Your guitar giving you a frustrating fret buzz? Help me solve this mystery guitar fret buzz.. I’m trying to better familiarize myself with lesser known brands. I’ve discovered I really like the older Peavey Tracer, so maybe some other hidden gems are out there?
I found a Behringer Strat on Craigslist for $30. So I Googled it and discovered a forum where people thought mighty highly of the Behringer Strat sound.
I’ve since learned you can find a forum where people like any kind of sound – pull a cat’s tail? – Great sound! Although I can attest that if you pulled my cat’s tail the next sound you’d hear would be a human scream – your own! Our 110 pound Rotweiller learned long ago not to mess with Dora, but let’s get back to the Behringer Buzz Mystery..
At first, fret buzz was the least of my worries with this guitar. The Behringer was filthy, had a broken tuner, corroded saddles and made awful sounds if you just plugged it into an amp.
I went through the guitar, cleaning everything, replacing corroded saddles and screws. I resoldered the loose ground wire, polished the frets, set all clearances to Fender factory settings (because, who the heck knows what Behringer factory settings are?), put new strings on and tuned her up.
So far, so good. A quick setting of intonation and I was ready for “play time”! But I got an awful buzzing sound from B and G strings. The sound seemed to be coming from the frets near the nut and fretting anywhere higher than the fourth fret vanished the buzz.
But the neck had more than adequate relief and I was sure the strings weren’t hitting any frets. To be certain, I loosened the strings a bit and ran an allen wrench between the nut and first fret, ensuring all strings were about an eighth of an inch above the closest frets.
The buzz was still there! I shook the guitar, listening for something loose inside – maybe some hundred dollar bills under the pickguard? (I dream big!) Nope.
Now I started eyeing the tremolo suspiciously. Hey, if you’re buying a sub-c-note guitar, you dang well don’t need no stinking trem, right?
I went to the garage and found a small block of scrap wood (about 5/8ths thick) from last weekends woodworking project (a 12-guitar rack – which I’ll write about later), and blocked off the tremolo.
I retuned and strummed – buzz gone!
Sometimes the buzz is at the other end of the guitar. I’ve had buzzing string trees and a blazing saddle – No wait! That was a movie. I’ve had a buzzing saddle.
Now, how does the Behringer stack up against a Yamaha, Epiphone and a Squier? Tune in next week kiddo’s and we’ll find out!