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Weird intonation problem on one string
Old 5 days ago
  #1
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Nightmare Circus's Avatar
Weird intonation problem on one string

The first string (little E) on my guitar refuses to intonate (it's severely sharp). I've tried just about everything including having it professionally set up by 2-3 different people and no one can make it intonate right. The problem at first was the entire string was in tune except the first 3 frets then i tried moving the saddle all the way back and it still wouldn't be in tune. Currently after the last set up the entire string is perfectly in tune.... except the open note. The guy told me that's as good as it's going to get. I rarely do open chords so it's not much of a problem for what I do but at the same time it's annoying that the entire string is in tune but the open E.

Any ideas what could cause this? The saddle will not physically move any farther back and moving it forward makes it more sharp.
Old 5 days ago
  #2
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Have you tried different gauges, different playing force? Not clear from your post what kind of guitar you have...
Old 5 days ago
  #3
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Nightmare Circus's Avatar
I use NYXL 1156s and I have this guitar:

https://espguitars.co.jp/ltd/F-400FM.html

the rest of the guitar is intonated just fine. Maybe the nut needs replaced?
Old 5 days ago
  #4
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Brent Hahn's Avatar
 

Wild guess here -- I'm wondering if the neck is on straight. If it's not, and ever so slightly aimed toward the treble side, that would gradually shorten the string lengths going from bass to treble.
Old 5 days ago
  #5
You say that it currently intonates perfectly EXCEPT for the open note?

Easy. Your nut is cut wrong and you need a new one, cut by a skilled luthier.
Old 1 day ago
  #6
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enorbet2's Avatar
Ooops I clicked "Like" on Brent's post before I clicked the link to the guitar which is a set neck from a brand and model known for decent quality.. John's assessment is far more likely possibly even certain though I am somewhat at a loss why any pro luthier would miss that... unless of course they aren't really "pro". It might even be the nut was cut properly for the original string gauge. Changing gauge without changing the nut could most definitely create this condition.
Old 1 day ago
  #7
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Pindrive's Avatar
Could something to do with the nut. It's possible. I built a guitar for a friend & set it up with my brand of strings. He promptly changed them out. The thing wouldn't intonate. Some strings intonate differently, depending on size & how they are built. W/O looking at the guitar, thats about as much advise as I can give.
Old 7 hours ago
  #8
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Mikhael's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Eppstein View Post
You say that it currently intonates perfectly EXCEPT for the open note?

Easy. Your nut is cut wrong and you need a new one, cut by a skilled luthier.
Yes, this would be by far my first guess. I would hesitate to disparage the people who've looked at it so far, but I would definitely get a second opinion. Where are you at? Maybe someone could give a good suggestion of a luthier in your area.
Old 4 hours ago
  #9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikhael View Post
Yes, this would be by far my first guess. I would hesitate to disparage the people who've looked at it so far, but I would definitely get a second opinion. Where are you at? Maybe someone could give a good suggestion of a luthier in your area.
I'm in the SF Bay Area. The guy I use is Gary Brawer - he does most of the pros in the area and is a favorite of touring musicians. He also has a Plek machine, not that he really needs it to do a great job.
Old 4 hours ago
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikhael View Post
Yes, this would be by far my first guess. I would hesitate to disparage the people who've looked at it so far, but I would definitely get a second opinion. Where are you at? Maybe someone could give a good suggestion of a luthier in your area.
I'm in the SF Bay Area. The guy I use is Gary Brawer - he does most of the pros in the area and is a favorite of touring musicians. He also has a Plek machine, not that he really needs it to do a great job.

https://www.realguitars.com/repairs
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