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  1. #1

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    Hi there fellow members,

    what is your opinion when you are looking at this image?
    String action at 12th fret: E6 = 2,5 mm / 0,098 and E1 = 2 mm / 0,0787.

    What is your opinion?-brücke-jpg

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  3. #2

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    Looks way too tilted.

  4. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gitterbug
    Looks way too tilted.
    Cannot go lower with the bridge without having buzzes at the lower frets.

  5. #4

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    Can you post a picture with a sightline down the neck?

  6. #5

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    Time for fret leveling.
    It could be one offending fret on the bass side. When you lower the bass side, does the buzz happen all along the fretboard?

  7. #6

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    If it plays well, all is good.

  8. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by BiscoDrew
    Can you post a picture with a sightline down the neck?
    Yes Sir.

    What is your opinion?-neck-jpg

  9. #8

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    If the guitar has been subjected to recent temperature or humidity changes, maybe the top moved a bit? I've seen that happen with archtops and one month later they play perfectly again..

  10. #9

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    I don’t see any relief on that neck. Perhaps adding some would help.

  11. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tal_175
    Time for fret leveling.
    It could be one offending fret on the bass side. When you lower the bass side, does the buzz happen all along the fretboard?
    No, but downwards till the end starting at the 12th fret. That´s what happening when I go down to 2 mm / 0,0787.

    The guitar has had a neck reset by a luthier.

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alter
    If the guitar has been subjected to recent temperature or humidity changes, maybe the top moved a bit? I've seen that happen with archtops and one month later they play perfectly again..
    The top looks perfect. Guitar has had a neck reset by a luthier.

  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Musgo Real
    No, but downwards till the end starting at the 12th fret. That´s what happening when I go down to 2 mm / 0,0787.

    The guitar has had a neck reset by a luthier.
    Just to clarify, do you mean buzzing happens when you play above the 12th fret or do you mean frets above 12 buzz when you are playing lower on the neck?

  14. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark M.
    I don’t see any relief on that neck. Perhaps adding some would help.
    There is a light neck relief towards the string side from 1st to fourth fret. No buzzes on the upper frets.

  15. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tal_175
    Just to clarify, do you mean buzzing happens when you play above the 12th fret or do you mean frets above 12 buzz when you are playing lower on the neck?
    When I play lower than the 12 fret.

  16. #15

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    Prior to the neck reset fhe guitar needed a low bridge. After the reset you need a taller bridge.

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Musgo Real
    When I play lower than the 12 fret.
    If playing lower on the neck causes buzz on high frets, increasing neck relief would help. Relief bows out the nut side of the neck effectively increasing the action on high frets.
    But it's still strange that it's only the bass side. If increasing relief doesn't help you reduce the height of the bass side, fret leveling might be the solution.

    One question is, with the bass side high, does the wood bridge intonate well?

  18. #17

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    A lot of guess work take it to a competent repair person.

  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tal_175
    If playing lower on the neck causes buzz on high frets, increasing neck relief would help. Relief bows out the nut side of the neck effectively increasing the action on high frets.
    But it's still strange that it's only the bass side. If increasing relief doesn't help you reduce the height of the bass side, fret leveling might be the solution.

    One question is, with the bass side high, does the wood bridge intonate well?
    I have had the buzzes on the lower frets through all six strings. Now with this setting not. I had to bring the guitar to a luthier because of this:
    What is your opinion?-hals-lose-jpg

    As you can see the neck lost some contact to the body because of string tension. Luthier told me after the neck reset that the guitar, a Hofner 455/S has a steep angle which was set wrong by the company, so he had to use a new but higher bridge because the original one, made by Hofner, was too low now, even in its highest position. Unfortunatly he glued the neck to the body with the same steep angle and not in a new angle which fits the original bridge.
    Last edited by Musgo Real; 04-01-2021 at 11:51 AM.

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by deacon Mark
    A lot of guess work take it to a competent repair person.
    I thought I did so...

  21. #20

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    If the E1 gap at 12th fret is 2 mm and E6 2.5 mm, the difference at bridge should 2x0.5 mm = 1 mm. The photo shows a different story, meaning something's really wrong. The neck down from nut photo is not clear enough to reveal anything. A roller coaster neck with a twist and a hump at 12th? How qualified is your luthier anyway?

