fret buzz

hahnsottis

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Okay, so I have read a ton of info about fret buzz and have done everything I can to avoid it on my latest build. However, the low E string still buzzes when played hard or when playing power chords.

NUT: There is no buzz when played open. The nut slot is a little high if anything.
Frets:
level: I have leveled the frets with a long solid beam and sand paper, crowned them and checked them with a fret rocker and they are dead level (well that's not entirely true, the 12th fret has a tiny rock, but that area isn't the issue).
I did put a small fall off on the board (actually the frets) after the 14th fret.

ENDS: There are no fret ends that are loose. the slots have been flooded with super glue and it is doing well holding everything down.

Crown: the crown looks pretty solid with not flat spots and the center of the crown seems to be in the center of the frets (I have read that if the crown isn't centered and rounded it can cause a buzz and poor intonation).

Board: the board is a 12 degree radius as is the bridge. It is dead flat lengthwise and the radius is consistent. Radius was created with a radius bit and then hand sanded for clean up.

Action, the action is a 4/64ths at the 17th fret with a capo on the first fret.

Relieve: The relieve is .012 at the 7th fret with a capo on the 1st fret.

I haven't wired it up yet, so it is possible it wont be audible through the amp, but I prefer my guitars to not have any buzz at all (that's why the action isn't lower).

Hardware, the hardware is tight (machines heads are tight (Grover) and bridge and saddles are tight (Gotoh 510 wrap around).

Strings are brand new.

What else could I be missing?

The buzz is only on the low E string and only when playing moderately hard. Most noticeable on the lower frets, but I think that is because I pick harder when playing in that area.

Any ideas?
 

Freddy G

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Action too low and a tiny bit too much relief would be my guess. Straighten up the neck a touch and raise the action. And 4/64 at the 17 is low enough that you will have buzzing, especially if you hit it hard.
 

CB91710

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Action too low and a tiny bit too much relief would be my guess. Straighten up the neck a touch and raise the action. And 4/64 at the 17 is low enough that you will have buzzing, especially if you hit it hard.
+1
I finally wired the pickups and strung up my SG project last night.
Ballparked the action a little too low... 3/64 on the bass and a smidge lower on the treble side.
Played like a dream with .010 relief, but just the slightest indication of buzz on the bass side.
Ended up just a smidge above 4/64 on the bass side.
 

hahnsottis

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Hey guys, thanks for the replies. I tried raising the action a bit and have been playing with different amounts of relief. For this build, it seems to like .012. However, I still get buzz.

I saw a thread years ago (probably at least 10 years ago) where someone devised a small light with a resistor to test continuity to determine where the buzz was coming from. I decided to give a try with my multi-meter.

I connected one lead to the string behind the nut fingered a chord at the third fret of low E and touched the probe to the fourth fret of the low E. It did beep. It also beeped on the 5th fret. This is without even picking the notes. I can see space between the string and the fret so not sure why it sees continuity, but that cant be good. the fret rocker still shows the frets as dead flat.
 

CB91710

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Interesting test method.
Probably best to use a capo or only press one string at the fret being checked, rather than finger a chord... and remember, if ANY string is making contact with the fret being tested, it will show continuity.

Can you hear the fret buzz through the amp, or only when playing unplugged? Unplugged, some buzz is normal, especially if you hit hard.
 

hahnsottis

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Holly smokes, what an idiot I am! Rich you are absolutely spot on. I was so laser focused on the E string I some how completely forgot that I was playing the A string on the 5th fret which explains the 4th fret beep a well. Ohh man, I'm embarrassed to admit that :facepalm:

I still haven't wired it up, waiting for the battery compartment I ordered to come in (active Pups).

So I do have other guitars the don't buzz at all Not sure what the difference is?
 


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