Who also plays guitar as a hobby?

By Nick Lee · 63 replies
Apr 3, 2008
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  1. ninnche

    ninnche TS Rookie Posts: 19

    I play guitar for 5 years and luvin' it very much :)
  2. Nick Lee

    Nick Lee TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    (I just got back from a USAskills competition in Greenville and got 2nd place in technical Math) What do you mean block the trem?

    and why doesn't my last tone knob work? could it be unwired or something?(yet my guitar works) I haven't checked the wiring yet.
  3. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,017   +2,546

    I think he means lock down the tremolo bar.
    One thing that causes electrics to go out of tune rapidly, is incorrect intonation. This assumes individually movable string saddles in the bridge. The octave harmonic must fall DIRECTLY on the twelfth fret for each string. I usually try to set them with a small piece of metal, as your finger is too round and wide to be truly accurate. Sometimes a small amount of lubricant in the top nut will prevent the strings from hanging up. What was originally suggested to me was some graphite shavings from a pencil. Pretty slippery stuff that. Back in the day, graphite was the only thing you were supposed to use in lock tumblers.
  4. rev_olie

    rev_olie TS Guru Posts: 560

    i dont know abut electrics going out of tune :D but i do know that one of the main casues is simply dirt build up on the switch pot. If the gutiar has a back plate (a piece of plastic screwed down on the back were the switch would be) unscrew that and look at the switch pot. Get some electrical cleaner and spray it on the wire the connections and the pot. Also give the wires a good tub. Dont be frightened of pulling them loose. If they come loose its been a bad connection and you will simply need to re clean the wire and re solder. Hope that helps

    Thats what the pot may look like new but you will be looking at the bottom
    if the gutiar doenst have the back plate il tell you how to clean it without
  5. Nick Lee

    Nick Lee TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    well guys I feel like an ***** because I now know what the last tone knob does... its the same as the first one but only works when the switch is in the other direction... I guess one knob for each side of the switch...
  6. rev_olie

    rev_olie TS Guru Posts: 560

    yer for the diffeent pickups and for a different sound etc. Some have 1 for the overall tone some have none so you control if on the amp and like yours you have more than one. For example you may have one pickup selected and one tone selecter would control that. You may have 2 pickups selected meaning one control qwould control one and the other the well other etc thats how :p
  7. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,017   +2,546

    No Quotes in This Post.......

    Nick; I takes a good man to admit what you did about tone and switch thingy.

    Shameless too!:blush: :rolleyes:
  8. Ralphmex

    Ralphmex TS Rookie Posts: 41

    I play too!!!! im from Mexico!

    Hey i play guitar too, wish it wasnt just a hobbie...


    Here´s some of my stuff, hope you like them, i did entirely myself all instruments and voices ;)


  9. Nick Lee

    Nick Lee TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    um... Thank you. :haha:
  10. Nick Lee

    Nick Lee TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    One other small question... When I play the 12th fret (around here) I hear like a rattling sound from the string... Could it be vibrating against the other frets(the metal parts) It doesn't seem to affect the sound coming out of the amp but I find it a little annoying from the guitar. Should I just Raise up the strings a little or.... Because the strings are really low where it almost takes no effort at all to press on them.
  11. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,017   +2,546

    Push....A little harder.....

    Sometimes a fret may be high or low in reference to the frets around it, which will cause buzzing. This gets solved by filing the individual fret down.

    >>>>DON'T <<<< try this a home kids. If you don't know what you're doing you can do more harm than good! Really DON'T!

    A guitar's neck actually needs a bit of "warp" in it to work properly. This is determined by fretting the strings at the first and twelfth fret then measuring the clearance under the fifth fret, where there should be a few thousandths of a inch clearance. (actual number depends on the type of guitar). Lack of that clearance will cause buzz at the lower frets

    You can get buzz from too low an action, too light a gauge of strings or a combination of the two. Some players actually change instruments based on whether they're playing rhythm or lead, the lighter gauge being used for lead, so you can more easily bend them. Light strings can cause tuning problems, and personally I like to use a "medium" string set, which goes from .046 low E to .010 high E. I'm really not much of a lead player though

    Electric guitars can buzz a bit, as long as you don't hear it through the amp you're gold. Too low an action though, will cause a lack of string "control" with the excess looseness allowing a sort of muddiness in the bass especially.

