Bad nut on a $5000 guitar?

TooMuchFiber

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
338
>>EDIT:
I bought this used - not for $5000! Thanks to some helpful people in this thread, I now know that nut slots can wear down over time and that a PLEK job would be overkill. Thanks to some other people here, I am reminded that the world is full of jerks who desperately need to feel superior by insulting others.
<<

How did I end up with a bad nut on a $5K guitar (Collings City Limits)? Granted, I picked it up at half that price used, so I can't complain too much, but it's pretty surprising and disappointing. When I have the action and neck relief set low, it plays perfectly everywhere except for a little fret buzz on the open G string. I assume this means the G slot in the nut is too low (or perhaps the first fret is too high beneath the G string). Maybe the previous owners screwed with the or it was just cut low to begin with. I guess I'll drop $300 for a PLEK job to see what the problem is.
 
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BrokenRomeo

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,347
You might need a little more relief in the neck, if the slot is too low, a tech can fill it a bit and that should get you by for a while. The nut could also be shimmed, or replaced altogether...it is a used guitar, so who knows what work was done on it before you got it.
 

TooMuchFiber

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
338
Take a $5 fret rocker and see if the fret has lifted, if it hasn’t grab a $15 Graphtech replacement nut.
Wow, didn't realize nuts were that cheap. But of course I've got to pay someone to slot it and install it, because I'm sure not going to hack up this beauty! I'll check out the fret rocker too, looks like fun :)
 

Fireball XL5

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,959
It's a used guitar and nut slots do wear. If the nut slot was cut as low as possible to begin with from the factory (which is what you want for best action/playabilty), even the slightest amount of wear will make it too low and buzz off the first fret.

Also, I may be off, but I believe Collings ships their CL model with 11 gauge strings, so if the guitar has lighter gauge strings on it now along with some wear in the nut slots....??

Take it to a good luthier and have a new nut made. Collings probably came with a bone nut? I'd get it replaced with the same. BTW... Beautiful guitar!
 

BrokenRomeo

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,347
Check the G string nut slot depth by fretting that string at the 3rd fret, then press the string over the first fret to check for clearance...if it's resting on the 1st fret the slot is too low, there should be a little bit of clearance.
 

ArtDecade

Member
Messages
2,422
Now you know why your 5k guitar was half off. I am guessing you will soon find that it more than just the nut depth.
 

pepedede

Member
Messages
2,648
Now you know why your 5k guitar was half off. I am guessing you will soon find that it more than just the nut depth.

Lots of boutique guitars and amps sell for half the new price used, doesn't mean there's anything seriously wrong, often just a chip in the finish or a bit of wear.

Unless it's extreme abuse or damage it can usually all be fixed fairly easily.
 

Drew816

Chupacabra Psychiatrist and Meme Thief
Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,566
So you meant to say Bad Nut on a used $2500 guitar?

And we all say, yep, happens, get a new nut. ;)

PLEK ain't gonna do anything for ya but lower your frets some and burn some money. Looks like a nice one though, enjoy!
 

TooMuchFiber

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
338
Check the G string nut slot depth by fretting that string at the 3rd fret, then press the string over the first fret to check for clearance...if it's resting on the 1st fret the slot is too low, there should be a little bit of clearance.
Bingo! It does indeed touch the first fret, whereas the other strings don't. Thanks for the tip.
 

joejazzguitar

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,144
As a pro tech and owner of five Collings guitars, I can guarantee you that the guitar did not leave the factory like that...either the nut is worn or that the previous (or his tech) improperly filed the slots.

Please, do NOT PLEK the guitar....set the neck dead flat (0 relief) and then check the distance between the bottom of each string and the first fret...if one string is lower than the others (or is touching the first fret)...just have your tech replace the nut .... and GraphTech XL would be my choice.
 




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