At least the strings didn't break...

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by SpankBass, Apr 15, 2002.

  1. So I was throwing on a set of flats onto my defretted bass, and the action was insanely high. So I decided to put a few strips of a coke can under the neck and I did a few adjustments to the string saddles but the action was still high. I just through 'screw it' and I tried to tune it. It wasn't tuning and I was getting frustrated, but then I hear a snap and I think 'there goes my $30 strings' but it was actually the bridge being torn from the body!

    What should I do? My dad suggested getting larger screws, but I'm not sure if they'll fit into the holes of the bridge. I'm thinkin that I should fill it with Bondo and redrill and tap it myself, but I'd figure I'd ask you pros first. Any help?
  2. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    It should be a fairly simple fix. Basically, just drill out the holes to 1/4" and glue a plug into each of the screw holes. Make sure the plugs don't protrude above the surface of the bass.

    Be very careful that the bridge is in perfect alignment with the neck before drilling pilot holes for the new screws.

    Make sure that you take care of the "insanely" high action problem before you bring the strings up to tuning.

    Did the bass have the high action problem before you changed the strings out?

    If you aren't really sure with what you're doing with the neck shims you probably would be better off having a repair person do it.

    Arbitrarily installing shims just to see if it will correct the problem is a pretty good tip that you may need to understand more about diagnosing the problem completely before you start making adjustments.

    I don't want to alarm you but when the action on a bass becomes "insanely" high and it's not very obvious why, it often means that the truss rod has a serious problem. Either completely loose or broken.

    If the TR is OK, the neck will probably have some back bow in it with the neck off the bass or the strings slack.

    Hope this helps. Good luck.

  3. Pretty much all Pkr2 said...

    But I can't contain myself!! :mad:

    I think I understand exactly how you got into this and it pretty much boils down to operator haste. Paying as much attention to the tuners as you were, when the action raised, you should have stopped immediately and checked the entire system!! Going to the tedious removal of the neck (Twice??) for placing shims should only have been done after all the other components were checked.

    There, I feel better now :cool:
  4. Hmm... I wonder why this didnt show up in the My Talkbass thread tracker thingy?


    Thanks for the advice guys (yeah I know I'm impatient). I asked around and a friend of mine who works at a music store told me to put a tooth pick or two into the holes and just screw it back in, and it worked great!

    Want to hear an embarrasing story? The reason for the high action is because I had misinterpreted what people told me on how to mess with the string saddles. Instead of using an allan wrench to lower them, I used a screwdriver on the back to move them back and forth :oops:. Thats why I thought something was wrong with my bass because the action wasn't going anywhere.

    But now I know, and knowing is half the battle :D
  5. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    Haste makes waste. I can't even count how many things I've effed up or broken, simply because I was in a hurry or didn't want to wait for help!
    G.I. Joe / A Great-American Hero / Fighting Cobra and Destro!