How often do you adjust your truss rod?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by 985plowboy, May 22, 2020.

  1. Jakedog

    Jakedog Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Short answer- I do it whenever it needs it.

    Longer answer- All of my guitars are different. My gig acoustic has a five piece laminated neck (lengthwise) and that guitar is ridiculously stable. It does not move. Crazy humid summer, super dry winter in the forced air heat, it just doesn’t move at all. I adjusted it just a tiny tweak when I got it about two years ago. Haven’t touched it since.

    My LTD... neck thru. Mahogany neck and body. That thing needs adjusted every time the wind changes direction. If I’m standing by the door of the bar during a gig and it’s drastically hotter or colder outside than it is inside, the guitar goes horrifically out of tune every time somebody opens the door. It’s a total rubber neck. I’ve had this issue with a LOT of inexpensive, imported set neck and neck-thru guitars. Not really ever with a domestic one...

    Really I adjust it when I feel it’s a little “off”. If I’m getting some fret buzz, or if it feels kinda high, I give it a look. If it looks off, I tweak it.
     
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  2. Sparky2

    Sparky2 Friend of Leo's

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    In 45 years of playing,
    and after owning, buying, selling, and playing around 80+ guitars
    (I currently own/possess 21)

    ......I can honestly say that I have adjust a truss rod about 10 times or less.

    And never more than once on any given instrument.

    And this is going to blow your mind;
    I have never once broken a string while playing or performing live.

    I have had them snap during the mounting and tuning up, maybe 5 to 8 times in my life, and it always turned out to be a defective string/manufacture issue.

    Okay, I'm gonna shut up now.

    :(
     
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  3. fendrguitplayr

    fendrguitplayr Doctor of Teleocity

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    Only when they need it. Usually in the cold dry winters and sometimes in the hot and hazy summers.
     
  4. eclecticsynergy

    eclecticsynergy Friend of Leo's

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    Like others here, I don't touch truss rods unless and until one needs it - and many never do.

    Occasionally you find a neck that's very sensitive to its immediate environment, especially when traveling.
    And I've had a few that seem to want seasonal attention even if they never leave the house.

    Still, IME most are quite stable. A handful of my favorites haven't needed any adjustment since the 1980s.
     
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  5. matmosphere

    matmosphere Tele-Afflicted

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    On my ‘92 tele I bought new, Never, but it’s been setup once by someone else.

    my Classic Player Jazzmaster has always needed it a couple times a year since I’ve had it.

    it is just going to vary from one guitar to another.
     
  6. Bill Sheehan

    Bill Sheehan Tele-Meister

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    This has been a good day, if for no other reason than I just heard a truss rod being described as "moody"!
     
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  7. Bill Sheehan

    Bill Sheehan Tele-Meister

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    Church Lady.jpg
     
  8. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Most of my herd needs a gentle tweak once a year.
     
  9. darkwaters

    darkwaters Tele-Afflicted

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    Some need a quarter turn once in the fall and once in the Spring. Others, hardly ever.
     
  10. scooteraz

    scooteraz Friend of Leo's

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    I’ll check the relief a couple of times a year, to be sure, but actually adjusting anything? A few times over my lifetime. Usually I’ll set up when I get the guitar, and once that is done, it’s good to go. I have two guitars that have traveled from Phoenix to much more humid climates (including Taiwan), and those required a bit of a tweak on each end, after a bit. But other than that, I can count the number of other adjustments one one hand.
     
  11. Retrobob

    Retrobob Tele-Meister

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    Not very often for me. But once in a while I'll notice it needs a week one way or the other.
     
  12. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Friend of Leo's

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    Whenever first receiving a guitar, and whenever changing string tension, mainly. Rarely does a truss rod of mine need any adjustment if I have initially set it up for myself and the string set remains the same.
     
  13. ReverendRevolver

    ReverendRevolver Tele-Afflicted

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    Only my strat, ever. It actually needs it again. I think that makes me either lucky, or means I'm cool with using different guitars for different seasons.......
     
  14. monkeybanana

    monkeybanana Tele-Meister

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  15. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Only twice over a quarter century. Both on brand new inexpensive guitars during the initial set-up.
     
  16. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I have an old Gretsch archtop I've had for years and never touched the rod.
    I switched to 9s for carpal tunnel ant that left me e with the tiniest hair of relief.
    I finally got to adjusting the rod because it's on the body end, the neck pickup has to come out, and I had to MAKE a tool to do the job.
    I'm so glad I did.
    A little more relief (maybe .010") and the guitar came ALIVE.
    Very dramatic and unexpected.
     
  17. MrGibbly

    MrGibbly Tele-Afflicted

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    If it plays well and sounds good, may as well leave it alone. I went through a bit of a “phase” where I fiddled with the action, the relief, the cut of the nut, etc. pretty constantly. I learned a lot about dialing in a guitar to be comfortable, fun, and sound good for me. Now that I am able to do that it’s been quite “fire and forget”. I haven’t touched my Tele in years and my Strat-like Object has been set since right after I built it more than a year ago. Confessedly, I still haven’t found the magic combination for my Casino so it’ll probably get a tweak and a twerk in the not-too-distant future... :)
     
  18. Fretting out

    Fretting out Friend of Leo's

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    You gotta throw a Wednesday in there some time, bring the excitement back! Make it Less of a routine;)
     
  19. televillian

    televillian Tele-Afflicted

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    whenever needed, ya never know
     
  20. Stanford Guitar

    Stanford Guitar Tele-Meister

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    When needed.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2020
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