what is a dead spot on a guitar?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by idk, Aug 19, 2010.

  1. idk

    idk Member

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    I hear that term a lot and i'm not quite sure what it means. I have an MIM strat I'm playing through a GSP1101 and i encountered something that may qualify. on the 7th fret or so on the A or D string, even when I'm running on a Mesa patch with I think pretty good amounts of gain, theres almost zero sustain, and instead of gradually tapering off it just rings and then goes dead after a second or so.
     
  2. EADGBE

    EADGBE Member

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    It's like you describe. A place where a certain string or note will just sort of sound dead or lifeless. It may have to do with a sort of phase cancellation. I believe that lighter guitars can suffer from dead spots more so than heavier ones.
     
  3. bluesjunior

    bluesjunior Member

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    I have a strat with a dead spot at the 7th fret A on the D string in standard tuning. I went through a phase of tuning down a half step and thought that I had cured it but no, it had just moved up a fret to the 8th. So I figure it is something to do with the note as well!!.
     
  4. idk

    idk Member

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    ahh okay thats actually nice to hear that it may not be the guitar's fault.
     
  5. torquil

    torquil Member

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    One of the vibrational frequencies of your neck is probably close to the frequency of that note. The vibrational energy of the string at that frequency is then quickly lost into the neck.

    I have had the same problem on a different guitar and different note. It can be influenced by attaching something heavy to the neck to alter its vibrational spectrum. This will typically move the dead spot to some other place on the neck. It also changes the guitar's tone for the same reason.
     
  6. bluesjunior

    bluesjunior Member

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    Yes that's right, I clip a capo to the headstock on that guitar and it is enough to cure the "problem".
     
  7. teefus

    teefus Silver Supporting Member

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    dead spots can also be caused by high or uneven frets just above where the dead note is.
     
  8. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Member

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  9. Faraldi

    Faraldi Member

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    Yep, I have this issue with my new Godin. Not terrible but just something I'm going to have to remember. I lowered my pups and it helped quite a bit so it might have been ther were too high. I've had a dead spot on most of my guitars.
     
  10. EADGBE

    EADGBE Member

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    Sometimes the dead spot(s) will go away on their own. I linseed oiled the fretboard of my ST-lll and it seemed like the dead spot it had went away. I remember reading an interview where Segovia was talking about one if his Hauser classical guitars having a dead spot. And that he sent it to Hauser's son but he couldn't fix it.
     
  11. EADGBE

    EADGBE Member

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    Yeah Aspen Pittman's Fatfinger was said to cure a dead spot.

    [​IMG]

    http://www.midi-classics.com/g/g21190.htm
     
  12. Zero

    Zero Member

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    This is one of those things I've heard or read about since I began playing thirtysome years ago and have never run across. If I unknowingly did it never stuck out to me as some big deal .
     
  13. idk

    idk Member

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    hmmm those are some good tips.
     

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