#1
SO, I buy a second hand Ibanez 7 string on ebay from an American seller, I'm based in the UK. When I received it, it was muddy on the low strings through an amp and had fret buzz especially on low strings. I changed the string gauge to 11-64 (remember this is 7 string) from the former 10-59. Still an issue. So I raised the action, still an issue.

I give it to a seemingly legit guitar tech, he levels the frets that the former owner already had levelled, and now the guitar is even worse! With both fretted and open notes, I have mud and fret buzz on the low strings and the higher strings have a tinny, muted, almost 'fretted-out' nature to them, its not a freely vibrating, clear tone. You can hear it in this video

There are 2 possible problems I see:

1. The truss rod may need adjusting. This would be surprising since the guitar tech would surely correct this if it was necessary. He doesn't seem to be a cowboy incompetent at all, I mean I know he didn't fix it but I'd be surprised if he missed this. By the way the reason I didn't pick up on the continued problem when I picked the guitar up was because when I got there he had tuned it up to where the higher 6 strings were a semitone above even standard tuning! It should at least be AEADGBE (although I flatten that) on a 7 string. The issues were obscured, I wonder if this was deliberate, but either way he surely would have adjusted the truss if this was an issue, I mean he seems very legit.

I have myself done a test concerning the neck. I have read that you can test the neck by holding down the string at the 1st fret and at the 24th. There should be a credit card sized gap then created between the string and the frets around the 12th fret. There is a smaller gap in my guitar but there is a gap, just not credit card sized. I'm not sure whether this is a legit test of the neck/truss rod however.

2. I think the main problem was always the frets that have now become too low, and this tech guy has excessively FLATTENED them. http://www.frets.com/FretsPages/Luthier/Technique/Setup/BuzzDiagnosis/FlatFret/flatfret.html Do people here agree that my frets shown in the attached picture resemble the ones in the link, given as an example of excessively flat frets? I mean when I rest a ruler on them, way more than a 'point' of the fret touches the ruler.
Attachments:
frets.pdf
Last edited by AwakeSleepingLi at Jan 14, 2017,
#2
A likely cause of the problem is the fact that the frets have been levelled down and the crowns are pretty much nonexistent. They're flat as a pancake. That can be a cause for fret buzz because what's happening is that when the previous luthier tried to crown them, because there isn't much material to work with to begin with, he had a hard time trying to file crowns back onto the frets after levelling them. As there's so much height lost from from levelling frets that are so wide that the crowns have had to have been filed very shallow, and so the buzz is occurring against the very fret that it's being fretted to.

This video shows what's happening a lot better than I can explain it.



Basically, I would send your guitar back to the guy who levelled the frets and see about what he can do about recrowning the frets to the correct shape.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#3
I'm not a guitar tech but what I can tell you is this. First, check the neck relief http://www.dummies.com/art-center/music/guitar/how-to-check-your-guitars-neck-relief/ make sure everything is good there.

Once you've done that check the bridge, perhaps there's an issue with the bridge causing the buzzing sound.

After that, check the nut, sometimes the slots in the nut are cut too deep and it causes buzz that you can't get rid of.

Out of that list one of them should take care of it. Which model is this? Does it have a tremolo or is it fixed bridge?

On the fret thing, I wouldn't be too worried about that. I've seen new guitars ship with flat frets. As long as they're not too low, as mentioned by the poster above it doesn't hurt anything, but it does take away any advantage that jumbo frets may have had.
Gibson Les Paul custom
Ibanez RG1570
Schecter KM7
Mesa Boogie triple rectifier
Rectifier 2x12"
Last edited by Chiliphil1 at Jan 14, 2017,
#4
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
A likely cause of the problem is the fact that the frets have been levelled down and the crowns are pretty much nonexistent. They're flat as a pancake. That can be a cause for fret buzz because what's happening is that when the previous luthier tried to crown them, because there isn't much material to work with to begin with, he had a hard time trying to file crowns back onto the frets after levelling them. As there's so much height lost from from levelling frets that are so wide that the crowns have had to have been filed very shallow, and so the buzz is occurring against the very fret that it's being fretted to.

This video shows what's happening a lot better than I can explain it.



Basically, I would send your guitar back to the guy who levelled the frets and see about what he can do about recrowning the frets to the correct shape.


Cheers for the help man, I KNEW I was right that they were too flat. Pshh the tech seemed legit. Thing is, as you mentioned, isnt the problem now that it is also too low? Does this mean I'm gonna be compromised unless I have the frets replaced? And one extra thing, I know I sound paranoid, but the pickups sound different. They are juggernauts, they have a distinct tone, I dont hear the same quality to the tone as I play now, this could be because of the issues described but is there a chance he switched them? I know this is mad but I'm hearing a difference. The outer look to the pickups are identical (the screws and the outer casing to the pickups, I don't know much about pickups but does this mean it is the same?
#5
AwakeSleepingLi I don't think the tech can be berated too much because in all fairness there really isn't much fret on that guitar to work with. Low, wide frets are the most difficult ones to crown.

