Anybody know any cheats to get rid of some localized slight buzzing frets on an acoustic.  If I play light it's okay....

Low "E" string only buzzes at the 2nd and 3rd fret.

"D" string only buzzes at the 2 to 4th fret.

The frets are rock.The frets are sloped down from the 12th fret to the end

The nut is set at correct depth.

The string height at 12th fret is 3/32

The neck was set perfect.....very flat to the bridge.  no upward or downward angle.  The top is not buldged.  Normal.

Neck Relief is about .006 ...I really don't want to give it more relief.  I can get rid of the buzz at about .015 relief

Is there a cheat to work the frets in a certain way or such at the buzzing frets?  Anything else to look for?

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We have no way to know how hard you play or how your pick attaches the strings, horizontal or downward-ish hits. A downward attack may invite buzzing which a player hitting the strings on the same guitar full sideways may not get.

.006" relief is pretty flat and could be a problem for players as described above.

I set up saddles with tipped action and like 2/32" treble and and 3/32" at the low E. Each guitar may have slight variation as to where a set up will behave, based on playing style and the instruments geometry You may not be able to have 3/32", on the money low E and no buzz.

You say the frets are rock. Did you use a good straight edge and span 3 frets at a time, trying to rock the straight edge over the middle fret? Do this with the strings on, up to pitch, with the straight edge touching and parallel to each string. Mark the tops of any offending frets with a marker. Knock the fret tops off, trial and error, checking frequently with the 3 fret straight edge. Spot crown, polish, ect.

I would let the relief out a bit more, 008" - .010" and raise the action slightly on the bass side.

The quest for low....

I can vary my's acceptable depending on how I attack the bass string. 

Yes, used a good steel rocker.  They are all level with no rock...3 frets. 

I can solve the problem if I go up to the next higher string weight.  Just didn't want to.   I use .012 to .053 light's expensive to buy individual strings.  The D string would have to go from.032 to a .035...that's okay.  I don't want to go from a .053 to a .056 on the "E".  It's a little better then adding to the relief.  I don't get as much overall bend in the neck buy doing it with individual strings.

I may try shimming the saddle just a sliver on the bass side.....I don't need much.  I could also change from elixar lights to the light medium ....then just buy a individual .053 "E" string to replace the .056.   With the slightly thicker "A" and "D" string it will probably raise the low E a little and make it cleaner.


David, I don't see how putting heavier D and E strings on can help your problem, other than the increased string tension pulling the neck into more relief.

You nailed localises the relief to that string and a very small amount to the others next to it.   It's like a very minute adjustment to the relief of the neck.

It works.  I have an acoustic guitar that has extremely low action.  Went to a .013 on the E and a .017 on the B string.  Went up .001...from .012 to .013 and such.  Buzz went away.  With the very low action it's not as noticeable with the heavier strings.   The problem is when you use have to buy individual strings and they are very expensive.

????  You nailed localises the relief to that string and a very small amount to the others next to it.   It's like a very minute adjustment to the relief of the neck.

That doesn't make any sense to me, when you add more string tension, it's pulling the entire neck.

Why not just let the relief out a bit with the adjustment screw and save the $$$ on custom string sets. I understand the quest for low but your splitting hairs with the action.

Because adjusting the truss rod raises the strings a lot compared to adding a slightly heavier string.  Even a small adjustment is greater then adding a heavier string in one position....and it effects all the strings in a greater way.  A single string doesn't move the overall relief that much but certainly will effect that one string.  Try it next time you have a buzzing string.  I've done it many times.

All I can figure out is that changing an "E" string from .011 to .012 is not effecting relief the same way as changing the truss rod.  It's pulling from a different location.  I've tried to google it but no one goes into that detail....they talk about overall relief....a full set of strings or a truss rod adjustment.  It's far from spliting hairs.  It's different...the two adjustments effect things differently. 

This sounds to me like the setup of is just screwed up. What am I missing?   

I agree Ned.

This is also the poster that uses that 'questionable' [by industry standards] device to level & recrown frets and rejected the entire site's rebuke of said device. He's also disregarded the advice he's gotten for this post.

He also posted a picture of his fret file. Not impressive at all and it looks like it could create more problems than it cures.

He can use whatever methods he chooses His use of the term "cheats" leads me to think that he's lurked on hack sites.

WE in the guitar care/repair business call  those "solutions".  It seems he wants hack shortcuts and not helpful professional advice [which IS our mantra & mission on this forum], which if taken would make his guitar adjustment and playing experience much more pleasurable.

But that's just my take. 

I hope, for his technical knowledge's sake, he capitulates and tries the forum members' suggested solutions and stop fighting back with bulls*it reasoning and "cheats". 

If not, we are wasting our time feeding his fantasies.

Have a good one, Ned.

Paul is the person who's never used the leveling device and decided he's the God of leveling.  When you've used it then become the authority.  You may have a better way but it is very arrogant to critique it without ever using it.  I don't care what you think about it and how you think you have the best way.   You can't critique something absolutely without using it.  Yes it's a short block...Everyone knows that you can use a short block if you're careful.

Actually this guitar was crowned with a file and is perfectly level with a  steel rocker.......very nice crowns.

It's not screwed's a low action.  The neck is fine.  I still haven't heard anyone say how changing a string changes the neck tension verses changing the truss rod.  Since Paul likes to critique without ever experimenting with something maybe he can post something to baffle us with his expertise.

When I'm faced with a D string rattle, I think the radius of the saddle needs adjustment. Ken Hill puts a little radius on his classical saddles to keep the D clean sounding. When I'm faced with the low E and the D rattling, (at the lowest frets, where string excursion is the greatest) I think the bass side of the saddle should be a bit higher, like Paul said. This would raise the D string a bit, just like changing the radius would. This might negate the need to go to heavier strings.One might be able to feel the difference 1/32" makes, at least until one starts to play.

Without having the guitar in hand, we're all just guessing, relying on experience.

If I were forced to guess why a heavier string rattles less, all things being equal, I would say the heavier string is vibrating in a different arc. Maybe it is changing the relief. Maybe it is changing the relief in a particular way, rather than just bending the neck. I don't think I'd come to blows if someone disagreed. People have been disagreeing with me ever since I had an opinion.


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