Introducing "Rocky"...

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,205
Looks like they have added a mm to the length of each tuner in the standard set to account for the UMP plate which I don't use.

Though sitar sounds are usually nut related when too wide or deep, if the string tree has solved it for you that is great but there can be a fine tolerance between a nut sitar-ing and not doing so.

 

cbransfield

New member
Messages
15
I'm sure this goes without saying, but the best "debugging" method for string action issues is to play the guitar unplugged.  It's very easy to hear all of the spurious non-harmonic mechanical string sounds, and it encourages me to mitigate them through improved playing technique as well as guitar set-up.  If I can get a tune to sound good unplugged, it sounds great with the electronics engaged.

Craig
 

Sadie-f

Senior member
Messages
427
Craig Bransfield said:
I'm sure this goes without saying, but the best "debugging" method for string action issues is to play the guitar unplugged.  It's very easy to hear all of the spurious non-harmonic mechanical string sounds, and it encourages me to mitigate them through improved playing technique as well as guitar set-up.  If I can get a tune to sound good unplugged, it sounds great with the electronics engaged.

Craig

Well said, my Fender (TM) has a buzz near g3 that was my initial motivation for building my W-strat :)
 

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,205
I probably play most of my electrics more unplugged than not nowadays. I agree it reveals a lot about a guitar and also allows focussing on the finer points of playing etc.
 

cbransfield

New member
Messages
15
Back again, folks!

After several months of "adapting myself" to this new electric guitar, I reached the point that I felt I was working too hard to get around the nuances of the Earvana nut.  So I removed it intact, and used it as a pattern for a non-compensated nut made with Graph-Tech TusqXL material.  The blank I used:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MA55ZA6?psc=1&ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details

was oversized in all dimensions and without slots.  I fitted it into the fretboard slot for the Earvana nut and set the string slot depths at a conservative clearance value (0.020" bass side, 0.018" treble side).

The first bit of good news is that the slot for the Earvana nut had been cut by Warmoth with its inboard face in exactly the correct location. Also, the last residual "hanging up" of the strings in the slots has disappeared.  Now, I can just pick up the guitar and play, with no special accommodation for finger pressure required.  Everything plays exactly in tune, and stays that way from session to session.

In addition, I replaced 3 of the Hipshot tuners so that strings 1 through 5 use the "short" (19mm) post, and only the 6th string uses the "tall" post (21mm).  As you can see in the photo, now I have all 6 strings with very nearly the same breakover angle at the nut.  Picky? Perhaps, but the results are quite satisfying.

Craig

 

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stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,205
There is something odd here.

The Earvana should have helped tuning, if you have replaced it with the leading edge of the nut in the same place as where the leading edge for an Earvana should be the new nut can not be playing in tune as it is overall too close to the first fret etc rather than in tune as mentioned.

What is the distance from the leading edge of the nut to the centre of the 1st fret it should be for a standard strat scale length it should be 1.431" or to fret 12 - 12.750". In metric nut to 1st - 36.353mm and to 12th - 323.850mm. If those distances are shorter the nut is in the wrong place and if they are correct the Earvana was not fitted correctly which is less likely.





 

cbransfield

New member
Messages
15
Regarding the new and improved low-end intonation of the uncompensated nut, I think we have to say that this is the point where art leaves engineering behind.  I measured the pitch deviations of each string at the first fret prior to replacing the nut, with results varying from -1 to +4 cents.  With the new nut, there are no detectable deviations at the first fret on any string.  This of course takes into account all factors including the chosen strings, clearance at the first fret, and "normal" applied finger pressure.

Warmoth does mention the difference in thickness of the Earvana nut in their literature, such that any replacement would need to be in exact kind, or custom fit as I have done.  They do not provide any guidance regarding expected intonation changes resulting from elimination of the "compensation pockets" of the Earvana nut.

If Warmoth made a mistake on my nut placement, then their error is now definitely in my favor.  As they say, "I'd rather be lucky than good any day"!

Craig

 

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,205
Craig Bransfield said:
If Warmoth made a mistake on my nut placement, then their error is now definitely in my favor.  As they say, "I'd rather be lucky than good any day"!

Craig

I highly doubt that such a mistake was made and from the pics it does not look like it. But if you have ended up with something that works for your playing style and is closer to what you expect to hear that is okay for you. But how in tune is it now at the 12th and 15th frets for example?

For interest can you verify the measurements?

 

cbransfield

New member
Messages
15
For the record, only very minor adjustments were made on the bridge saddles after the new nut installation.  Intonation is essentially perfect anywhere on the neck, provided I don't apply excessive finger pressure.

Also, I am not in a position to measure the actual distances to the required accuracy.  I am relying solely on pitch readings from my electronic tuner, as well as how it sounds musically.
 

stratamania

Senior member
Messages
9,205
Okay Craig, the important thing is that it is working for you. I am just curious from a maths/engineering point of view.
 

cbransfield

New member
Messages
15
Another quick update - I'd been having issues achieving proper string volume balance, especially with a weak 4th string compared to a strong 3rd string. I contacted Lindy Fralin who built these pickups - he was very helpful. He pointed out that he builds these "Split-Blade Humbucker" Strat pickups to have very low magnetic flux (Gauss). As such, it is OK to bring the pickups quite close to the strings without generating magnetic pinch, or "wolf tones". He recommended holding the strings down at the highest fret, then adjusting the pickups up to leave only about 1/16" string clearance. This worked out just fine on my guitar - much better string balance along with plenty of signal strength.

Craig
 

Rick

Senior member
Messages
4,311
Ooops ... "A" tip from the man. But if I saw Lindy, and he gave me a tip on pick ups, I'd thank him most profusely, LIndy Bro' if you're reading this know you make great pups. Love you man. Next time I'm in Richmond I'm taking the tour. That's a great town.
 
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