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  #1  
Old 03-16-2018, 06:47 PM
JackB1 JackB1 is offline
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Default Setup Question - relief and saddle good, still buzz

Ok need some advice here...

Got a used Taylor 114ce and the relief is sufficient, the saddle has not been shaved down, the neck angle is fine and the action is not low. Yet I have a buzz on the B string on the 5-8th frets. The E string also has slight buzzing in the same area. The nut is very low and measured below Taylorís specs, especially for the G,B and high E. Could the low nut be causing a buzz with fretted notes mid neck, while open strings donít buzz?

Any ideas would be appreciated. I have never changed a nut myself and local shops charge $80-100 to do that. I donít want to put much more money into this guitar. Anything else I can try on my own? The guitar is fairly new and the frets arenít very worn so I donít think itís a high fret somewhere. Can I do anything to raise the nut slightly without doing a total replace? Any other suggestions?
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Old 03-16-2018, 08:45 PM
mz-s mz-s is offline
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If a fretted note buzzes, it's unlikely to be the nut.

Most likely suspects are neck relief or high frets. I'd try giving a bit more relief in the neck (lossen TR) and see if that resolves it.
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Old 03-16-2018, 08:57 PM
JackB1 JackB1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mz-s View Post
If a fretted note buzzes, it's unlikely to be the nut.

Most likely suspects are neck relief or high frets. I'd try giving a bit more relief in the neck (lossen TR) and see if that resolves it.
That was my main question.....if no open string buzz, then its not the nut then?

The action is already quite high and the saddle is original height, so should I try adding more neck relief and then sanding down the saddle to bring it back down? Should I add more relief until the buzz goes away and then see how much I need to lower the saddle to being it back down?
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Old 03-16-2018, 09:02 PM
mz-s mz-s is offline
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How much relief is in there now, and are there any high frets?
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Old 03-16-2018, 09:34 PM
JackB1 JackB1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mz-s View Post
How much relief is in there now, and are there any high frets?
let me take a bunch of exact measure measurements.

How do I tell if there are any high frets?
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Old 03-16-2018, 09:50 PM
mz-s mz-s is offline
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Easiest way is with a fret rocker or similar tool - a short straightedge that will sit across 3 frets https://www.sweetwater.com/sweetcare...or-high-frets/

I use my string action gauge - the long edge works on the first 5-8 frets, and the short edge works for the rest of the frets.
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Old 03-16-2018, 10:17 PM
JackB1 JackB1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mz-s View Post
How much relief is in there now, and are there any high frets?
Relief is .010” on the G string at the 7th fret.
Action is 4/32” at the low E 12th fret and 3/32” at th high E

The first fret measurements (no capo) are:

.19 high E
.26 low E
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Last edited by JackB1; 03-17-2018 at 07:33 AM.
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Old 03-17-2018, 02:57 AM
N+1 N+1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackB1 View Post
That was my main question.....if no open string buzz, then its not the nut then?

The action is already quite high and the saddle is original height, so should I try adding more neck relief and then sanding down the saddle to bring it back down? Should I add more relief until the buzz goes away and then see how much I need to lower the saddle to being it back down?
With the modern Taylor neck, the saddle is set at a standard height, and the neck angle is adjusted using shims to set the action. So unless you think someone has previously replaced the saddle, I wouldn't sand the saddle without further investigation.

You said the neck angle is OK, but how accurate is that statement? If you sight carefully along the edge of the neck, does it point exactly at the top of the bridge? If it doesn't then a small correction of the neck angle would be the right way to go, but you'd need a Taylor tech to do it (it shouldn't be expensive).

But before I did any of these things, I'd check the relative humidity, and make sure the RH was in the 45-50% range for at least two weeks - and then check everything again. I've seen how much even moderately high humidity can change the set up and it is remarkable.
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Old 03-17-2018, 10:08 AM
ChrisN ChrisN is offline
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Beyond a possibly high/dislodged fret (unusual on a Taylor, which is to say I've never heard of one, but I guess it could happen), I've nothing to add on your buzz. With 8/64 action on E (exceeds Martin's spec for needing a neck reset), it's not saddle height or, imo neck relief, and with a fretted note it's not the nut.

