Help! Advice on SR5 Bass Neck vs. Dry Heat in House.

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Jaycephas, Jan 30, 2014.


  1. Jaycephas

    Jaycephas Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2003
    Location:
    Waxhaw, NC
    Hey folks,

    I'm in a bit of a pickle with the neck on my SR5 as a result of dry heat in my house. My studio is upstairs so the heat is rising and the neck is moving ever so slightly, but as you know, once you have a bass set perfectly, any movement is too much. The SR5 has only been here since late summer so this is my first winter with the bass.

    We keep the temp around 69-70 degrees, but the dry air is having an effect. I can slightly feel the fret edges on the SR5 which is bothering me a bit.

    Should I keep the bass in a case? It hangs on a wall most of the time but I could keep it in a case if that helps. Should I add a humidifier to the room?

    I have a other basses but none have the SR5 finish so they tend to stay more stable regardless of the dry air.

    Any suggestions from you long-time SR owners is appreciated.

    Thanks.
  2. lowfreq33

    lowfreq33

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Location:
    Nashville
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Genz Benz Amplification
    Humidifier will help.
  3. Britbonic

    Britbonic Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2002
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Is it a stock SR5 or does it have a roasted neck?

    I have a 2012 PDN SR5 with the roasted maple neck and there is more movement in that neck than any bass I've ever owned. I live in Bay Area where climate/temps/humidity pretty moderate and no huge swings.

    I love this bass to death but find I constantly have to adjust it to keep the playability where I want. The good news is that once you get the bass setup the way you like it, you should only have to make truss rod adjustments to compensate for any changes. Fortunately the wheel design makes this very easy. Still frustrating though.
  4. Jaycephas

    Jaycephas Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2003
    Location:
    Waxhaw, NC
    Standard neck. Will the wood 'expand' back with humidity introduced? I can't stand feeling the fret edges, even slightly.
  5. Register to disable this ad
  6. KramerDon

    KramerDon

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2011
    Location:
    Southwestern Michigan
    I think a humidifier would help.We had hot water baseboard heat(very dry heat) in our old home and my baby grand would go out of tune as soon as it dropped below freezing outside till I put a humidifier in the same room all winter.
  7. Jaycephas

    Jaycephas Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2003
    Location:
    Waxhaw, NC
    I'm trying that now. My sinuses already feel better for sure.
  8. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    Location:
    Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
    You getting a cold winter in NC?

    The fret ends coming out is called fretsprout and is very common with basses, especially with "California basses", there is no putting it back. You have to file the ends down.

    Also, your instrument is probably changing more because of the pressure changes in the atmosphere than the dry heat in your house. Is this your first MusicMan? MMs tend to be one of the most reactive brands to pressure change in my experience, both with their guitars and basses.
  9. therhodeo

    therhodeo

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2011
    Location:
    Owasso OK
    In all of the years I've played bass and guitar and all of the time I've been on gear forums I believe this is the first time I've ever seen someone attribute neck changes to barometric pressure.
  10. Jaycephas

    Jaycephas Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2003
    Location:
    Waxhaw, NC
    Hey man, not compared to Saskatchewan. Our weather would probably feel like a heat wave to you guys.

    This is my second MM but the first keeper. Definitely not happy about the fretsprout, but I know a great luthier in town who can fix it when spring arrives and temps get back to normal.
  11. elBandito

    elBandito

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2008
    Location:
    Rotten Apple
    You want to fix the sprout before warm weather comes. That defeats the purpose. And the truss rod wheel is not there to look pretty.

  12. staindbass

    staindbass Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    try one of those acoustic guitar case humidifiers.
  13. Britbonic

    Britbonic Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2002
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    I don't have any problem with the fret edges, just neck movement. Maybe cause I'm in California?:smug:

    First time I've heard the terms fret sprout and California basses. Surprising given that the vast majority of mass produced US basses are made here and the fact that the climate is pretty dry.
  14. therhodeo

    therhodeo

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2011
    Location:
    Owasso OK
    I believe "california basses" is a way to say Fender.
  15. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    Location:
    Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
    People in my region call lots of manufacturers california basses. I have started to realize people elsewhere do not use the term. Fret sprout is not limited to california basses. My Dingwall was built a few km from my house and it got fret sprout.
  16. SemiDriven

    SemiDriven Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2012
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    My basses hang on the wall. A 20-degree drop in temperature (especially in cold weather) causes all of them to go flat. And winter so far as been a doozy!

    A humidifier would help.

    For those of us with allergies, however, dryer air may be better for us (at least for me) while not so good for instruments.
  17. shastaband

    shastaband Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2006
    I moved from a humid, moderate environment to a hot, dry environment with 8 Musicman basses, and two of them suffered fret-sprout. One 5-string Stingray, one four-string Stingray, both with maple fretboards. Had a luthier file the fret ends down. No problems since.
  18. Jaycephas

    Jaycephas Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2003
    Location:
    Waxhaw, NC
    So I was at Sam Ash today and they had three SR5s, one of which had a maple fretboard like mine. All brand new, and every one of them had the same issue as mine. So this must be a MM thing, which makes me feel better, cause I love mine. I'm taking it in next week to get the frets cleaned up and back to awesome.

Share This Page