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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by ce24, Nov 28, 2020.
Ironically, this guy does not play a zero fret.
I’m confused by the zero fret thing. The article linked above says that the zero fret is no higher than the rest. So, an open string still rests on the nut and the zero fret has no affect. Fret the string and the zero fret has no affect because it’s not ‘in okay’. When does the zero fret actually touch the string and make any difference. Might be simple but I’m struggling here!
The zero fret is the same height (above the fretboard) as the other frets: the nut (which is really just a string guide) is cut lower [edit: and further away from the bridge] so that strings’ breakpoint is the crown of the zero fret, not the front of the nut.
In other words the strings always rest on the zero fret. However since the strings barely move on the zero fret then it should have minimal wear.
For quite a while my only guitar was a 1970s Shergold which had a zero fret — but in those days there was no internet so I didn’t have to develop an opinion on whether this was better or worse than any other guitar design...
Got it! Thanks. It’s the same height but the guitar’s set up means the ‘action’ is so low that the strings rest on it.
I have a selmer style guitar with a zero fret. Seems like a great idea to me--the tone of the open strings is the same as the tone of the fretted strings.
The downside is wear on the zero fret, but If I were going to design a guitar from scratch I'd have a zero fret made of stainless steel
It’s just on other way of doing things IMO. As a player, neither better nor worse than a well cut nut.
I put a zero fret one of my builds. It’s certainly an easier process than cutting a nut. You don’t have worry about getting the string guide cut accurately, just cut the slots in the right place and deep enough.
There’s no reason that a zero fret would wear quicker that your normal frets - the strings don’t move on it much and there’s no finger traffic.
Tonewise you’re not always playing open so it doesn’t make a great deal of difference.
Only have one zero fret guitar but it works great!
I have a nylon strung guitar with a zero fret...and a six string banjo with one
as stated German Luthiers were fond of using them...they do put more ring into an open string sound..and you dont have to worry about Nut wear...action up the top of the neck is better too ive found...i reckon zero frets should be more of a thing myself...
I have a Hallmark with one. No issues, but I also haven't experienced anything like a specific advantage.
My take? It solves a problem I don't have currently have with my gear. I believe I have owned three, maybe two, guitars with a zero nut and it didn't leave an impression on me one way or another.
This is an example of a zero fret . The other things like the Zero Glide are adaptations . A zero fret utilizes a separate fret and nut in their own respective slots . The nut does nothing more than establish a string path relative to spacing . The zero fret sets the string height only . I am not attempting to disparage the other setups , but they are not real zero frets , they are adaptations . Since I am not familiar with the Gibson setup , I do not include it in this post . Stainless Steel and titanium should work just fine to address the wear issue .
If you look closely , you will see a zero fret .
the neck relief is what stops buzzing...some use a bigger fretwire for zero frets..that way you can get lower action without a buzz...my 6 string banjo has a bigger stainless steel jumbo fret as zero taken down slightly to give best possible action at 1st fret and much thinner frets for the rest...only needs a feather touch to fret anywhere on the neck...and rings out lovely
those hybrid zero/nuts are a gimmick...a zero fret is straight to the wood...
Remember...Gimmicks Seldom Work on guitars...or banjos...or most instruments...most have been tried in the past and confined to the Luthiers Dustbin
the internet has revived many...and claimed them as "a new idea"....and people leap on them...usually to be dissapointed upon trying them...for example...T/O/M roller bridges...tried yrs ago...found to be tone sucking things that dont work...one use of "wigglestick" and the intonation is out...even if the roller saddles dont move...too small diameter on rollers to work...you cant reinvent the wheel.
I read that Brian Setzer is not a fan of zero fret, he has them replaced on his Gretsch's.
As was said by someone, there’s not a good idea on Earth that can’t be buggered up by improving it.........or words to that effect!
Hengist Pod...square wheels springs to mind
So wouldn't the Fender roller nut be a type of zero fret?
Remember the Austin Allegro........................?
Kind of a zero fret / nut hybrid I s’pose
i do indeed...the flying pudding....never was going to replace the motor car was it....what penk thought to put a square steering wheel in the early ones...a distant descendant of hengist pod
they tried to pass it off as quartic....then the decided to fill TR7 gearboxes with swarf...a handfull of nuts and washers then mix the oil with cold tea from the works canteen....all for a payrise....
fit washer ...at 12000 mile service?....they wont have had to fit many...allegros didnt last long enough...another BL copout
I have a few. Couple vintage Burns, various vintage Japanese and an old Harmony. Certainly not my daily players but their kinda cool.