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Telecasters g string is sharp

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by matt117, Apr 16, 2018.

  1. matt117

    matt117 Tele-Holic

    721
    May 12, 2014
    Manitoba
    I’ve filed the nut down to .010” and it still is a tad sharp when fretted. How low should the nut action be over the first fret?
    That was without pressing the string anywhere, measured the distance above the first fret.
    What else should be accounted for?
    New stainless steel 6105s were just put in. Crowns look good.
     

  2. robt57

    robt57 Telefied Ad Free Member

    Feb 29, 2004
    Portland, OR
    New strings put on too? Intonation set?
     

  3. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

    Mar 16, 2003
    Godzone
    When you fret the string at the third fret, it should just clear the first fret.

    +1 on intonation, new frets will change it.
     

  4. lammie200

    lammie200 Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 11, 2013
    San Francisco
    You might want try a compensated nut. I like Earvanas.
     

  5. OldMike

    OldMike TDPRI Member

    52
    Mar 4, 2014
    Cleveland Zoo
    Just to echo other posts, I set string to just clear first fret while fretting at third fret. I don't file anything till all other adjustments have been made.
     

  6. matt117

    matt117 Tele-Holic

    721
    May 12, 2014
    Manitoba
    Intonation was set first, new strings put on. Yup did the press the 3rd have just a hair of daylight come under the string over the first fret.
     

  7. GuitarJonz

    GuitarJonz Poster Extraordinaire

    Mar 16, 2003
    MA
    It's a perennial problem for me too, G string sounding sharp in the cowboy chord area. In my case, this was remedied by loosening up on my gorilla grip; the excess pressure, can throw the note sharp. I've tried to lighten up on my grip, which works, and, also have tried the Earvana nut, which also worked for me. Maybe try lighter fretting pressure. I know it's hard to change that, but it worked for me.
     
    matt117 likes this.

  8. LeicaBoss

    LeicaBoss Tele-Meister

    328
    Oct 16, 2015
    New Jersey
    How are you tuning? Open strings set to "perfect" pitch with a tuner?

    I found a fretted G never to be right doing that, and just went with the Guild of American Luthiers standard for tuning. It isn't a pre-determined, fancy sweetened tuning but just a solid compromise that balances the strings against one another and accounts for fretting technique on the trouble strings.

    I know that's a rabbit hole but I found it the best compromise.
     
    matt117 likes this.

  9. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    Intonation should be set with new strings. If not, then everything will be sharp. Since you have already installed these new strings with the saddles too far forward, either adjust the intonation...move saddles back, or play the guitar as is until you change strings. During that string change, move the saddles back..away fripom the 12th fret...with the strings removed. Restring, tune up and play for a few minutes...or let the guitar sit for a while...before intonating.
    If you want to do an experiment to impress upon yourself how long strings actually last for a demanding ear, try this.
    After intonating the fresh strings, strum a few chords....if the guitar is well set up and if fretting technique is correct,
    You will be happy with the results. Put the guitar in the case and don’t pick it up for 14 days. Pull the guitar out, tune it up...and check the intonati9n at the 12 th fret. The intonation will be flat. Nothing stops metal fatigue, and tha fatigue begins immediately when the string is put under tension and the degradation takes place whether the guitar is 0layed or not. A hard working pro’s strings are done after one gig with regard to this metal fatigue/intonation relationship equation. This metal fatigue is also why coated strings DO NOT and CANNOT last longer than an uncoated string...nothing stops metal fatigue.
    If one doesn’t want to deal with changing strings often to maintain the finest intonation and likes what old strings do, then intonate strings after they have been on for a week or so....
     
    Obsessed likes this.

  10. beninma

    beninma Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Age:
    41
    Mar 17, 2017
    Massachusetts
    It depends on how you are measuring when you're filing but IIRC mine is filed down to 0.005" (clearance from fretboard to bottom of slot) and it'll still go sharp if you push too hard.

    Depends on the string but at 0.010" you're still a ways away from that rule of thumb of pressing down on the 3rd fret and just barely clearing the first/second. When they ship from the factory at 0.020+" they really are sky high.
     
    matt117 likes this.

  11. matt117

    matt117 Tele-Holic

    721
    May 12, 2014
    Manitoba
    K good to know! I’ll have to keep working at it and obtain “the eye” for it.
    Filed to where it is now the strings are much lower at the nut then any of my other guitars. Almost feels weird how easy it is. I just went from 10s to 11s on the guitar too.
     

