lot of unwanted fretbuzz, but I dont know why. Could it be the maple fretboard? I still have the original strings on there, but I dont see how the strings could make THAT big of a difference as far as fretbuzz goes. I used to think it was the fact that it has active electronics, but it does it even with the bass off, so what could it be? Anyone have a similar bass that could help?

  2. could be lots of things. these will fix the problem. get some new strings and have the bass set up by someone who knows what they are doing. truss rod may need adjustment. replace the 9 volt battery. good as new.
  3. old strings have caused fretbuzz for me in the past.
  4. Fretbuzz is a setup issue. Post in that forum.
  5. Dbassmon


    Oct 2, 2004
    Rutherford, NJ
    Fretbuzz is a fret problem. A fret is raised or the fingerboard is uneven causing the fret to raise.

    First thing is have a professional repairman sight the neck to see if you have too much reverse bow. That can be fixed with a truss rod turn counter clockwise.

    If that is not what is causing the buzz then you might have a fret that has become unseated. That to can be fixed by a repairman. If your finger board is twisted or uneven then all the frets have to be pulled, the neck leveled and refretted. That can cost a few hundred. The bass can be made to play perfectly.
    That's pretty much all the possibilities.

    By the way, strings last a couple of days if you are giging every night, a couple of weeks if you are playing once a week. Change those old strings!
  6. grygrx

    grygrx Lookout! Here comes the Fuzz! Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 24, 2003
    Columbia, MO
    This is opinion and has no relationship to the fact of how long strings "last".
  7. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    I'm with Dbass on the 2nd paragraph of his post. If the bass has fret buzz that seems to have got worse, the buzz is in the 2nd to 6/7th fret region (which is where we tend to spend a fair bit of time) and the bridge hasn't been tinkered with, the most likely cause is the neck shifting to a situation where there's too much backward bow. It's nothing to do with the fretboard material or your active electronics. If it's a bad fret or frets the problem is more likely to be quite localised, rather than over a larger part of the neck. So, if the buzz is where I described...

    Check the relief by fretting a string with your left hand at the 1st fret and simultanously with your right hand at about the 15th. Any clearance between the string and the frets around fret7/8? You should just be able to see a gap (about 1mm or so) if the bow is right. If the string is flat against all the frets (and I suspect it may well be from what you're saying), the truss rod needs to be slackened off a little. Have a tech do this if you're not sure about doing it yourself.

    And get some new strings!! Some people say they last a few days or weeks, other say a couple of months, but if they're YEARS old they're almost certainly shot.
  8. Most likely the neck. Back the truss rod off just a freckle and see if it cleans up. Maple boards are always just a bit noisier than dark woods.
  9. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    This is definitely a setup issue. Let's give it another chance in our Setup forum.
  10. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    James Jamerson and Bernard Edwards never changed their strings in all the many years they were playing on huge numbers of gigs and sessions - I've used strings successfully for 3 years or more!! :meh:
  11. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    I put a new set of flatwounds on my P bass because the old ones were over 3 years old. I took them right back off and reistalled the old strings. The older they get the better I like the sound of them. YMMV.

    I couldn't afford to change strings every two weeks, much less every two or three days.

    I've never heard of anyone changing them as often as Dbassmon suggests.

    Dbassmon: do you want to sell a few dozen sets of your "old" worn out strings at a good price?
  12. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Yes it's funny - I was changing a set of old strings at Jazz Summerschool and one of the Jazz pros (Tutors) asked if he could have them - he wanted to give me some money, but of course I said no and gave them to him freely - he told me later how he really liked the sound and went on to use them on an album he recorded - which I have subsequently bought - realy nice bass sound!! ;)
  13. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    For buzzing, couldn't you just raise the action a little? My bass had a bit of a buzzing problem, and raising the action seems to have fixed it. Might be better than paying for a setup.

  14. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005

    Yeah, I have to disagree with that, too - I like a fairly bright sound, and like my strings best when they're only a couple of days played in... I play nearly every day, and get about 2 months out of a set of Boomers...

    - georgestrings