Post Number: 54
|Posted on Tuesday, December 28, 2004 - 4:06 pm: |
I have my Epic's action set up to my liking but I get fretted out when bending a string. What would that indicate,and are there any adjustments that can be made to prevent? It seems to be caused by the 23/24 th fret... Is it lack of use of that note range?
Post Number: 49
|Posted on Tuesday, December 28, 2004 - 11:25 pm: |
This sounds to me that you may have the bridge set slightly low. The first thing I'd try to do is to raise the bridge height just enough to stop the problem and see if that's workable for you. Although bridge height is a big part of the overall action and playing height, you may find that tweaking the relief will minimize the difference in feel from the higher height. The bridge height dominates the feel in the high registers, but for most of the rest of the neck, the feeling of string height is coming from the neck relief instead. If you play with a lot of relief (bow away from strings), then the action will feel high no matter how low you put the bridge. So setting the relief slightly lower may allow you the extra height at the bridge.
The next thing to check would be to take a look at fret wear. In a perfect world, if you fret at the 1st and 24th fret, you should see a gentle bow, reaching its greatest point in the middle (around the 12th fret). The max gap is sort of dependent on the playing feel that you like, but is usually pretty small (like a medium to heavy pick, for me). In addition to checking that, you should see the fret gaps increase and decrease linearly toward the middle. In most cases, the finished height of the fret should be about the same across the neck too, but this can be variable - if there was a high spot on the fingerboard, then having some frets ground smaller to compensate isn't wrong, even if it's non optimal. If you see irregular gaps and irregular fret sizes, then you probably will need to look more closely at that to allow low action.
That ought to at least get you started.
Post Number: 632
|Posted on Wednesday, December 29, 2004 - 8:45 am: |
I concur with David. Typically, you'd have this problem playing on the middle frets if you tried to make up for too much neck bow by lowering the bridge, or if your 23rd/24th frets are high relative to the others.
Normally, I'd suspect the setup, but if you do a lot of bending and use steel roundwounds, maybe you have generated some fret wear. Even then, fret wear tends to center under the string. As such, when you bend, you should be pushing the string away from fret wear to higher spot.
One other possibility is that those lower frets aren't in tight. I've not seen it on an Alembic, but I have on other basses. You might want to use a hardcover book or block of wood with a t-shirt to protect the bass and apply pressure to make sure the frets are fully seated.
Post Number: 55
|Posted on Sunday, January 09, 2005 - 6:52 pm: |
I set the neck straight and it has stopped the fretting out. I also have the problem of having to set the outside strings low to get the middle two to not be so high.The radius of my fretboard isn't as rounded as my bridge suggests. Is it possible to get lower replacements for my middle two?
Post Number: 54
|Posted on Monday, January 10, 2005 - 1:26 am: |
I believe Alembic custom cuts all the brass for the bridge, so it should be possible to get bridge pieces any height you want. If it's not tremendously different, then your local tech can probably just cut the slots deeper in the middle pieces to solve your problem.
For what it's worth, it seems like the bridge on one of my basses also reflects much more curvature than the neck has, just as you describe.
Post Number: 355
|Posted on Thursday, January 13, 2005 - 8:52 am: |
I would imagine that ALEMBIC, like most thoughtful builders, would leave things with a little left fo be filed on/down at a later date should things require this.
I'd tend to believe that's why the bridges tend to show a little 'rounder' radius than the fingerboard reflects.
My own advice would be to get a small ruler with fine gradations (out to 64ths) and be sure of your string heights on the outside strings are even. I'd start at 1/8" of an inch clearance (unfretted) over the last fret and work to what's right for you.
Generally you'll end up with the bass side (your E or B) running a bit higher than the treble side as the strings vibrate through a bigger arc: They're twice the size of your G or C.
J o e y