I would see about trying to get them recrowned as best the luthier can and if that still doesn't work, consider getting a full refret. This is why its important to check the fretwork of the guitar before buying it and if the seller hasn't included pictures, ask for them. If the seller refuses or ignores you, walk away because chances are the state the frets are in is something they'd rather hide. The state the frets are in is probably the reason why the seller wanted to get rid of it and make it someone else's problem.
And one extra thing, I know I sound paranoid, but the pickups sound different. They are juggernauts, they have a distinct tone, I dont hear the same quality to the tone as I play now, this could be because of the issues described but is there a chance he switched them? I know this is mad but I'm hearing a difference. The outer look to the pickups are identical (the screws and the outer casing to the pickups, I don't know much about pickups but does this mean it is the same?

I'd worry about getting the fretwork sorted out first before diagnosing anything else. Fret buzz affects tone, even when playing with lots of gain.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#7
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
AwakeSleepingLi I don't think the tech can be berated too much because in all fairness there really isn't much fret on that guitar to work with. Low, wide frets are the most difficult ones to crown.

I would see about trying to get them recrowned as best the luthier can and if that still doesn't work, consider getting a full refret. This is why its important to check the fretwork of the guitar before buying it and if the seller hasn't included pictures, ask for them. If the seller refuses or ignores you, walk away because chances are the state the frets are in is something they'd rather hide. The state the frets are in is probably the reason why the seller wanted to get rid of it and make it someone else's problem.

I'd worry about getting the fretwork sorted out first before diagnosing anything else. Fret buzz affects tone, even when playing with lots of gain.


When you say he didnt have much to work with do you mean specifically my guitar or the model (Ibanez SIX27). Because to yeah I suppose they were fairly low beforehand but no pics of that here so how would you know?
#8
Quote by AwakeSleepingLi
When you say he didnt have much to work with do you mean specifically my guitar or the model (Ibanez SIX27). Because to yeah I suppose they were fairly low beforehand but no pics of that here so how would you know?

Your guitar, specifically. Whether or not that model if Ibanez generally has that issue or not, it isn't relevant now. The guitar is in your hands, nothing you can do about it but try and resolve it.

Again, you should've asked the seller before buying. Live and learn.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#9
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Your guitar, specifically. Whether or not that model if Ibanez generally has that issue or not, it isn't relevant now. The guitar is in your hands, nothing you can do about it but try and resolve it.

Again, you should've asked the seller before buying. Live and learn.


I didnt show the frets BEFORE the tech though. The pics are what he did.

Yeah you are right. Man, I paid a lot of money for it to be shipped and customs and tech, adds up to more than the real value and what i could sell it for probably. With the same money I could get a nice one from a reputable shop no problem, it just all added up. Damn haha
#10
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Your guitar, specifically. Whether or not that model if Ibanez generally has that issue or not, it isn't relevant now. The guitar is in your hands, nothing you can do about it but try and resolve it.

Again, you should've asked the seller before buying. Live and learn.


Also, if the frets were too low and filed down to begin with then he should have predicted he couldnt have crowned them or that any lower would be a problem. Instead of making it worse and charging me 60 pound
#11
You can edit posts to add more information rather than doubleposting. Just click the 'edit' button.

Posting multiple times in succession is to a point, against the rules.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#12
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
You can edit posts to add more information rather than doubleposting. Just click the 'edit' button.

Posting multiple times in succession is to a point, against the rules.


Apologies, I thought you may answer the first one before I had chance to edit the additional stuff in. So be that as it may, do you agree with my point about the tech? Sort of pointlessly dwelling on this now, but if its a legitimate point I may ask for a refund
#13
AwakeSleepingLi
I think the question of if the tech was wrong to work on the guitar is a bit pointless now. Telling the tech that he's wrong isn't going to fix your guitar.

Getting a refund from the seller is a non-starter. You've modified the guitar to a condition it wasn't in before so in no way is the seller liable. I'd ask the tech about getting the frets recrowned again and if he says it won't work, either look elsewhere for another tech, or get it refretted. If you choose to refret the guitar, ask for a discount from him on the grounds that the work he's done is unsatisfactory.and he should not have tried to level the frets if he wasn't certain he'd do the job to a good standard. If you ask him to recrown the frets properly, request he does it for free as he shouldn't have sent the guitar back to you with the job unfinished.

I'd get the frets recrowned first because there's really nothing to lose with the state the frets are currently in.

Obviously don't tell him 'YOU'VE NOT DONE YOUR JOB PROPERLY' or he might refuse to work with you. But show him the problem you're having and ask him if its possible to make the crown of the frets more round.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#14
T00DEEPBLUE Thanks for the help here mate. Yeah I actually didnt mean a refund from the seller, I know thats a no go, I meant from the tech! I have a good point I think, I do think it matters that he worked on it when maybe he shouldnt have touched it since potentially he could only make it worse by filing it down more. He should have said sorry heres the money back i wont touch it as ill make it worse, or youll have to have it refretted and thats a different cost, this matters as its how I'll approach the matter with him. He either made it worse or no better, i think worse, lower and flatter frets than before for sure. I think he owes me a refund and/or the crowning and even the refretting done for free. I've thrown so much money at this guitar, I might have got away with selling it before the tech got his hands on it without too much hassle but now i'd have to sell it has faulty and lose a lot of money
Last edited by AwakeSleepingLi at Jan 14, 2017,