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12

TL;DR The short answer (thanks, @RockinCowboy!) is that usually you want your action as low as possible, without hearing any fret-buzz, especially if you are just starting with guitar. Now the longer answer... There are advantages to both a higher and lower action on a guitar. In fact, it is often appropriate to have a higher or lower action depending upon ...


12

The lower the fret action, the more buzz you will get. Your ideal height will be based on what you need. Unamplified, many of the really fast guitarists have fret buzz all over the neck. Personally, I use a reasonably high action on most of my guitars (about 3mm at 12th fret) because I dislike buzz and have quite a hard picking action. I do have two guitars ...


10

Optimum bridge position is all tied up with the position of the sound post (which can be moved) and the bass bar (which can't). There's also the matter of getting used to playing a fiddle with non-standard dimensions, which may be counter-productive. A new bridge isn't expensive. Treat the violin to one, and a set of standard weight strings.


6

This distance is known as the "action". Three things affect the action. The height of the nut - adjustable by shaving, shimming, replacing The height of the bridge - method of adjusting depends on the guitar type The curvature of the neck - on steel strung guitars, adjusted using the truss rod All of these can be adjusted, but it's really a job for a ...


6

Your guitar may need to be "set up" properly. This means getting it into its best playing condition, and in particular, it includes adjusting the height of the strings above the fretboard (called the "action"). If the action is too high, the strings will be difficult to press down, just as you are experiencing. If the action is too low, the strings will buzz ...


6

Put a new set of light gauge strings on it and adjust the truss rod accordingly to give just a bit of neck relief. It needs adjusted from time to time especially if you change string gauges. It may have had heavier strings put on at some point—which are great for tone but harder to play if you aren't used to them—or the neck just got out of whack over time. ...


6

Many folks think it's a rather simple operation of just tightening the nut on the truss rod, but actually it is recommended that the neck be clamped in a jig that causes the neck to be bent backwards the desired amount and then tighten the truss rod in order to hold it in the newly desired position. Many a truss rod has been ruined by trying to force the ...


5

Tuning up will increase the tension on the neck which can affect (i.e., increase) the action. This is, however, no big deal because it can be corrected by adjusting the truss rod. This also means that basing your decision on the action of the guitar is not such a good idea because the action can be adjusted rather easily on any decent guitar. You could ...


5

Well, you have two choices I guess. 1) Use a pair of calipers to determine the precise size wrench needed for the specific guitar you own right now. Or find out through some other means (e.g., by contacting the manufacturer and asking what wrench size is needed). 2) Buy a multitool which will have the right size for now and also probably for any other ...


5

Fret buzz isn't necessarily a sign of a poor setup, because some players want low action and can accept some fret buzz. A guitar tech should discuss this with a player before doing a setup. Having strings fret out when bending is more serious and I would expect a tech to make sure this isn't happening, unless a player said they don't do string bending and ...


4

The benefits of higher action go to lack of buzz. You can pick harder, which is nice for certain musics. I think it helps harmonics a little. I suppose there's some "You gotta want it, Rocky!" aspects, but really, yeah, high action is mostly something that'll keep beginners from moving forward.


4

Your guitar appears to be a nylon-strung classical guitar, and as such may not have a truss rod. However, it's worth going on to answer the question in general: Unless you have a very unusual guitar, a truss rod tool is either a hex key or a hex socket. These are common fittings in all kinds of fields, not just musical instruments: bikes, self-assembly ...


4

Normally the bottom of the saddle would be sanded down to lower it. The challenge is sanding it down evenly and squarely. The technique I've seen for this is to fix or hold down the sandpaper on a flat surface and run the bottom of the saddle back and forth over it. You might consider buying an extra saddle or two and working on a spare so you can keep your ...


4

It depends. How high is high? And what is the cause of the high action? If it is an improperly cut (too high) nut, it will make barré chords in the first few frets difficult, and open chords will be out of tune. If it is too high because of a bridge that is too high, or too much neck relief, it will be increasingly difficult to play the higher up the neck ...


