Opinions on multiple guitars buzzing…

Viking Power

Synchromatic
Jun 11, 2018
741
Mountlake Terrace, WA
Hey all,

Wondering if those of you with some technical skills can throw a suggestion or two my way…
Scenario:
- I now have 3 guitars that have some form of buzzing in the low E string. They are a G6636T, G5622T, and a Jazzmaster.
- I got the Falcon that way so maybe a setup would cure it.
- The Electromatic and the Jazzmaster WERE both fine. Had some mods done to each at different shops and they came back with the buzz.

For a while I’ve tried to convince myself that it is my playing that is causing it but I have a Strat and an SG that are both buzz free and again, two of the offending guitars were fine before they went into the shops.

Any thoughts? Is there a simple fix that a meathead like myself can do?

Thanks Gretsch Brethren.
 

loudnlousy

Gretschified
Gold Supporting Member
Oct 18, 2015
12,745
Germany
Maybe your problem can be cured by a simple trusrod adjustment or by adjusting the string-height.
A little buzz on electrical guitars is quite common and usually not heared through the amp.

Maybe there are different reasons for your problems:
The fretboard reacts to change of humidity. Sometimes the frets will move a bit, maybe they even pop out of their slots. Show it to a good luthier.
 
Last edited:

ruger9

Country Gent
Nov 1, 2008
3,617
NJ
It's season-changing time.... I seem to need to adjust most of my truss rods twice a year, for the changes in heat/humidty... I've noticed just in the last week (humidity has dropped, temps have cooled) a couple of my guitars are buzzing just a tad, and will soon require a 1/4 turn loosening of the truss rods (to add relief: and 6-7 months from now, I'll likely need to tighten them 1/4 turn due to humidity increases)
 

Highroller

Country Gent
Gold Supporting Member
Jun 11, 2015
2,210
Portland, OR
From a technical standpoint, i.e. - what should a properly set up guitar sound like - your guitar should and most likely can be buzz-free.

From a practical standpoint, it might be less important. I agree with Loudnlousy in that if you don't notice it when you're plugged in, it might not be worth worrying about. I've got an old Tele that's always had a little buzz down there on the low E. Teles are sort of infamous for it. I gave up worrying about it years ago 'cus you just don't hear it thru an amp.

We don't know how bad a buzz you're talking about, how long they've been that way, or any of that other stuff, but if I had a buzz-free guitar that came back from a shop with a buzz, I'd be thinking about having the shop double check their work. It might just be that they didn't know your personal tastes and set it up to their own preference.
 

Back in Black

Country Gent
Double Platinum Member
Jun 22, 2020
1,747
Ontario Canada
Hey all,

Wondering if those of you with some technical skills can throw a suggestion or two my way…
Scenario:
- I now have 3 guitars that have some form of buzzing in the low E string. They are a G6636T, G5622T, and a Jazzmaster.
- I got the Falcon that way so maybe a setup would cure it.
- The Electromatic and the Jazzmaster WERE both fine. Had some mods done to each at different shops and they came back with the buzz.

For a while I’ve tried to convince myself that it is my playing that is causing it but I have a Strat and an SG that are both buzz free and again, two of the offending guitars were fine before they went into the shops.

Any thoughts? Is there a simple fix that a meathead like myself can do?

Thanks Gretsch Brethren.
VP,

As loudnlousy has stated, sounds like you need an action adjustment.

It could also be, while your guitars were out, they were subjected to a humidity change and could use a truss rod adjustment.

Before making a truss rod adjustment, I would let the guitars settle in, now that they're home, before making a neck adjustment.

Raise the action slightly, this should solve your problem.

Best,

BIB.
 

Gregor

Country Gent
Gold Supporting Member
Oct 17, 2018
1,478
New Brunswick, Canada
What frets are they buzzing on. That could determine what action to take. If it's around the middle, truss rod. If around 22th fret and up, maybe a slight raising of the action at the bridge. If it's an open string, you're in big trouble at the nut but I doubt that's where you mean.
 

Ricochet

Senior Gretsch-Talker
Gold Supporting Member
Nov 13, 2009
22,773
Monkey Island
I think Loud and Ruger called it. The "seasonal humidity change" affecting neck relief.

