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How much fret buzz is to much?

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by zash, Oct 20, 2012.

  1. zash

    zash TDPRI Member

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    I know this topic has Been done to death but I'll give it one more go as its bothering me.

    I have a Spalted Maple hh Tele with x jumbo frets. When I got the guitar the it was pretty buzzy all over and didnt feel right, so I took it to a well recommended guitar tech for a set up.

    I went whole hog and had a full set up with fret level and nut mod. He said he was impressed with quality of the guitar and the way it played.

    The guitar came back a lot better but the Low wound strings were pretty buzzy up to the fifth fret. I mentioned this to the tech and he said that the light strings I had were a problem. I think they may have been 8 or 9's. He did actually try to talk me out of the light strings when I first approached him.

    So I put some hybrid strings on so the low strings were a size bigger. I also raised the action a tad on the low strings. This got rid of some of the buzz but it's still bad compared to my other guitars, one of which has action close or as low to the problem child.

    I contacted the tech again and this time he said the x jumbo frets were also more prone to buzzing. I can understand the thinner strings causing more buzz but not the bigger frets.

    So I'm trying to work our if my expectations are too high or I have a lazy tech. I paid a decent. $ for the set up so I want my money's worth. What do you think?
     
  2. Stubee

    Stubee Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

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    You talking acoustically or amped?

    I don't like much buzz & keep my Fenders set pretty high but that is more due to my attack than buzz concern. A slight buzz acoustically is often a non-issue when plugged in. I don't play my Tele etc w/o an amp much, if at all.

    Buzz on a flattop guitar is totally unacceptable to me but the Tele & Strat get a small bit of a pass unplugged.
     
  3. zash

    zash TDPRI Member

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    Buzz unplugged, I do a lot of my practice unplugged.
     
  4. Loudog99

    Loudog99 Tele-Holic

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    I don't like any buzz at all. A good level, crown, and polish is mandatory for negating fret buzz. If the buzz is in the first 5 frets, it sounds like it could be the nut was cut too low. Press the string at the third fret and check to see if there is a small gap between the top of the first fret and bottom of the string. If it touches the fret there's your problem. Other than that, could be that you don't have enough neck relief, or the fret leveling job was not properly done.

    Good luck.
     
  5. telex76

    telex76 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    For me, any at all is too much.
    One of the reasons I like a higher action.
     
  6. BobbyB

    BobbyB Tele-Afflicted

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    light strings are more prone to buzzing....my rule is if you must use light strings raise the action a bit. Remember light strings flex much more. If your a heavy handed player they will buzz. I know a few people because of hand problems due to injury or arthritis need to use the lightest gauge strings, however usually they adjust their action to medium instead of low and adjust their technique(lighter picking/strumming.)
     
  7. Sasz

    Sasz Tele-Meister

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    How much neck relief do you have?
     
  8. zash

    zash TDPRI Member

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    Neck relief is slight, looks like about .5-1mm when you capo 1st & 12th fret. Im assuming that a professional tech would know how to set the relief, you'd hope.
     
  9. suave eddie

    suave eddie Friend of Leo's

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    Any buzz is too much for me--Electric or Acoustic.

    A good tech should be able to get the action as low as you want with no buzzing. Make sure he knows how you attack the strings--Do you have a light or heavy touch?
     
  10. jule553648

    jule553648 Tele-Meister

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    I never minded some moderate buzzing(sometimes I have big attack), but now when I made myself a tele with piezo saddles, now I am preffering non buzzing guitars, because the buzz comes out very loud through piezo.
     
  11. Rob DiStefano

    Rob DiStefano Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    you'll hear fret rattle acoustically but it won't come through the amp, whereas fret buzz does.

    LOTS depends on how you play and the string gauge. tuned to standard concert pitch, an aggressive attack with light 9 gauge strings and "low action" will ALWAYS buzz. either deal with it or make changes. that's about it.
     
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