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  #1  
Old 01-05-2019, 03:32 AM
Blonde Girl Blonde Girl is offline
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Default Another Nut problem

Hello lovely people. I have been trying to help a friend who has a fairly rubbish Hondo guitar. Someone had put a nut on it that was way too big. I bought a nut of the right width and sanded it down to the right height.
Now when it is tight up against the end of the fret board I can tune the guitar, but by the time I get to the 5th fret the note is high and un playable.
Here is what I have done:-
Straightened the neck
New strings
Measured with a fret rule

I had less problem with a guitar I made for my gcse than this - any help or wisdom from you guys would be awesome

Thanks Melody xx
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Old 01-05-2019, 05:36 AM
MC5C MC5C is offline
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My rule of thumb for setting up guitars is start with the nut, get it right with correct string slot heights, or at least pretty close. String it up to tension and check using the "press at the third fret, look for clearance over first fret" technique. With strings at tension, adjust the truss rod for your desired relief - I use .004 to .006 fretting at 1 and 12. The final thing to do is set your desired action at the 12th fret - .065 high E and .090 low E (1/16" and 3/32") is considered good, normal action for an acoustic guitar, but work up to it - with an old, cheaper guitar you may come up against wonky frets that need work, or leave action higher that ideal to reduce buzzing. So it sounds to me that you just need to start working on the bridge saddle. If you can measure how much you want to lower the action by at the 12th fret (say you measure .100 and you want .065) you take double that amount off the saddle. Don't go too far and run out of saddle. If that doesn't do it, there may be structural problems with the guitar.
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Old 01-05-2019, 09:26 AM
runamuck runamuck is offline
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From what you describe, it sounds like you have an intonation problem and the solution for that is working on the saddle.

http://charlestauber.com/luthier/Res...May%202015.pdf
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Old 01-05-2019, 12:42 PM
Blonde Girl Blonde Girl is offline
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Thank you
I'm kinda wondering - the fret rule measure, if I go from the bridge (saddle) and the rule is at the front of each fret the nut is in the right place - if the centre of each fret is where the rule lies then there should be a 1mm spacer between the nut and the fret board
Does that make sense??
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Old 01-05-2019, 02:21 PM
runamuck runamuck is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blonde Girl View Post
Thank you
I'm kinda wondering - the fret rule measure, if I go from the bridge (saddle) and the rule is at the front of each fret the nut is in the right place - if the centre of each fret is where the rule lies then there should be a 1mm spacer between the nut and the fret board
Does that make sense??
It's more complicated than that. You'll need to get acquainted with the issue by reading up on it. There's no quick answer here - unless you take it to a guitar tech.
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Old 01-06-2019, 09:47 AM
Blonde Girl Blonde Girl is offline
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Ummm - one more bit

If instead of using a tuner, and I tune the guitar by ear - instead of using the 5th fret tuning (Like E string on the 5th fret = A open on the next string down) I use 1st and 6th fret (sooo 6th Fret on the E string and 1st fret not the next) the guitar is in tune as long as I don't have an open string (like bar chords are ok) - this is why I'm still puzzling at the nut end of things

And yeh, looks like I need to read loads!!

Thanks
Melody xx
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Old 01-06-2019, 07:54 PM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blonde Girl View Post
Ummm - one more bit

If instead of using a tuner, and I tune the guitar by ear - instead of using the 5th fret tuning (Like E string on the 5th fret = A open on the next string down) I use 1st and 6th fret (sooo 6th Fret on the E string and 1st fret not the next) the guitar is in tune as long as I don't have an open string (like bar chords are ok) - this is why I'm still puzzling at the nut end of things

And yeh, looks like I need to read loads!!

Thanks
Melody xx
If you tune the guitar with a capo affixed and the intonation is okay, then tune it without a capo affixed and the intonation is not okay, there is a problem with the nut or its location.

I'd start by ensuring that the strings break at the leading edge - at the face of the nut abutting the end of the fingerboard - of the slots in the nut. If they are not, they can negatively change the intonation.
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Old 01-07-2019, 01:29 PM
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Rodger Knox Rodger Knox is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blonde Girl View Post
Thank you
I'm kinda wondering - the fret rule measure, if I go from the bridge (saddle) and the rule is at the front of each fret the nut is in the right place - if the centre of each fret is where the rule lies then there should be a 1mm spacer between the nut and the fret board
Does that make sense??
It's pretty common to reduce the distance from the nut to the first fret a little from the calculated distance, half the width of the fretsaw kerf (~0.01") is pretty common. That usually improves intonation.
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