#1
I love my telecaster. But lately I've been trying some faster techniques like sweep picking and the relatively high action on it has made it really hard to get any kind of good speed.

So my question is this: is it realistic to lower the action on my telecaster and be able to sweep pick?

Below is a pic of the string height.



Thanks
#3
for me it looks too high. never really played a telecaster though
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#4
@Pikka Bird
Well my question is whether this was something that would help. As in being able to lower it further without getting fret buzz or anything.
#5
get a ruler like this one : http://greatnecksaw.com/images/product_images/medium/25353.jpg (measures in 64ths)
and a feeler gauge (metric)
then send me a message and i'll walk you through a set up
OR
take it to a professional and have them do it (good idea to do this at least once in the life of the guitar in case it needs fret work)
#6
Before you adjust the saddles, check your truss rod. In case you're not sure as to how you do it, here's how;

Hold the low E string down at the 1st and 17th frets. Check the gap between the string and the 8th fret. You want the gap to be just slightly less than a buisness card. If it's too high, tighten the truss rod, by turning it clockwise. You don't want it too tight, or the strings will be too close.

In my experience, 9 times out of 10, this is usually the problem with high action.
There's my way and the wrong way.
#7
Quote by PassingStranger
@Pikka Bird
Well my question is whether this was something that would help. As in being able to lower it further without getting fret buzz or anything.

You might get a huge amount of buzz and you might not... Just try to lower the strings and listen... It can't hurt it at all. Lower, retune, play, evaluate. If you get buzz then you will need a truss rod adjustment, but that's a different issue that other posters have already touched upon.
Last edited by Pikka Bird at Feb 12, 2009,
#8
Okay, thanks for the responses guys.

Especially thanks for the offer, Sanitarium, but I'm thinking since this is my first time, I'll just take it to guitar center. Normally I wouldn't jump straight to having someone else do it, but I have a gift card that's expiring in the next few days anyway.

Thanks for the advice.
#9
wait wait.

you dont need to take it to gc. half the time those guys arent real techs anyway. or they send the guitar out and it takes a week or two to get back.


just
fret the first fret on the low E, at the same time,
fret the last fret on the low E, where the neck and body meet.

with both places help look at the middle frets. 7-9th

can you fit more than a credit card in that space?

if the answer is yes, then post back here. at least you'll have an understanding of what's needed, if you still decide to bring it in.


also, in rereading the thread, i'm not even 100% sure you've Tried lowering the saddles first.

i see pikka noticed this. but really if you havent tried, all you need is a little allen wrench. it fits the front two pegs of each saddle, and one turn raises or lowers each saddle to the height you want.

Jenneh

Quote by TNfootballfan62
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Last edited by jj1565 at Feb 12, 2009,
#10
Quote by PassingStranger

So my question is this: is it realistic to lower the action on my telecaster and be able to sweep pick?

You will not suddenly be able to sweep pick because your action is lower. It might make it a bit easier, but only a tad.
#11
have you seen his action?
Jenneh

Quote by TNfootballfan62
Jenny needs to sow her wild oats with random Gibsons and Taylors she picks up in bars before she settles down with a PRS.


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#12
Quote by jj1565

can you fit more than a credit card in that space?

if the answer is yes, then post back here. at least you'll have an understanding of what's needed, if you still decide to bring it in.

Okay, just tried it and it's definitely more than the width of a business card/credit card.

So I've heard some conflicting advice other places. Should my first step be adjusting the truss rod or the saddles?
#13
Quote by Y00p
You will not suddenly be able to sweep pick because your action is lower. It might make it a bit easier, but only a tad.


I've got high action too and I've put off learning to sweep until my guitar gets set up properly. My action's pretty high and when sweeping on the high frets, letting go of the strings results in a lot of unwanted noise (not just my technique)
#14
Generally lowering the action of a guitar means you can play it faster and more accurately. This does not go for everyone so give it a go and see. My Tele has a low action and was the first guitar I bought that really played well for me. My strat has a slightly higher action as I find that better on the strat , no idea why but it feels right to me.

As long as you are just making small changes you can always put it back the way it was and if you get too carried away a decent guitar shop can put it right for you.

Have fun

#16
Quote by jj1565
have you seen his action?

I have.

