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Capo not loving my Highway one Strat

Messages
205
I use a capo a bit and having issues with my US Strat. The intonation isn't perfect but pretty close and normally plays well without a capo. I usually capo up 2nd or 3rd fret and the low E string sounds a fair bit out of tune. Have tried putting it in all different positions, up close the the last fret, back towards the rear fret.....on a slant etc. It's a good quality capo too and I tried my friends also still pretty much the same thing. I had a look to make sure the capo wasn't pulling the E string sideways or something looks ok. The frets aren't 100% but they're not bad and its doing it in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd fret positions. I have had this issue before with some electric guitars where they just don't seem to capo well. Is there anything I am missing or something I can try?
 

Timberwolf

Member
Messages
258
What capo is it exactly? my old capo was pretty expensive brand, but it was spring loaded and I always felt the pressure was a little too much on some necks. now I have the other type (Fender Dragon), and I could not be happier. Also make sure to not place it in the middle but as close to the fret as possible. Another thing I noticed is that for capo intonation smaller frets work better than jumbos.
 
Messages
205
You need to tune the guitar with the capo on.
Yeah that probably would be an issue in between songs playing live. If that's the best I can get it might move the guitar on. Like I said I have experienced this on other guitars but usually 90% fine. Is there any particular reason for it? its an Epi Riviera, dead straight neck / low action. Normally plays well. Doesn't matter where I put the capo.....back front middle of the frets
 

Bossanova

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
8,440
Yeah that probably would be an issue in between songs playing live. If that's the best I can get it might move the guitar on. Like I said I have experienced this on other guitars but usually 90% fine. Is there any particular reason for it? its an Epi Riviera, dead straight neck / low action. Normally plays well. Doesn't matter where I put the capo.....back front middle of the frets
Depends, is it royal tan or sparkling burgundy? If it’s tan, there’s no cure and you need to sell it to me.

srsly, a capo with adjustable pressure and a guitar with small vintage frets won’t sound as out of tune. But still, you really need to tune with that capo!
 

joelster

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,487
The capo is pressing down too hard on the strings. Is it adjustable? Loosen it a bit. put it right behind the fret or right on the fret as Krausewitz suggests. Maybe try a different capo.
 

budglo58

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,693
I used to use a Kyser capo and it did throw my tuning out of whack even with 10s . Switched to a G7 and have better luck. You could try putting it on the fret , like the op suggested .
 
Messages
205
What capo is it exactly? my old capo was pretty expensive brand, but it was spring loaded and I always felt the pressure was a little too much on some necks. now I have the other type (Fender Dragon), and I could not be happier. Also make sure to not place it in the middle but as close to the fret as possible. Another thing I noticed is that for capo intonation smaller frets work better than jumbos.
Its a decent brand....... at my friends atm so can't check. It is fairly strong sprung. I would have thought it would be better? The frets are pretty small vintage style. Certainly not jumbos or mediums. On the fret eh? I never thought of that although going down 4 or 5 frets would leave you little room for your fingers for some chords I would imagine. How does the tension of the capo effect the tuning? Like its not pulling on the neck or anything and is only the E string, other strings are fine. I might sit down with it tomorrow, make sure the intonation and tuning is spot on and experiment with it a bit
 

Texsunburst59

Member
Messages
5,274

No need to get rid of your Highway 1 strat. That Highway One is a really good instrument.

This will be quicker and more precise than ANY capo you could use.

One thing I'd check on your guitar, even if you get this pedal, is to make sure it's properly intonated.

You just need this pedal



Morpheus Capo Guitar Effects Pedal 888365673882

Price:$99.99 & FREE Returns

Proprietary polyphonic up pitch Up tune up to 3-1/2 steps in 1/2-step increments Full Octave up tune and Octaver/12-string emulator Latching effect on/off switch Momentary down and toggle/up switches Bright backlit up tune, octave, octaver, toggle and effect indicators Rear panel trim level control with front panel LED level display In, out and power supply jacks (power supply included) Patent pending Rugged cast-metal chassis Two-year limited warranty
 

TDLP

Member
Messages
229
If you want to use a capo that's even remotely close to not needing to retune when you put it on, try and find one with adjustable tension. When you put on a capo with too much tension, it will 'pull' the strings down towards the fretboard, similar to what happens if you fret a note too hard.

