Fret buzz on two thinnest strings.. why?

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by Hamfisted Gumbie, Dec 11, 2019.

  1. Hamfisted Gumbie

    Hamfisted Gumbie TDPRI Member

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    Hi all,

    I have a 2017 Elite Tele with the Fender 6-saddle chrome bridge. I'm getting pretty bad fret buzz* on both highest strings, and I can't figure out why. The action is not any lower than my other guitars, and I don't want to put it higher; and the neck bow looks fine - just a hint of forward curve. Interestingly, it sometimes improves momentarily if I grab the string right at the saddle and push it from side-to-side, as if there's a piece of fluff or something jammed under the string, but there isn't. AND.. I'm only getting the buzz when I fret the strings (all frets, from 1-22). Pickups are low too.

    G string and the wound strings are fine on all frets.

    * At least, I think it's fret buzz. When I pick the fretted string, instead of getting a consistent, sustained "oooooooo' sound, I'm hearing a 'eeeeaaaiiooo' that dies quickly compared to picking the open string.

    I'd be very grateful if anyone could suggest something I might not have thought of.

    Thanks a lot,

    Al
     
  2. jonnyfez

    jonnyfez Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Sounds like a high fret somewhere. Fenders tend to develop a hump where the neck attaches to the body.
     
    JL_LI likes this.
  3. JL_LI

    JL_LI Friend of Leo's

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    I’d check the saddles. The groove that holds the string may be cut at a slight angle or may be cut a little too deep. The guitar should still be under warranty. I’d have it checked where you bought it or at the nearest authorized Fender service center. I’m sure Cambridge is big enough that’s there’s one in town.
     
    AAT65, howardlo and Hamfisted Gumbie like this.
  4. Hamfisted Gumbie

    Hamfisted Gumbie TDPRI Member

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    Cracked it! Thank you JL. After much fiddling with truss rod and action height, to no avail, it turned out to be the *angle* of the saddles. Each of the six saddles has two grub screws at the front for height adjustment, and I'd set the angle/profile of each saddle to match the fretboard radius. Once I set them all to dead flat, parallel with the bridge plate, the problem went away. I'm a happy chappy again.
     
  5. AAT65

    AAT65 Friend of Leo's

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    Good! Well solved.
    Since the Elite has a compound radius fretboard the bridge saddles should be as near flat as can be — the radius is 14” about the 12th fret, I think, so it is probably nearer 18-20” radius at the bridge.
    My Elite Tele is set up with the saddles near dead flat with no buzz.
     
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  6. JL_LI

    JL_LI Friend of Leo's

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    You’re welcome. I’ve been helped out more times than I care to admit by fellow TDPRI members who thought of something I overlooked or simply told me how to solve a problem. This is what community is about. I’m pleased to make your acquaintance Mr Gumbie. :)
     
    jwp2, mfguitar and Hamfisted Gumbie like this.
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