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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by 985plowboy, May 22, 2020.
When I knock over a guitar with a bolt-on neck, sometimes the truss rod needs a quarter turn.
I buy maybe 6 or 7 used guitars a year that are next to mint but been sold cheap. It is almost invariably because someone has tried to alter action by altering relief and then deciding the guitar was a dud
Best experience was buying a bass for 350 w backbow, letting it off a half turn, and selling it for 550
I read the thread title and wondered how many posts it would take to get to this point. The number is 16 haha. That's actually more than I thought!
Thank you. Very helpful.
How often? What year is it?
I thought this was another old guys thread...
For me, that's where shades of gray come in. Less than 1/8 turn? I wouldn't bother. I guess my action is high enough that I don't find a need. 20 guitars, all different, and only ever adjust when I first buy it for the most part. That tells me most necks are more similar than different, and those of you who travel or live in hostile environments may need more.
On the guitar I've had longest, since 1972, I've never adjusted the trussrod. Of course, it's my 1939 D18- doesn't have an adjustable trussrod! Thankfully, it really hasn't needed tweaking.
Depends upon the guitar. I haven't touched the Tele neck in years (Strat too). Once I got it set up the way I like, any slight relief changes are within the tolerances of how I like my action, so other than having to retune, I'm fine (but I keep a Fender "T" hex wrench tool in both my Tele and Strat gigbags.
I check it every time I change strings, when I'm also giving the guitar a good cleaning, checking intonation, etc. Actual adjustment - some guitars never seem to need it, but my Classic Vibe tends to want an adjustment every four to six months. It has a quarter-sawn neck; seems odd that would lead to more neck adjustments, but it's the only obvious difference from my other maple necks.
My 2014 Am. Standard was adjusted the day I bought the guitar, and I've never had to adjust it since.
This is primarily a "stay at home" instrument so that could have something to do with it.
Necks move due to humidity change, either seasonally in one's home environment, or by exposing the guitar to different climates, such as going on tour.
If there is no humidity change, there will be no movement.
If there is movement, whether it affects playability depends on the desired action and the tolerance of buzzing.
Low action, NO buzzing, in the northeast US, where the humidity swings dramatically, guarantees truss rod adjustments twice a year, minimum.
Higher action, and/or living in the desert... the guitar might never need an adjustment.
For my own guitars, I do a setup every time I change strings, which is every couple months. There's rarely much needed, as they never have time to stray far from the ideal.
I live in Athens home of the famous "Attikon climate" with stable humidity around 40% and mild winters/hot summers.
I haven't adjusted the truss rods in my 10 guitars in YEARS.
If the Relief suits=Leave as is. If not adjust accordingly to personal taste until it does!
Like many here, I’m in the when needed, which seems to be seldom and guitar dependent camp.
We have agonisingly hot, humid summers and pleasantly mild* but very dry winters. Also, the main two rooms at home that I use guitars in have double sliding doors to the outside world, often open, like right now. My LP I don’t think has ever had an adjustment. Maybe once, twenty or so years ago when I got it and changed to heavier strings. Can’t actually remember. My Tele though, seems to be a bit seasonal. I was planning on giving it a tweak today or maybe tomorrow in fact.
* according to southern New Zealand me. Bitter, freezing cold according to the natives.
Edit: and here's the view through the insect screen to the outside world right now, taken upside down from where I’m laying on the sofa in my study. Tricksy phone flipped it right way up. If only guitars would correct themselves...
Edit 2: and for the sake of completeness, here’s the view the other way, including my, um, leg rest.
I usually have to tweak the truss rod twice per year mainly at the change between winter/summer and vice versa.
We have very humid winters and dry summers which causes a lot of variation.
One exception is my number 1, a 93 MIJ Fender Strat... Not touched the truss rod in 25 years.
I set my rods for the action I prefer. I have no issue with that once or twice. If I have to go back a 3rd time & adjust it, I start looking for a new home for the guitar. General physical stability is a benchmark requirement for me, along with even frets, no string buzz, and no electrical hum.
I am a habitual tweaked. That said I have guitars that need a truss rod adjust a couple of times a year and some that I’ve never touched. My maple board Tele needs adjusting with every season change. I have a 52 es 125 that I haven’t touched in 5 years. I check the relief at every restring.
only if something is very wrong, or if you make a big change in string gauge.