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Dead spot - deal breaker?

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  • Dead spot - deal breaker?

    A friend's dilemma: he bought a $1500 guitar (used) and has since discovered a dead spot on the neck - I played it myself, and can confirm that the 12th fret G string has noticeably less definition and sustain. Otherwise, no complaints - great tone, nice player. He wants to sell it. Would you?
    The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. -- John Kenneth Galbraith

  • #2
    A friend's dilemma: he bought a $1500 guitar (used) and has since discovered a dead spot on the neck - I played it myself, and can confirm that the 12th fret G string has noticeably less definition and sustain. Otherwise, no complaints - great tone, nice player. He wants to sell it. Would you?


    Chances are, it's a spot where the fret has come up a bit and that saps string energy. Before he sells it, I'd have a really good close look and see if you can find the culprit.

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    • #3
      Pana more than likely hit the nail on the head, The culprit is more than likely have to do with a problem with a fret or few and is nothing that cant be fixed. I would doubt the guitar would need a complete grind and polish(as you would see major wear on the frets) but even if it did it is only a $100 job.

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      • #4
        The 12h or more likely the 13th fret on the G string is usually the deadest spot on any guitar neck. You should always check this zone when buying a guitar. If this zone sings as well as the rest of the neck, it is one key element of an amazing axe.
        '79 Strat Hardtail
        Carvin SC90 flametop
        97 Gibby LP Std. 'burst
        Heritage 575
        Peavey TL-6
        MIJ Blue Flower Tele MIJ Pink Paisley Strat
        Carvin Bolt-T Swamp Ash
        Hohner Steinberger
        73' Rick 4001 Fireglo
        Larrivee D-09
        Agile Doubleneck
        Some handmade Paracho flamenco guitar
        Seagull S12+.

        Amps:
        Legend 30
        Billm Blues Jr.
        Mesa Nomad 45
        Ampeg J12-T
        Homebrew 1 1/2 watt tube sucker

        Lotsa modded pedals.

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        • #5
          Sometimes dead spots go away. I had a guitar with one, now the dead spot is gone.

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          • #6
            Is it a bolt-on neck?

            Because sometimes people will "fix" the neck angle by shimming a neck too far, and no amount of tweaking the truss rod will correct it, because the neck is curving back UP after the 12th fret or so.

            Pull the shims, lower the bridge, and adjust the action accordingly. Life will be better.
            This is my signature file. There are many like it, but this one is mine.

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            • #7
              most certainly would NEVER buy a guitar with a deadspot.
              Missionary ov teh boosted midz
              I like to build things
              Good people: TomVanDeven, I.P. Freeley, Science!

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              • #8
                Did you try changing strings?
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                • #9
                  Raise the action on that string a little til the dead spot goes away and reintonate the string.
                  SPAM:

                  FS Rivera Era Bassman 20

                  Always looking for interesting trades.

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                  • #10
                    A friend's dilemma: he bought a $1500 guitar (used) and has since discovered a dead spot on the neck He wants to sell it. Would you?


                    I have the same problem with a Fender P-bass. Played great for a couple of years and now the the A and D strings have dead spots, starting around the 5th fret. Not completely dead, just lacking the punch and volume of the other strings.

                    If I sell it, I will have to disclose the problem and will not get squat for it. Other than that issue, it is an incredible instrument. Great intonation and stays in tune for weeks at a time.

                    This is my #1 and I hate to see it go.

                    Surfy
                    HC Geezer Brigade #71

                    "There's a little green man in my head"

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                    • #11
                      Weird. I've never played a guitar with a "dead spot"

                      I own 30 guitars too.
                      Originally Posted by DToad:

                      Lets face it- today's GOP is all about the richest one percent exploiting the dumbest fifty percent.

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                      • #12
                        It's a set neck semi-hollow; frets are level and show no wear except on the 2nd and 3rd frets in the high-E and B string area. Strings have been changed several times. We held a stopwatch to it, and the B string fretted at the 12th rings more than twice as long as does the G on the same fret. The G at the 13th fret rings loud and clear, as it does on the 11th. Weird.

                        I have a fretless bass with a dead spot at the 5th fret of the G string, which is apparently very common, but I've never played a fretted guitar with this problem. It's mysterious and frustrating, so he's ready to show it the door.

                        I was sort of thinking about making him an offer, but now I'm not too sure I want to inherit this issue.

                        Thanks for the help, everyone.
                        The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. -- John Kenneth Galbraith

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                        • #13
                          It's a set neck semi-hollow; frets are level and show no wear except on the 2nd and 3rd frets in the high-E and B string area. Strings have been changed several times. We held a stopwatch to it, and the B string fretted at the 12th rings more than twice as long as does the G on the same fret. The G at the 13th fret rings loud and clear, as it does on the 11th. Weird.

                          I have a fretless bass with a dead spot at the 5th fret of the G string, which is apparently very common, but I've never played a fretted guitar with this problem. It's mysterious and frustrating, so he's ready to show it the door.

                          I was sort of thinking about making him an offer, but now I'm not too sure I want to inherit this issue.

                          Thanks for the help, everyone.


                          Check the nut for binding and replace the saddle on that string. Something has to be dampening it. Also try lower the pickups a hair. Magnetic fields can dampen vibration too.
                          SPAM:

                          FS Rivera Era Bassman 20

                          Always looking for interesting trades.

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                          • #14
                            Sounds like it needs a fret level and setup. Have a shop check out the condition of the frets.

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                            • #15
                              Check the nut for binding and replace the saddle on that string. Something has to be dampening it. Also try lower the pickups a hair. Magnetic fields can dampen vibration too.


                              The saddle or nut binding theory has merit, but I don't understand why it would only dampen the string at one fret.
                              The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. -- John Kenneth Galbraith

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