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Scrapping Noise on Strings When Changing Frets

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by wannabe_bassist, Apr 13, 2002.

  1. wannabe_bassist

    wannabe_bassist Guest

    Jan 25, 2002
    I am sure it is my newbie technique here, but my fingers (no callouses yet) are making quite a bit of noise when I change fret positions. Even lifting straight off the strings. I get noise fretting too when I push the string down on the fret. I cannot go too slow otherwise.......its too slow.

    I am sure its me and not the bass needing adjustment.

    What can I do to stop this unwanted sound?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. ashton


    Jan 4, 2001
    get some mega callouses going and the problem will probably go away. well not mega but just get some skin hardening in your tips.

    also i have found out that new strings do that sometimes, and old strings have done it to me a few times.

  3. I think I know what you're talking about, and this happens to me. As far as I can tell, its nothing with the bass itself, the tone is just turned up and this is a result. But after working up better technique, the noises begin to go away, but beside that, it seems that to anyone besides bassists, the noises are unnoticable. So don't worry about it right now.
  4. wannabe_bassist

    wannabe_bassist Guest

    Jan 25, 2002
    I noticed that on my bass (Yamaha RBX-270), when the treble is turned up it gets more noticeable but I kind of like the sound that way too.

    I also have yet to play with the GK controls to see if I can do anything about it there. I still have "soft" fingers right now! No hardtips, so to say.

    I am new to the bass guitar and music in general, but I am fascinated by it and love the bass.

    You folks are the greatest! I love this website too, lots of great info.........
  5. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Try to stay "in position" as long as possible and not shift about all over the place and then when you do have to move - make sure that you are muting the strings - probably easiest with with your right hand - although muting is a subject in itself and would probably need a whole other thread to do it justice! ;)

    It is something that comes with experience - it's quite difficult to explain in writing and is much easier to demonstrate one-to-one. It is the sort of thing that a good teacher would be able to help you with as part of overall "good technique".

    Of course some people like the noise or integrate it into their technique - so Jean-Jacques Burnel of the Stranglers got loads of noise - but in the band it was just "his sound". The thing is to make it all musical and part of the way you play - part of your technique.

    It is of course much more noticable when you play on your own and in most loud rock band type situations won't be noticed at all - you will be lucky to make anything heard beyond the drummer and distorted guitarists. ;)

    If you are playing "acoustic" Jazz, for example, then you do have to be far more concerned and of course you can go for less treble on EQ or less-bright strings...lot of things to consider and as I said something that would probably be best addressed one-to-one with a teacher.
  6. wannabe_bassist

    wannabe_bassist Guest

    Jan 25, 2002
    I would love to get with a Bass Teacher. But they are tough to find. Most are guitar players who frown on the bass and do it as an afterthought unfortunately.
  7. lazybassass


    Jan 23, 2002
    yes that sadly is the case sometimes. Just search and make phone calls and try different people out until u find one that suits ur needs. I'd definently recomend lessons they improve ur playing and u learn alot and god knows theres alot ot learn.
  8. Get Flatwound strings...
  9. Regarding the fret rattle, that is perfectly natural for a beginner. If your technique is sound, then after your hands and fingertips adjust the problem will disappear. Promise.

    :( That's bad. Because you need to go "too slow" in order to have good technique.

    Slow it down until the rattles are gone, then practice at that speed. Only speed up when you can do so with perfect control.
  10. Also, after your finger tips calus over, then you will have hardened enough fingers and then after quite a bit more playing, your fingers will be strong and you will be left with very very little scraping noise.
  11. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    With all due respect, I think this is just rubbish! Fret noise etc is down to technique and I can avoid it quiet easily and have never developed callouses. No matter how tough your fingers are, it is very easy to get scraping noises out of a bass if you ignore muting and play it badly enough! ;)
  12. wannabe_bassist

    wannabe_bassist Guest

    Jan 25, 2002
    No kidding?

    I don't understand the muting part and I play badly. Hence my original question. Hoping to get some help from more experienced bassists too.

    So as I move from one fretted position to another, I should also mute the string (all this done in nanoseconds of course). Not sure I understand that. Also, as I press down on the string to fret it, I get the "ding" noise as the string hits the fret. Any slower and it would be pointless to bother as I would be simply playing whole notes. Turning the treble down virtually eliminates this but the sound is much different now.
  13. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Well this could be due to an action that is too high or down to technique - so the more accurately you fret and the way you hold your arm wrist and the part of your fingers you are using to contact the strings all come into play.

    What I was originally trying to say, is that your problem is almost impossible to diagnose via the web and a discussion forum like this; but if I was actually standing in front of you playing your bass, then I could almost certainly spot what is going wrong in a few minutes!

    So, if you had just one lesson with a reasonably good bass teacher, he or she would be able to sort this out and probably give you loads more tips and point out where your technique is hindering you and where it is other things.
  14. wannabe_bassist

    wannabe_bassist Guest

    Jan 25, 2002
    Believe me. I would love to show my bad technique and would accept any suggestions for improvement. Problem is finding a good bass teacher (or any bass teacher for that matter).

    I have lots of poorly done videos and books. The videos are horrible and I doubt I will ever buy another bass guitar video. Books aren't that bad though. But I really need a seasoned bass player to observe me playing so I don't form any bad habits too quickly.

    Nearly impossible to do on the web, of course. But I appreciate everyone's feedback.

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