SG Faded 2016 ALWAYS SOUND WEIRD/OUT OF TUNE

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by Tulsa Jack, Sep 11, 2017.

  1. Tulsa Jack

    Tulsa Jack New Member

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    Hi all,
    I bought a 2016 SG Faded Guitar last summer and after the first month of playing whatever i do it never sounds right. Any Tips or suggestions on what to do?
     
  2. sazista

    sazista Active Member

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    Ha! I have had this issue with my Faded 2002 for years ( one of the reasons why i liked my Epi G310 so much).
    The Gibson gets fine tuned but when i play a hit open G chord the 6th or 5th string sounds warped or outta tune. It also happens on the frets around 14th throu 19th. I check the tuning constantly. Half the time the Gibson classic tuners don't hold tuning well , but this phenomenon occurs when it is in tune. You are not alone. Some wise SG owl will chime in soon and tell us about neck relief or string winding or about the devil himself being the culprit ;)
    Ps. I use 10 gauge strings.
    Let's wait and be edubakated.
     
  3. sazista

    sazista Active Member

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    II also play Turkish oud and have experienced this but in that case it has something to do with the thickness of the doubled nylon strings being uneven or thinner/thicker at the place you're pressing on the neck. Sometimes removing the offending string and reversing it to the other end solves it, but my Faded always does this. it's a mystery.
     
  4. DrBGood

    DrBGood Well-Known Member

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    Maybe you should go see a good luthier.

    If this was my guitar, I'd tweak the nut.

    Out of tune open chords sound like a nut cut too high. I've had that and lowering the nut, by sanding the bottom of it (if you don't want to mess with the slots), cured the problem. But you might have to mess with the slots anyways, if the guitar doesn't stay in tune. Strings must be binding somehow.

    So all in all, not a big thing. Nothing to go NUTs about.
     
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  5. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

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    Have you changed strings? These ship with 9-46 plain G. The same gauge strings will be closest to intonated, one hopes.
    If you are conversant with the mechanics of guitars, a good set up is not difficult, take your time.


    Begin by setting the bridge height for frets 17-21(2) so that the strings play buzz free at the lowest possible height.

    Start with low E. Lower the bass side until it buzzes, raise until clear. Check A and D raise slightly if needed to get clean notes. Then do the treble side. If you bend notes up here, try a few typical bends, to make sure they don't buzz out.

    When all strings play clean go to the lower frets and neck relief. Play the high E string from fret 1 to fret 16, increasing relief (loosening trussrod) to relieve buzz or decreasing relief (tightening trussrod) to lower the string height. So tighten, by fractional turns, until it buzzes and back off until it doesn't. If you bend strings , do your typical bends to insure they don't buzz out. Once satisfied, check the other strings and make small adjustments as needed.
    Once you have acceptable relief, i.e. no buzz and easy action, set your intonation and you're done.

    I think so.
     
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  6. sazista

    sazista Active Member

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    found this curious so i switched on the tuner tuned the open strings. Started on 6th string , 1st fret. The note was sharp by 15 cents, up to 20 cents: same result as i went up higher. When i got to the 5th fret the notes start lining up (more or less) or measuring to be in tune with the tuner. Down in the 15th or so they start getting flat . Though i am used to playing quarter tones and micro tones in Turkish and Persian music, these just don't cut it on a guitar, and surprised me on a Gibson. i pulled out the Epi and got similar off notes, though less of them. anybody else notice this? Now i see why i can never play things in open chords on the first 3 frets without hearing someone not singing in tune with their partners in the chord!! Annoying.
     
  7. jvin248

    jvin248 Active Member

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    .

    Fret the third fret and if there is more than one sheet of photocopy paper gap between any string and the first fret -- you need the nut slot filed down. $6 welding tip file set will fix you up, just make sure you cut the slots at a slant down on the peg side and up on the fret side, and go slow measuring often as you get close.

    Suspicious that either you or the previous owner: swapped the nut or thicker strings.

    Fixing the slots will allow you to get lower overall action.

    .
     
  8. pedecamp

    pedecamp Active Member

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    Never had an problems with my faded. Take it to a reputable repair guy and have them sort it out, doesn't cost much to do so.
     
