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GalenRedri enmorten Elí Saúl davidlbrehm pilou Gonçalo

Do I need my frets... fixed? Scrape-y when I vibrato.

kevorkazitokevorkazito Winnipeg Manitoba Canada✭✭
:?:

Last month I got my first GJ guitar, an Altamira M01.

I'm really happy with this guitar except when I do up-and-down vibrato, the strings really scrape on the frets. It's frustrating to apply some tasteful vibs and hear 'schzzzz-scrape!' with the modulation.

Does this mean I have to do some fret 'dressing', like a level and crowning? I guess over time I would wear the frets down to a polished, slippery surface. But until that day... Oy!

Any advice or similar experiences? I don't think it's supposed to be this way.

TIA, Carlos
«13

Comments

  • Ian RossiterIan Rossiter Fort Vermilion ,Alberta ,CanadaNew
    Posts: 203
    Unless you have big ol' gouges and ruts in the fretwire, mabey a polish would help. I've had really good luck with the "Fret-erasers" from Stew-Mac.
    Practice ,Practice,EAT PRACTICE- Tommy Tedesco
  • kevorkazitokevorkazito Winnipeg Manitoba Canada✭✭
    Posts: 178
    Unless you have big ol' gouges and ruts in the fretwire, mabey a polish would help. I've had really good luck with the "Fret-erasers" from Stew-Mac.

    No, the frets have no textural defects aside from have some kind of friction coefficient where there shouldn't be any.

    I have never heard of them but I do like the idea of doing it myself. I'm going to place an order for a set of them now, thanks for the tip Ian!

    They are a helluva lot cheaper than a crown and leveling (I'm guessing).

    http://www.stewmac.com/shop/Fretting_supplies/Polishing_and_abrasives/Fret_Erasers.html
  • Jeff MooreJeff Moore Minneapolis✭✭✭✭ Lebreton 2
    Posts: 476
    Remember that these guitars accentuate treble, and "schzzzz-scrape" is a treble sound.
    But new frets seem to always get smoother as you do the vertical bends and "smooth em with the strings". I've had a bunch of new guitars and I think all of them stopped doing this at all, in a short time.
    But if they look really smooth, I don't know why they would scrape?
    You can use really fine sandpaper and a flat sanding pad and roll over them perpendicular to the neck, (like they should do before there're sold).
    "We need a radical redistribution of wealth and power" MLK
  • kevorkazitokevorkazito Winnipeg Manitoba Canada✭✭
    Posts: 178
    Jeff Moore wrote:
    Remember that these guitars accentuate treble, and "schzzzz-scrape" is a treble sound.
    But new frets seem to always get smoother as you do the vertical bends and "smooth em with the strings". I've had a bunch of new guitars and I think all of them stopped doing this at all, in a short time.
    But if they look really smooth, I don't know why they would scrape?
    You can use really fine sandpaper and a flat sanding pad and roll over them perpendicular to the neck, (like they should do before there're sold).

    The treble timbre is there, and I understand the characteristic tone of the guitar. I've seen some videos at Rosenberg Academy where Stochelo demonstrates vibrato and the string glides silently over the frets.

    Having slept on it I am concerned about wrecking the fret wire with too much sanding. Need to do more research before I take action.

    They do look smooth and yet there is a pronounced scrape.

    Here's a video demonstrating the problem:

    http://youtu.be/bIhlkHtmyWc
  • BluesBop HarryBluesBop Harry Mexico city, MexicoVirtuoso
    Posts: 1,378
    That doesn't sound normal...

    You could try this:
    http://www.guitarcenter.com/Planet-Wave ... 1134814.gc
    http://www.planetwaves.com/pwProductDet ... ing_System
    It's just a few bucks and some elbow grease. I don't think it would do any damage to your guitar...

    Another thing to try is to put on some fresh strings or maybe switch brands?
  • Art-TArt-T New
    Posts: 2
    Hi there. I have an old patenotte which had scrapy frets. Best solution is 000 gauge wire wool to smooth them. If it's a new guitar that ought to be enough, fret dresses are for worn frets. Sounds like they just need a polish which is simple and rewarding to do yourself. Good luck!
  • kevorkazitokevorkazito Winnipeg Manitoba Canada✭✭
    Posts: 178
    The strings that came with the guitar are Argentine, 11's I think. I'll have to order some from here since my music store said 'huh' when I inquired about GJ strings.

    I guess I'll give them a polish. That should be all she needs. The rest of the guitar is amazing.

    I just ordered the fret erasers. This quote sold me on them:
    I've been doing the 0000 steel wool treatment and have always HATED it! Messy, time consuming, not ideal. Enter these little life savers. Fast, easy, not messy. Some people are not happy that they get black so easy but it doesn't interfere with how they work. A simple wipe off after using them and they feel terrific. I still use tape on the fretboard as I don't want to take the chance but a more skilled person could w/o it. I have the 800 and 1000 but will be getting the full set next time :)
    chrisharbin

    Thanks for the tip Ian and everyone else's input.
  • Craig BumgarnerCraig Bumgarner Drayden, MarylandVirtuoso Bumgarner S/N 001
    Posts: 794
    Sounds like you are on the right track. I would just comment that it takes very little in the way of scratches across the fret, that is parallel to the string, to notice when you play. You could quite possibly overlook them without a bright light and a magnifying glass.

    The erasers are cool, I have them and use them, but you can also use a small mill file, then sandpaper progressing from 600G to 2000G. Be sure to tape off around the fret or you will scratch the fingerboard. When I do this , I finish with a rubber polishing wheel in a Dremel tool, the a mini buffer and rouge in the Dremel. This results in a mirror polish and the fingers will say "Ahh, that's a nice" when playing.
  • HemertHemert Prodigy
    Posts: 263
    There's nothing wrong with your guitar. You are just pressing down to hard on the string while doing vibrato. Think of it in this way: use force to MOVE the string, NOT in pressing down the string.

    Takes some practice, but you'll be fine. Don't fix your guitar, it's fine as it is!

    Oh and by the way: that scrapy sound is normal. I scrape, Stochelo scrapes, Bireli scrapes. You just don't notice because the amplitude of the vibrato is so large that your ear goes to the sound of the singing vibrato.
  • MichaelHorowitzMichaelHorowitz SeattleAdministrator
    Posts: 5,811
    It should be noted that pretty well all the Asian guitars are fitted with inexpensive fret wire and this "scraping problem" is common. I do notice it the most on the Ciganos, but other Asian guitars have it to a certain extent.

    It does usually go away after playing for a while as the strings themselves will smooth out the frets.

    Good luck!

    M
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