I do not agree that Taylors adjust action via their neck angle without regard to the saddle height - they do not. They do adjust neck angle via replaceable shims, but, that's not the same thing.

I have 3 Taylors - measured as I know you measured yours - perfect neck angles, all, and with a new, unlowered, saddle, my actions are where yours is - too high. I take the saddles down (leaving the perfect neck angle as-is) to the action I like (really low - like 4/64 - no buzzing anywhere).

So, leave the neck alone, determine if you have a high fret or frets, fix that (they can be lightly sanded, or tapped back down if they've come due to drying out), then lower the saddle to the action you like.
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Old 03-17-2018, 12:11 PM
N+1 N+1 is offline
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Quote:
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I do not agree that Taylors adjust action via their neck angle without regard to the saddle height
That isn't what I said. Of course they don't do it without regard to the saddle height.

If you buy a new Taylor, and the action isn't as you like it, they don't change the saddle. They take off the neck, and fit appropriate shims to get the action you want. (The adjustment needed is very small.) I've watched it done several times, with my own guitars.

Of course we're talking here about a used guitar, and if the saddle has already been changed, that's a different matter.
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Old 03-17-2018, 01:48 PM
JackB1 JackB1 is offline
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OK so I bit the bullet and brought it to a guitar tech. He looked it over and thought the neck was too straight (even though it has .010" relief). He did the trick where you hold down the first fret and the 14th and tap the string above the 7th fret. He thinks he's going to add more relief and then shave down the saddle to bring the action down. I guess we'll find out if that fixes the issue.
I should get it back by Tues. I'll report back.
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Last edited by JackB1; 03-17-2018 at 02:11 PM.
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  #12  
Old 03-17-2018, 03:14 PM
ChrisN ChrisN is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackB1 View Post
OK so I bit the bullet and brought it to a guitar tech. He looked it over and thought the neck was too straight (even though it has .010" relief). He did the trick where you hold down the first fret and the 14th and tap the string above the 7th fret. He thinks he's going to add more relief and then shave down the saddle to bring the action down. I guess we'll find out if that fixes the issue.
I should get it back by Tues. I'll report back.
Fascinating - .010 relief, AND buzzing on fretted note WITH saddle action at 8/64. Perhaps the .010 relief refers to backbow (negative relief that would move the frets closer to the strings)? I'm kidding. I'm looking forward to the outcome and hoping it works out.
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Old 03-17-2018, 07:02 PM
mirwa mirwa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackB1 View Post
OK so I bit the bullet and brought it to a guitar tech. He looked it over and thought the neck was too straight (even though it has .010" relief). He did the trick where you hold down the first fret and the 14th and tap the string above the 7th fret. He thinks he's going to add more relief and then shave down the saddle to bring the action down.
By your descriptive, that does not sound like a competent tech to me.

10 thou relief is pretty high to start with.

Steve
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Old 03-17-2018, 08:33 PM
JackB1 JackB1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisN View Post
Fascinating - .010 relief, AND buzzing on fretted note WITH saddle action at 8/64. Perhaps the .010 relief refers to backbow (negative relief that would move the frets closer to the strings)? I'm kidding. I'm looking forward to the outcome and hoping it works out.
Yes Iím skeptical myself but weíll see what they can do with it.
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  #15  
Old 03-17-2018, 09:15 PM
mirwa mirwa is offline
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So which fret was it buzzing on, these are all things a competent tech can tell you the momment they get the guitar, you play it, they assess it, show you were the buzz is and what the repair process is, it takes less than 5 minutes to do all the above.

Yu should have a fixed price and knowledge of what is being done before you even leave their workshop.

Steve
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