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  1. #1
    Les Paul Forum Member
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    Nylon or Bone Nut

    My 59 historic needs a re fret i was wondering if replacing the stock nut with a new nut to a nylon or bone nut.

    Help Needed


    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Tusq or bone are commonly used. In fact if a professional job is done on a nut anything will sound excellent. Nylon too. Nylon, tusq and bone are the easiest to cut proper slots.

  3. #3
    Les Paul Forum Member Yelly's Avatar
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Are you sure your nut isnít already nylon? My 2013 R9 certainly has one.

  4. #4
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Tusq is a fancy name for nylon.

  5. #5

    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    You're guitar has a nylon nut, if it's a historic.

  6. #6
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Thanks I thought Tusq was bone
    Last edited by Del; 02-05-19 at 05:24 AM.

  7. #7
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Taylor says tusq has similarities to bone which is why Taylor uses tusq.

  8. #8
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Every Gibson CS guitar since 2009 has Nylon 6/6 nut, unless ordered differently.

    Due to back angled headstock, nothing compares to Nylon in terms of strings NOT binding in nut slots when bending or simply microbending, which efery single fretting a string is. Not even a Tusq XL which has added lubricant can compete with slippery surface of Nylon.

    Also, nut has significant part in shaping every note played on guitar (absorption of overtones), due to force imposed on it by strings tuned to pitch, both for open and fretted notes. However, not every human ear is able to hear the tonal difference it makes, when compared to any other natural or man made material. Hence, other materials inferior for the purpose still being used.

    Therefore, let's just leave it at a simple fact that it is plain stupid to use any other material, since any other material needs lubricant, no matter how perfectly nut slots are shaped. Nylon does not need any EVER. However, people do stupid things, cause they must do them. It is by design.

  9. #9
    Les Paul Forum Member marshall1987's Avatar
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Although I have a preference for nylon, the highly experienced guitar tech I go to insists that unbleached bone is superior. I think the two materials are both excellent. Bone might be a little easier to cut and notch.
    "Scan not a friend under a microscopic glass; you know his faults so let his foibles pass".

    Sir Frank Crisp
    Friar Park
    London, England

  10. #10
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    6/6 or 4/6 ?
    where can i get these from

  11. #11
    Les Paul Forum Member Yelly's Avatar
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    It is a pig to work with and hard to get hold of. I looked for nylon sheet suppliers. They are usually sold as 2m by 1m but I picked up a test sample of 30cm X 30cm at sensible money.
    If you email me an address, I can send you enough to make a few nuts (no charge).

  12. #12
    Les Paul Forum Member P.Walker's Avatar
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    I recently had my TH58 refretted with bigger wire and just had the original nylon nut shimmed (with mahogany) and then fine tuned.

    The slippery part (as mentioned previously) is a big reason why I went this route. It wears slower than just regular bone. Less maintenance and work carving a new nut and lubing it etc. On a fender I'd go bone or the stock plastic that comes with the guitar.

    Most important thing is the workmanship and quality of the slots.

    Both sound fine- though I'm not into splitting hairs these days.

  13. #13

    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Quote Originally Posted by marshall1987 View Post
    Bone might be a little easier to cut and notch.


    This is why luthiers/techs prefer bone; nylon is hard to work with.


    To OP; I'd leave the original nut if possible.

  14. #14
    Les Paul Forum Member latestarter's Avatar
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Quote Originally Posted by Yelly View Post
    It is a pig to work with and hard to get hold of. I looked for nylon sheet suppliers. They are usually sold as 2m by 1m but I picked up a test sample of 30cm X 30cm at sensible money.
    If you email me an address, I can send you enough to make a few nuts (no charge).
    What a good man!
    Otherwise known as Grant.

  15. #15
    Les Paul Forum Member TM1's Avatar
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Quote Originally Posted by Yelly View Post
    It is a pig to work with and hard to get hold of. I looked for nylon sheet suppliers. They are usually sold as 2m by 1m but I picked up a test sample of 30cm X 30cm at sensible money.
    If you email me an address, I can send you enough to make a few nuts (no charge).
    Thereís a guy on here named Rand K who CNCís Nylon 6/6 nuts. His nuts are excellent!