  12. beninma

    beninma Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

    Age:
    41
    Mar 17, 2017
    Massachusetts
    That would make sense assuming your other guitars have factory nuts and either your or a local luthier/tech didn't file the slots.

    AFAICT everything is high when you get it unless it's some kind of "custom shop" type guitar or from a boutique builder. I picked up a Nash Tele in a store and it had a flawlessly cut low nut. I've pretty much never picked up anything else that had a perfect nut like that on the showroom floor.

    I think most of your Fender/Gibson/Martin/Taylor/whatever nuts are just pumped out of a machine and glued in without a human actually finishing them to be correct on the instrument until you get to a pretty high price point.
     

  13. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 17, 2003
    Lubbock, TX
    Beninma, ime I have never seen any guitar that meets my criteria for a good set up....no matter who built it.
    Two weeks ago I set up a Nash. The owner thought he loved it as it was....but he let me set it up due to the change that occurred with the work I did on a Strat for him. His eyes went wide when he played the Nash.....all he kept saying was “Listen to the sound...listen to the sound”. I had told him before I set it up that it did not sound as good as it should...it did not feel as it could and should, and that it did not play in tune. He is a believer.
    I will say this about the regulati9n of the nut to the first fret.....it was in the correct range. However, there was one aspect to that nut that was not done and which greatly influences the sound of the open strings.
     

  14. Obsessed

    Obsessed Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Nov 21, 2012
    Montana
    +1 Yup, always check intonation after replacing strings. I check one more time after a few hours of practice as some of the strings might still stretch even after stretching them during installation.

    The G string is the classic issue and why there are wound and unwound G strings.
     

  15. milocj

    milocj Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

    Aug 21, 2005
    Michigan
    Don't forget that if you aren't used to the height of 6105 frets the first fret is where you'll pull the string sharp the most by fretting even a bit too hard. It can take a while to get used to lightening your touch if you're coming from lower frets.
     
    matt117 likes this.

  16. highwaycat

    highwaycat Tele-Meister

    Age:
    30
    392
    Jun 15, 2017
    California
    Did someone else put the frets in? If so I'd tell that person and maybe they can fine tune the nut for you.
    For the nut slot height being so high that it causes the 1st fret to go sharp, it has to be higher than most factory nuts. If cut properly. It is most likely going sharp because it needs to be filed a little more or your playing or the setup. So I'd factor in who did the new frets and talk to them. .010" is very low, that's half of a factory nut height. Some players need it higher, depends how they pick and how hard, and few other tings too. You don't need to get the nut as low as the 1st fret, that's overrated, in my experiences. All you have to do is file the slots correctly and maybe lower them a tiny little bit and that will be low/medium nut action. Anything lower is asking for open string buzz.
    I have a graphtec nut that the slots have worn lower slightly, so you want to leave a little 'wiggle room' for future wear.
    You don't need a special compensated nut. I don't think the pros use those anyways.
     

  17. RegularJim

    RegularJim TDPRI Member

    Age:
    46
    80
    May 24, 2017
    Winthrop Harbor, IL
    Quick fix... Tune the string a few cents flat when open. While 20 cents sounds WAY off, finding a good medium like 10 cents flat open and 10 cents sharp at the 3rd fret will make it difficult for the average human ear to discern.

    Good luck!
     
    highwaycat likes this.

  18. highwaycat

    highwaycat Tele-Meister

    Age:
    30
    392
    Jun 15, 2017
    California
    I just noticed you filed it lower, there may be a chance the nut slot take off point isn't perfect.
    Also want to take the chance to add that I'm a guitar tech for a couple gigging metal bands that pick very hard and tune low. So I have to leave the nut slots no lower than what I would call medium height, certainly not low height, or else their open notes will buzz, which is a no no under distortion and metal. You have to compromise and work with the player in mind to do a great job. I've worked on over 20 of their guitars and they are still very happy.. They get around 3/64ths action, very straight necks, but medium nut slot height. It's just the way it is. They pick hard and tune to low tunings.

    Now if they are soft pickers and tune to E or E flat, I can get he slots a little lower, also keeping in mind sometimes the slots wear lower in time.
    --Extremely low nut slots are overrated, trust me.--
    Plus getting the neck straighter can lower them too, causing buzzing.
     

  19. MatthewK

    MatthewK Tele-Holic

    563
    Jul 29, 2009
    Hobart, Australia
    Using a wound G, for which the Tele was designed, makes it right.
     

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