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mhartma93 07-23-2016 02:24 PM

Martin DCPA 4 Fret Buzz (Neck issue)
Hey Guys,

I just picked up a 2014 DCPA 4 custom Martin and noticed a little fret buzz on the E A & D string from the 6th-8th frets, I brought it to the shop and was told that the neck dips slightly in the middle and is raised in the top of the neck. I was told that if I lowered the action on my guitar I would get fret buzz in in the lower frets and if I were to make the action higher, it would suck to play and the fret buzz in the middle of the neck would get worse.

Can anyone confirm this for me; has this tumultuous situation happened to any other lovely Martin owners before?


mirwa 07-23-2016 06:56 PM

Without seeing your neck in person, all comments are....

Many times a neck has a wave going through the board itself and cannot be rectified through truss rod adjustments and or fret levelling.

In these situations the height of the string above the fretboard is very limited and lowering almost always encounters fret buzz.

It is common to remove all the frets and deal with the board issue and then refret to rectify

However the refret is only one option of repair, many other avenues can be approached but only after a visual assessment has been carried out


Ned Milburn 07-25-2016 06:29 AM

Truss rods affect the bow of a limited area of the neck - sometimes nut to 9th fret, sometimes only 2nd fret to 9th fret.

It is common for Martin style guitars to have a hump where the fingerboard crosses onto the body. Some manufacturers do better mitigating this than others. Some Martins are absolutely fine, others are more troublesome. The hump, if not extreme (85% of the time) can be corrected by skilful fretwork. But it is not basic fretwork. Ideally, the WHOLE fingerboard should show the same bow, and even better is to have slightly more bow on the bass side than the treble. Hence, 15" straight fret levelling bars that stew-mac and others sell will never yield an ideal result, where the neck/fingerboard bow is contiguous from 1st fret to last.

If I understand correctly from your description, your fingerboard will be improved by some careful fret-work to lower the hump. But as I mentioned in a reply to another question of yours, it is difficult to make conclusive determinations via just a few words on the internet.

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