A few questions about 7.25" necks

AtlanticCity83

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The worst thing wasn't even the choking but the uncomfortable playing on the middle of the fretboard.

I guess (and hope) when there's less relief, I can set up the action resulting in a lower action without choking notes.
 

Wallaby

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Greater relief makes the strings stiff-feeling IMO.

There are "factory spec" relief measurements, I guess from Fender, of around 0.01", and speculation that this is used in part as a way to conceal bad frets and nuts.

Lower relief is possible, and maybe desirable, but accomplishing that depends on the frets, the nut, and the neck.

Personally I like .003" - .005" - but my frets are level and nut slots correct. Some like no relief at all, and some like it higher to accommodate their playing style, how hard they strike the strings, etc. It's personal preference.

I have a guitar with a 7.25" radius neck and vintage frets, low relief and low action, and have no problem bending. The effect of radius on string bending is theoretically real, but overblown on the internet IMO.

It's weird to me that your setup person gave the guitar back to you like that, maybe there's a problem with the fret level, or maybe it was just a forgotten step? It sounds like it's been okay with that person before for you.

I highly recommend keeping a a quality straight-edge and feeler gauges if you don't have them already.

I hope you can get your guitar tweaked to perfection soon! It's really, really nice to play a well-setup guitar!



The worst thing wasn't even the choking but the uncomfortable playing on the middle of the fretboard.
 

kinkstah

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A little update:
I have tightened the trussrod and the action is now 2.0mm and 1.75mm, relief is around 0.4 - 0.5mm. For now I leave the guitar in its bag and measure again tomorrow evening.
The choking didn't get worse so I hope I can lower the action a bit by straighten the neck so there's enough room to raise the saddles without ending up with an action which is too high.
Hi,
Don't hesitate to go with way less relief than 0.4-0.5 mm (heck, even Fender's specs @ 0.3 mm are, IMHO, too much of a bow).
 

Boreas

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Hi,
Don't hesitate to go with way less relief than 0.4-0.5 mm (heck, even Fender's specs @ 0.3 mm are, IMHO, too much of a bow).

I have two necks that I keep perfectly straight - no relief. They may buzz a little if I play too hard, but those necks play really nicely, so I keep them that way. My other guitars all have minimal amounts of relief.
 

Wallaby

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I thought I saw mention of making a partial adjustment and then waiting a day and adjusting more. I'm not familiar with that, is there a reason for not adjusting it completely in one go?
 

kinkstah

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It is huge to anyone who knows how to set up guitars correctly.
Yes, I agree with you :), thinking too that 0.5 mm is unplayable (personally, I shoot for 0.10 mm -or 0.005-0.004"- on my electrics). Actually, I wrote 'to each his own', because I've read that some players do like such a huge relief, as the esteemed Bill Kirchen (0.020", according to Dan Erlewine) ;)!
 

kinkstah

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I thought I saw mention of making a partial adjustment and then waiting a day and adjusting more. I'm not familiar with that, is there a reason for not adjusting it completely in one go?
I think that the reason for not adjusting the truss in one go is to allow for reaching a stage of "fine tuning" the relief. IME, the closer I get to that point, the more I go in small increments, as wood (neck) and steel (truss rod) may not always react simultaneously. That being said (again IME), waiting a whole day for things to settle is not really necessary (unless the needed changes in neck curvature are drastic).
 
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InstantCoffeeBlue

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.5"... is that a typo? I set mine to .005 on the low E and never have issues with notes fretting out. The playability issues of 7.25" necks are greatly exaggerated. Assuming the frets are level and in good shape, they can be set up to shred if that's what you're after.
 

sloppychops

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I have no technical input on this subject, just a question and observation:

When you bend the string, does the adjacent string go above your fingernail or do you bend the string such that your finger pushes against the adjacent string?

I've changed my bending technique to have my fingernail go underneath the adjacent string. Have little problem with notes choking out.
 

AtlanticCity83

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Yes, I did notice a change. An hour ago I gave the trussrod another 1/4 turn and measured around 0.3mm of relief. The action is 1.7mm and 1.5mm.
After work I'll adjust the action and try around 2mm and 1.75mm. Hope the choking will be gone then. (It didn't get worse after I straighten the neck.)

Oh yes: there now is only a little bow you can recognize when you look down the neck.
 

AtlanticCity83

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Well,

I just set up the action and with all strings set at 1.6mm there is no choking, no buzz and the guitar plays like a dream. NOW I fully understand the love for 7.25" radius fretboards!

It seems the luthier did a fantastic job by levelling the frets. For the set up, I was told that this is the best setup possible on that guitar...., strange.

Another question:
What is the best action setup? All strings when possible at one height, or shall I give the bass strings more room? The high D-string at 1.6mm is the lowest action possible without choking.
 

Si G X

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Another question:
What is the best action setup? All strings when possible at one height, or shall I give the bass strings more room? The high D-string at 1.6mm is the lowest action possible without choking.

You can do either, it depends on your playing style really, I tend to give my bass side a little more room. I don't measure anything though just adjust as necessary.
 

Jakedog

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I have one guitar with a 7.25” radius. It’s my PRS. I always swore that I hated that radius, and would never have another one. But the PRS looked so good on paper aside from that, I decided to try it.

It works great. First, it has taller frets. Only a little, but taller. It helps the feel a ton. Secondly, the frets are level. Like really level. This makes the biggest difference. My action is less than 1.5 mm high E at the 12th, and right about 1.5 mm on the low e. I get no buzzing anywhere at all, and 1.5 step bends are not a problem with no choking or fretting out. I don’t measure my relief, I do it by feel, but it’s very, very little.

Mr. Smith himself says the radius isn’t the problem, and never has been. It’s having a properly leveled fretboard and frets that makes the difference. After owning one of his guitar, I believe him 100%.
 

Boreas

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Well,

I just set up the action and with all strings set at 1.6mm there is no choking, no buzz and the guitar plays like a dream. NOW I fully understand the love for 7.25" radius fretboards!

It seems the luthier did a fantastic job by levelling the frets. For the set up, I was told that this is the best setup possible on that guitar...., strange.

Another question:
What is the best action setup? All strings when possible at one height, or shall I give the bass strings more room? The high D-string at 1.6mm is the lowest action possible without choking.

Personally, I start with matching the neck radius with the bridge heights. If I am getting some buzzing, I may raise just the offending saddle(s) or I may raise them all, keeping the radius or just a tad flatter. IMO, it doesn't make a big difference. Often depends on the bridge. Or if I can find my Allen wrench.🤣
 
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