  16. #16
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Quote Originally Posted by TM1 View Post
    Thereís a guy on here named Rand K who CNCís Nylon 6/6 nuts. His nuts are excellent!
    I can attest to this. He provides three types - slotted for historic string spacing, vintage spacing or un slotted. I ordered 3 of them un slotted and have just replaced a poorly cut bone nut on my CR8 with nylon. I could not be happier. Quality product and great service.

  17. #17
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Quote Originally Posted by marshall1987 View Post
    Although I have a preference for nylon, the highly experienced guitar tech I go to insists that unbleached bone is superior. I think the two materials are both excellent. Bone might be a little easier to cut and notch.
    I just had my LPS setup and an unbleached bone (horse, cow?) installed. Acoustically, it seems louder than before but it may be that the bone nut squelches different frequencies than a nylon nut does. I'm probably hearing different frequencies that weren't emphasized due to the previous nut material. I also went from 10's (Dean Markley) to 11's (NYXLs) so that may also be messing with my perception of what the guitar is producing.

    I changed several things on the guitar: Unpotted Fralin P-90s, Switchcraft toggle, JEL 525k pots, orange drop caps and the guitar was PLEK'd. To say that it is a different guitar is an understatement. It plays better, sounds better (goodbye P-100's) and I'm very happy with the guitar changes.

    What's really funny is that I also have a modded LP Gothic that I really liked but now I want to have a bone nut and switch up to 11's on that axe as well.

    It never ends, does it?
    I heard the news lady..All about your disease.......

  18. #18
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    This is a rabbit hole of an issue for sure . Firstly does your guitar play well and stay in tune and intonate properly ? If yes , I would leave the Custom shop installed nut alone , if you are inclined to change it you should be aware that you could have finish damage around the area of the nut as when the original nut is removed will require the delicate touch/hands of the finest Luthier to remove said nut , and after words you might not like how it looks or feels if it comes out with difficulty . Seriously don't do it if the guitar plays well . If you have to use 6/6 nylon nut .

  19. #19
    Les Paul Forum Member sonar's Avatar
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Way back when I put bone nuts on all my guitars, but now I stick with whatever came on the guitar. If the nut is properly cut, slotted and lubricated tuning should not be an issue.

    Fwiw, I've never heard any tonal difference on a solid body guitar. Same goes for hollows and semi's, but won't argue if others do notice a difference. There might be something to it with acoustics considering a player is often playing in the first position.

  20. #20
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    I've recently added Nylon 6/6 to our choice of materials for nuts, but micarta , tusk , and bone are the preferred choice so far, bone being number 1.
    I'm planning to try it on a Les Paul with a Bigsby, as the lower friction could help with the return to pitch which has always been an issue with the current nut.

    I'm actually wondering if the popularity of Bigsby's in the '50,s was the reasoning behind Gibson's choice of plastic over bone.
    I just can't imagine that it was some kind of cost cutting measure, that doesn't make any sense to me at all, which leaves me wondering if it's the low friction of nylon that swung the decision.

  21. #21
    Les Paul Forum Member Hamerfan's Avatar
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    6/6 nylon is always like 6/6 nylon. But bone is quite different. A vendor and luthier said you should look for unbleached camel bone, more slippery than the whiter bleached ones.

  22. #22
    Les Paul Forum Member Big Al's Avatar
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    I prefer quality bone. Properly cut and polished. It is best, by far. I don't know anyone who replaces Martin bone nuts with nylon. I did replace many nylon nuts, [and adjustable bridge], for customers, on Gibson acoustics as well as electrics.

    IMO, nylon is not a tone enhancer. Only a correct spec vintage part.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  23. #23
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    Re: Nylon or Bone Nut

    Per my previous thread and Sol's, I have noticed marked improvement in tuning stability with the "G" string. I still love how it rings out acoustically and sustains a bit more.

    I'm really liking what I once regarded as a "poor man's LP" far better than more expensive guitars now. I wouldn't put it up against anything from the Custom Shop or a boutique axe, but I would consider a great "working axe" with the improved electronics and the bone nut now.

    A buddy of mine has a mid-90s SG that won't stay in tune at all, breaks strings frequently and is seriously considering the switch to a bone nut as well via the shop/upgrades that I did to my LPS. It is also his main gigging guitar for his worship band. It's done its duty in stock form and he's fired up about doing the mods but needs to keep it on the down low from the wife. ($$$)
    I heard the news lady..All about your disease.......

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