What happened to my bass?!?!?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Gbass75, Sep 28, 2021.

  1. Hey there T.B. Fam...

    So, last night I was changing the strings on my bass...

    As I was doing so, I thought I heard a *click* sort of a sound... next thing I know, my A string will no longer ring or resonate... it seems to have gone completely flat against the fret board, and is unplayable...

    So, what just happened?

    Is it something to do with my truss rod, perhaps?

    Any thoughts on what I've got going on?

    I feel like, after this many years of playing bass, I should know what's happening here... but, I don't.

    Thanks so much everyone!

  2. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Hmm. The truss rod going would affect all strings, I would think. I wonder if the core of the A string broke internally leaving the wrap intact. That'd give you that "dead string" effect (magnetically stuck to the pickups?)
  3. jd56hawk

    jd56hawk Supporting Member

    Sep 12, 2011
    The Garden State
    Since bholder beat me to it, is the string twisted?
  4. Whale


    Apr 12, 2008
    Portland, OR
    Well, since it is only your A string that means your bridge is still intact and secure. It also means that the rest of your bass is likely good, as well.

    The odds are, your string broke or your tuner gave up the ghost. My bet is that the string snapped somewhere along its length or the retainer ferrule on the end of the string released.

    Give a tug on the string and see if it unwraps.
  5. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Yeah let's hope it's the string not the tuner.
  6. James Collins

    James Collins

    Mar 25, 2017
    Augusta, GA
    It's the string in the saddle properly? It sounds like it could have slid out of position?
  7. James Collins

    James Collins

    Mar 25, 2017
    Augusta, GA
    Tuner wouldn't make the string flat against the fretboard. I would think he noticed the tuner doesn't tighten the string. I don't think the core breaking would make the string rest against the fingerboard either.
    BlueTalon, Polfuste and Gbass75 like this.
  8. Gosh... you guys must be right!

    Yes, everything else seems to be intact... tuners, bridge, etc... and the neck didn't suddenly start to crazily bow forward; so I figured it couldn't be the truss rod...

    It never even occurred to me that the core of the string could have snapped, but I think that's just got to be it.

    Of course, if anyone has any other ideas, I'm down to hear them... but, I feel like we've found our answer!

    Thanks to bholder, jd56hawk, and Whale for chiming in!

    Hope all's well with everyone!

  9. I checked the tuners... all good. Checked the nut... at first I thought it had broken, and that was the problem... but, I think it's okay. That said, it looks like it's time for a replacement...

    The tuners appear to be functioning as ever... no problems...

    But, again, there was a little click sound before the string suddenly wasn't operating as expected.

    Any other thoughts?

    And, thanks again!

  10. Ricky Rioli

    Ricky Rioli

    Sep 29, 2020
    Has the nut cracked under that one string? That would allow the string to lie on the frets
  11. jd56hawk

    jd56hawk Supporting Member

    Sep 12, 2011
    The Garden State
    Happened to me once and after a few minutes of frustration, bought the strings online and definitely didn't want to wait a week for another set, I remembered what someone had written about twisted strings and I loosened it enough to find out yes, it was...just a bit of slack to correct the issue at the bridge and voila!
    I hope your problem is easily solved, too.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2021
    C Stone and Gbass75 like this.
  12. You know... I was still kind of thinking that might be it... in fact, when I first inspected the bass, that was what I thought was going on.

    I'll take a pic later tonight... if it's not broken, it certainly is worn waaaaaaaay down. I think I many have mentioned earlier that I was thinking the nut needs replacing...

    As far as the twisting of strings... in all my years, I've never run into this particular issue; though, it's certainly possible. I'll revisit this tonight, and will let you know if this has something to do with it.

    Man... this has been really helpful! Thanks y'all!!!

    If anyone else wants to chime in, I'd be much obliged to ya!

    jd56hawk likes this.
  13. jd56hawk

    jd56hawk Supporting Member

    Sep 12, 2011
    The Garden State
    I think it happens when someone rushes putting on strings, as I've done in the past.
    Gbass75 likes this.
  14. Dan Bone

    Dan Bone

    Apr 4, 2021
    Lancaster, PA
    If the nut is good and the tuners don't look broke/cocked, I'd say the core of that string broke. So what happens now if you tighten that string? What i'm gettin at is if the string wasn't seated well at the BALL END, and under tension it pulled thru the hole and now it is seated. Then it should work and all is well..... No????
    Gbass75 likes this.
  15. Grinderman


    Dec 21, 2013
    Los Angeles
    Did you crimp the string before trimming the off extra at the end, so the core doesn't slip?
    Jefus, Nev375, JettBlaq and 2 others like this.
  16. For sure. In my defense, I wasn't in a hurry... though I may have been a bit distracted... :confused:

    Yes, I surely did...

    Is the "twisting" a sure sign of the core of the string having broken? Or is there not really any way to tell by looking at it.

    Again... been playing bass for 33 years and have never experienced this before. Weird, right?!?

    Thanks again... you folks are awesome!

    jd56hawk likes this.
  17. BobKos

    BobKos Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2007
    I think Ricky Rioli has it. My thought is that either the nut cracked or the replacement strings are a smaller gauge. The replacement string slipped deeper into the nut than the previous string thus causing ridiculously low action on that string only. Perhaps it was barely hanging on high in the nut then snapped in under tension causing the forementioned click noise.

    Also - make sure the neck mounting screws are tight. Shouldn't affect only one string but easy enough to check anyways.

    Put the old A string back on and see what happens maybe?
  18. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Some stringy folks will send you one. Can’t hurt to ask. Glad it’s just the string. I don’t think it says what brand.
    Aqualung60 and Gbass75 like this.
  19. Take the A string, move it to another position, and see what happens. Or move it to another bass.
    Ricky Rioli and Gbass75 like this.
  20. BassFalcon


    Nov 18, 2020
    Check the saddle again. Depending on the bridge design/type various things can occur there. On the classic fender bent plate style, it’s possible for the saddle to flip while the string is off, which would reverse the height adjusting screws and put your string on the deck as you describe. If you see screw bottoms instead of tops, problem solved. Happened to me just last week actually.
  21. Primary

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