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Thread: Why does my Prs go out of tune? I need help

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    Unhappy Why does my Prs go out of tune? I need help

    Lately my guitar has frequently been going out of tune. I have a PRS SE Custom 24(bought in new 7 moths ago), i don't see what seems to be the problem. It mostly goes out of tune on the G and B string when do bends on the strings or use the whammy bar. I find myself re-tuning all the time. I was recently playing at my church, did a little whammy bar usage, and my strings went out of tune, leaving me out of tune the whole time I was playing. Is there anything I should do to make sure it never goes out of tune on me again?

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    Senior Member sergiodeblanc's Avatar
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    Your strings are binding in your nut, you'll have to widen the slots a bit.

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    Did you change the string gauge when you last changed the strings? If you went up in size, say from 9's to 10's or 11's then the strings are probably binding in the nut as sergio says. With a vibrato it could be any number of things, I'd take it to a qualified tech and get it set up again.
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    Senior Member wardog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sergiodeblanc View Post
    Your strings are binding in your nut, you'll have to widen the slots a bit.
    +1
    i had your same problem with my se custom 24 and it was the nut. the slots need a little widening. now it is in tune like it should be. i actually opened the slots enough to go to a 9 hybrid string set. i like a heavier sound on the bass strings.

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    What the others stated above should definitely be checked. This may be obvious, but just in case, and nobody mentioned it, always tune up to pitch, not down. If you're slightly sharp when tuning, bring it down (flat) and then back up. If you tune down to pitch, then bend or use the trem, this would cause the guitar to go out of tune as well. Also, may sure you stretch your strings. Sometimes, when I tune my PRS DGT Std, it is slightly sharp. Before touching the tuning peg, I pull up on the string. Oftentimes, this is enough to get it to pitch. If this doesn't work, then I loosen the string and bring it back up to pitch. When I'm just about done tuning, I always pull on the strings, stretching them a bit. Most of the time, I'm still in tune, or maybe one string is now flat. Seems like a lot of trouble, but it's worth it. After an hour of playing, I'll recheck after a break and usually the guitar is still in tune. I use a strobe tuner too. Sometimes, a week later the majority of the strings are still in tune. That's why I love PRS guitars!
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    Senior Member gush's Avatar
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    I had this problem with my cu24 when I first got it. A couple of suggestions that were mentioned on this forum were 1-use chapstick on the nut in the string slots for lube 2-when you restring and your strings are installed and stretched, work the trem up and down to the extremes. This seems to get strings "settled in" and stable.

    I do both of these things when I restring and have had excellent results. You can use Big Bends Nut Sauce instead of chapstick but chapstick is cheap and I don't think you should put nut sauce on your lips. Just sounds wrong!

    BTW-my G string was the worst offender, always went sharp.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by gush; 12-01-2013 at 11:54 PM.

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    Thank you for all the help, I'll try your suggestions. If it does not work i'll come back

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    DEEPER STRIATIONS markie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gush View Post
    You can use Big Bends Nut Sauce instead of chapstick but chapstick is cheap and I don't think you should put nut sauce on your lips. Just sounds wrong!



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    Opaque John Beef's Avatar
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    You also might just need a new set of strings if your current strings are really old.
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    So it keeps going out of tune after a setup with new fender 10's and graphite in the nut

  11. #11
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    This may sound weird, because we've been taught to tune up to pitch, not down, but, you might want to try tuning down to pitch. I've found, especially with new strings, this works, at least until the strings have broken in, then I go back to tuning up to pitch. It's worth a try, at the very least.
    PRS electrics and bass, Taylor BTO GS Cocobolo, K26e Koa, 2012 FLTD 412ce-N and GS mini mahogany acoustic guitars; Bad Cat Cub IIR, Carr Rambler, Fender Supersonic 22, Univox, Fishman Loudbox 100, Loudbox Mini and Mark Bass amps
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    No non-double-locking trem is going to stay in tune when going from strings flopping against the pups whammy divebombs to cross-fretboard bends.
    What you CAN do is, while tuning keep using the bar. So for instance on the G string...tune it, then hit the trem...BURY it. Tune it again and again WHAMMY the heck out of it..rinse repeat. Now, when onstage, after a serious bend, that string will be a little flat. Hit the whammy again and it will spring right back to pitch.
    Of course it kinda sucks hitting the bar after EVERY bend but..
    Short of a Floyd, YES the PRS trems are awesome but there's a reason there are still FRs..and even on PRSs....even with locking tuners and a free-acting or roller nut...there's gonna be SOME tuning issues.
    A lot of it lies in the bridge's tremblock. PRS seats the strings "higher" up in the block but there's still a little bit of "slop" there.

    Make sure your nut is properly cut for your string gauge. Use nut dressing/graphite/or lube in the nutslots. Use locking tuners. And, tune using the bar. IF you wanna do some divebombing. It isn't 100% but probably as close as you're ever gonna get without a double locker.

    EDIT: And yes, always tune UP to pitch if you plan on doing any bending. You don't want any slop on the tunershaft or behind the nut.

  13. #13
    Senior Member vchizzle's Avatar
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    Has it always had this or just since you changed the strings? Make sure strings are good and stretched out. If you had 9's on, you probably need nut slots widened for 10's - especially with trem use.

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    Yes it has always been doing this. I've stretched out the strings already. My prs se cu24 has a graphite nut, if nothing works, what mods can i do to keep my guitar in tune with the whammy?

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    so this guitar's tuning problem is getting on my nerves! how can i this problem once and for all?

  16. #16
    A♥ hoards guitars A♥ rugerpc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SrgEx951x View Post
    so this guitar's tuning problem is getting on my nerves! how can i this problem once and for all?
    There are a few questions that still seem unanswered:

    Did your guitar leave the factory with 9s?
    Did you change to 10s?
    Did you have the nut recut for 10s?
    Last edited by rugerpc; 02-21-2014 at 06:19 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gush View Post
    BTW-my G string was the worst offender, always went sharp.

    A sharp G string is always uncomfortable.


    Have your nut recut if you changed to a thicker gauge. I would advise you to have a professional do it if you haven't done it before - don't want to cut too deeply. Not even with a sharp g-string....

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