ESP neck relief with low light strings

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by JPrinos, Dec 29, 2013.


  1. JPrinos

    JPrinos

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    It has been about 3 or 4 weeks since I picked up my ESP LTD B-206.

    The bass had a really light set of strings on it. Measured with my calipers:
    B .130"
    E .08"
    A .07"
    D .048"
    G .03"
    C .02"

    The setup of the bass as I received it was laughable. Intonation was way off and the action at the 12th fret was too high to be practical.

    I have lowered the action and set the neck relief to be small enough to disallow any fret-buzz at the first 5 frets. Repeatedly, over about a weeks time, the neck relief decreases to the point where fret buzz reappears in somewhere in the first 5 frets.

    The last time I adjusted the truss rods, I ran out of thread (i.e. no more adjustment available).

    Has anyone else run into the problem where the string tension doesn't seem enough to allow for adequate string relief on a bass's neck?

    Is my only option to get strings of higher tension?
  2. Bobster

    Bobster

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2006
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Hi JPrinos,

    Couple of questions, if you don't mind...

    Is this a new instrument? If so, I'm a bit confused. My Ltds have shipped with Cleartone Strings http://www.cleartonestrings.com/products/nickel-plated-bass-strings/

    And they don't have an .08 E string. I would recommend finding out what strings are on your bass (did dealer change?).

    I would think a heavier set is called for. You can also contact ESP customer support to find out what they recommend, and I will be surprised if this is it. http://www.espguitars.com/pages/support (they normally take about 2 days to respond).

    If this is used, then yes, I'd recommend a heavier set and possibly a washer or two on the truss.

    Let us know how everything goes.

    Bob
  3. JPrinos

    JPrinos

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Yup, a used instrument. I normally play with heavier strings but was willing to check these light ones for while. I will drop ESP a quick email as well. Thanks for the suggestion.
  4. JPrinos

    JPrinos

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Just picked up a set of D'Addario EXL170-6 regular light gauge Nickels. Certainly enough tension now to use the truss rods to put the neck where I want (flat). Just adjusted the relief and action. Next the intonation.
  5. Dave Curran

    Dave Curran Lilduke Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2013
    Location:
    NEPA
    You said your getting buzz in the first 5 frets. You also said you have now run out of truss rod adjustment, trying to get rid of the buzz. You need to loosen it.

    [​IMG]

    :bag::bassist::D
  6. JPrinos

    JPrinos

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Was loosening with the original strings. Now I can tighten, Yay!
  7. elBandito

    elBandito

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2008
    Location:
    Rotten Apple
    He probably meant, there's no more thread to loosen, before the truss rod nut falls out.
  8. Bobster

    Bobster

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2006
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Just to confirm,

    Stock string diameter from ESP vs set diameter at purchase:

    B - .125 .130
    E - .105 .080
    A - .085 .070
    D - .065 .048
    G - .045 .030
    C - .030 .020

    Looks like the E, D, G and C strings were considerably lighter than stock.

    Bob
  9. JPrinos

    JPrinos

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Certainly looks that way. With the new strings, I 've had to tighten on the truss rods and the neck is holding where I've set it. :)
  10. Dave Curran

    Dave Curran Lilduke Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2013
    Location:
    NEPA

    Well that makes a lot more sense. Doh I've never heard of a neck doing that before, with strings on.

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