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Need help with sudden fret buzz

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Silvent, Jan 4, 2021.


  1. Silvent

    Silvent

    Jan 4, 2021
    Hi.
    I just had my bass at a shop for complete setup cus I was having some issues with fret buzz. They did a solid job and it was sounding and playing great when I got it back. The bass is tuned in D standard and was set up accordingly.

    The problem started again when my brother was visiting and borrowed my bass and tuned it up to E standard since that's what he was comfortable with. I tuned it back to D standard pretty quick after and now I got some nasty feet buzz again on the lowest string (9ish+ frets) .

    Is this most likely unwanted bow in the neck due to added tension in the strings, cus it got tuned back and forth to quick?

    What is the best course of action to remedy this without having it sent back to the shop?
     
  2. bass2109

    bass2109

    Mar 12, 2020
    Is it ONLY the lowest string, and all the frets 9th and above? Im asking to rule out any other possibilities.
     
  3. Silvent

    Silvent

    Jan 4, 2021
    As far as I noticed playing yesterday it was only the lowest string and most frets from 9ish and down to the body. Will da a double check when I get home in a few hours.
     
  4. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    Towards the body is up, not down. Think of the pitch of the notes, not vertical position. And to be sure, the lowest string is the fattest one (the lowest pitch) not the one that is closest to the floor. So we are talking about buzz above the ninth fret on the E string (tuned to D) right?
     
  5. Silvent

    Silvent

    Jan 4, 2021
    Yes, you are correct. Lowest string (E tuned to D) 9th fret and UP towards the body
     
  6. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    What's the height of the E string at the last fret. How does it compare to the height of the A string at the same location?
     
  7. Silvent

    Silvent

    Jan 4, 2021
    They are the same height, about 6mm.
    I can mention that I run 55-110 gauhe strings, if that matters..?
     
  8. bass2109

    bass2109

    Mar 12, 2020
    try straightening the neck. do it little by little and keep checking after a turn or so.
     
  9. Silvent

    Silvent

    Jan 4, 2021
    Wouldn't this bring the string closer to the frets and cause more buzz?
     
  10. dwizum

    dwizum Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2018
    Did you get specs on the setup that was done recently? Can you rule out the saddle changing positions unintentionally? Knowing exactly what measurements the bass was set up to can help you measure now and determine what changed. On some bridges, the saddle screws can slowly creep as the bass is played, causing an issue like you're seeing.

    How are you making that "about 6mm" measurement? Can you show us a photo?
     
  11. vaesto

    vaesto

    Jun 21, 2010
    IMHO it is a combination of too low action and/or too flat neck. Either llightly loosen the truss rod (1/8 of a turn counter-clockwise or even less) or rise the E string saddle.
    I don't believe serious problems like kink or ski-jump can develop so fast and under one string only.
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2021
  12. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    Yes. Don't go fiddling with the truss rod unless the relief is not right.
    If the problem is from the 9th fret up, adjusting the truss rod is not the answer. Relief is for the first 3 or 4 frets. Once you get to the 5th fret and up clearance issues are addressed at the bridge or by levelling uneven frets.
     
  13. bass2109

    bass2109

    Mar 12, 2020
    Turnaround made a good point. I was thinking about a ski jump situation, but then again it wont be fixed with a change in relief. Apologies!
     
  14. Silvent

    Silvent

    Jan 4, 2021
    I'm sorry, I measured again and it's 3mm.
    I got no such specs from the shop.
     

    Attached Files:

  15. Silvent

    Silvent

    Jan 4, 2021
    OK, thanks. I will try to adjust the action from the bridge then and see if that helps.
     
  16. Silvent

    Silvent

    Jan 4, 2021
    Looks like adjusting the height at the saddle solved the issue. The tuning must have pulled and loosened the grip of the screw holding the saddle for that string.! Thanks alot.
    Won't be so hesitant to tinker around a bit with my bass next time.
     
    vaesto likes this.
  17. dwizum

    dwizum Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2018
    The saddle height screws will sometimes creep over time. Think about it this way - your bass is a giant vibrating object, so of course it's natural that small, low friction fasteners with very little torque on them will dance around a bit. If you find that this issue repeats in the days/weeks/months to come, you may want to put a tiny drop of low strength loctite on the screws to keep them from changing position.
     
  18. What @dwizum said. If you do decide to use Loctite make sure you use blue on the saddle height screws. If you use red you’ll have a very solid bridge, indeed. :D
     
  19. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
    May 14, 2021

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