Wrong frets on my Strat??? - Jemsite
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-02-2006, 07:54 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: MI
Posts: 88
Wrong frets on my Strat???

I have a 1989 American Malmsteen strat which is plagued with buzzing. I can hear it through the amp. It buzzes nearly everywhere, though not severely (no fret-out).
I have researched the issue greatly (read dozens of setup guides and articles), Tried different setups/strings (taking VERY careful measurements--I used a calibrated micrometer), had multiple pro set-ups done, and have come up with no conclusive solution. Nothing appears to be out-of-spec.
I took it to a well-regarded local shop 3 times, and they said it was simply the nature of my guitar: I need to go with heavier strings and higher action.

I run .009's, tune flat and have the action 1.5 times recommended spec!
No, I don't pick too damn hard. The guitar has never had any work done, except a basic setup.

Something MUST be wrong. I am fairly convinced the frets are the issue, yet they don't appear terribly worn. The shop stated the frets were fine, but I am NOT convinced.

The guitar should have Dunlop 6000 frets.
I looked at the Dunlop guide:
http://www.jimdunlop.com/products/ma...ets/chart.html

The fret should be 2.99mm wide, and 1.47mm high, correct?
Mine measure barely 2mm wide and barely 1mm high (this is a generous measurement). They do have some worn areas, and appear flatter on top than my other guitars--but not severely flattened.

Now I am very confused.
I guess that maybe Fender dressed the frets after assembly...but could they have taken THAT much off? Were the wrong frets installed from the factory?
Did little green Yngwie wannabees sneak into my house and grind my frets down?

Anyone???

Bob
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-02-2006, 08:42 PM
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Los Angeles
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Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

Just ask for someone in here to measure his/her YJM frets for comparison and then take action. Refret maybe?
einarabelc5 is offline  
post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-02-2006, 08:45 PM
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Oxford, UK
Posts: 2,779
Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

Action is measured from the top of the fret to the bottom of the string, so fret height should not influence to over all action.

Twisted neck?
Algiman is offline  
post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-02-2006, 08:59 PM
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Lynwood, WA
Posts: 47
Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

The original Malmsteen strats had vintage fretwire.
Fretmelter777 is offline  
post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-02-2006, 09:40 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: MI
Posts: 88
Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fretmelter777
The original Malmsteen strats had vintage fretwire.
I was just confirmed this via Mike Spitzer. He stated that they didn't "REALLY" use the Dunlops until 2000.

I think this is false advertizing, because my manual shows the 6000's...though there is a disclaimer on Fender's site stating they can substitute things at will...

Bob

Last edited by pedalinbob; 01-03-2006 at 08:21 AM.
pedalinbob is offline  
post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-02-2006, 10:01 PM
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Sydney Australia
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Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

mmmmm - fret size seems awfully big in stated dimension......
David McCarroll is offline  
post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 08:48 AM
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: NB Canada
Posts: 3,467
Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

Have you ever considerd a fret leveling? There is a guy on Evilbay selling do it yourself kits for around $20.00, and the feedback on the kit is very good. If you want to try it and can't find them PM me and I'll send you a link. On that guitar I'd say you have nothing to lose.
Rotti is offline  
post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-03-2006, 12:14 PM
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: The World
Posts: 173
Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

If the guitar is 17 years old, has been played consistently for more than 2 years and has never been serviced in a shop, fret wear is the safest bet. Exact calibrations shouldn't be necessary on any strat - setting them up is not rocket science. The frets likely need crowning or replacement; $75 vs. $150-200 cost-wise.

Another idea is to take pictures and post them here. To assess fret wear, pull each string to one side and take a picture of the upper register frets and frets 2-5, where open chords are.

Alternately, take the guitar to a well-reputed refurb person or at least a different shop. The people you keep taking it to are completely wrong about the the string gauge. If you live in the NYC area, go to Doug Proper in Louisboro; he does work for John Aebercrombie, John Scofield and various other big name jazz guys - he is fantastic. www.guitarspecialist.com

-Devin
Devine is offline  
post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-04-2006, 12:53 AM
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: North Adams, MA
Posts: 2,641
Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

You can have lower action with fatter strings with less buzz. Try 10s until you get that fixed.

Also, smaller frets can have lower action, but you have to play softer.

Frets of a different size will not create buzzing though, unless the ratio is not proper.
red5 is offline  
post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-04-2006, 09:06 AM
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: NB Canada
Posts: 3,467
Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

Quote:
You can have lower action with fatter strings with less buzz.
I've always found the opposite. When I use heavier strings I end up with higher action. Maybe it's just the way I play or something.
Rotti is offline  
post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-23-2006, 07:22 AM
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 8
Re: Wrong frets on my Strat???

Quote:
Originally Posted by pedalinbob
, had multiple pro set-ups done, and have come up with no conclusive solution.
Bob
No you have not, If you had a pro setup you would not be having this problem!, sight down to neck looking at the fret tops, are all the frets parallel to each other?, what is your action measured at the 17th fret, stick a capo on the first fret press your low e string down on the last fret, get some automotive feeler gauges and check the neck relief at the 8th fret, get a 16" ruler lay it on the middle saddle of your bridge and lay it on the neck, the first fret that the ruler does not touch take a measurememt with the feeler guague, then report back with the measurememts.

Eddy
Eddy_mc is offline  
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Tags
fret level , fret leveling , fret size , john scofield , malmsteen strat , neck relief

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