That's why I said, in his situation it will help, certainly, but not much. Meaning, his sweeping technique is still what matters, so he won't magically sweep like Cooley after just lowering his action.
#17
Quote by PassingStranger
@Pikka Bird
Well my question is whether this was something that would help. As in being able to lower it further without getting fret buzz or anything.


need a ruler...measure in 64ths...proper action is roughly 4/64ths...go higher/lower depending on how you feel with it.

after you adjust the bridge - don't forget to check your intonation
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#18
That action is way to high. You don't really need a ruler or anything. Just lower it until it feels right. It's pretty easy. If you get buzz then raise it a little. But remember with low action you will most ALWAYS have a little buzz. But a little buzz can be a good thing. You can't hear the little buzz through the amp anyway. But if you got it to low to where it's laying on the frets you will have the bad buzz and you won't be able to play good.

But if your frets are to high you won't be able to put it really low. It'll end up laying on one of the frets and you'll have a few frets that won't work. Which is why I have fretwork done on almost all of my guitars.
Last edited by hcsn2008 at Feb 12, 2009,
#19
Quote by PassingStranger
Okay, just tried it and it's definitely more than the width of a business card/credit card.

So I've heard some conflicting advice other places. Should my first step be adjusting the truss rod or the saddles?



most guitars cant get buzz free with a business card's spacing at the middle.

i wanted you to check 2 medium picks, or a credit card at the middle.


in addition i need to know if you've adjusted the saddles yet.
Jenneh

Quote by TNfootballfan62
Jenny needs to sow her wild oats with random Gibsons and Taylors she picks up in bars before she settles down with a PRS.


Set up Questions? ...Q & A Thread

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#20
Quote by jj1565
most guitars cant get buzz free with a business card's spacing at the middle.

i wanted you to check 2 medium picks, or a credit card at the middle.


in addition i need to know if you've adjusted the saddles yet.


A credit card could definitely fit in the space. I checked and there are no nearby places that sell the .050 allen wrench that I need to adjust the saddles so I ordered a set online yesterday so they'll be here in the next few days.
#21
ok sounds good. that should do it.

if you need more setup help for the neck relief after the saddles are done, then click the green link in my sig. i'll answer them.

i'd post back here but new posts dont always pop up on my searches.
Jenneh

Quote by TNfootballfan62
Jenny needs to sow her wild oats with random Gibsons and Taylors she picks up in bars before she settles down with a PRS.


Set up Questions? ...Q & A Thread

Recognised by the Official EG/GG&A/GB&C WTLT Lists 2011
#22
Yeah if you need to adjust the neck that's an easy task also as long as you do it properly. But can be dangerous if you do it improper. But I mean unless you're just stupid it's hard to do that. You just have to remember it takes VERY small turns. A lot of people are scared to adjust the neck but they shouldn't be. They should just use common sense and follow directions. You can find out how to do it on tons of places online. As long as you don't sit there and twist and twist it's not going to snap. You also should only do little by little at a time or it can be bad for it. So if you need a major adjustment do a little and then wait a while and then do more.
#23
Quote by jj1565
have you seen his action?

Yeah, it's crazy big.

Lowering will defenitely make it easier. But not a lot. Practice will make it easier.
#24
Quote by Butt Rayge
Yeah, it's crazy big.

Lowering will defenitely make it easier. But not a lot. Practice will make it easier.


practice doesn't have anything to do with it. He can practice and be the best guitar player in the world but which will he be able to play more efficiently and better. His playing will also be more clear.

So yeah he can practice and get used to it being up high... But he's only going to be that much better with it lowered.

Lowering it makes it a LOT easier.
#25
Practice has everything to do with it. I used to have super low action, but i got tired of having no sustain, so i raised it and it didn't make anything harder. It's not as high as his though. Should defenitely lower it a little.
#26
Quote by Butt Rayge
Practice has everything to do with it. I used to have super low action, but i got tired of having no sustain, so i raised it and it didn't make anything harder. It's not as high as his though. Should defenitely lower it a little.


Well i agree with it shouldn't be to low. I had mine to low and did the same thing. If you do it to low it takes away a lot of tone. But I said it has nothing to do with practice because it doesn't matter how good he is. He can be a guitar god but he's going to feel better with his action lower. And I don't mean really really low. I just mean way lower than his.