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my bass is buzzing like a fly

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by trocadero, Aug 2, 2005.


  1. trocadero

    trocadero

    Jun 12, 2005
    Gamleby, Sweden
    I got hold of this bass, it had been laying around for 20 years almost without anyone playing it:
    http://www.talkbass.com/forum/showthread.php?t=193020
    and took it to a luthier to fix a whole lot of things.
    When I first got it the bottom had losened. He fixed that, change the bridge, the strings. I got it back, it started to ramble quite loud around A(in every octave) so I took it back to him. He fixed that and said that he had put in extra woodblocks where they where needed and removed a couple of old fixings that he didn't think was necessay and now this:

    Aweek after I got it back it has started to buzz(when I play from the lowest A to the G-string B. It's not the ratteling that was before, just a little buzz. Like a fly is trapped inside...
    Now, if a just put my indexfinger lightly on a certian spot(the center of the back, 2/3 way up, it has a crack from almost the bottom of the back up to this point) the buzzing is gone.

    Now this guy is backed up so I wont get my bass ready in a couple of weeks if a decied to get it fixed and I'm starting at a new music(school) the 22:th this august. Can I just attach like a piece of gum(or something more aproprite) to the spot I'm talking about or must I fix it properly. Is it dangerous to play it if I dont get it fixed?
     
  2. I can't tell from your pic whether that's a flat back or not. If it is, it's more than likely one of the three cross braces that live in the backs of flat-backs. The sound-post sits on the middle one, and no amount of gum is gonna give any relief to you or the bass. If that's what it is, the top or the back will have to be removed and the braces re-glued. Flat-backs are famous for this.
    Please don't get any ideas about screwing the back down to the braces!
     
  3. uptonbass

    uptonbass Proprietor, Upton Bass String Instrument Co.

    Oct 8, 2002
    Mystic CT
    Founder UptonBass.com
    Totally agreed AND even if the work is dead on the money, basses that undergo MAJOR restoration usually have a settle or break in period. Under most circumstances these instruments will need something adjusted or changed/corrected after the first season as a "new bass". Summer to winter etc.

    But Paul, if I use screws I can just tighten things up as they start to rattle. Then when the top comes off the ribs I can use a few brads to put it back down and oh, oh, oh, :hyper: a lag bolt to hold on the neck!

    Yeah..... its sad, check it out http://www.stringrepair.com/db6.html

    trocadero, looks like you will have a nice bass once it is 100 percent. I like the F holes!
     
  4. trocadero

    trocadero

    Jun 12, 2005
    Gamleby, Sweden
    whats with the f-holes? I think they are strangly cut because they dont seem to line up 100% verticly.
     
  5. It looks like the bridge is way too small for the bass for one thing. Way too much space between the bridge feet and the holes. Obviously, everything needs to be lined up: Bridge, sound post and bass bar.
     
  6. nicklloyd

    nicklloyd Supporting Member/Luthier

    Jan 27, 2002
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    well, the ff hole placement might be wider than usual... the bridge may in fact line up with the bar... we can't tell from these pictures. what is your bridge height, by the way?
     
  7. trocadero

    trocadero

    Jun 12, 2005
    Gamleby, Sweden
    that's why I dont want to bring it back to the same guy. My guy doesn't seem to be that good at setting up the bass. The string height is 11 mm on E and 8 mm on G which is to high to be filed off. The bridge is as you've said, not lined up with the f-holes, its to far down which makes the mensur longer than it should be. The string lenght right now is 110 cm(43,3") and its a 3/4 bass.

    He didn't know how to tell if it was D-mensur or Eb-mensur.
    He didn't know if the strings would sound better with time, right now the whole instrument sound more like its made out of metal then wood, it was restrung with Thomstics about 2 weeks ago.

    My current luthier is very nice to me and very cheap but the more I hang around here and learn things, the more do I realize that he's not that good...

    EDIT: the bridge is almost 6 " high
     
  8. trocadero

    trocadero

    Jun 12, 2005
    Gamleby, Sweden
    thank you very much for this!
    I couldn't decide if I should get my bass back to the same guy or change luthier. Now I've decided to take it somewhere else.
    I was thinking of doing what you recomended, call a bassplayer at the local symphony orchestra, infact I know one through a friend. I guess my bass deserves the best luthier I can get hold of!
     
  9. uptonbass

    uptonbass Proprietor, Upton Bass String Instrument Co.

    Oct 8, 2002
    Mystic CT
    Founder UptonBass.com
    Ken...MUST? Isn't that a bit of a sweeping statement? IF this bass has a self bar, which I bet it does, AND its probably really skimpy, I don't like the idea of a taller bridge without other things considered.

    A nice tall bridge will help you keep away from the c's with the bow but I hate to see the bass suffer from all that downward pressure with a weak self bar.

    I hate the wedge under the fingerboard idea and hate to see it on any bass.

    I still love the ff's on that bass, elegant, sexy.....but yeah way out there...lets hope the bar is correct. Also, don't count on those nothces as your guidance for bridge placement as they are often wrong.

    I think this bass will be a gem with a FULL restoration. Not a stuffy "papers" bass but a real players bass.....
     
  10. trocadero

    trocadero

    Jun 12, 2005
    Gamleby, Sweden
    pardon me guys but english is not my language you'll have to explain it to me simply.

    Where there 3 alternativs? Can you explain more about the procedures, should the neck angle be changed? What is a wedge shim for example?

    What kind of money are we talking about to get something like this fixed? How much will it be worth when it is fully fixed?

    I live in Sweden so the prices maybe very different but I'd like to get a hint.


    How do you calculate where the bridge is suppose to stand?
     
  11. trocadero, since English isn't your main language, and in the interest of you understanding Kens post...I think he was typing a little too fast and misspelled integral as untegral.
    Integral is correct and as he says, it mean the bass bar is carved out of top or, is actually part of the top.
    Gary's use of 'self bar' is a new one on me. Obviously, Ken has heard it before, but I haven't.
    Any luthiers ever hear that one before?
     
  12. a. meyer

    a. meyer

    Dec 10, 2004
    portland, oregon
    Two words: pop rivets.
     
  13. uptonbass

    uptonbass Proprietor, Upton Bass String Instrument Co.

    Oct 8, 2002
    Mystic CT
    Founder UptonBass.com
    Self-bar AKA Integral Bass Bar, just my lingo and exactly what I meant.

    Ken, understood on not wanting to ruin a pretty button or a neck graft without it being nessecary.