GEAR411 Talks About Fret Buzz

This was just a good example of what Tony Pasko is bring to GEAR411, a new feature at The Rock House Method.

Hi Tony,

I am a beginning guitar student at the young age of 44! I just bought (with the help of a very accomplished rock guitarist friend) an Ibanez RG series electric guitar. I'm getting some fret buzz on the low E. I've already taken it back to Guitar Center and they raised the bridge a bit and adjusted the truss rod (the neck was too flat). It was fine for about two weeks, now it's buzzing again. Is a little fret buzz normal, or is something out of adjustment. What should I do?!!

Thanks, Rob


The winter months are really hard on guitar necks. The cold will make your guitar neck bow and twist, especially thinner Ibanez necks. Some buzzing is ok but if it's bothering you enough to mention it? Then it's too much. Here's how to check to see if your neck has moved or not.

Set the base of the body on your foot and hold the headstock.

Line up your eye so you can see straight down the right side neck.

The neck and the 6th. string (E) should be parallel with each other.

If the neck looks like it has a bow in it, then tighten the truss rod with an allen wrench one full turn to the right should straighten the neck.

If the neck looks like there is a hump in the middle, then turn the allen wrench to the left one full turn.

Repeat these steps as necessary.

The ends of the frets should all look even down the neck. if they are not? Then one of the frets might be sitting a little high making the string buzz. In that case you might need a fret file.

These are all little tricks to get your guitar playing and sounding the way it's meant to.

If you aren't comfortable with any of these steps, then take it to your local music store and have one of the guitar guys there walk you through it.

This is pretty common with guitars and the more you do it the better it gets.

Good Luck and let me know how this works out for you.


Tony J. Pasko

Gear 411 is all about helping you with gear and studio issues. If you are in the market for a new piece of gear, need help making a decision on what to buy, aren't sure what you need, trying to hook something up, having problems making something work or just want to pick Tony's brain a little, this is the place.


Dy-sphoric said...

Great 411 Post and it should help me with my issue of buzzing...

Thanks for posting this.

sarge1875 said...

Tony P. is the man when it comes to fixing problems