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Slap and buzzing

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Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Sun Jan 24, 2010 11:46 am

I've searched for slap and buzz and what came up didn't really help me or explained my situation.

It's like this. When I play the open E string I can slap fine. As soon as I fret the E (or A) string all I hear is a metal "clank!" followed by what I can best describe as a harmonic. This happens if I slap the string head on.

If I want to get a tone out of it I actually have to slap beyond the string and rest on the one below. So it's more of a brush rather than a slap.

My question is, is it because my action is set too low? I have complained about a fret buzz before and they adjusted the neck but they misunderstood and refused to set my action any lower - I didn't ask for them to set it lower; I asked them if it was TOO low ... oh well.

If this is not possible to figure out without a vid; I'll shoot one tonight or tomorrow .. but I'm not entirely comfortable with doing that. Usually because my thought is: people are assholes until they become friends.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  BlackF89 on Sun Jan 24, 2010 1:47 pm

Are you making sure your thumb bounces off the string when you slap? This could explain the clank but I'm not sure about the buzz, it does sound to me like your action is a bit low.

If you can upload a vid showing the problem it'd be easy enough to say whats happening I'm sure. I don't blame you for not wanting to put one on youtube though (the internet hate machine), I think someones already said to disable comments and ratings? Smile

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Sun Jan 24, 2010 4:05 pm

yeah my thumb is coming back after the slap but there's not enough space for the snare to ring it seems ... almost as if it hits dead after hitting the fret or something ...

But yes, I'll upload a vid when I get around it. It's been bugging me for some time and maybe I'm doing it all wrong - that's quite possible.

I'll make a vid showing a few slaps on an open string and a fretted one and hopefully the sound will be recorded clearly enough for you guys to look over/hear.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  Dropthelines585 on Sun Jan 24, 2010 7:01 pm

That is most definitely a low-action problem
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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Sun Jan 24, 2010 10:08 pm

Alright, it was a bit of a challenge but I got a vid made and uploaded. Wow, miracles do exist!

Please understand that this whole upload and show myself playing is a HUGE leap for me; please be kind.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlGkwPe1jII

add me as a friend if you like Wink

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  Stryfer on Sun Jan 24, 2010 10:25 pm

I've never had such a problem. It's probably a low action problem, although my action is pretty low and I come out fine. It actually seems like the string is too tense when you fret it in order to produce any sound i.e. it doesn't vibrate.
I have noticed one thing though. The farther away you move from the fretboard when slapping, the more hollow the sound gets. Although, I've never heard a sound go THAT hollow before. As a test, try slapping the string closer to the fretboard. Some people slap over the fretboard, but others (like Flea) hit the string just before the beginning.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  Dropthelines585 on Sun Jan 24, 2010 11:15 pm

I slap on the fretboard. Couldn't do it any way else.
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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Sun Jan 24, 2010 11:39 pm

I've uploaded another vid; but it may not be ready yet when you try the link. It's still 'processing'.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gebL4KNZKqQ

I started near the fretboard and just kind of went up and down from bridge to fretboard. Still sounding weird.

anyways, now I'm REALLY off to bed.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  BlackF89 on Sun Jan 24, 2010 11:54 pm

Action is too low it seems Smile

I added you, I'm blackblues on youtube Razz

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  ThreeLetterSyndrom on Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:40 am

Too low action would cause the string to ring at one of the highest frequencies, so I don't think it's that.

Your neck seems awfully straight, while it should be just a little bended to let the string vibrate properly (which is very important when you're playing hard. Slap is a natural hard sound.

I'd say, take it to the music store and see what they can do for you. Most of the time it's free.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:35 am

BlackF89 wrote:Action is too low it seems Smile

I added you, I'm blackblues on youtube Razz

Smile Yeah I figured you were Smile

Thanks, can't have too many friends on that scary place Wink

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:39 am

ThreeLetterSyndrom wrote:

I'd say, take it to the music store and see what they can do for you. Most of the time it's free.