    Hope that helps.
  12. Nick Lee

    Nick Lee TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    This helps me understand some, I use Ultra light strings... I believe. I was thinking it was because I lowered the strings buy unscrewing those pieces on the bridge. so If I were to raise them a little and re-tune it then it would stop.
  13. rev_olie

    rev_olie TS Guru Posts: 560

    Yer it sounds like you have the biggest combination of fret buzzing ingredients ever. Firstly the extra light strings....uuurg...its good at the moment to use these to help you fingers adjust to the playing but at some point you will need to look at maybe guage 10 strings to get a more rich sound like Sabbath etc and that will help solve the rattle. Also if you play with the same guage strings for a long time and then change them it will waerp the guitar neck so change sooner rather than later. Also it sounds like you have lowered the string hight. It can be tricky to put it back better. What you have to do it do it string by string and tune by fretting at the 12th fret and then tuning it by changing the screws tightness. Eg if it was sharp to too tense you would slacken the sting and vice versa.
    Take a look here:

    It depend whether you haver lowered the bridge or individual strings. Also maybe due to the age some truss rod adjustment may be nesesarry if the buzz cannot be solved at the bridge but that is an area for experts only!!

    btw what make of strings are you using? just wondering
    also well done on the maths didnt say last time :D i personally cannot stand the subject just confuses me :S but obviousley you get it lol
  14. Nick Lee

    Nick Lee TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    That actually does help a lot. And Thank You. I cant measure 2 or 3/64 of a inch but I can raise them hair by hair until the rattling stops, I raised them all a long time ago... I don't even know what the trust rod(s) are.
    Edit: It works I moved all the string from 1 1/2 to 2 full allan-wrench revolution. It sounds better like no rattling, louder ?, and.... I think that is all.
  15. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,017   +2,546

    >>> Truss<<< rods (not) "trust" rods, and they run through the neck to set the bend in the neck which I described in my earlier post. The adjustment for the truss rods is under the little plate on the headstock.

    It isn't any hard and fixed rule that using the same guage strings will warp a neck. They used to say to tune the guitar down when your not using it, but that just cycles stress and relief which isn't any good either.

    Just put the guitar in a quality case while you're not using it. By quality, I mean one of the insulated plastic cases that prevent sudden changes of temperature and humidity.

    I would argue against really thin string sets, since guitar playing is a physical activity. It's a good idea to play an accoustic instrument from time to time.It builds muscles and stamina in those muscles. Electrics with hair thin strings don't do this. Sort of like swinging two bats before going to the plate.

    I would also further argue that if you can go on about how good you are at math, it really shouldn't be that dificult to learn to measure 3/32 of an inch or whatever.
  16. Nick Lee

    Nick Lee TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    lol, I know I want to get maybe medium strings. I have the Hard case that came with the guitar which in my opinion is really good. I am good with math and I never said I couldn't learn to measure it. Its just that I have tape measure (a no go) or a ruler which sicks because at closest it can go to 16th and I could guess at half of that to be a 32th but it wont be exact as I don't have a ruler to measure really tiny things. Thanks for making the truss rod thing understandable.
  17. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,017   +2,546

    Rulers aren't what's called for when measuring string clearance.

    The ideal way to do this would be with a set of "feeler guages", which are different measured thicknesses of metal designed to be inserted between two objects. This is how spark plug electrode gap is measured, All you need to do then is learn to deal with decimal to fractional equivalent conversion. IE 1/16 " = .0625

    The truss rod sits in an very low radius groove under the fingerboard. When the adjusting nut of the truss is tightened it pulls the rod more into a straight line, and with it the neck. The groove is deepest in the neck around the 5th to 7th fret. So, tighten the rod, the neck bends backward.

