Go Back   UG Community @ Ultimate-Guitar.Com > Instruments > Acoustic & Classical Guitar
User Name  
Password
Search:

Reply
Old 08-27-2014, 08:44 PM   #1
songbird64
Crazier everyday
 
songbird64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Small grooves in fret wires?

Okay, so I have a Fender steel string acoustic guitar that I bought new about a year ago. Well, the last time I changed the strings, I noticed small grooves on the fret wire where the strings go over. It is mostly on the first fret, but there are a few grooves on some other fret wires. It is currently not causing a problem, but sometimes sounds a bit brassy. I currently use Martin light to extra light (depending on what I can find in the store) strings. I play this guitar about every other day give or take.
I was wondering if this is common or not and if I should get it checked out or fixed.
Thanks in advance!
__________________
"Being honest may not get you a lot of friends, but it'll always get you the right ones."
songbird64 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2014, 10:24 PM   #2
Tony Done
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
This is normal fret wear, and when it gets too bad the frets can be levelled and recrowned. Eventually a complete or partial refret may be necessary. Some use stainless steel frets reduce wear, but they are a more expensive.
__________________
Tony Done
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=784456
http://www.flickr.com/photos/done_family/
Tony Done is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2014, 10:42 PM   #3
Captaincranky
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by songbird64
Okay, so I have a Fender steel string acoustic guitar that I bought new about a year ago. Well, the last time I changed the strings, I noticed small grooves on the fret wire where the strings go over. It is mostly on the first fret, but there are a few grooves on some other fret wires. It is currently not causing a problem, but sometimes sounds a bit brassy. I currently use Martin light to extra light (depending on what I can find in the store) strings. I play this guitar about every other day give or take.
I was wondering if this is common or not and if I should get it checked out or fixed.
Thanks in advance!
OK, that Fender is engineered to sound, "brassy", and you're making it worse with extra light strings. It's not the frets.

80/20 "brass" string are bright. (brassy?) Phosphor bronze is more mellow and warm.

In any case, you really shouldn't go any lighter than "custom light" strings. (.011 to .052). Even they lack a bit of bass.
Captaincranky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2014, 10:46 PM   #4
Tony Done
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captaincranky
OK, that Fender is engineered to sound, "brassy", and you're making it worse with extra light strings. It's not the frets.

80/20 "brass" string are bright. (brassy?) Phosphor bronze is more mellow and warm.

In any case, you really shouldn't go any lighter than "custom light" strings. (.011 to .052). Even they lack a bit of bass.


True, phos bronze is less brassy than 80/20. Anything lighter than 12-52 on a flattop is a crime against nature, IMO.
__________________
Tony Done
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=784456
http://www.flickr.com/photos/done_family/
Tony Done is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2014, 11:05 PM   #5
songbird64
Crazier everyday
 
songbird64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Thanks for your responses. Is there a different brand of strings that you would recommend?
__________________
"Being honest may not get you a lot of friends, but it'll always get you the right ones."
songbird64 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2014, 11:36 PM   #6
Tony Done
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by songbird64
Thanks for your responses. Is there a different brand of strings that you would recommend?


I've been using John Pearse phoshpor bronze for years, try a set of lights (12s)
__________________
Tony Done
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=784456
http://www.flickr.com/photos/done_family/
Tony Done is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2014, 05:02 PM   #7
songbird64
Crazier everyday
 
songbird64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
^ Thanks! I will look for them
__________________
"Being honest may not get you a lot of friends, but it'll always get you the right ones."
songbird64 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2014, 11:45 PM   #8
songbird64
Crazier everyday
 
songbird64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Done
I've been using John Pearse phoshpor bronze for years, try a set of lights (12s)


I changed my strings to these and I can tell an improvement in tone. But the brassy sound is still there. It is very hard for me to explain the sound. It almost sounds tingy if that makes any sense. Almost like vibrating metal. When I went to the guitar store I tried other acoustics to see if it was my playing, but others sounded fine. Any other ideas on what it could be? When I get the chance I will take it to a guitar tech to see about the action.

Thanks!
__________________
"Being honest may not get you a lot of friends, but it'll always get you the right ones."
songbird64 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2014, 03:03 AM   #9
Captaincranky
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by songbird64
I changed my strings to these and I can tell an improvement in tone. But the brassy sound is still there. It is very hard for me to explain the sound. It almost sounds tingy if that makes any sense. Almost like vibrating metal. When I went to the guitar store I tried other acoustics to see if it was my playing, but others sounded fine. Any other ideas on what it could be? When I get the chance I will take it to a guitar tech to see about the action.

Thanks!
OK, it sounds like you're describing what we call "fret buzz". It happens primarily when the action of the guitar is too low overall.

