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Intonation


arneyz

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So I was playing today and I noticed that my high-E string was playing slightly flat in the higher frets so i decided to re-intonate. Well turns out that saddle in the Tune-o-Matic bridge doesn't come any further forward and its still a little flat. Anything I can do?

 

Regards,

Zach

 

Hooray for the Moon
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Hmmmnn... What guitar is this?

 

What gauge string?

 

The bridge is a Gibson-style Tune-o-Matic type bridge or something similar, right?

 

Looking at the saddle for that string, is the ramp-side, the angled side, to the rear (towards the tailpiece), and the straight, 90-degree square side to the front, facing the pickups?

 

If it ISN'T, then it needs to be, that will make enough difference in how far forward the saddle's peak can travel. (If this is the case, you can un-screw the saddle from its screw, flip it around, and replace it on the screw and put it back onto the bridge.)

 

-But- if the saddle has a notch in it for the string, and that notch was made with the saddle the other way around, then the notch will be at an angle instead of straight and the string will be a bit wrongly spaced and may tend to bind there and be prone to going out of tune. If THAT is the case, if the saddle was on backwards and notched that way, the saddle will need to be replaced and freshly notched.

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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It is an Epi Casino. The bridge is a Gibson style Tun-o-matic. The saddle is on the right way. The strings are still stock. I'm not sure of the gauge though.

 

And I'm just using a standard chromatic tuner. But the string is noticeably flat. Just enough to grind on me.

Hooray for the Moon
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It is an Epi Casino. The bridge is a Gibson style Tun-o-matic. The saddle is on the right way. The strings are still stock. I'm not sure of the gauge though.

 

And I'm just using a standard chromatic tuner. But the string is noticeably flat. Just enough to grind on me.

 

Damn; that bridge is fixed in position, right? Not "floating", on a wooden base or bases between the T-o-M bridge and the guitar's top?

 

(If the latter- which I doubt- then the whole bridge can be slid a little to get it into a better position for intonatability.)

 

Unfortunately, it sounds here as if the guitar's bridge-posts have been poorly located, and at least one of the two would need to be relocated, with the old hole(s) plugged and refinished-over. Uhmn... is it still under waranty? If so, I'd look into having it replaced straight-up...

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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My question would be how long you have had it and was the string always flat?

 

If not try changing strings first. Crazy but I have heard old strings sometimes do not intonate well......don't know how true that is......I have heard it on my own guitars but never verified it with a strobe. Maybe it was imagined LOL!!

 

I am certain your ear is true but when intonating don't use a regular tuner.....get it on a strobe which is more accurate.

 

If it is new and always was flat I second Caevan-the-expert....hit them up on warranty.

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I had the same deal on my Samick Avion and was able to fix it by flipping the string saddle, the neck is still a bit too skinny though
Wonder what the new Linkin Park album would sound like if they didn't have Perfect Circle to steal from.
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Well it's not exactly new. I've had it for a little less than a year, and I'm not really sure if it's still under warranty. But now that I think about it, the intonation has probably been off from the beginning. I guess I just noticed now because I've been favoring my Tele lately and just recently gone back to playing the Casino.

 

There are these twist-able machines on the legs of the bridge that apparently allow you to raise and lower that respective side of the bridge. I haven't touched them but the high-e side is as low as it can go. If I were to raise that would it do anything besides raise the action slightly? I wouldn't have to adjust it much because the intonation isn't too far off.

Hooray for the Moon
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First things first. Change the year old strings. As strings stretch out, the tension which is needed to tune them to pitch changes, the more they stretch out, the further the intonation goes out of whack.

 

Also, replacing the strings with a different gauge will put your intonation out.

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I usually run my fingers underneath the strings (especially the wound strings)...and when the fret marks become fairly pronounced, like defined notches....then it's time, for sure.

 

But depending on the climate and your own body chemistry...you may need to change sooner if the strings get that noticeable gunk on them and they look real dull.

I don't have those issues...so I just judge by the actual string/fret wear....

 

miroslav - miroslavmusic.com

 

"Just because it happened to you, it doesn't mean it's important."

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Of course, I use Elixir Polywebs so the tone never changes until they're really shot. :D

 

Neil, how do you like the Elixirs? I've heard a lot of people heavily dis them, & others sing their praises. Aren't they a bit on the squeaky side? Like more prone to squeak when making position changes?