Check by pressing the first and last fret on the E-string(check both) and see how much relief you get in the middle. You should still be able to get a ping when you tap it.
 

Viking Power

Synchromatic
Jun 11, 2018
741
Mountlake Terrace, WA
Hey thanks all for the replies and advice. Much appreciated.

I’ll give a little more detail to answer some questions and maybe clear up the situation a bit. I’ll add as an edit to my original post too.

Guitar 1- G5622T - had bridge, pickups, wiring harness, and pickup selector replaced in early 2021. Had a little buzz before, came back with more. My solution thus far: Play other guitars and try not to think about this one. Thing is, if it didn’t buzz it would be killer.

Guitar 2 - American Jazzmaster - back in 2019 had the vintage bridge replaced with a Mastery. Came back from the shop buzz free and capable of withstanding major right hand abuse. Took it back in this year in August to get Lollar pickups installed. Came back abuzzin’…

Both guitars (and my G6636T) buzz even when amplified. It should be noted that I am generally playing then at bedroom levels so not moving a lot of air and probably more likely to hear buzzing than if I cranked the amp.

I am not sure if any of them are buzzing at a certain fret more than others and it seems that the buzz comes even when played open.

Keep in mind I have two electrics that do not buzz at all.
 

Cryin_Caleb_Aaron

Friend of Fred
Gold Supporting Member
Aug 15, 2018
7,692
Auburn, Maine
I do my own setups, truss rod, string action etc, but I’m not good when it comes to any kind of fret work. Many times when I’ve had a guitar tinkered with by a professional, it’s comes back to me with a more buzz than it had when I dropped it off. Techs sometimes seem to love to bring the action down so it’s lower than anyone wants it.
 

coolrene

Electromatic
Apr 17, 2021
20
France
Necks are sensitive to climate change. Unless you have a twist in it, or unequal fret heights, a simple setting should do. Check the relief and increase it a hair if it buzzes, and then only raise the action by 0,25 mm increments.
 

DECEMBER

Electromatic
Nov 25, 2021
46
Beaverton, OR
I have 3 guitars and no matter what I do there's still terrible fret buzz. I've leveled the frets. I straighten the neck, I put relief in the neck, I raise the bridge till the action is too high to play, checked & filed nut slots... Nothing helps.
I have 3 basses that all have fret buzz on the G or G & D strings. Same thing: leveled frets, tried every possible setup configuration. The only way to get rid of the buzz is to make the action obnoxiously high.
 

Henry

I Bleed Orange
Apr 9, 2014
19,240
Petaluma
You need to find someone else to do the work. If all this effort results in buzz I'd be concerned that the work done, particularly on the frets, is as negative as positive.
 

MrWookiee

Country Gent
Jun 17, 2020
1,645
SoCal, USA
I have 3 guitars and no matter what I do there's still terrible fret buzz. I've leveled the frets. I straighten the neck, I put relief in the neck, I raise the bridge till the action is too high to play, checked & filed nut slots... Nothing helps.
I have 3 basses that all have fret buzz on the G or G & D strings. Same thing: leveled frets, tried every possible setup configuration. The only way to get rid of the buzz is to make the action obnoxiously high.
Maybe the nut is too low?
 

ruger9

Country Gent
Nov 1, 2008
3,617
NJ
If you play with a heavy picking hand, it will cause buzzing. I play with a heavy right hand, and it requires higher action. "Obnoxious levels"? I don't think so.

But that would explain why all 3 guitars buzz (along with seasonal changes and possibly sub-par fretwork that you performed, no offense intended)
 

TMcGee

Electromatic
Oct 14, 2021
47
USA
I have 3 guitars and no matter what I do there's still terrible fret buzz. I've leveled the frets. I straighten the neck, I put relief in the neck, I raise the bridge till the action is too high to play, checked & filed nut slots... Nothing helps.
I have 3 basses that all have fret buzz on the G or G & D strings. Same thing: leveled frets, tried every possible setup configuration. The only way to get rid of the buzz is to make the action obnoxiously high.
That sounds like a classic radius issue, the bridge is not as tight of a radius as the neck. Probably the only fix would be a new bridge saddle. If it doesn't get to the amplifier it isn't a big deal.
 


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