Try isolating the buzz by fretting one string at a time, one fret at a time, all the way up the neck, at least to the 15th fret.

There are other possibilities, such as one fret being too high, or a worn fret can cause the buzz at the next higher fret. Beings as the guitar is only a year or so old, I don't think the wear would be severe enough to cause this yet.

Another possibility is that you're a heavy player, and the action needs to be raised to accommodate that. Very light strings would aggravate the issue.

New string also have a very metallic "twang", are we sure you're not hearing this?
Captaincranky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2014, 11:22 AM   #10
songbird64
Crazier everyday
 
songbird64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
^ I think you are right about it being fret buzz. I am sure about it not being new strings. There is major buzz on all the strings when I fret on the third fret. Soon as I strum, whether it be with my pick or my thumb, there is a lot of buzz. It only happens on that fret. On other frets, it buzzes sometimes as it rings out. The weird thing is that it only started happening a couple of months ago, and has slowly gotten worse. I've heard other people play my guitar and it happens to them too so I don't think it's me.
Thanks for your post.
__________________
"Being honest may not get you a lot of friends, but it'll always get you the right ones."
songbird64 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2014, 02:05 PM   #11
Captaincranky
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
I think your guitar needs a truss rod adjustment. I'm reluctant to say that, because beginners can go a bit overboard when they try this fix.

Generally speaking, a truss rod rarely needs to be adjusted much more than 1/4 turn. In your case it would be LOOSENING, turning the adjuster in a counterclockwise direction.

But first, you're going to read this tutorial about acoustic set up: http://thbecker.net/guitar_playing/...up_page_01.html to try and give yourself "the big picture", as to how to check the guitar over and isolate the problem.

This issue could still be one of three things, low action, insufficient "relief", (the neck is too straight!), or the 3rd fret is too high.

Most likely it's the truss rod, but a fret backing out is still within the realm of possibility.

So, read the tutorial, and if there's anything you don't understand, post back, and we'll try and talk you through it.

Taking the guitar to a tech is also a great idea, but it costs money. An acoustic guitar's setup can change seasonally, from bouts of high humidity, and also from settling in due to age. The player is the, "first at the scene of the accident", so to speak, knows his or her preferences, and should be able to accomplish basic maintenance operations.

If you're a little handy, you should undertake this yourself. If you work cautiously, doing things in proper sequence, very small amounts at a time, you won't do any harm, nor anything that can't be undone.

Last edited by Captaincranky : 08-30-2014 at 02:09 PM.
Captaincranky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2014, 03:42 PM   #12
oneblackened
Future Breed Machine
 
oneblackened's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Asgaard
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Done
This is normal fret wear, and when it gets too bad the frets can be levelled and recrowned. Eventually a complete or partial refret may be necessary. Some use stainless steel frets reduce wear, but they are a more expensive.

Accurate.


I don't think I've ever heard of SS frets used on an acoustic before though.
__________________
-Dave
LTD MH-400 (SD Distortion/59)
Ibanez S970W (Dimarzio Evos)
ESP Eclipse II (Lace Finger Burners)
Agile Septor Pro 727 Maple Board (EMG 81-7s)
Peavey 5150 II
oneblackened is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2014, 04:42 PM   #13
Captaincranky
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by oneblackened
...[ ]...I don't think I've ever heard of SS frets used on an acoustic before though.
Carvin offers them as an option on their thin body A/E instruments. Of course their true acoustic line, (size and shape), has been discontinued.

I believe that Ovation's, "Adamas" series comes with stainless frets stock. Not sure though. You could wait for "stepchildusmc" to weigh in on that, since he owns one, (or more (?)), of that series. (I checked Ovation's site, no joy or confirmation about that).

I can't think of any particular reason they wouldn't work well on an acoustic. Although, they might brighten up the guitar a bit.
Captaincranky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2014, 11:32 PM   #14
stepchildusmc
Registered User
 
stepchildusmc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captaincranky
Carvin offers them as an option on their thin body A/E instruments. Of course their true acoustic line, (size and shape), has been discontinued.

I believe that Ovation's, "Adamas" series comes with stainless frets stock. Not sure though. You could wait for "stepchildusmc" to weigh in on that, since he owns one, (or more (?)), of that series. (I checked Ovation's site, no joy or confirmation about that).

I can't think of any particular reason they wouldn't work well on an acoustic. Although, they might brighten up the guitar a bit.

yep. Steppy's Adamas' all( all 2 of them) have stainless.. I don't believe they make much of a difference sonically. they're just supposed to resist wear longer.
__________________
need more gear and a lot more talent(courtesytuxs)
stepchildusmc is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:19 AM.

Forum Archives / About / Terms of Use / Advertise / Contact / Ultimate-Guitar.Com © 2014
Powered by: vBulletin Version 3.0.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.