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SANDING MY NUTS...   You are logged in as Guest
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JBASHORUN

Posts: 1839
Joined: Jan. 23 2005
 

SANDING MY NUTS... 

OK... so I've got 2 nuts... both in blank form, and made from bone. I use a proper nut file to file the string grooves in the top, then sand the nuts to fit my guitars (both classical guitars as I am practising before doing it to my Flamenco one).
The problem is this... with both bone nuts snugly in place on both guitars I am getting a nasty "twang" noise (sort of like an Indian Sitar) when I pluck (firmly) the third strings on each guitar. I tried with a different set of strings, and still the same.
Maybe someone can tell me what's causing this and how I can stop it.



By the way, my new Yamaha is here! First impressions are that it is a well made guitar... it certainly looks quite "beautiful" and even smells nice. But it doesn't sound as close to PDL's sound as I'd like it to... perhaps Skai is right that it has slightly too much bass/richness to the tone. But for the price, the sound is okay. One thing, though... I was under the impression that Flamenco guitars were supposed to have smaller/shallower bodies than Classicals... but I measured the Yamaha against my Classicals and the size is virtually identical- is that supposed to be the case?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 3 2005 17:13:59
 
musicalgrant

Posts: 188
Joined: Oct. 21 2004
 

RE: SANDING MY NUTS... (in reply to JBASHORUN

quote:

I was under the impression that Flamenco guitars were supposed to have smaller/shallower bodies than Classicals...


Me too, my hand made flamenco has a narrower waist than both my classical guitars...

I was wondering if its supposed to be narrower as it doesnt sit on ones lap so well?

Nuts! I believe one has to get the angle right on the grooves...ie going from the fret board down towards the machine heads/pegs..so that the string is touching the top of the groove at all times.....i could be wrong

Cheers
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 3 2005 17:24:21
 
duende

Posts: 3051
Joined: Dec. 15 2003
From: Sweden

RE: SANDING MY NUTS... (in reply to JBASHORUN

quote:

so I've got 2 nuts


i hope you do.... and sanding those nuts sounds painful

H

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This is hard stuff!
Don't give up...
And don't make it a race.
Enjoy the ray of sunshine that comes with every new step in knowledge.

RON
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 3 2005 18:47:34

JBASHORUN

Posts: 1839
Joined: Jan. 23 2005
 

RE: SANDING MY NUTS... (in reply to musicalgrant

quote:

my hand made flamenco has a narrower waist than both my classical guitars...



I've just used a tape measure and the Yamaha actually has a DEEPER body than both of my classicals by 4mm. It also has a slightly wider waist than the classicals by a few millimeters. I wonder whether that has much relevance to the sound it produces... I'm beginning to think this Yamaha is just a Classical guitar but made from Cypress wood!


BTW... I filed a bit more off the edge to try and even up the grooves. It seemed to work fine for the first guitar, but on the second, the grooves got to low, and now the string is "buzzing" as it rubs against the first fret Not much I can do with it apart from start again with a fresh nut or replace the old one (I went for the latter)... I don't think I'll waste the time replacing the nut on the Yamaha... more trouble than it's worth.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 3 2005 19:38:27
 
Skai

 

Posts: 317
Joined: Sep. 12 2004
 

RE: SANDING MY NUTS... (in reply to JBASHORUN

I think the nut on the Yamaha is probably bone. Sanding nuts and saddles from scratch for a guitar wouldn't be something I'd do myself. Too much trouble if you make mistakes.

Anyway the Yamaha is quite good for such a price and will probably open up along the way, but don't expect cheap guitars like ours to ever sound like PdL's. While body size does change the sound, it's mainly the bracing patterns that distinguish a flamenco from a classical. In fact my Alhambra which cost me more than SGD$1100 has a rather similar size to my classical! But I'm sure it'll open up. It sounds good new and it has to be the bracing that makes it different from my classical.

The only flamenco guitar I played that was really light AND small was a SGD$5000+ Yamaha. Could someone tell us why lower end flamenco guitars aren't smaller and lighter? Wouldn't it be cheaper for them as it uses less wood?

Anyway James, did you have to use such a topic for your thread? "Sanding my nuts" was the thing that made me click on it LOL!

Cheston

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Try some Enrique Iglesias for some great cante.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 4 2005 2:39:01
Guest

RE: SANDING MY NUTS... (in reply to JBASHORUN

James.

Making nuts is easy, making good nuts is difficult. I use 4 different special files for the grooves in order to make the the same size as the string. The string shouldn't be able to move sideways in the groove but at the same time it should be moving easy length wise in order to tune well. Friction in the groove makes tuning the guitar difficult. You also have to know the height of the strings in the nut. This is very important. To high makes the guitar very uncomfortable and to low makes it buzz.

Body size is another thing and it influences a lot on tone. Flamenco guitars are in general thinner (shallower) in the body in order to make the response from the back faster. But Reyes has build very nice guitars (6000+ Euros) with 10cm body thickness. The most important thing is that the builder knows how to control what he/she is doing.

The reason cheap factory guitars have the same size, I think is because they use the same mold or machine when assembling. And remember that because your Yamaha is cypress on the outside, it can be other woods in the laminations of the back and sides. Dont compare your guitar to expensive handbuild instruments. You'll just get frustrated. Enjoy it the way it is, play it a lot, and when times and money show up, change it to a better guitar.

Nice playing
Anders

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 4 2005 8:02:16

JBASHORUN

Posts: 1839
Joined: Jan. 23 2005
 

RE: SANDING MY NUTS... (in reply to Skai

quote:

did you have to use such a topic for your thread? "Sanding my nuts"


LOL, Yeah sorry about the title, guys! But it seemed appropriate at the time, and my query was really about sanding and filing nuts (of a sort).

As for the Yamaha nut being made of bone... I'm not so sure. Its looks very glossy/shiny, which my bone ones don't. Although it may be polished bone. Luckily it's not one of those cheap looking ones- it seems quite good quality, whatever it's made of. But you're right Cheston, there's plenty of things that can go wrong when making a nut from scratch (for example getting the fit perfect, and the string grooves of uniform depth and parallel) so whilst it's nice to be able to do it when necessary, it's something I don't plan to do unless I really need to (my Classical nuts were both already cracked), and I don't think I'll risk it on the new Yamaha.

Anders, I did use proper nut files for the string grooves, but they cost £10 each, so I couldn't afford more than 2!!! So I got a medium thickness one (which says 0.046) and a thicker one (which says 0.056). the guy who sold them to me said I'd be better off using the thinner one and angling the file to make a wider groove where necessary.

Anyway, I think you guys are right... I'm expecting too much from such a cheap instrument. After all, the label does state that the guitar is "made in Taiwan". I suppose it may never sound like PDL's, but for the price, the sound is good and bright. I will continue to break it in and see what happens. Thanks for the advice everyone.




James
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Apr. 4 2005 11:51:05
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