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ChooChooTran
04-12-2012, 11:12 AM
I recently purchased a Kala KA-CG and when i play the C and E string on the 1st or 2nd fret, it makes a light buzzing sound. I attempted to stretch the strings and retune (not sure if that made a diff). :confused: Anybody know what the cause might be?

OldePhart
04-12-2012, 11:25 AM
Sounds like the third (or possibly fourth) fret is a little high. You might try slipping a thin shim under the bridge saddle to raise the action but on most of those it's pretty high already. I think I'd be taking it back to the shop where I bought it. For future reference you'll have much better lucking purchasing low and midrange ukes from fellow uke enthusiasts like Mim, HMS/MGM, Uke Republic, etc. It's not unusual for those ukes to need some setup work from the factory and big chain stores and outfits like Amazon.com just drop ship them without so much as opening the box... The vendors who hang out here and have good reputations here set those ukes up before they ship them so you're more likely to get something playable.

John

hibiscus
04-12-2012, 11:59 AM
Before I ordered my Ohana Concert, I bought an inexpensive Kala to see how I liked the size. The C string was vibrating/buzzing, so I took some advice from a poster and put a tiny piece of "paper" under the string on the nut groove there on the C string, and now it sounds great. (I just don't need it any more!)

Paul December
04-12-2012, 12:44 PM
Make sure the nut is tight on the turner, or the washer will buzz.

OldePhart
04-12-2012, 03:10 PM
Before I ordered my Ohana Concert, I bought an inexpensive Kala to see how I liked the size. The C string was vibrating/buzzing, so I took some advice from a poster and put a tiny piece of "paper" under the string on the nut groove there on the C string, and now it sounds great. (I just don't need it any more!)

But the OP is reporting that it buzzes when he frets at the first or second fret - that immediately eliminates the nut from being the cause... ;)

kamaka_4_life
04-12-2012, 06:22 PM
I know how you feel my friend, I have dealt with this issue in regard to my Kamaka ever since I got it about 3 years ago. I took it to the factory a bunch of times, but I just learned to live with it. You would think that a uke company with such high standards would build flawless instruments, but it happens. Most Kamaka's i've played have the same problem, Chris Kamaka said that even Jake's uke buzzes but that's what happens with any acoustic instrument. It might be the build quality, or the weather... Sometimes the weather plays a factor and can stretch the wood or whatever LOL i'm not really an expert on that, but to get back to your Kala, it should be fine. Maybe you can send it back and get another? Good luck :o

kapahulu50
04-12-2012, 10:05 PM
Might need to build up some callouses on your left hand, sometimes the buzz comes from not enough pressure on the string. Good luck!

hmgberg
04-12-2012, 10:35 PM
There is a good overview of buzzing causes and cures here:

http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?10546-Buzzing-on-String-Instruments-Causes-and-Cures

Oldephart is right; if it buzzes when fretted, it cannot be the nut. Slipping paper into a nut slut would only help if the problem is that the slot is too wide for the string. In that instance the string would only buzz when played open. Generally, when a string buzzes when played at a particular fret, it indicates that a fret is too high. Because your's buzzes on the first and/or second fret, it is most likely the third fret that is high. While buzzing can occur for many reasons, I think when the location of the buzz is so specific, it is likely to be that specific a cause. Anyway, that's where I would start. Well, I might try changing the strings first, or giving your strings a week or so to settle in.

I believe you purchased the ukulele from an online seller. Even were they be willing to exchange it, you may end up with a uke that has similar problems because often these instruments are not set up properly before they are shipped. I would recommend that you take it to a music shop. Generally they have a tech who could attend to this specific problem in a few minutes. I realize that spending an additional $40.00 or so increases the cost to you of the ukulele significantly (proportionately because it is not an expensive instrument to begin with), but you want to play it, right?

I would also recommend that the next time you buy an ukulele, get it from a seller who does set-ups.