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STRING BUZZ? ADJUST TRUSS ROD? HELP!!

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by arther daily, Jun 6, 2000.


  1. OK, I've just brought a new bass (Stingray)
    and I've also just moved into a top-floor flat, which is very hot indeed. I think my room (upstairs) is acutally a few degrees hotter than the downstairs rooms, which are inturn alot hotter than my previous home.

    The problem is that my strings have started to buzz. They buzz worst when I play between the 3rd and 9th frets. I spent about two hours carefully adjusting the height of the strings yesterday (the action, am I right?) but to no avail.

    ALso, I dont really want very high action (who does?) When I got the bass, about 2 weeks ago, the action was very low and there was absolutely no buzz whatsoever, so I know it can be set-up perfectly.

    My guess is that the heat of the room causes the neck to swell in someway, meaning that the bass needs a few adjustments(?)
    I read earlier in another thread about some guy who bought a bass and the manufacturers stated that he'd probably HAVE to adjust the truss rod to suit the climate where he lived, so I think I'm on the right track(?)

    My truss rod adjusts from the body-end of the neck. The truss rod is like a screw:

    CLOCKWISE will TIGHTEN the rod, bringing The headstock TOWARDS the bridge(?)

    ANTI-CLOCKWISE will LOOSEN the rod, taking the headstock AWAY from the bridge(?)

    Am I right so far?

    Now, here's where I need help:

    Do I need to TIGHTEN or LOOSEN the truss rod? Bearing in mind where my strings a are buzzing, if this is relevant?

    ...and How much (approximately) to I need to adjust the rod: a quarter, half turn or what? (I'm guessing it will only need a small adjustment)?

    Also, if I make a half turn one way for summer, can I safely make the same adjustment in reverse for the winter, without damageing the neck?
    (I live the UK, the ever-changing weather rules my life!)


    PLEASE HELP, I can't stand the buzzing any longer, but I'm too scared to adjust without any expert advice incase, God forbid, I kill her.

    many, many thanks

    (sorry, there's no cash reward!)
     
  2. Howard,
    This works for me.
    I don't loosen my strings before adjustment, but by the book it is advised that you should.

    If you bought this bass new I would try to put the string height roughly back where is was before making the adjustment. I am assuming it is an EB Stringray and that you haven't adjusted the truss rod yet. I think by what you say you need to slightly loosen
    the truss rod.

    Check your tuning. Install a capo (if you dont have a capo improvise) at the 1st fret, depress the E string at the last fret. With a feeler gauge, check the gap between the bottom of the string and the top of the 8th fret. It should be about .013" Caution: Because of the amount of string tension placed on the neck. It is advisable to loosen the strings before making any actual adjustment. I would loosen the truss rod(anti clockwise) or tighten clockwise, no more than a quarter turn at a time, or even less depending on how far it is out. Tightening the truss rod will slightly lower the strings. After the adjustment is made retune the strings to pitch and recheck the gap with the feeler gauge.

    I find the E.B. Stingray the easiest truss rod to adjust.

    Be carefull, small adjustments at a time, and if you are in any doubt about this, take it to an expert or the shop that you bought it.

    Hope this was some help.
     
  3. Christopher

    Christopher

    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    Spike has some good advice there. However, if, after adjusting the neck, the frets still buzz and/or the action is too high, the nut may need to be shimmed or the frets may need to be dressed. These tasks are best handled by professional luthiers.
     
  4. that is kinda weird, cause when my bass buzzes, it is usually with the higher frets, not the 3-9. i think tightening the truss rod should work, but i would REALLY loosen the strings, this will help a lot (and is much safer)
     
  5. Chris A

    Chris A Chemo sucks!

    Feb 25, 2000
    Manchester NH
    I have to disagree with tallguy. If your strings are buzzing near the top of the neck, it means you need more bow in the neck, so you want to loosen the truss rod. If you have buzz in the higher frets, it means that you have too much bow in the neck and you should tighten the rod.

    Chris A. [​IMG]
    BTW, I have to do this quite often on my Carvin. It's a neck-thru and the changes of season affect it in spring and fall.

    ------------------
    "I have all my own teeth!"--Jenn Scott Poulin

     
  6. :RE: Always remember, Righty- tighty, Lefty- loosey. Seriously, it sounds like your neck has a reverse bow and you may need to loosen the truss rod about a half-turn.But wait, before you charge off,hear me out..Have you considered the environment you are living in?] I also live in a hot humid hellhole, and the same thing was happening to my basses.I was freaking out, thinking about repair costs, but instead I decided to get a room dehumidifier(available at Sears or wal- Mart) and you know what? Within a week they were all back to normal, without any adjustments!Just something to consider..
    Good Luck!


     
  7. good idea - i've already made the adjustments and all is fine - action needs is a little higher - but it's still fine.
    I'd arthe rhave the action a little higher anyhow, it is sooo sensitive to change in temperature etc when it s as low as can be.

    Wal-Mart is called ASDA in the UK - they are contraversial (in the news all the time) over here as they're ruthlessly putting all our local small ye olde village grocers out of business - capitalist, money grabbing, theiving, cold-hearted, businessmen b*stards! ---- just thought you might be interested!?

    Thanks 4 your comments, I'm going to have a look at some dehumidifiers at lunchtime, cause an hours practice in a sweaty room is very unpleasant anyhow!

    cheers!
     
  8. [quote

    Wal-Mart is called ASDA in the UK - they are contraversial (in the news all the time) over here as they're ruthlessly putting all our local small ye olde village grocers out of business - capitalist, money grabbing, theiving, cold-hearted, businessmen b*stards! ---- just thought you might be interested!?]

    Yeah, It seems to be happening everywhere these days,and it is a shame- I saw the same thing happen in Germany,and I sure do miss those old shops where you knew the owner,and
    shopping was more like a visit than a hassle.
    Sigh... [​IMG]



    [This message has been edited by reedo35 (edited July 31, 2000).]
     
  9. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Arfur' - from what you describe, I think you could get a lower action if the nut was raised a little. In my experience, if you get buzz at the nut end, it's a problem with the nut.

    I have talked to the experienced set-up guy in the Bass Centre in Wapping about this before. Raising the nut can be done, but is an involved process; he keeps some ground up dust from old "nuts" (not hazel etc!)which he puts in the slots in the nut with superglue and this raises the string height at the nut very slightly. He just adds more until the buzz stops. It works - I've seen it done - and still allows you to have a low action.