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Musgo Real
    I have had the buzzes on the lower frets through all six strings. Now with this setting not. I had to bring the guitar to a luthier because of this:

    As you can see the neck lost some contact to the body because of string tension. Luthier told me after the neck reset that the guitar, a Hofner 455/S has a steep angle, so he had to use a new but higher bridge because the original one, made by Hofner, was too low now, even in its highest position. Unfortunatly he glued the neck to the body with the same steep angle and not in a new angle which fits the original bridge.
    High bridge on an archtop is better than low bridge

    It's possible that after the neck reset, the neck is tilted a bit sideways causing the bass side to be higher. Like it's as if you rotated the neck on it's horizontal axis. I don't see how this could have a negative impact on the playability (considering it's only a sight sideways tilt).

    If this is true, then the action would be even across the fretboard and the wood bridge will intonate well, despite the bass side of the bridge being higher. It looks like this is the case.

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gitterbug
    If the E1 gap at 12th fret is 2 mm and E6 2.5 mm, the difference at bridge should 2x0.5 mm = 1 mm. The photo shows a different story, meaning something's really wrong. The neck down from nut photo is not clear enough to reveal anything. A roller coaster neck with a twist and a hump at 12th? How qualified is your luthier anyway?
    These are the true settings I have and as you can see that is the result on the bridge.

  24. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tal_175
    High bridge on an archtop is better than low bridge

    It's possible that after the neck reset, the neck is tilted a bit sideways causing the bass side to be higher. Like it's as if you rotated the neck on it's horizontal axis. I don't see how this could have a negative impact on the playability (considering it's only a sight sideways tilt).

    If this is true, then the action would be even across the fretboard and the wood bridge will intonate well, despite the bass side of the bridge being higher. It looks like this is the case.
    1) It doesn´t look like that the neck tilted after the neck reset sideways.

    What is your opinion?-hals-vorne-jpg
    What is your opinion?-bridge-vorne-jpg
    Last image: These are the lowest positions on the bridge that I can play buzz free on the lower frets. String action, please see my first post at the beginning of this topic.

  25. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Musgo Real
    1) It doesn´t look like that the neck tilted after the neck reset sideways.
    If the neck is tilted, that would be very hard to see in a photo. But with the bass side of the saddle very high, if the action is even on treble and bass sides of the fretboard, I don't know what other explanation is physically possible.

    I mean one other explanation is if the fret wires are higher on the bass side then on the treble side after a bad fret leveling job. But I doubt it.

  26. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tal_175
    If the neck is tilted, that would be very hard to see in a photo. But with the bass side of the saddle very high, if the action is even on treble and bass sides of the fretboard, I don't know what other explanation is physically possible.

    I mean one other explanation is if the fret wires are higher on the bass side then on the treble side after a bad fret leveling job. But I doubt it.
    Well I can move the E1 side of the bridge also that high like the E6 side, but getting a string action for E1 higher than 2 mm / 0,0787, as it is at the moment. But cannot go lower with the side for the bass strings.

  27. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Musgo Real
    Well I can move the E1 side of the bridge also that high like the E6 side, but getting a string action for E1 higher than 2 mm / 0,0787, as it is at the moment. But cannot go lower with the side for the bass strings.
    Ok my understanding is, with the bass side of the saddles very high, you're getting an even action, right? That is 2mm on the treble side, 2.5 on the bass?
    So I don't understand how else this is possible if the neck is not in rotation with respect to the body?

  28. #27

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    How was it before the neck reset? Even if the top were sunken on the bass side, it wouldn't have happened overnight.

  29. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tal_175
    Ok my understanding is, with the bass side of the saddles very high, you're getting an even action, right? That is 2mm on the treble side, 2.5 on the bass?
    So I don't understand how else this is possible if the neck is not in rotation with respect to the body?
    1) Yes.
    2) I don´t know.

    In the meantime I have turned the wheel of the bridge`s side for the bright strings to the same hight as the bass side. Having an action of 2,5 mm on both sides now. Intonation is better than before on the bright strings.
    I will try now to lower both sides until that buzzing on the lower frets is starting again.

    O.k, I cannot go lower than 2,5 mm on the bass side of the bridge, otherwise the buzzing starts again beginning at 13th fret.

  30. #29

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    Deacon is correct. Find a competent luthier! Too much guessing going on here IMHO. Good luck.

  31. #30

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    was the bridge tilted like that before the reset?
    if so the neck might be twisted. the reset does like steep, but not ridiculously so. the saddle is notched for the thumbwheels, if it weren't the tilt would obviously still be there but the bridge wouldn't appear to be too tall.

    I have a couple of very old archtops that have a tilt like that as a result of a neck twist, but they're set up very well and the tilt is a non issue.

