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Truss rod for 32" scale neck

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by lagerratrobe, Nov 21, 2012.


  1. lagerratrobe

    lagerratrobe

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    Making my first bass from scratch, a medium scale maple and bubinga special. Got my truss rod today, a 23 1/4" dual-action jobby from Grizzly Industrial and see now that I have a problem. I think the rod is too long for my neck. Which brings up a few questions about these suckers.

    The guitars and bass that I own already have necks whose truss rods adjust from the headstock side. Given that the nut end of the rod is round, and slightly larger in diameter than than the rectangular portion of the rod, how exactly do I lay out the channel to accommodate access to the nut after it's installed?

    Also, what are some guidelines for determining the correct length of rod that should be used for a custom scale length? Is it nut to xxx distance from end of heel, or nut to fret N?

    Advice appreciated on this, thanks.
     
  2. K-Frog

    K-Frog

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2002
    Location:
    Camden, AR, USA
    I also am building a 32" scale bass and found my rod to be too long. I just cut off about an inch and rewelded that end.
     
  3. Musiclogic

    Musiclogic

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2005
    Location:
    Southwest Michigan
    Disclosures:
    Owner/Builder: HJC Customs USA, The Cool Lute, C G O
    Using an 18" or 19" guitar truss rod works great for shorter scale basses
     
  4. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2004
    Location:
    Central Florida
    Disclosures:
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    I find the standard LMI rods to be fine for 24 fret 32 scale necks
     
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  6. Ironfingers

    Ironfingers Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2010
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA
    Most people will route a slightly larger channel about the same length as the nut if it is at the headstock end. I usually do mine at the heel, and for that I will measure from there to the center of the 1st fret to get my length. Then I call LMI and order a custom length truss rod. It's the same price, it just takes a bit longer to get it since it has to be custom welded. They quote up to 2 weeks, but the last 2 times I bought one, it came in about 4 days.

    I don't think there is any standard way of measuring how long a truss rod needs to be. I do the same length when it's at the headstock. Heel end to center of the 1st fret, I just turn it around so the nut is the other way. Works for me, but as tjclem says, standard rod is fine, I just like it the length I like it. I'm pretty sure it does not have to be that long.
     
  7. lagerratrobe

    lagerratrobe

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    Thanks, great info here. I didn't know that I could cut the rod - wasn't sure what was inside the round tube with the adjusting bolt at the end. Also appreciate the rule of thumb - heel to middle of 1st fret. I can work with that.

    Sorry for delay in getting back to all of you. I thought I had toggled the "email me when people respond" setting, but it looks like I forgot to. I had been wondering why no one was responding. :)
     

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