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action problem that i just dont understand...

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Da Funk Docta, Jun 19, 2005.

  1. so also while setting up my bass, i noticed that even if i take off the saddle allen wrench action screws, that the action is wayyy to high... and i dont quite get why it... i tryed adjusting my truss rod, but it made my first few frets buzz considerably, while still haveing the high action, so i just moved that back. any suggestions? my bass diddnt used to do this...
  2. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    IIRC, if you are buzzing on the lower frets, you need to turn your truss rod CCW (viewed from the headstock).

    I didn't quite get the part about the saddles. What kind of bass is this?

    With Fender style bridges, you can raise or lower the strings by turning the twin vertical allen screws on both sides of each string saddle. CCW to lower and CW to raise. Turn each screw set for each string an equal amount.

    Somebody correct me if I got the turn directions wrong.
  3. sorry if i was unclear in the question, its a fender 5 string standard 2002 jazz bass. i tryed to correct a problem with the action being to high by putting tension on the truss rod, and because there was too much, the first few fretts rattled, and the action was still too high for some reason. so i put it back. so now i dont have rattleing, but my action is very high. just to clarify, even if i dont have the vertical action adjusting screws in my saddles, the action is still far to high.
    thank you for the reply though :)
  4. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire

    Does your bridge look somewhat like this?

    The screws are under the cylinder like things. Two on each side of each string. I say "vertical" when the bass is laid flat on a table or bed like this.
  5. yes, thats the kind of bridge, and those are the screws i meant. even when the 2 paired screws are out of my saddles completley, the action is too high.
  6. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire

    That's interesting.

    I dunno then :confused: , sorry.
  7. The neck is not loose is it?

  8. flange


    Feb 22, 2005
    Cochrane Alberta
    It sounds like your neck angle is bad. Don't know how it would change on its own though. Shimming at the very base of the heel of the neck should correct the high action. You are changing the angle of the neck in relation to the body.
  9. travatron4000


    Dec 27, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    those were my thoughts. sounds like your neck needs to get shimmed so that alligns up with the body correctly. what kind of bass is it?
  10. hmmm thanx alot... and no it never necessarily went "lower", but its lowest point used to be low enough at one point in time. any tips on shimming the neck so that its strait?
    btw, its a 5 string fender jazz bass (MIM standard 2002)
  11. jeffhigh


    May 16, 2005
    pull off your neck,Slice off a credit card about 3/8"wide and place it under the very end of the neck between the back of the neck and the pocket. this small amount magnified by the distance to the bridge is generally enough.
    Screw the neck back on.
  12. thanx for all the advice, and i used a buisness card for a shim and its all great now
    you guys never let me down :)
  13. BTW, FunkDr. a few posts back up the way, you said something to the affect that you were adjusting the trussrod to get better action. This isn't the function of the TR at all. The TR is to adjust the "relief" in the neck. The relief is the amount of bow that is in the neck that is caused by the strings and is counterbalanced by the trussrod. Action is string height above the fretboard and that's why the bridge (and in your case, the shims) is adjustable.
  14. yea, i know, but it got to the point where i thought it had to be an upbow in the neck because it wouldnt go any farther down. so i tryed adjusting the truss rod as kind of a last resort
  15. Blues Cat

    Blues Cat Payson Fanned Bass Strings Owner Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 28, 2005
    Katy, Tx
    Payson Fanned Bass Strings Owner
    Da Funk Docta, that's good that the shim helped but did you happen to see if the barrel saddles were upside-down? I'm not sure how it is on your bass but if the intonation screw dosen't go directly thru the middle of the barrel, & is in the upper part of barrel, that would be keeping it from going down all the way. If intonation screw goes directly thru middle of barrel it dosen't matter. If not, you can turn the barrel saddles 180 to get action lower. If string path dosen't line up ,you might have to switch saddles E to the G & A to the D. It is possible that the manufacturer of bridge put saddles on backwards. Let us know if this is the case.
  16. bannedwit


    May 9, 2005
    Buffalo, NY
    Sounds like your neck is too bowed out... You will want to counter act the bending of the neck....

    SHIM = throw shims to the rear of the neck recess... If you put it in the front then it will just make the neck more bowed...

    Did you say you did a truss rod adjustment?

    It seems like all you need to do is crank the truss rod and loosen it so that it goes back and reverse the effect. Be sure to so like only 1/8 of a turn at a time and wait like 5-10 min before re-tuning so the neck wood can move properly...

    If you are buzzing only on a fret or 2 then try adjusting your playing style... Less of a finger attack... raise your pickups to increase the gain and signal from yoiu bass so you don't have to kill the strings for sound... buzz issue solved.
  17. Triclops

    Triclops Guest

    Jan 14, 2006
    What an amazing resource you all are!!!:hyper: I have same aformentioned problem with my new hand made bass I just bought from a luthier in texas! I am going to try the shim thing , and i;ll get right back to ya'll on the result!
    thx guys and gals:D
  18. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Push down on each string on the forward side of each bridge saddle. This creates a clean "break" at the point where the string contacts the saddle (not sure of the correct term as to why this works). I've noticed that the strings, especially those of larger diameter, make a "lazy loop" as they pass over the bridge saddle. Its really prominent when stringing thru the body. David King recommends this procedure on his website.

    Oh yeah, don't forget to check neck relief. I wouldn't shim anything yet until you exhaust the simpler measures.

    Good luck!

  19. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    If anyone that posted recently missed his post midthread, he shimmed and it seems to have fixed the problem.
  20. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I'm glad the shim worked but I'm still curious as to what structural changes occurred so rapidly (and radically) as to necessitate the repair. The bass was fine...then all of a sudden wasn't.


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