 

Scott Fraser

Scott Fraser
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There are these twist-able machines on the legs of the bridge that apparently allow you to raise and lower that respective side of the bridge. I haven't touched them but the high-e side is as low as it can go. If I were to raise that would it do anything besides raise the action slightly? I wouldn't have to adjust it much because the intonation isn't too far off.

 

Hmmmn; yes, changing the action either way- raising or lowering it- will affect the intonation. Raising it a little will most certainly sharpen the intonation; and it's unusual for the T-o-M bridge to be all the way down like that. Could be THIS is the cause of the whole problem!

 

Something tells me that your Casino could stand a good, thorough set-up; I bet the truss-rod could be adjusted to dial-in a little less relief, straightening the neck and effectively lowering the overall action a little bit; following the relief being checked and adjusted accordingly, the action and intonation could be tweaked. And, of course, some fresh strings in the bargain. I bet that, not only will your Casino intonate better after a good thorough set-up, it will play, feel, and sound better than ever, too...

 

Take it in to a reputable luthier/repair-tech person, and don't grouse over the bench-fee, it'll be money well spent here. Probably more worthwhile and cost-effective than most any gear you could buy for the same amount...

 

Oh, and be sure to ask a lot of questions, ask them to explain everything that is done to your Casino; if possible, have them show you as the work is done. Be nice and also buy some extra strings or other stuff, too, if they're willing to be so accommodating and patient.

 

Again, your axe will sound, play, feel, smell, fetch beer, and swim better. And everyone knows girls go for guys with great set-ups. ;):thu::D

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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I've heard a lot of people heavily dis them, & others sing their praises. Aren't they a bit on the squeaky side? Like more prone to squeak when making position changes?

 

I tried them once on one of my acoustics. Absolutely hated them from the first note.

 

They do not squeak...actually, they feel rather weird. I could really feel like I was playing plastic coated strings. YUK!

And to my ears...they were so dull sounding right out of the box...they had no life at all.

I'm sure they last a long time and that their tone hardly ever changes...but you have to like that tone to begin with.

I didn't like their tone from the first strum.

 

I tried doing a bit of recording...and man, I kept notching up the high-band EQ on my mixer trying to put some life and sizzle into the sound.

So...after a few days of trying to acquire a taste for their feel and tone...I just took them off and went back to my Martin phosphor-bronze strings. :thu:

 

But yeah...some people really love them....

 

miroslav - miroslavmusic.com

 

"Just because it happened to you, it doesn't mean it's important."

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I tried them once on one of my acoustics. Absolutely hated them from the first note.

But yeah...some people really love them....

 

Well all right then. Your experience mirrors that of several clients of mine. I actually don't know anybody who loves them, but I was given a couple sets of Elixirs that I've never put on & wondered if it was worth it, given the bad reaction some people have had with them. I'm guessing it may not be worth the time & effort.

 

Scott Fraser

Scott Fraser
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I put Elixir Nanowebs (?) on my acoustics, my cheapy resonator and on my jazz box. I don't get all the hoopla that they flat suck...they sound good and seem to hold tone longer. I have had them on for almost a year and they still sound good. They are bright and have good bass and I do not even notice any "plastic" feel.

 

I put them on with some trepidation....having heard all the bad reports.

 

Nothing jumped out at me as really sucking.

 

Granted I do not have a high end acoustic so that might be the decider....maybe at that level of quality in an instrument there is a noticible problem.

 

Scott, it's just a string change and the strings were free. Why not try them? In fact why not record the guitar first and then change to Elixir's and record it and compare.

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Well, we all hear things a little differently....which is why I pointed out that some people really love them.

 

With the Elixir strings, I could hear a noticeable loss of that acoustic guitar "sparkle" and I could very easily feel the coating with my fingers (even with calluses), and it felt like....well, like a plastic coated string.

 

*shurg*

 

As soon as I took them off and put the Martin phosphor-bronze back on the guitar...it was, Ahhhhh...thank you!

 

YMMV....

 

I'm just being honest about my Elixir experience.

The loss of high-end sparkle and plastic feeling under my fingers...well, for me, it kinda' warrants the "YUK" remark...and I don't really have a high-end acoustic, just some Carvin Cobalt and Seagull guitars.

 

Maybe on a naturally bright acousticthey might be OK.

 

On electricsI wouldnt even try them.

 

Oh...and I agree, if you already have a couple sets, then try them out, Scott.

That's the only way you will be able to experience them.

It's a just a couple of string changes.... :)

The only reason I tried them is 'cuz someone gave me a free set.

 

miroslav - miroslavmusic.com

 

"Just because it happened to you, it doesn't mean it's important."

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