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tuning problem

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by Beeboss, Mar 14, 2013.

  1. Beeboss


    Mar 14, 2013
    Hi everyone
    I am having a small tuning issue with my bass. What happens is that one string (the D) doesn't change its pitch very well when I
    I try to tune it up or down, it tends to stick and then it goes about a 1/4 tone in one go. It makes it difficult to get the string perfectly in tune.
    I am suspecting that it is not a problem with the machine head but just that the string is not moving over the bridge properly. Someone was telling me that a good way of dealing with this is to get some pencil graphite on the bridge to act as a lubricant for the string and I wanted to check out if that was a sensible idea or not before I try it. I don't want to risk messing up my new expensive strings and the problem is not really bad enough to merit a special trip to my repair guy. Many thanks for any advice offered.
  2. MostlyBass

    MostlyBass Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Oak Park, IL
    This is normal. Put some pencil graphite in the notch.. But - anytime your string is sharp and you tune down, give that string a little tug and that will do it. I teach this as standard practice for all my students and I do it on my hand carved Solano bass with Sloane tuners... Nothing to worry about and it's normal.

    If tuning UP is also giving you an issue, try putting some pencil graphite in the bridge notch. If there's STILL an issue make sure both the but and bridge notches are not pinching the string.
  3. GKevinK


    May 23, 2008
    Glen Burnie, MD
    Ok, so we're not talking about the bridge here, but the nut.

    I use GraphitALL Guitar Lube whenever I install strings, which seems to help.

    If the string is sticking that seriously, though, I'd inspect the string closely to make sure you don't have a nick on the string or in the cut that needs attention (or replacement).
  4. Beeboss


    Mar 14, 2013
    Thanks so much for the quick replies. I tried putting some graphite in there (at the nut and bridge) and it now seems much better, on first impressions anyway. Can't see any nicks or pinching going on but I am no expert.

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