I've been back twice already >.< They straightened the neck for me because the buzzing and clainking was far worse before. It was like playing on eggshells. They also told me that it was set in the most common setting used by bass players.

I've complained about the action before but I don't know what to say to explain the problem to them. I don't want to come home empty handed - or with a bass more suited for slapping >.< yeah that's me.

oh well, I'm going to take my bass back tomorrow and see what's up


Last edited by FranR on Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:47 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  Fuzzy on Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:42 am

How low is your action?
Measure the gap between the end of the fretboard and the strings, just to rule that out.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:57 am

At one side it's about 5mm near the pickups, the other side near the nut about 2mm ... very roughly.

I just used a I don't even know the word in English scratch it's like a ruler on a string. I don't have any specific or specialized tools for this kind of thing.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  Stryfer on Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:41 pm

Now that's odd. The action definitely isn't too low. Mine is about 3mm.
What's strange is that it's 2 on one end and 5 on the other. I might be mistaken, but I think it should be the same on both ends, it's the same for me on both. I smell a bent neck.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  Spoon on Mon Jan 25, 2010 1:15 pm



one of these? its a tape measure

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  BlackF89 on Mon Jan 25, 2010 1:38 pm

Well it' not the action and if you say that you've had a truss rod adjustment done professionally done it shouldn't be that. You could try getting strings with a lighter gauge and see if that helps, there does seem to be a lot of tension.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  ThreeLetterSyndrom on Mon Jan 25, 2010 4:20 pm

FranR wrote:At one side it's about 5mm near the pickups, the other side near the nut about 2mm ... very roughly.

I just used a I don't even know the word in English scratch it's like a ruler on a string. I don't have any specific or specialized tools for this kind of thing.
Nederlands kan vertaald worden. Razz

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:02 pm

Unfortunately I cannot test further at the moment, because I fell with my bike today and broke my shoulder Sad So, no bass playing for a while. I've seen my x-rays and at the shoulder; about a quarter has broken off and is 'floating a few mm's above it.

I'm typing this now with one hand, because trying with both is a bit painful.

Back at the hospital I figured I could still play, but there's no way in hell that I can lift my bass and have it hang around my neck with just one hand.

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:05 pm

ThreeLetterSyndrom wrote:
FranR wrote:At one side it's about 5mm near the pickups, the other side near the nut about 2mm ... very roughly.

I just used a I don't even know the word in English scratch it's like a ruler on a string. I don't have any specific or specialized tools for this kind of thing.
Nederlands kan vertaald worden. Razz

OOeh, gaaf. Het is een rolmaat Smile Van de Gamma

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  ezekiel on Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:13 pm

Sad
Thats awful...i hope your shoulder gets better soon

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  ThreeLetterSyndrom on Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:25 pm

FranR wrote:
ThreeLetterSyndrom wrote:
FranR wrote:At one side it's about 5mm near the pickups, the other side near the nut about 2mm ... very roughly.

I just used a I don't even know the word in English scratch it's like a ruler on a string. I don't have any specific or specialized tools for this kind of thing.
Nederlands kan vertaald worden. Razz

OOeh, gaaf. Het is een rolmaat Smile Van de Gamma
Van de gamma nog wel. XD

Still a tape measure in English Razz

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  BlackF89 on Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:55 pm

Thats well shit, get better soon Sad

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  Fuzzy on Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:33 pm

That sucks Sad

If it's 5mm at the end of the fretboard and 2mm at the nut, then that's fine

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Re: Slap and buzzing

Post  FranR on Sat Jan 30, 2010 2:35 pm

thanks for the get wells guys, appreciated.

Though I don't think I can wait so many weeks to play bass again. Maybe if I can have it rest on my lap that I can get back to it sooner Smile

2nd of Feb I've got my new doc's appointment; hopefully it's healing well and I can play some bass again. I miss it Sad

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Re: Slap and buzzing

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