I'd recommend against getting any sort of pedal to use instead of a capo, using a capo will be much simpler and have less to go wrong.
Grab something like a Shubb S1 capo and decrease the tension on it until its only just enough to stop the strings buzzing when you put it on. The tuning should be pretty good. In regards to why it happen on certain guitars, its probably the neck profile, gauge of string used and scale length, and size of the frets causing differences
 

Timberwolf

Member
Messages
258
It is fairly strong sprung. I would have thought it would be better? How does the tension of the capo effect the tuning?
The stronger you press, the sharper the note. Definitely worth trying a different capo. The ones with adjustable tension are the best - you can literally adjust with a screw.
Planet waves and others make good adjustable capos that won't break the bank.
In any case, check the intonation without the capo first - it has to be totally spot on. If it is spot on and the adjustable capo placed right behind the fret still throws you out of tune, then the problem is elsewhere. But it never happened to me, provided the guitar intonates right, does not have jumbo frets and the capo is alright.
 

MikeMcK

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
6,019
I used to use a Kyser capo and it did throw my tuning out of whack even with 10s . Switched to a G7 and have better luck. You could try putting it on the fret , like the op suggested .
This is the answer right here. I keep a Tele in open E and tried a bunch of capos to save my left hand from Stones songs (in G), Bonnie Raitt (Ab) etc. The Kyser wasn't even close to being usable unless I re-tuned every time I moved it.

I used to roll my eyes every time I saw a G7... who would spend that much on a capo? The answer is, "me and everyone else who wants to be in tune when they use one." The trick is to get used to putting it on with just enough pressure to not buzz.
 

ant_riv

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,953
As has been said by others, in slightly different words:
- When you press a string down, the note occurs when the string contacts the fret.
- However, due to the height of frets, you can continue to press the string downward, towards the fretboard.
- The additional distance causes the note to go sharp (get higher) because you are essentially bending the note more than necessary (since the note occurs at the fret, not the fretboard).
- So when you use a capo that presses the string to the fretboard, or not quite to the fretboard, you will be out of tune by the amount of the additional pressure.

A capo with adjustable pressure allows you to set the downward pressure to only bring the string securely to the fret, and not all the way down to the fretboard.
This is why jumbo frets cause more tuning issues than lower frets. There is more distance from the top of the fret to the fretboard.

This can also be true when you fret a guitar with fingers. A gorilla grip will be more variable in tuning accuracy than a light touch, which only brings the string to sufficiently touch the fret.

I hope this helps.
Best wishes to you for getting this resolved.
 

caledoneus

Member
Messages
1,536
most capos are really designed with an acoustic neck in mind. They make some that are adjustable tension, that is probably what you need.
 

Steely Dave

Member
Messages
768
Put the capo directly on the fret, not behind it.


Morpheus Capo Guitar Effects Pedal 888365673882

Price:$99.99 & FREE Returns

Proprietary polyphonic up pitch Up tune up to 3-1/2 steps in 1/2-step increments Full Octave up tune and Octaver/12-string emulator Latching effect on/off switch Momentary down and toggle/up switches Bright backlit up tune, octave, octaver, toggle and effect indicators Rear panel trim level control with front panel LED level display In, out and power supply jacks (power supply included) Patent pending Rugged cast-metal chassis Two-year limited warranty
Yeah, don’t do either of these.
 

Steely Dave

Member
Messages
768
Why?

Have you tried this pedal?

Does it not do what it was made for?

I really want to know, because it looks like it solves an age old problem.

This was just something I looked up as a solution for the OP.
It’s not nearly as accurate as just using a capo. I’ve yet to find a drop tune/capo pedal that doesn’t feel weird as hell and have some glitches to it.
 




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