what is the ideal distance between fretboard and strings.

Discussion in 'Guitar Gear Talk Forum' started by hemant_spidey3, Jul 8, 2012.

  1. hemant_spidey3

    hemant_spidey3 New Member

    Hi guys,

    Can any one tell me what should be the ideal distance between fretboard and strings. I mean exactly how much in mm or cm, also measures are on which fret and on which string. Please help me with this.
  2. aryasridhar

    aryasridhar New Member

    Use a visiting card, try to slide the card while the 12th String is pressed down on each string, the card should see some resistance before it slides in between the string and the fretwire......ensure this is done between the fretwire and the string.....if it slides in with ease, there is a little relief that the string has got, which means more space, you may want to check with a luthier/repair guy to take a look at your guitar in that case.....
  3. hemant_spidey3

    hemant_spidey3 New Member

    as per your method there is some resistance between card and string. Actually my guitar repair guy adjust my truss rod and i think he lift it up a bit as my guitar strings were buzzing(though the actual problem was because of saddle, which he will be replacing in couple of days), so I just wanted to make sure that what should be the exact distance b/w strings and guitar. if you can tell the measuremet, it will be really helpful.

    Thanks for suggestion by the way:)
  4. joshuac

    joshuac New Member

    The distance between the fret and the string is known as "Action" this measurement is taken at the 12th fret. Very high action is difficult to play barre chords n very low action will cause the strings to buzz. So normally it should be at 5mm for an average player, if u play more of fingerstyle then it should be little lower at 3mm
  5. aryasridhar

    aryasridhar New Member

    String action is not only determined by the saddle or the neck/truss rod adjustment, there is another important factor as well, that is the nut at the neck. If the slots on the nut are too deep or not uniform, it would cause issues such as buzzing, bad intonation, guitar going out of tune often etc....so the nut also needs to be carefully judged. Best way to find out if the nut is in good shape is to check how the string is sitting on the nut, half of the string should be sitting on the nut and half of it should be exposed and should be felt and seen above the nut slot. meaning if a string is totally buried in its slot, that means trouble.

    Press each string on the first fret and pick each string to see if you hear any buzzing....then place a capo on the first fret and press down on the 12th fret of each string, and now you should pick each string to check for any buzz. These techniques tell whether there is enough relief or no relief. No relief would mean certain buzzing.....and too much relief would mean high string action....you need to balance it out....there is not ideal string action in the book, you need to figure out what feels better to you........I may like low action and you may not like that.....

    I would suggest you go to the repair guy you are dealing with, have him set the saddle and tune the guitar, you try it out then and there, and see how it feels, does it feel hard to play or hard to press the strings, does it take a lot of effort to bend the strings? these are the questions only you can answer....

    In short, test drive each time your guitar tech does the adjustments......

    Have a good one, hope this helps....
  6. hemant_spidey3

    hemant_spidey3 New Member

    thanks for such a wonderful explanation. Nuts of my guitar are fine, i think i'll let my repair guy to take care of rest. thanks again

    one question is this measurement on low E string or High E string. mine measurement is just around 3+ mm o high E string, is it OK ?
  7. henrynh

    henrynh New Member

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