Zero frets, like'em?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by neils, Mar 27, 2015.

  1. neils

    neils Supporting Member

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    Curious about these. They ought to help with intonation in the first few frets I'd think when it seems the nut isn't doing it for you. I have a heavy left hand. Old tired blue collar hands. I just push too hard to often and I wonder if this would help

    Stew Mac has a new Zero Fret kit. Check their website. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

    Neil

    http://www.stewmac.com/Materials_and_Supplies/Nuts_and_Saddles/ZerO_Glide_Nuts.html
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2015
  2. nmiller

    nmiller Drowning in lap steels Silver Supporting Member

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    I like them. They have no more effect on the intonation than the nut does, but they help even out the tone between open and fretted strings.
     
  3. Jayyj

    Jayyj Supporting Member

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    I like them when they're done properly - my Fylde acoustics have zero frets supported by a well cut nut behind the frets and they work great, but I'm not so keen on the ones I've encountered on older budget guitars where they're an excuse not to cut a proper nut.
     
  4. RRfireblade

    RRfireblade Member

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    If both are done properly, you really should not be able to the tell the difference either way. The differences have more to do with things other than playability.
     
  5. Claytone

    Claytone Member

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    Builders like them. I've had a few guitars with zero frets and they intonate well and accurately, and so if the nut is off by a fraction of a millimeter or a fraction it isn't the end of the world or the guitar. I think they look cool too.
     
  6. edward

    edward Supporting Member

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    So what's the purpose of them? No, not on cheaper guitars where the obvious purpose of a zero fret is to save the labor of cutting a proper nut. I mean on quality (some even high end) guitars where the maker chooses to utilize a zero fret. What is the rationale behind it (no 2015 Gibby comments here, please ;) ).

    Edward
     
  7. 1radicalron

    1radicalron Member

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    I hate 0 frets, They wear down eventually, and will need to be repaired.
     
  8. Jayyj

    Jayyj Supporting Member

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  9. Mitch T

    Mitch T Member

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    Exactly. And for that reason, I love them on hollow bodies but couldn't care less for them on solidbodies.
     
  10. Gibson 1964

    Gibson 1964 Member

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    I can tell a difference on some of my guitars which have them, most notably that their are no corners of the nut for your hand to hit. It only usually makes a difference on barre chords on the first fret. Also on a headless guitar with a zero fret... I once was playing and tried to go a fret lower than there was a fret. That... didn't go so well.
     
  11. swiveltung

    swiveltung Member

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    Yeah, I don't see why all guitars aren't built with them. As soon as you move up the neck you are in effect using a zero fret. All the nut issues would go away....
     
  12. RRfireblade

    RRfireblade Member

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    I'm not sure you slamming your hand into the nut is a con of having nut.

    Might be something unique to you.....just a guess. With a zero fret do you find yourself running into the tuners?

    :D

    j/k
     
  13. goodwater

    goodwater Member

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  14. H. Mac

    H. Mac Member

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    I'm not a fan and see zero frets as a fix for a non-existent problem.
     
  15. Guitarworks

    Guitarworks Member

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    I'm ok with zero frets. I like the idea of the nut just being a string guide and having a fret be the end of the vibrational distance. It's nice with locking tuners and a vibrato unit, since the strings pass freely and don't get hung up on a poorly-cut nut.
     
  16. Whiskeyrebel

    Whiskeyrebel Member

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    Anyone tried the zeroglide retrofit nut that comes with a zero fret? Are they easy to self-install correctly?
     
  17. neils

    neils Supporting Member

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    http://www.stewmac.com/Materials_and_Supplies/Nuts_and_Saddles/ZerO_Glide_Nuts.html

    Here is the link to what I am talking about. I just wonder if it would help with my intonation up in the first 4 or so frets. I can't seem to help pushing too hard and "playing to the wood" in stead of the fret as a friend calls it.

    I can sour any note!!! B and G string especially up in the first 3 frets.

    I don't dare lower the nut slots more than they are.

    Neil
     
  18. onemoretime

    onemoretime Member

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    This is why Chet Atkins insisted Gretsch incorporate them into his signature guitars. The hollow body guitars tended to overemphasize the open strings vs. fretted strings, especially when finger picking melody and bass lines.
     
  19. edward

    edward Supporting Member

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    ^^^ Ahhh, hollowbodies. OK, now that makes sense (to this die-hard solidbody guy). So for you hollow-bod guys the difference between open and fretted notes is something you clearly fret over ;)

    Edward
     
  20. Lone Bear

    Lone Bear Member

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    May I suggest an alternative remedy? :hide2
    Restring with the lightest gauge strings you can find then woodshed concentrating on using the lightest touch you can possibly muster while achieving a clear note.

    "...clearly fret over" :roll
     

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