Tele Set Up Question


I recently bought a Highway 1 tele and got it set up. What I did not notice until I got it home was the tendency for the high E string to sound like a sitar between frets 10 and 15.

Is this due to unevent frets or will a slight raise in the saddle fix this?

Also, when I bend a note at the 15th fret it dies past a half-step bend.

Any thoughts?


Jan Folkson

Sounds like it needs a set up. Could be that the action is too low, frets need to be dressed or a truss rod adjustment is needed or a combination of all three. It's really hard to tell without seeing the guitar.


I believe those have a 9.5" neck radius right?

You could be experiencing what's called "fret out".
The upper frets get in the way when you bend a string and choke the note.
I don't usually experience that on a 9.5 neck as much as a vintage 7 1/4" neck.

The popular fix for this is to do a fall-away on the upper frets usually from the 12th fret up.
Simply put, you lower the frets above that a few thousandths and it can also help to slightly flatten the radius on the frets there.
I do this on most of my Fenders.

The other possibility is that you have a high fret or two in that area, so a good fret leveling and crown job would fix that.

You can sometimes help it by raising the saddles a bit but if you prefer a low action you will have to dress the frets.

I prefer a little higher action on Fenders because when I bend a string I find it easier to get a hold of it if it is a little bit higher off the board.

When you are up in that region I don't think a truss adjustment is going to help it.
The neck may need a shim as well.


Check the web for the specs, but get a capo and set the neck relief first. Then set the bridge saddle height and then the pickup height. Fine tune each string as needed, (in case you have a high fret, etc). If you took it to someone for the setup, take it back and make them re-do it.


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