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SG setup question

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Need a little help, please. My new SG-400 played pretty nicely right from the factory, but the intonation sounded a little off to my tone-deaf ears so I took it in for a setup at the shop where I bought it. It came back sounding better on the one string that was bugging me, but it also had a new fret buzz problem that it hadn't had before. I asked the technician about it, and he said it was because I had selected a lighter string gauge (.09's instead of the .10's that were on it when it went in), and the lighter strings require a lighter touch. This was a slip on my part, not deliberate. Anyway, he told me to restring with .10's and see if that corrected the problem. It didn't. I took it back to him and he tweaked it again -- now it's better, but still not where I think it was before. Now I'm wondering about his assertion that lighter strings buzz more than heavier strings, because I just bought a Fender Strat that was shipped with .09's and it doesn't buzz. Is this technician out to lunch? Should the same gauge of strings buzz on one guitar and not on another -- assuming the neck and action are adjusted similarly? I bought both guitars new, from different shops; the Strat has not been in for a setup yet, unless they did one at the store (not sure); the SG came straight from the factory.

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Whenever you change string guage a slight adjustment will usually be required.

A lighter guage of string will not put the same amount of tension on the neck as a heavier set.

A light set is easier on the fingers to play, but will not usually sound quite as crisp as a heavier set.

If you are a hard strummer your guitar will have to be set up a bit on the high side also.

As for the buzz problem, there are a few different things that can cause it.

 

1. The bridge was lowered too much.

2. The nut was cut a bit too low on the bass side. [usually that is where the buzz problem lives]

3. There is not enough relief in the neck. Too straight.

4. You have a high fret somewhere.

 

I would take it back and tell the tech what the exact problem is.

 

I do setups and repairs part time, and if I set someone's guitar up, and it wasn't to their

satisfaction, they could bring it back no problem. But they need to tell me exactly what, and

where the problem exists.

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9's sit lower in the nut and bridge than do 10's + all that's been said above.

 

There's nothing wrong with your guitar, your time is best spent learning how to set up your instrument, then you'll be good for life.

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There's nothing wrong with your guitar' date=' your time is best spent learning how to set up your instrument, then you'll be good for life. [/quote']

 

Good point.

 

Although care should be taken, it is not rocket science. Don't just read the article I posted. Read all the articles

you can. There are many good ones out there.

The set up on any guitar can change with time, humidity and the change of the seasons.

 

There are 2 things I do twice a year:

Check the setup on my guitars.

Talk to the wife.... After 39 years of marriage I can say stuff like that. (I hope she doesn't read this)

 

Willy

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should re intonate also, Off topic my Iommi I just got isnt hitting harmonics (pintch) as good as it should. I have the pups set about right and its intonated right but the neck might have alittle too much relief, not alot of bow but it could be straighten some more a little when I check it so I wonder if that will help?

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There are 2 things I do twice a year:

Check the setup on my guitars.

Talk to the wife.... After 39 years of marriage I can say stuff like that. (I hope she doesn't read this)

 

Willy

 

 

LOL Willy. We all post things occasionally that we hope our better half won't read.

 

james_edward wrote:

9's sit lower in the nut and bridge than do 10's .

 

lennysboy wrtote: That is incorrect. Think about it.

 

Quite right lennysboy. The bottom of the nut groove does not get closer

to the fingerboard no matter what size strings you have. Although a much larger string

will have the opposite effect, because the string does not sit in the bottom of the groove.

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There are 2 things I do twice a year:

Check the setup on my guitars.

Talk to the wife.... After 39 years of marriage I can say stuff like that. (I hope she doesn't read this)

 

Willy

 

 

LOL' date=' WW ..... at least you talk to her...I just grunt at mine[biggrin']

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This thread is yet another reminder why it's such a good idea to learn and understand setups. It may not be reasonable to expect a technician to get it "right" the first time - guitars are unstable anyway because they're wood, you may want to try different strings, the weather changes, etc., etc.. It seems that the OP's guitar just needs a tweak or two to be OK.

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Thanks guys. FWIW, I recently bought a copy of Dan Erlewine's Guitar Player's Repair Guide and am learning how to do the setups myself in future. No question my SG is a good guitar. It's just frustrating that when all I ask for is the intonation to be checked and new strings, it comes back with a problem it hadn't had before. But we'll sort it out...

 

And don't worry, if your wives are like mine, they will NEVER read anything in a guitar forum! Although I was somewhat impressed that she did a little internet research to try to find out what I paid for my Strat!

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Need a little help' date=' please. My new SG-400 played pretty nicely right from the factory, but the intonation sounded a little off to my tone-deaf ears so I took it in for a setup at the shop where I bought it. It came back sounding better on the one string that was bugging me, but it also had a new fret buzz problem that it hadn't had before. I asked the technician about it, and he said it was because I had selected a lighter string gauge (.09's instead of the .10's that were on it when it went in), and the lighter strings require a lighter touch. This was a slip on my part, not deliberate. Anyway, he told me to restring with .10's and see if that corrected the problem. It didn't. I took it back to him and he tweaked it again -- now it's better, but still not where I think it was before. Now I'm wondering about his assertion that lighter strings buzz more than heavier strings, because I just bought a Fender Strat that was shipped with .09's and it doesn't buzz. Is this technician out to lunch? Should the same gauge of strings buzz on one guitar and not on another -- assuming the neck and action are adjusted similarly? I bought both guitars new, from different shops; the Strat has not been in for a setup yet, unless they did one at the store (not sure); the SG came straight from the factory.[/quote']

 

 

I had .10s on mine and had absolutely no fret buzz. I switched back down to .09s and got fret buzz (only when fretting the A string at the second fret). I took it in for some other work and asked them to deal with the fret buzz. It is better now, but not perfect. Lighter strings can make a difference and maybe some guitars just 'like' heavier strings better. So long as you can't hear it through your amp I wouldn't worry about it.

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Thanks guys. FWIW' date=' I recently bought a copy of Dan Erlewine's Guitar Player's Repair Guide and am learning how to do the setups myself in future.

 

And don't worry, if your wives are like mine, they will NEVER read anything in a guitar forum! Although I was somewhat impressed that she did a little internet research to try to find out what I paid for my Strat![/quote']

 

 

That is the best repair guide I've read to this point. Good stuff.

As I mentioned earlier I do setups/repairs part time. Email me if you have questions.

Sometimes, with a good description a problem can be diagnosed from afar.

 

Yeah, that would be like a wife.

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Yes, dropping from 10s to 9s will require less tension on the neck to tune to the same pitch. This means that the neck will straighten ever so slightly or, problematically, will go from dead straight to a back bow. If your frets buzz from the middle of the neck up towards the lower (headstock end) register then the string change would explain it. One fret buzzing only might be a sign of a problem fret.

 

Fret buzz in general is inevitable if you have a very low action and a straight neck, although fret levelling will alleviate it. Straight necks are more appropriate for people with lighter picking styles. If you have a heavier style or are a strummer then you'll need to loosen the truss rod to give a certain amount of neck relief (up bow) from headstock end to middle. This allows the string to resonate in its natural eliptical pattern (between two points) without hitting other frets.

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I'm a beginning guitarist, so take this any way you'd like. When I got my new used Epi g400 set up, the luthier said I would get a better set up with 10s, which makes sense based on what I read here. Now having previously "played around" on my daughter's guitar that is strung with 9s, I have to say there is little difference I can discern in the way my soft newbie fingers feel. My daughter went to 10's on hers after playing mine because she agreed they sound better. So far, I can see what advantage 10s have over 9s in terms of fullness of sound and I can see myself trying heavier gauges as I progress.

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