  9. AngelDeVille

    AngelDeVille Well-Known Member

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    lessons?
     
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  10. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    here's a few more edubakation suggestions:

    First, NEW STRINGS! Old dead strings will not stay in tune. Thats how you know it's time to change strings, when your guitar won't hold tune well any more.

    Second: Professional setup job by a qualified luthier (which includes new strings). The luthier will do all of what Biddlin describes above, and check the nut slots and the frets and the neck for straightness, and set the intonation so that your guitar plays true all the way up and down the neck. You have to pay for this, but it's very worth it IMHO. Once I've gotten the first setup job done right, I can usually keep the guitar that way.

    Third: when you change strings, install the new ones using the "Self Locking" method of installing strings. (Just google this phrase, and get a whole page of explanations of how to install strings that lock themselves with their own string tension). Every player needs to use this method, but especially players who are having trouble with tuning stability.

    Fourth: Lube your nut slots. I use a home made mixture of Vaseline and Powdered graphite, but there are also commercial preparations for sale. A tiny dot on a toothpick is enough for a nut slot. It's also good on the string saddles at the bridge and under the string tree on a Fender.

    Good luck. There's likely to be nothing wrong with your guitar. Guitars are organic and change over time and with changes in humidity, so they need to get set up periodically. And change your strings.
     
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  11. Tulsa Jack

    Tulsa Jack New Member

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    Thanks a lot man really cleared it up. But Im living overseas and there are no luthiers here so Im probably going to have to wait until next summer when im back in the US and ill bring it back to get set up.
     
  12. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    well, if you follow Biddlin's instructions, you can do most of it for yourself.
    Ask him to clarify if you don't understand something, he won't mind.

    Just changing the strings, lubing the nut slots, adjusting the action, installing
    the new strings with the self locking method, double checking the intonation once
    you've got the new strings on and the action set... these steps ought to improve
    things for you.

    I always recommend at least the first setup be done by a pro luthier, because they have tools and measuring devices that the average guitar player does not
    own. So they can tweak things to close tolerances. But Gibson guitars are designed so we can do a lot of our own adjustments. You can watch online
    tutorials that will help you get most of it straight.
     
  13. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    I don't know if this applies to you, but lots of guys lurk on this site and read posts like this hoping to learn why they have trouble with tuning. So here's something
    that nobody but me would bring up:

    THE ACOUSTIC INSTRUMENT PLAYER'S GRIP OF DEATH... (which throws notes sharp)

    I played acoustic guitar and electric bass for literally decades before I bought my '07 SG, the first electric guitar I'd owned since I was a young man, and the first really excellent electric guitar I'd ever owned. As soon as I started working out with my new SG, I began to feel that something was wrong. My notes were out of tune, especially down on the first three or four frets.

    I was so in love with this new guitar anyway, I used to take it with me everywhere. Once I was driving by a restaurant with my SG in the back when I noticed a couple of musicians I knew, playing outside at that restaurant. I stopped my car, grabbed my SG and went to listen. When they were done, I asked one of them if he wanted to see my new guitar. He did, of course. I suggested he plug it in and try it. He did this, and he played it up and down the neck, and had NO PROBLEMS... *grins

    That's when I knew there was nothing wrong with my guitar. What was wrong was my style and technique. I was squeezing the guitar too hard, and throwing
    the notes sharp. Once I made up my mind that it was me, I decided that I could either teach myself to play right, or give it up. So I started learning how to play guitar all over again, trying hard to keep my thumb behind the neck and my fingers arched over the strings, and playing with a much more relaxed hand.

    This was difficult to do, but very worth it. If you play acoustic instruments like you mention, then you might be pressing the strings on your SG too hard. You have to force yourself to back off the pressure. But once you learn to play with a more relaxed hand, you will find yourself capable of playing parts you never could before. And your acoustic playing will take off as well.

    So verify this for yourself. Pursuade an experienced electric guitar player to
    work out on your SG, and listen. If his notes are off too, then you have to adjust your guitar. If he plays true notes and you don't, then you have to adjust your grip.
     
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  14. Rob H.

