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CharlieDog
09-18-2016, 06:56 AM
I bought an Oscar Schmidt solid spruce top baritone off Amazon from a third party seller. It buzzed on the g string mostly below the seventh fret. I also felt that the action was too high and wanted to return it, but the seller cautioned me that if the product wasn't defective there would be a 15% restock fee and a charge for shipping.

Well now I'm a little paranoid. So others opinions are requested.

What is the normal string height for a uke? This one measures in a 5/32.

Do ukuleles have a noticeable neck relief? This one is about the thickness of two business cards.

Fwiw I wouldn't expect string buzz at these action settings, let alone on just one string. Some of the wire wrappings along the sting are dented after only 15 minutes of play.

Any insight into this would be helpful.

Booli
09-18-2016, 08:28 AM
Sorry for your troubles.

Have you not seen the dozens of times each week other vendors are recommended that do a full setup FOR FREE?

Sounds like either the uke needs a full setup or the neck is warped. You can verify if you hold the butt-end of the uke to your cheek and sight down the strings from the bridge to the nut (kinda like aiming a rifle) - the strings should be straight, but if the neck is twisted you will see it since it will NOT be parallel to the strings.

If so, and the NECK is warped, that counts as 'defective' and should go via normal Amazon returns whereby you pay nothing, no restocking fee and no return shipping.

Wwere this to happen to me, I'd ask for another uke to be sent out in replacement, and make sure that the vendor actually OPENED THE BOX and checked it out first, - but oh, wait, they are drop-shipping from an Amazon warehouse that is THOUSANDS of miles away and cannot inspect the uke before shipping?

Well then, as it's defective, I'd want a refund and if the vendor refuses then it's time for a charge-back via your credit card since they sold defective merchandise and refuse a return, exchange or refund, and now the vendor will eat way more than 15%.

I will NEVER buy from a 3rd-party vendor off Amazon, they are too many scams and too many shady businesses that could never survive in the real world without Amazon. I only buy from Amazon and FULFILLED by Amazon, but never any musical instruments.

I wish you the best of luck to get this resolved in a happy way, but at the very least, you will have learnt a lesson about online uke sales...

edited to add - I have ukes as high as 3.25mm at the 12th fret and as low as 2.0mm at the 12th fret, all controlled by the balance of the nut slot height vs. the saddle edge height, so not sure there is a 'standard' nor if relief is always or even necessary.

Michael N.
09-18-2016, 08:34 AM
Business cards come in different weights, so it's not really telling me much. If it's around 0.2 or 0.3 mm's relief, it's about where it needs to be.
String buzz can happen even at very high actions. It's very difficult to give precise advice because any Uke can be made to buzz. it is a product of how hard you hit or pluck the string. Some people play in a very timid manner, others in a very aggressive one. The only sure way to find out is to check the geometry of the fretboard, which requires a straight edge and an accurate fret rocker. If you find that a fret 'rocks', it's faulty.