Annoying intonation problems on 7 string guitars

Discussion in 'Sevenstring Guitars' started by elkoki, Jun 25, 2020.

  1. elkoki

    elkoki SS.org Regular

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    Have any of you 7 string players run into annoying intonation issues on your 7 ?

    A problem I've run into with more than one guitar is the low strings always sound out of tune/sharp even after an intonation and setup ( using a good tuner to intonate) ..My 6 strings havent had this problem, just my 7's and it drives me f*cking nuts!! I find that if a particular 7 string always sounds sharp that tuning the last 3 strings slightly flat makes a huge difference. Does anyone else do this? And is it possible that the string gauges I've used were too thick and had too much tension ? Lighter gauges may work better as long as I'm not down tuning too much ?

    Share some tips or your experiences please !
     
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  2. mlp187

    mlp187 Burrito Master Contributor

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    I had this happen once. Couldn't figure it out. Turned out the nut was not cut properly on the low B.
    The slot was too narrow AND the nut was too high at the low B.
     
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  3. elkoki

    elkoki SS.org Regular

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    I'm going to try a pair of the stock strings (10-56) I generally don't tune low anyway . My guess is the strings on it now 10-60 are slightly too thick and maybe are sitting too high on the tones pro bridge. They're also really snug in the nut slots so that could be why I have to tune so flat to sound in tune . Whatever the problem is though its fuckingannoying as hell . Cant wait to swap the strings out
     
  4. MadYarpen

    MadYarpen SS.org Regular

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    As far as I know this is generally normal, especially on the open B string. I guess this is a combination of low tuning / scale / string gauge / tension that makes the string unstable on the attack.

    Pushing the string into the nut when you replace it seems to be helping a bit.
     
  5. rowsi

    rowsi SS.org Regular

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    This and, more importantly, pushing down at the bridge. In the world of bassists this is called "setting the witness points". The strings need a sharp break at both the nut and the bridge to have a well defined speaking length (especially on TOM style bridges!). This is done by (gently but firmly) pushing down the string between the nut and 1st fret and pushing down between the bridge and bridge pickup. When you can see awell defined break angle at the bridge, you've done it right.
    This should help somewhat. However, the strings will go sharp anyway with attack and return to their true tuning a few ms later. This is normal.
     
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  6. ElRay

    ElRay Mostly Harmless

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    +1 for setting the action at the nut correctly, it's amazing home much of a difference this can make.

    On a similar note, most TOM saddles can be notched deeper, so if the action on the 7th string is too high (after the action at the nut is adjusted), you may have to deepen the notch in the saddle.
     
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  7. elkoki

    elkoki SS.org Regular

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    Yeah I definitely always do that, still sharp. I think the tom bridge on my guitar needs to adjusted for thicker strings or I should just go back to the stock strings which is fine by me because I normally stay in standard
     
  8. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    Try a different brand of string or see if you still have the issue with a smaller gauge.
     
  9. elkoki

    elkoki SS.org Regular

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    Went back to the stock strings and it finally intonates well. Not entirely sure what the problem was with the other strings. but i'm sticking to this brand from now on.
     
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  10. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    What was the previous brand? What is the new brand?

    I've heard some people claim some brands of strings intonate easier than others when it comes to their larger gauge strings.
     
  11. elkoki

    elkoki SS.org Regular

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    Previous brand that couldn't intonate was Dunlop heavy core. 10-60 . I replaced them with Ernie ball regular slinky 10-56. Not a huge change in thickness but a massive difference in intonation . Could be the nut and bridge on this particular guitar arent setup to take anything thicker than the stock strings. Never really had good experiences with Dunlop strings either, I've had them break in the past after only a few days of use
     
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  12. benny

    benny Ibanez RG Addict

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    I had the same issue with that set of Dunlop heavy core strings. I didn't like the strings anyway, so I was happy to change them.
     
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