Truss Rod: Tired of the Heel Adjuster, I've Decided

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by ChicknPickn, Sep 6, 2021.

  1. cyclopean

    cyclopean Poster Extraordinaire

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    You can’t get at the heel adjust like that in some guitars.

    It’s just bad design.
     
  2. 19sixty3

    19sixty3 Tele-Meister

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    Thanks for your post! The game "vintage correct" is completely off the mark at this point! This is exactly why I will not buy a Noventa for example!
     
  3. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    I find it funny people complaining about others in this thread that "I have never even needed to adjust mine" favoring heel adjust. Yet Leo Fender did include a truss rod (at all regradless of heel or headstock adjust) just because of that the initial nocasters and broadcasters really had necks without trussrods, and they came back with warped necks. I e it was badly needed, because they warped within warranty time.

    When truss rods was included, they hardly ever came back. It was something you could do yourself. And I have yet to see any adjusting advantage over heel from headstock, when it comes to setting relief. The only thing is unwieldy access to it, and aesthetic purposes. No more no less. KISS = Keep It Simple Stupid.

    As time passed on, even Martin came creeping towards the cross, and finally gave in due to the enourmous amount of neck resets and adjusting of necks within warranty period. They had to set up a whole deparment, like a factory floor that just dealt with straightening the necks. Note even with the square steel rod inside the necks. And with 99 percent of all acoustic guitars, a neck reset is something inevitable that needs to be done, be it 1 year down the road, or 30 years. Eventually, it will warp. And that was the main incentive of the maintenance needed on Fenders since they got bolt on necks, and it was cheaper, and easier to just change them out later on, than trying ot fix it, like you had to do on Gibsons or guitars with set necks.

    Later on when "fast" necks became the new fad in the 80s with thin necks, you just had to adjust them way more than before, and changing of string gauges became more and more ubiquitous.

    Truss rods are not for climate changing, and does nothing to warps. A neck can warp anyway, and a truss rod adjust will do very little to that. Truss rod adjust is for adjusting RELIEF on the fretboard only, so it aligns well with whatever type of strings, gauges, alloys, and tuning you are using. It's only the backbow, bow and everything in between you adjust. And yes, I have to do that once in a blue moon, except on graphite necked guitars/basses.

    Even graphite/carbon fiber neck manufacturers had to - eventually - include a truss rod because of peoples different playing styles, string changes, string action, and so on. There's no one-size fits all when it comes to neck relief. Graphite/carbon never warps due to season changes, you just adjust truss rod for any relief.

    I even had Hagstroms that I needed adjusting their H-truss rod. The one necks that hardly needed ever adjusting where those that were heavily 5-8 piece laminated necks. Once every fourth leap year or something... bass guitars mostly.
     
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  4. HotRodSteve

    HotRodSteve Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've tried adjusting the truss rod with the heel adjuster on my 2013 '52 Hot Rod, never seems to move or do anything. Pretty much gave up on adjusting the relief or whatever on the baseball bat neck of my Tele.
     
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  5. klobasa

    klobasa Tele-Holic

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    Teles are easy to adjust from the heel with the Stewmac tool. It takes 1 min to screw out the pickguard, then just adjust. The whole process takes maybe 3 mins. If that it too much work for someone...well, then it is. But with a Strat...that IS a pain in the butt, because most (all) strats that I have ever owned did not have than opening/routing in the body right next to the truss rod, one cannot access the rod even with pickguard removed. THAT is what Leo got wrong (even if he got it right with the Tele!)!
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2021
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  6. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    As compared to a headstock adjustable where there's no cover or nothing to remove at all?
    :twisted:
    And you still need that "special tool"... on the Teles (or any heel adjust). I would prefer a Phillips like tool and not a regular flat screwdriver kind...
     
  7. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    Frankly if there ever was a real need/incentive for a heel adjusted truss rod it would be on Les Pauls. So they can keep that wood up the headstock no need for carve out anything to just weaken the headstock by quite an amount. But...a spoke wheel then. Open or covered.

    That, plus scarf joint, plus the volute on the back of the neck, plus retracting the angle tilt of the heastock a bit, would make it significantly stronger.
     
  8. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    Yes, that tool is only (still a very special tool needed) for some heel adjusted guitars where this gap is possible and visible. There are actually very few other guitar models with this "Tele-gap" built in. It's always solid.
     
  9. Matthias

    Matthias Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    I like the bullet truss rod nuts. Yep, the aesthetics are an acquired taste, but they’re super easy to access. Mind you, on actual 70s Fenders, those “hard rock maple” necks don’t move much in my experience, especially the chunky ones!
     
  10. klobasa

    klobasa Tele-Holic

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    I am not so busy that I can't spend 5 mins once a year to adjust my neck :D
     
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  11. ArcticWhite

    ArcticWhite Tele-Afflicted

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    Leave neck on. Remove pick guard.
    Adjust.
     
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  12. Cheap Trills

    Cheap Trills Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    I'll buy you heel adjust necks off you if you decide to replace them.
     
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  13. msalama

    msalama Tele-Meister

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    Well I guess I'm a lucky barstage then, since neither my 2015 Epi LP nor My 2018 Squier Tele seem to need any seasonal adjusting or anything. And both have necks as skinny as Twiggy in her prime ;)
     
  14. naveed211

    naveed211 Friend of Leo's

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    I remember looking at those as I love Thinlines. I like the idea of the wheel adjuster...but yeah...that bridge is just god awful.
     
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  15. cyclopean

    cyclopean Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yeah it won’t work on my jaguar. This is poor design.
     
  16. cyclopean

    cyclopean Poster Extraordinaire

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    Not having a headstock adjust is a deal breaker.
     
  17. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    Polarized this thread has become...

    Is there anyone out there who has modded their headstock adjustable neck just because it looks fugly and swapped it out for a heel one, no matter the change in tone playability, or other things that might have gone havoc?
     
  18. shallbe

    shallbe Tele-Meister

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    I disagree. It is a bad design for you. It works for a lot of people now and has for a long time.

    EVERY bolt on guitar I own is a heel adjust, and I have no issues with any of them. Never have, never will.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Looking at life one day at a time when you're 78 years old is like sitting down on the throne, doing your business, and looking over at the toilet paper roll and it has ONE sheet left on it. You're glad it's there, but you wish there were just a few more to go with it.
     
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  20. 39martind18

    39martind18 Friend of Leo's

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    Amen! I'm not afraid of my time ending, but I'm having WAY too much fun for me to want it to end any time soon!:)
     
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