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Nut snapped while playing...

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by steele1, Mar 26, 2013.

  1. steele1


    Jan 8, 2010
    I have a mexican fender jazz bass and I just had it set up about two months ago. The nut on the part that holds the G snapped off in the middle of playing. I've looked around and most people say a new one is like $6 and only takes about 10 minutes to fix if they have one pre-cut for your bass. But I dont understand how it wouldn't require another set up. Dont all the strings have to be removed to replace it, and wouldnt that mess up the set up? Also I'm worried its just not going to feel the same after.

    One other thing is one of the screws for the G string saddle had fallen out and when I got it set up they just used one they had to replace it and it never really looked like it was long enough, could this be a reason why it broke? I don't have $90 to upgrade my bridge right now. Thanks for any help
  2. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Well, if the new nut is cut just like the old one, you're good to go. No need to do another setup. And they are easy to cut, or sand, or shave down any number of ways. Just make the new one look exactly like the old one without the break.
  3. steele1


    Jan 8, 2010
    Well I have no idea where it went when it snapped off and I wouldn't be comfortable doing anything to one myself. Is it going to be difficult to find a pack of the new ones pre-cut in any shop I'd be hoping to get it repaired at?
  4. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    If you lack the skills to do the job yourself, take it to a shop that does set-up and repair and have them replace your nut.
  5. steele1


    Jan 8, 2010
    So im probably going to need to pay for another set up then?
  6. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    They should be able to put a new nut on for you without any major setup changes. Maybe a tweak of the truss rod at most.
  7. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Any good shop should be able to make a new one based on what you have left of the original. But the bad news it that it will probably cost you more than a setup anyway.
  8. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    For the low price of a replacement nut, I would get a Tusc Graphtech nut and at least try it. I have one on my MIM P bass and it is great. The hardest part is getting the old nut out and cleaning up the slot. If you are not comfortable doing this, then get a pro to do it.

    Look... is that a Fedora over there? While the hardcore are distracted, once you take out the nut, just try the new nut without gluing it in. The strings will hold it in place. If it works then you can worry about gluing it in later.

    Sorry, my mistake, it was only a Fender. I always gets basses starting with F mixed up.
  9. musicman666


    Sep 11, 2011
    I say you do it yourself. Buy a nut, sand it to shape, and follow Fender's set-up guide on their web-site. Use common sense and don't force anything. It's only a bass guitar, wood, glue, wires, nothing to be intimidated about. Plenty of video's on Youtube as well! Plenty of info on TB come to think about it! Good luck!
  10. JLS


    Sep 12, 2008
    Emeryville, Ca
    I setup & repair guitars & basses
    Repeat after me: There is no such thing, as a precut, drop-in nut.

    Taking this to heart, will make for much less gnashing of teeth, later.
  11. T_Bone_TL


    Jan 10, 2013
    NW Mass/SW VT
    MHO - go read, twice, everything in or linked to from the sticky in this forum, "ALL BASIC SETUP QUESTIONS ANSWERED HERE"

    Then order yourself the right screw for your bridge, and a new nut (I'd lean to tusq from what I have read, though I'm pretty sure I still have the original plastic, and no burning need to replace it while it's intact.)

    If you are not comfortable doing a setup, how are you ever going to change strings?

    Dive in and learn a little.
  12. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    There's a pretty big difference between a basic setup and fitting a new nut. No shame in having it done professionally.
  13. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars

    A pre cut nut just means string spacing is predetermined. It will drop right in, but your action at the nut will be extremely high to the point where its almost unplayable. If you don't have a set of nut files, I would just pay someone to install a new nut. A basic set up will probably be needed afterwards.
  14. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    Fender makes a pre-cut nut for MIA P-basses. I used it once and it only needed a slight adjustment. I had a MIJ 51 RI that went all kinds of crazy at a practice once. I finally noticed the nut has snapped in half and I could not play the bass again. I took it to a shop to have a new nut cut and installed. They said the factory nut's ratius was cut to shallow like a half moon and the strings tention snapped it in half.
  15. RSBBass


    Jun 11, 2011
    You could always try gluing it back together. If not the Graphtec should be as close to drop in as you are going to get. Rather than use nut files to adjust it, if it is too high (and it probably will be) sand the bottom till its right.
  16. JLS


    Sep 12, 2008
    Emeryville, Ca
    I setup & repair guitars & basses
    It would work much better, to wrap some sandpaper around the correctly sized drillbits, than to try to sand the bottom of the nut.
  17. R&B

    R&B Both kinds of music: Rhythm AND Blues! Supporting Member

    Great thread. I just bought an American Special slightly used. The factory nut is slotted too wide on the A string, so it rattles like crazy with TI flats.

    Quick fix was to put a little piece of rubber band alongside the A string in the slot. Stopped the rattle. But I will need a new nut. Probably not Fender...? Might have the same issue. Tusq by Graph Tech gets love here. Gonna have to do it myself as the local luthier shop just closed. Further suggestions or links welcome. Wish me luck!
  18. fraublugher


    Nov 19, 2004
    ottawa, ontario, canada
    music school retailer
    30 dollars tops to have someone do it for you, offer them 20.

    Be sure to ask for the nut replacement surgery special.:)
  19. 202dy

    202dy Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2006

    The professional tech will say no.

    The amateur might say yes.

    Which do you want working on your guitar?
  20. hsech

    hsech Work hard. My Social Security needs a raise.

    Jun 27, 2012
    Central Iowa

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