Zero Fret...?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Richard_P_Harve, May 23, 2012.

  1. Richard_P_Harve


    May 19, 2011
    Been playing bass now for 40+ years and every once in a while I hear the term "Zero Fret". Well I have read that term here twice over the last day or two and I must admit that I really don't understand the function of the zero fret. I know what it is but I don't get what it's there to an old bass fart understand, thanks.
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    The point of it is to make the four open notes sound more like fretted notes. Whether it works or matters is a subjective thing.
  3. progrmr


    Sep 3, 2008
    Columbus, Ohio
    the "zero fret" is a fret wire directly after the nut on the neck. It is meant to eliminate intonation issues due to a poorly cut nut.

    The Epiphone Viola has a zero fret.
  4. Zero nut
  5. JimB52

    JimB52 User Supporting Member

    May 24, 2007
    East Coast
    The Hayman 40/40 has one.

  6. jim777

    jim777 Tarantula Lobbyist

    Aug 7, 2006
    South Jersey
    I personally like them a lot, but that's just me.
  7. zortation


    Dec 26, 2011
    Toronto, ON
    A zero fret gives you a fretted tone at the open position, almost like a brass nut. And they also give you a consistancy in action that is better than just a standard slotted nut alone.
  8. With a zero fret, I think the open strings would have the potential to sound fuller and tighter. The vibrational physics of the nut, with its U-grooves, just don't seem that they'd be as pure as with a string held tightly over a flat metal wire. I'd be interested in others' opinions on this.

    I wish mine had them. You see my basses in my signature. My Hofner is the Ignition. Their Contemporary (CT), while also a copy of their German models, has a zero fret.

    I tend not to play open strings much, except the E when called for, of course.
  9. chriscrob

    chriscrob Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2008
    Atlanta, Georgia
    OOOO. I want that. Things get real wobbly on my E string in drop D sometimes
  10. +1
    As I have posted elsewhere here, my Martin, Strat, Tele, Epi's and Danos, all are without a zero fret. I understand fully what the intendended purpose is, I just have never missed it. If it were that important, I'm sure that these other major companies would be installing them.
  11. mdogs

    mdogs Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2010
    Constant state of flux
    This subject has been hashed over and over again. The reasons that major companies don't use zero frets have little to do with whether they work or not...
  12. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

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