  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by skykomishone
    Deacon is correct. Find a competent luthier! Too much guessing going on here IMHO. Good luck.
    Today I was at a different luthier but there is no possibility of doing a new neck reset because the first luthier used Epoxy, even I asked him to glue the neck. Todays luthier told me he cannot do a new reset without destroying parts of the body. He won´t do that job. I have to life with the result.

  33. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon
    was the bridge tilted like that before the reset?
    if so the neck might be twisted. the reset does like steep, but not ridiculously so. the saddle is notched for the thumbwheels, if it weren't the tilt would obviously still be there but the bridge wouldn't appear to be too tall.

    I have a couple of very old archtops that have a tilt like that as a result of a neck twist, but they're set up very well and the tilt is a non issue.
    I don´t know. The necks bottom of it´s end towards the body was touching the body´s surface. String action at 12th fret was E6 = close to 5 mm and E1 = around 4 mm. Bridge was on its lowest hight. Sound was poor. Probably because of the missing contact of neck and body. Because the first luthier used Epoxy, there is no chance to do a new neck reset. That was the comment of the second luthier I visited today.

  34. #33

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    In any case, if it bothers you the neck can be corrected by leveling the fretboard to accommodate the sideways angle. I don't mean leveling just the fretwires but the actual fretboard itself. ie by sanding the bass side down wrt the treble side in combination with levelling the fretwires with a similar angle.
    This is a common thing luthiers do to old guitars with warped necks. It's much easier than resetting the neck given the status of the last repair. But doing this kind of repair certainly requires experience.

    On the other hand, as long as the guitar can be set up with good intonation and action, the slightly higher saddles on the bass side my not matter.
    Last edited by Tal_175; 04-01-2021 at 01:35 PM.

  35. #34

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    Oh mine he used epoxy to glue a neck? Unbelievable glue to use in a neck reset. Never is a long time but necks are glued with titebond or hide glue. I prefer titebond gives more working time.

    After using epoxy only thing left is dealing with it by using other avenues of control. The frets, fingerboard and bridge can all be tailored to get a useable result. Archtops are forgiving in this respect so you are actually ok. My guess is it can be set up to play fine. It could possibly look a bit odd after but play fine.

  36. #35

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    I have a guitar that has a nearly identical bridge angle, however mine plays fine all along the neck. Until it plays poorly I'm just letting it be.

  37. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by deacon Mark
    Oh mine he used epoxy to glue a neck? Unbelievable glue to use in a neck reset. Never is a long time but necks are glued with titebond or hide glue. I prefer titebond gives more working time.

    After using epoxy only thing left is dealing with it by using other avenues of control. The frets, fingerboard and bridge can all be tailored to get a useable result. Archtops are forgiving in this respect so you are actually ok. My guess is it can be set up to play fine. It could possibly look a bit odd after but play fine.
    Indeed he used Epoxy... when I asked him to glue the neck I did not mean Epoxy, it was his own decision to do so without asking me. In German there is a verb called "verleimen" which includes the noun, but I cannot find a better translation than glue for it. I think it is the same or identical with tidebond. I won´t do a tailoring of the fingerboard etc...I also don´t got the money to do so. I have to try my luck experimenting with more neck relief. Probably that will help to get the bridge a little lower, hopefully resulting to a lower string action without buzzing on any frets.

  38. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by BiscoDrew
    I have a guitar that has a nearly identical bridge angle, however mine plays fine all along the neck. Until it plays poorly I'm just letting it be.
    What is your string action at the 12th fret on both E´s? The hight of my bridge is messured from surface of the body to its highest top 3 cm wich are 1,1811.

  39. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by Musgo Real
    Today I was at a different luthier but there is no possibility of doing a new neck reset because the first luthier used Epoxy, even I asked him to glue the neck. Todays luthier told me he cannot do a new reset without destroying parts of the body. He won´t do that job. I have to life with the result.
    So the luthier who did the neck reset was not all that competent. Epoxy? WTF? I am sorry to hear that. However, 2 to 2.5 mm action at the 12th fret is very reasonable in my opinion. Having the second luthier check the setup (nut height, relief, etc.) and whether fret leveling and crowning is necessary might help. Sometimes there is a hump where the fingerboard sits over the neck joint. It looks like the bridge saddle has more radius than the fingerboard, judging by the varying depth of the string slots, so that might be worth checking with a radius gauge. I suspect the issues are too subtle to be seen in photos on the web.