4

Most fret buzzing is a result of the vibrating string contacting another fret as it vibrates in an oscillating arc. There are several things that commonly cause this to happen. Neck does not have enough relief or has a back bow. The vibrating/oscillating string must clear all the frets between where it is fretted and the bridge. If the neck is ...


4

There is nothing you can do, assuming you stay with concert pitch tuning. Since the new strings will be 10-15% lighter, with less tension involved, there may be some relaxing in the neck.So, nothing will break, the bridge won't be torn off, but you may find that the bow in the neck is too small, and the strings will rattle against the fretwires. Or not. If ...


4

There is an excellent, reliable, time-tested way to find out all about the action (and other important elements) of a guitar before you buy it: you play the guitar. Yes that does present a challenge when buying online. When shopping online you have three options: Make sure you buy from someplace that has a great return policy and you have the interest and ...


4

Those strings look like .011s or .012s. Not only that but 10 years too late being changed ! Put some .009s on first, and feel the difference. If that doesn't solve all the problem, check the action, and the relief in the neck - they're related, and in old guitars often need adjustment. Don't bother with finger strengthening - playing is the best way to get ...


4

You say it's heavy/stiff. Which? If the action is well-regulated, there's probably little that can be easily done about the weight. But a piano technician can do something about 'stiff'. We can't diagnose this online. Call your tuner in to advise.


4

I see now in the comments that the OP has now mentioned a specific, special guitar, and @leftaroundabout has answered with the appropriate information for that guitar. This is answer is applicable to most conventional electrics, but is probably not to relevant to the actual guitar in question.) You don't have to take them off, but you should loosen the ...


4

The instrument’s action may need a treatment with a proper lubricant to resolve the problem. A more experienced technician will know what to use: a liquid called Protek CLP (cleaner, lubricant, protectant). This magic substance can flush out the bad oil and leave the pin and bushing refreshed and lubricated, freeing the key action.


4

If you are interested in more information on this, check out Charles Rosen's book, "Piano Notes". In short, in conjunction with a local provider, concert pianists pick a piano to play at the venue where they will be performing and the piano technician adjusts the piano to the liking of the performer. I have played pianos that are generally "in good ...


3

If the guitar is playable, then it shouldn't cause any major issues and may actually help build hand and finger strength. Unless it's so difficult to play that it results in excessive stress. If playing your guitar necessitates too much muscle tension to overcome the high action, playing it could potentially lead to over use/stress injuries. So it really ...


3

Before you start sanding your saddle down, it is important to be sure you have the truss rod adjusted optimally for your playing style. Excess relief in the truss rod will make the action higher, particularly from about the 4th fret to the fret closest to the sound hole. You might be able to attain a lower action by adjusting the truss rod to flatten out ...


3

Have it set up by a professional guitar tech. They can adjust the nut, the bridge and the truss rod to reduce the action. The action being too high will also explain your difficulty bending. You've already bent the string some amount just by fretting. The higher the action, the more tension you have to add.


3

My original style was electric blues, and this has changed over the years to jazz standards, and solo jazz guitar. For both styles I prefer heavy gauge strings, and for blues the bigger strings combined with higher action really helps the tone when bending the strings. You have the added advantage of building up strength in your hands and fingers, because a ...


3

The strings buzz quite consistently but not enough to be heard through an amp Strings buzzing not only puts you off playing but it will prevent the string from resonating for as long and lower your tone quality. In my opinion nobody should create fret buzz when you ask them to lower your action. One thing you could try is a higher gauge string, but that ...


3

Fret buzz is not only not necessarily bad, but actually a part of the guitar tone. The guitar is partially a percussive instrument, and one percussive aspect of that (in addition to knocking or tapping on the body of an acoustic guitar or hollow-body electric) is the snap produced by string-on-fret action. Slap guitar technique in particular exploits this ...


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