I keep reading that good action measures about 3/32" under the 12th fret. I can't seem to get my guitar to play without buzzing at less than 4/32". 

My neck angle seems correct with a straight edge just touching the top of the bridge. Neck relief is as much as possible and there are no high frets that I can find with my rocker tool.


Is there any other factor that I am ignoring? 


When I tighten the truss rod to reduce the relief, thus lower the action as well, a buzz occurs somewhere above the 5th fret (toward the body).  I am afraid to lower the saddle any more for fear of buzzing. If I do, and buzzing occurs, I'm guessing loosening the truss rod might correct it, but won't that just raise the action again?




Doug Collins

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I agree with youur method of diagnosis Pierre-Antoine, that's why buzzing only on the bass strings 4th to 6th fret indicated a  possible fret problem rather than a relief problem

I want to thank you guys for all your help. I did find a couple high frets, which really surprised me because I had already checked that. 

I have reduced the relief and raised the saddle to an acceptable string height.  I am still finding a bit of buzzing when I pluck hard, but maybe is will be okay with normal playing.

As has been stated, playing style is a factor, but the problem is, I don't really have a playing style.  I never get past the first 3 frets when I play, so it plays fine for me. My next step is to put the guitar into the hands of someone who actually knows how to play and get their opinion.

It may be good, or I may have to rework the balancing act, but you guys have set me straight on the concept of truss rod vs saddle height.


Many thanks,



You're right, I did not read Doug's story carefully enough.
Make sure you start with a fretboard that is level along the entire length. The fret rocker only registers on 3 frets at a time. Once you level and dress the frets over the entire length of the fretboard, then you can confidently proceed with adjusting saddle height and then relief.


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