  40. #39

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    I had an archtop that was exactly like that. The action was great and it played perfectly, but the bridge had to be tilted higher on the bass side. I was never quite sure if the neck was set with a tilt or if the top’s arch was not symmetrical, or maybe both. I never noticed it at first, so it’s also possible that the bass side of the top sagged a bit over time. Any of these factors could cause this type of anomaly. In my case, it didn’t affect the playability at all. So, unless you are concerned with how it looks, it probably isn’t a huge issue. I was not happy with the way it looked so I eventually let the guitar go. Ever since then, I always check for that issue if I am buying a guitar. I prefer to see a saddle sitting fairly level over the base.
    Keith

  41. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by floatingpickup
    I had an archtop that was exactly like that. The action was great and it played perfectly, but the bridge had to be tilted higher on the bass side. I was never quite sure if the neck was set with a tilt or if the top’s arch was not symmetrical, or maybe both. I never noticed it at first, so it’s also possible that the bass side of the top sagged a bit over time. Any of these factors could cause this type of anomaly. In my case, it didn’t affect the playability at all. So, unless you are concerned with how it looks, it probably isn’t a huge issue. I was not happy with the way it looked so I eventually let the guitar go. Ever since then, I always check for that issue if I am buying a guitar. I prefer to see a saddle sitting fairly level over the base.
    Keith
    Two of my Gibson archtops have a slight tilt on the treble side of the bridge (not as severe as the tilt in this post to be sure). I assume that there is either a slight twist in the neck or a slightly lower side of the top of some sort in those two guitars, but they play great and have had no issues over the years, so it is a non-issue for me.

    As with women (or men if you are female), looking for perfection in a guitar will mostly lead to a life of disappointment.

  42. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    As with women (or men if you are female), looking for perfection in a guitar will mostly lead to a life of disappointment.
    Oh how I love that statement! You should get it copyrighted!

  43. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    Two of my Gibson archtops have a slight tilt on the treble side of the bridge (not as severe as the tilt in this post to be sure). I assume that there is either a slight twist in the neck or a slightly lower side of the top of some sort in those two guitars, but they play great and have had no issues over the years, so it is a non-issue for me.

    As with women (or men if you are female), looking for perfection in a guitar will mostly lead to a life of disappointment.
    Good point. Every instrument has its own quirks. A slight tilt that doesn’t affect playability is really nothing to worry about. The tilt on mine seemed to be a little more than normal though. I just decided to move that one out and buy something else that was a little closer to perfection.
    Keith

  44. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by Musgo Real
    What is your string action at the 12th fret on both E´s? The hight of my bridge is messured from surface of the body to its highest top 3 cm wich are 1,1811.
    I'll check and get back to you. Someone mentioned sag in the arch. I think that's the case with mine.

  45. #44

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    Im approx 1.8 at the low E, almost 3 at the high E. Maybe closer to 2.8. Eyeballing- I can't find my feeler gauges.

  46. #45

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    What is your opinion?-q3-jpgWhat is your opinion?-q6-jpg

  47. #46

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    Thanks to everyone for their input.

    Today I have sent an inquiry to the second luthier I was after the neck reset, asking what he wants for checking the fret wires. Good thing in the end, the guitar sounds very pleasant and warm, doesn´t got that very bright sound you hear often on other vintage Hofner acoustic archtops on youtube. I tested the guitar, which is loaded with a set of 12th gauge Thomastik Bebop strings at the moment, with 20 plecs all in different size and strength (thickness? Sorry, English is not my native language) and found my happiness with Fender`s Moto heavy - 351 shape. Now I am waiting for a set of 12th Soft Brass strings by Philippe Bosset. Rob MacKillop`s video on youtube inspired me to give them a try.
    Last edited by Musgo Real; 04-03-2021 at 12:00 PM.

  48. #47

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    I have an archtop which has the neck at a slight angle, not quite parallel to the body. It's only noticeable if you look closely from the tailpiece end of the body, or at the bridge, which is higher on one end when set properly. Otherwise the neck is perfect, action is ~1mm at the 12th fret on the treble E. It plays very well, and to me it's a non-issue.

    If the strings are buzzing when fretted at the lower frets, then IME the frets need leveling, the trussrod needs adjusting, or both. That is fixable without a neck reset.

  49. #48

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    I recently purchased a 2015 ‘59 VOS ES-175. When it arrived the action was higher than I liked and the bridge was high up on the adjustment wheels. I took it to Rainbow Guitars (Tucson) and they told me the neck was fine but it needed the frets leveled and dressed. They did that (and installed a bone nut). I had them fit the nut for round-wound TI Jazz Bebop 13’s and she is now spectacular.