LSR nut binding

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner: Guitar & Bass Technical Discussi' started by analogsystem, Feb 1, 2012.

  1. analogsystem

    analogsystem Member

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    I've had a CS Strat pro for about a year now. It's got the LSR roller nut and staggered locking tuners. I've been playing this guitar a lot, with extremely heavy trem use and have had incredible tuning stability until recently.

    My A string is binding badly at the nut now, mainly when I pull up (my trem is floating) it stays way sharp.

    I'm not sure what kind of maintenance these LSR nuts require but something is definitely up. I've been using the same gauge of strings (12-52) the whole time I've owned the guitar, my setup has not changed at all.

    Any advice on how to fix the binding or toubleshoot this nut would be great. Thanks!
     
  2. Barnzy

    Barnzy Member

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    If I recall correctly, the LSR rollernut is only supposed to be strung with "10's" and anything bigger can be a problem. I use "11's" on mine without problems, but it sounds like you've reached the limit with your use of "12's", particularly at the A string. It's not like a standard nut where you can widen the slot so I don't have a "slick and quick" solution for you. Also, Fender states that no maintenence is required, so don't lube it. This isn't a maintenance issue anyway...the part just doesn't function correctly with your chosen gauge of string...only thing you can do is drop gauge....
    Barnzy
     
  3. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    Seems to me that if the string was too big for the LSR, it would have bound up the first time it was tried.

    You can check this by taking a length of that size string and "flossing" the slot, to see if it slides through smoothly.
     
  4. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    Wait, the problem is the string staying sharp after an up-pull on the bar? that means the problem is not the nut at all, but the bridge.
     
  5. analogsystem

    analogsystem Member

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    I've been using the same gauge strings for a year with no issues so I don't think that has anything to do with it. The LSR works with 12s.

    Its not the bridge, as all the other strings return to pitch. Its the nut. If I lift the string out of the nut and set it back down, it's in tune again. Its definitely binding at the nut. I just have no idea why it would suddenly start doing this after working flawlessly for a year.
     
  6. 9fingers

    9fingers Supporting Member

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    It was the older Wilkinson roller nut that had the binding with bigger strings. The LSR is quite flexible in that regard. I corresponded some with the late Bill Turner, R&D master who designed the LSR at Fender. He said never to lube it with anything- that would eventually just gunk it up. The hardened ball bearings in it should not wear out. You didn't somehow lose a ball, did you? I would do a close inspection with a magnifier to see if anything is amiss mechanically in the LSR. Take a good look at the A string bridge saddle too & maybe give the saddle a little lube.
    Let us know what you find out.
     
  7. Barnzy

    Barnzy Member

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    I wont push the point about "12's" and the LSR nut because if you've had it working in the past then no reason it shouldn't work now. But it isn't. So the only other thing I can suggest is to give the LSR a good "dry" brushing with a toothbrush to help clean out the slots in case dirt/grime is the culprit here. Making sure you didn't lose a ball, and flossing your slot are two great idea's also...(can't believe I wrote that...)
    Barnzy
     
  8. Barnzy

    Barnzy Member

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    ...one last thing...is it a different string brand? the A strings may be different gauges between brands....but really not sure what's going on there...I'd change out that string anyway though.
    Good luck,
    Barnzy
     
  9. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    if it were binding at the nut, then an up-pull would leave too much string on the fretboard side of the nut, and it would come back flat.

    if an up-pull comes back sharp, then something else is going on, likely at the bridge. the act of lifting the string out of the slot is enough to pull it free of whatever's grabbing it. (next time, use equal force to lift it in the middle somewhere so that it doesn't come out of the nut, and see what happens.)
     
  10. analogsystem

    analogsystem Member

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    I think I'll change all the strings, take the bridge off and put chapstick on the knife edges.

    Can't seem to find anything wrong with the nut.
     
  11. socalscott

    socalscott Member

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    Take a look at Jeff Beck's LSR nut. E and A rollers are gone and ground to function as normal.
     
  12. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    "rollers"?

    are you referring to the older wilkinson, where the string got fed over one roller and under another?
     
  13. soulmap

    soulmap Supporting Member

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    I have an '89 strat that came with an early version of this nut. I never could get it to work well, for me. Replaced it with a graphite nut (and yanked the 'trem-setter' out) - not perfect but pretty stable under fairly extreme use - very workable.
    Now, twenty plus years down the road, the guitar has developed another tuning issue detailed in another (currently ignored) thread; the locking tuner for the high E seems to slip a bit. - anybody know a fix for that, or a source for one replacement Sperzel?
    I apologize for the hijack.
     
  14. socalscott

    socalscott Member

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    I'll just say that whatever the LSR does @ the string slot does not exist, it looks to step down in that area. Check out Live at Ronnie Scott's club(video) or find some picks.
     
  15. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    there was an earlier version of the wilky nut that indeed did not have the extra rollers over the wound strings; the plains got fed through, but the wounds just lay on top.

    the LSR is way better than either version.
     
  16. Mark Robinson

    Mark Robinson Gold Supporting Member

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    Walter has it correct the first Wilkinson just captured the plain strings from above, and that's the version that Jeff Beck continues to use.

    I have a nice stable of trem equipped 25.5" scale guitars, two set up with LSR, one with the second version Wilkinson, and two with graphtec nuts. The LSR is a good sounding nut, but I find that with 9-42 guage strings that I like a lot, Boomers, that are sort of a stiff alloy, the Wilkinson somehow, comes back in pitch a little more consistently. The LSR hangs sharp on the G and B and sometimes even the D. I have habituated, any bend brings it back, or if you are really working it, finish with a pull.

    With a 10-46 set, all the guitars run about the same. I prefer the look of the white graphtec though. All of my trem guitars have graduated Sperzel or Schaller lock post tuners, no trees. Well one has a tree, it was zingy, and I didn't feel like commissioning yet another nut. That guitar has a super flat fingerboard 15" and I wonder if that's a factor? Probably not.
     

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