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Posted by Rob Perl on March 22, 2000 at 19:24:12:
In Reply to: buzz posted by Larry on March 18, 2000 at 20:21:51:
: One thing that drives me crazy, regardless if I am playing my electric fretless or my double bass is buzzing.
: Can anyone tell me what causes it and how I can get rid of it?
: I don't have the problem on my fretted instruments, and my fretless is doing well right now.
: However, my double bass is brand new, and I should not be having this problem so soon. I just bought it in December.
: Any suggestions?
Buzzing is ucaused by the played string making contact with the neck where it shouldn't. Usually, an adjustment in your setup - the truss rod and/or the string height.
It can also be caused by improperly dressed frets, a damaged nut, or even neck warpage.
The easiest solution is to bring your basses to a luthier and get them set up by a pro - it should cost $25 to $50. New Basses especially need this. They come assembled, but very rarely are properly adjusted.
If that's not feasible, here's what you can do yourself:
On your fretless, find the truss rod adjustment nut - it's usually in the headstock covered with a screw on plate, or at the body end of the neck. Turn it a half turn and see if that helps; if not, return it to the original position, and turn it a half turn the other way. If either of these help, turn the adjusting nut very carefully until the buzzing stops. If you don't have any success, then return the nut to its original position.
You might also try raising the string height by adjusting the bridge. If you adjust the truss rod, be very careful - you can snap it if you turn it too far, and end up paying hundreds of dollars to fix it!
If you have an adjustable bridge on your upright, try raising it - it will make your basss harder to play, though. If that doesn't work, you'll have to take it to a luthier. It's not uncommon for upright basses to need the neck planed down - even new ones.
Hope this helps.
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