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Intonation question

Lou Brush

On my Les Paul, the intonation on the "A" string is correct, but the saddle is too far forward than what would be considered "normal". I took it to a repair shop and they couldn't find anything extraordinarily wrong with the nut, bridge, saddle cuts, etc. I'm using normal, gauged sets of strings from several different manufacturers. The guitar plays in tune up and down the neck. There's a very slight bow in the neck... nothing serious. All the other strings are ok. I'm stumped. What could cause this?


I had an LP with the most jacked up intonation ever....well I still have it but am trying to sell since I have waaay overspent my capabilities....

anyways, back on topic.

The problem was the strings. I had DR True Blues on.....GREAT sound....but they had the craziest intonation problems ever. My saddles looked like this:


I switched back to "normal" strings...went back to the usual 2-pair of 3s symmetrical. I think it was because the DRs wind "43 gauge" string into a "42" or whatever they claim.....whatever it does, it sounds great, but doesn't intonate like a normal string.

Change strings and see what happens....if it happens exactly the same again...change brands of strings, not sure what you use, but switch to a really mainstream/typical brand like d'addrio.

If that fails, check the nut. If that fails....no clue


We just had a discussion about this and I think we all agreed that if it's not a bad string, as in some of those DR strings or any other for that matter, And it intonates and plays in tune, don't worry about it. I've had many over the years to do this and yet they played in tune, the most important part right?


Gold Supporting Member
Yeah... I'm not sure why this is even an issue if the intonation is fine?


It's not an "issue". Like I stated, the guitar plays in tune and intonnates. I'm simply interested in the physics of what is causing the oddity.

It does seem to defy the laws of mathematics as well, and I've never really totally understood why that is either. It's probably got something to do with "temperament", however, as in:

That's why individual bridge adjustments for each string really come in handy!

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