    As I said before, the quitar neck must be slightly "warped" (lower at the 5th fret) to avoid buzzing. So, don't go flying into this adjustment, this is just FYI.

    Electric guitar necks are very much less prone to warping than acoustic necks because of a lower action and very much lower overall string tension. In acoustic guitars, sometimes the sound board warps upward and in so doing increases the height of the action.
    Then there's the 12 string, which should actually be tuned 2 to 4 half steps lower than the E to E of standard guitar tuning. Somewhere from D to D and C to C. Then you use a capo the bring it up to standard pitch when playing. Most acoustic twelves won't survive very long tuned to "concert pitch". Not to mention they're almost impossible to finger. Try a bar chord on a pitched up 12, get to know what pain is.

    Some players use the lower tunings anyway, due to the fact most baritones can't hit the top "G" in the G open chord.
  18. Nick Lee

    Nick Lee TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    The informations helps a lot, not to sound stupid but where can i get some feeler gauges?
  19. rev_olie

    rev_olie TS Guru Posts: 560

    Nice one there captaincranky good info.

    You can get them in loads of places just do a google product search youl find them anyware amazon.com even!!.
  20. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,017   +2,546

    I Hate to Quote Myself But, I Didn't Finisn the Thought.....

    The classic example of this is the famous Beatles song, "Yesterday", sung by Paul McCartney The acoustic is tuned in a standard tuning, but from "D" to "D" So, the Yester......Day...,Ay..., Ay...,Ay. , comes right down a"G" open chord, "G", "D"
    (B string, 3rd fret), "B" open string), then "G" (3rd string open. But he's actually singing "F", "C", "A", "F".
    I'm really old so I've actually heard yesterday, (a #1 hit), hope you guys have too.

    Ah yes, feeler gauges, an auto parts store or perhaps a Sears "Tool Dept", you want a thick set that goes up to .060 or so, so you don't have to put too many together..
  21. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,017   +2,546

    I Hate to Quote Myself But, I Didn't Finish the Thought.....

    Double post, sorry
  22. halo71

    halo71 TS Rookie Posts: 1,090

    Nick, blocking the tremelo means that you set it where it cant pull up or dive. For example, the Floyd Rose trem's on any of my 4 vintage Kramer guitars floats on the trem post and back springs. If I blocked them, they are still set up the same way just the trem will not move. Some do this when they have tuning issues. But if you know what you are doing with a Floyd Rose trem this is not needed. Blocking the trem can be done with a tremsetter or even shims or smal blocks of wood set between the tremelo baseplate and the body of the guitar in the trem route.

    For fret buzz....what you describe could be several things as pretty much already said. The tremelo may need raised, the frets may need a dressing (DO NOT ATTEMPT YOURSELF!), fret job (replacing frets). Truss rod may need adjusting as well. You may also need to remove the neck and place a thin shim in the rear of the neck pocket. On a guitar as old as yours, a fret dressing may be in order. Look closely at them, is there any pitting or valley's on the frets?

    In my years of playing guitar, adjustment of the rod or raising the trem a little corrects this issue. Truss rod adjustment is done at the headstock end under the truss rod cover, or at the heal of the neck. I would imagine yours is at the head stock though.

    EDIT: Remeber, the old Tokai's today are pretty collectible and some are worth a good bit. If I were you, I would take that guitar to a reputable guitar tech and have it set up properly. You'd be amazed at how much better a guitar sounds and plays when its intonated right and everything is set properly.
  23. halo71

    halo71 TS Rookie Posts: 1,090

    huh??? Are you quoting this from somewhere or what?

  24. Nick Lee

    Nick Lee TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    Thanks for the tip, I was thinking of going down to cornerstone and seeing if they could help the truss rods and have it intonated right.
  25. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 13,017   +2,546

    Well, Actually......

    I've played the guitar for forty years, (not well, but including the 12 string), and gotten a couple of "A"s in English Comp recently.
    Are you saying you like or dislike the the style, disagree with the conclusions, or suggesting I'm plagiarizing the material?

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