    Rob H. Member

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    SG necks can flex quite a bit, also at the neck heel. Even thick necks. I had a 2005 Special with a baseball bat neck I initially returned because after years of letting my fretting hand hang on maple Fender necks to no detriment, I was pulling everything slightly out of tune on the SG.

    I briefly swapped it for a sturdier LP Studio but ended up getting the Special and adjusting my technique.

    +1 on the setup. Nut, truss rod, action, intonation, new strings. Frets are tall too so you may be pressing too hard, thicker strings may be in order.
     
  15. sazista

    sazista Active Member

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    Ha. I just fixed most of my issue two ways. The guitar was set up recently, but set up for Eflat!! I tune to D. Sooooo, i adjusted the intonation and checked my finger pressure and yes, i have been choking the notes!! I have been playing since 1980 but never noticed this. Maybe all those years in punk bands did it., Plus these D'Addario extra something or others are REALLY squishy! (well, the 4th to 6th) I noticed that when it was we strung. Very easy to go sharp with them. I pushed very lightly on them while the tuner measured the notes. Much better. Thanks guys. I can always count on this forum for great advice. As for the dude who said "lessons?", not sure of his/her intent, but i could give him lessons. I'm a lover, not a fighter... ;)
     
  16. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    glad to know you solved some of your issues.
    I was thinking that there was nothing wrong with your guitar.

    Don't take the comment "lessons' in the wrong way.
    Many times our members have all agreed that if a player spent
    as much time and effort AND money on lessons as we do on modifications and extraneous gear, we might make better music.

    I'm going to be 69 in a week, and have just picked up my girlfriend's old piano from her mom's house. She's been trying to get her mom to move out of that house where she lives all alone.
    I am staying out of the discussions, but only offer to transport things or people in order to facilitate the process.

    Getting things out of the house is one way to help. So I was glad when Cindy's mom offered to let us have the piano. It's one less large thing for her to worry about, plus: I am pumped to take some lessons and learn how to play the piano. I've been a musician since about 1964, but have never given up the idea of learning more about this. So: I'm not too proud (or too old) to take some
    lessons and learn how to boogie all over again.
     
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  17. Paul G.

    Paul G. Well-Known Member

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    1. Tuners are fine. Unless you have an $89 guitar with diecast pot metal tuners it is never, ever the tuners. Ever.

    2. Guitar may need a setup, usually nut is too high and intonation must be set. Where are you that there are no guitar shops or techs?

    2. Once that is done, anything else is on you. Are you an experienced player? Nobody likes to say it but, if a quality instrument, properly set up and intonated plays "out-of-tune", it's not the instrument.

    These are quality instruments, once adjusted properly the play as perfectly as an assembly of wood, zinc, magnets and steel can.

    Finally my usual smarmy tag -- "it must be crap, send it to me for disposal".
     
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  18. sazista

    sazista Active Member

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    The OP said he was overseas so not in contact with luthiers. I am in Santiago Chile. There are many, but unfortunately many are not so good. My guy is good. I will gets some non spongy strings next. These are strangely springy , and are not Ernie Balls. The slightest pressure gets me a sharp note, to the likes of what i play on Tukish oud. Anyhow, thanks to all for taking the time to give advice.
    Nobody is too old to learn.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017
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  19. sazista

    sazista Active Member

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    Thanks for sharing. Though it's a Gibson it isn't without problems. One particular issue is the high E sliding off the edge of the fingerboard too easily due to the shape of the rounded fret ends. A luthier here claimed that it is common with SGs and LPs. I wonder if it it due to the narrowness of the neck as compared to others, especially those with binding. So with that i will go back to making music, but with a better sounding open chord!
     
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  20. grausch

    grausch Active Member

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    Binding makes the strings slide off easier, but the solution is quite simple. Just buy cheaper Gibsons that don't have binding. For less money you get a guitar that plays a lot better.

    The above may sound like a joke, but I found it to be very true. I play better on SG Fadeds than on Standards and it is all due to the way I fret G chords. I tried changing the way I fret it, but why should I adapt to a guitar? Why should I only have this issue with Gibsons with binding and slim taper necks?

    I found my solution and in my case it saves me plenty of $.
     
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