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Thread: Only the D String Is Off

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    Only the D String Is Off

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    So I just did a run-of-the-mill string change. Now for some reason only my D string's intonation is out. I have a tune-o-matic bridge with a stop bar. Chiefly I've been adjusting the saddle screw, but even at the extreme it won't come into tune.

    It loses pitch as I go up the fretboard. The way I've been checking is that, for all six strings, I'll check the tuning of the open strings (fine). Then I'll check the 12th fret harmonic (fine), then I'll check the 12th fret fretted (all fine except D).

    Very strange. Any ideas as to what's happening?

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    Thought someone else might weight in. I'm not familiar with the tune-o-matic. Can you reverse the bridge piece for that string? Did you change string gauges?
    Mike B My new album on CD Baby: Fact and Fiction
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    Is it sharp or flat? What happens on the first couple frets? I'm guessing the problem is at the nut end. The new string isn't sitting properly in the nut slot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mjbphotos View Post
    Thought someone else might weight in. I'm not familiar with the tune-o-matic. Can you reverse the bridge piece for that string? Did you change string gauges?
    I did change gauges, but I changed all of them... I would have thought it would have affected all of them.

    Quote Originally Posted by ashcat_lt View Post
    Is it sharp or flat? What happens on the first couple frets? I'm guessing the problem is at the nut end. The new string isn't sitting properly in the nut slot.
    It gets increasingly flat as I go up the fretboard.

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    I have two guitars with tune-o-matic type bridges which I had set the intonation after going to a lighter gauge string. Not sure, but I think the lighter gauge was more sensitive to fret height and were more prone to sounding off as they got more of a stretch when pushed over a high fret. FWIW both have the bridge pieces that are staggered like my Epi shown below and seems consistent with some images I've seen online. Is yours similar?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails bridge-jpg  
    Mark.......

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    The usual problematic string for intonation is the G string. I had to go to a heavier gauge (wound G string) for my Dot, otherwise I could not get it to intonate correctly. But Mark is right - if you have medium-jumbo frets, these can screw up the intonation with lighter strings, too.
    Mike B My new album on CD Baby: Fact and Fiction
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    Quote Originally Posted by HRmusic90 View Post
    Chiefly I've been adjusting the saddle screw, but even at the extreme it won't come into tune.
    It sounds like either a dead string or you have a kink somewhere (did you adjust the saddle screw after loosening the tension, then re-tune? If not try that way). You shouldn't have to go to the extreme -- that's a sign the problem lies elsewhere. I'd try a new D string from a different pack.

    Hope this helps I won't be able to respond anymore until a week or two from now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by arcaxis View Post
    I have two guitars with tune-o-matic type bridges which I had set the intonation after going to a lighter gauge string. Not sure, but I think the lighter gauge was more sensitive to fret height and were more prone to sounding off as they got more of a stretch when pushed over a high fret. FWIW both have the bridge pieces that are staggered like my Epi shown below and seems consistent with some images I've seen online. Is yours similar?
    It is similar.
    I'm very hesitant to cut off the D string and replace it with a new one because I just put on a brand new set, but I may try that option too.

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    Don't know if it would help with intonation problems, but do you stretch new strings when you put them on?
    Ed’s Shed: Stay in Tune by Stretching Your Strings | Guitar World

    There are Youtube videos on stretching to show how it's done.
    Mark.......

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