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can't loosen truss enough

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by paintandsk8, Jan 18, 2004.


  1. paintandsk8

    paintandsk8 Pushin' my soul through the wire...

    May 12, 2003
    West Lafayette, IN
    OK, I searched around here on this and came up with some ideas but i wanna check them out. Ok I just got a washburn taurus t25 about two weeks ago. I am setting it up myself, and i have fret buzz on the first few frets. So i went to loosen the truss rod. The only problem is that it already has no tension on it. It's completely loose. I'm thinking that this is because the bass is so new and hasn't settled itself yet. I don't have 6 months to let it do it's thing though, so i wandered if there were any temperary things i could do to eliminate the buzz without sacricifing action. I was thinking maybe i could go to lighter guage strings which would cause more tension and more neck relief. Is my reasoning correct? Any other ideas?
     
  2. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    You are correct in thinking that higher tension strings will bow the neck more. That may help. It might not. Are you certain that it is a relief issue?
     
  3. If you are certain that it is neck relief, you might consider shimming the neck.

    Shimming will allow you to have low action but it will raise your neck.

    http://www.mrgearhead.com/faq/basssetup.html

    [​IMG]
    Treena
     
  4. pkr2

    pkr2

    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    Not to be argumentative, Treena, but shimminng the neck or adjusting the tilt or neck angle (all the same thing with different names) Is definitely what should NOT be done to correct a relief problem.

    Relief probs should be addressed with truss rod adjustment. Neck angle adjustment is indicated if the heigth adjustments at the bridge are out of normal range.

    The problem with most setup sites is that there are certain problems that are not addressed and a novice can be left high and dry or worse, actually break something.

    IMHO, there is not enough info on any of these sites to adjust every bass that comes along. They are great sources for learning but only cover the rare instrument that can be set up completely "by the book".

    Please accept what I've said as constructive criticism.

    Harrell S.
     
  5. pkr2

    pkr2

    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    I have had success with correcting that problem by temporarily Putting a block of wood about an inch thick between the fingerboard and the strings at about the 5th fret. Bring the strings up to pitch or even a bit higher and let the bass set overnight. BE SURE TO LOOSEN THE TRUSS ROD BEFORE BRINGING THE STRINGS TO PITCH. Be sure to monitor the bass closely because it's possible to put too much relief in with this method. You may have to leave it for a couple or three nights but the changed angle of the string tension will introduce relief into the neck. If you go a little too far, the truss rod will remove excess relief.

    Harrell S.
     
  6. Harrell, I not above learning. :D

    A question though, how can he use a 1 inch block to gain relief when the truss rod "It's completely" loose."??

    "The title of the thread is, can't loosen truss enough."

    I understand what you are instructing but as you said, the novice will not, they will only become more confused.


    This is most likely a mute point, because a lighter guage string will most likely solve the problem for now!

    I would forgo trying to do this myself and take it to a trained tech.........

    Treena
    [​IMG]
     
  7. doc540

    doc540

    Jul 28, 2003
    Beaumont, Texas
    I don't care what anyone else says, Treena.

    I believe you!

    :)
     
  8. i'm confoozed. if you put lighter strings on the bass, won't the tension required to bring them to pitch be less than the heavier strings? how will that add relief to the neck? you want more tension.

    rather than trying to change the relief when it doesn't want to, and you're not sure it's the problem.......why not check the relief:

    fret the E string at the first and last fret and check the clearance in the middle (probably around the 7th or 8th fret for 20 frets). i can't remember exactly where the middle is at this point..... there should be some clearance there......i'm guesstimating about a credit card thickness? maybe a little bit more? someone can correct me on a good starting point for relief.

    if there's enough relief, then raise the saddles to get rid of the buzz. if they can't go high enough, THEN shim.
     
  9. Jontom

    Jontom

    Mar 11, 2002
    New York
    Your ideas for shimming are spot-on, but that is if your dealing with a bolt-on neck. I think the Washburn Taurus T25 is a neck-thru. Now whatcha gon' do?:)
     
  10. pkr2

    pkr2

    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    "A question though, how can he use a 1 inch block to gain relief when the truss rod "It's completely" loose."??

    The tension that the truss rod puts on the neck can only remove relief. The tension from the strings can only add relief. By loosening the truss rod completely you are assured that the truss rod doesn't prevent the strings from adding relief.

    By temporarily changing the angle of the string tension the relief is forced into the neck. the neck will maintain the relief when the block is removed if the truss rod is promptly adjusted to hold eveything in place.

    The title of the thread is "Can't Loosen Truss Rod Enough". The only reason that you would ever loosen a truss rod should be to add relief to the neck. Once in a while a bass comes along that with a fingerboard/neck that tends to cancel out relief as the wood ages. The problem can get so bad that only a hot press will put relief back in the neck under normal string tension. Using the block as I described will give some of the benefits of a hot press but it has to be done slower.

    I hope that I've answered your questions. :)
     
  11. Thank you! Yes you did and quite well I may add. :D

    [​IMG]
    Treena
     
  12. pkr2

    pkr2

    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    Maybe setup should be changed to a popularity contest?

    Harrell S
     
  13. doc540

    doc540

    Jul 28, 2003
    Beaumont, Texas
    If it in any way helps to lighten things up a bit and create a few smiles, I'll vote for it!

    Of course, a skirt-blowing dumbass like me has a habit of cracking jokes at the annual Furrowed Brow convention.

    ;)
     
  14. paintandsk8

    paintandsk8 Pushin' my soul through the wire...

    May 12, 2003
    West Lafayette, IN
    Well Harrel and Treena both win. The block idea fixed my relief problem on the taurus quite nicely, and the shim idea let me lower the action on my peavey fretless quite a bit.
    Thanks for all the ideas.
     
  15. pkr2

    pkr2

    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    Ain't it great when a plan comes together? :)

    Harrell S.
     
  16. tkarter

    tkarter

    Jan 1, 2003
    kansas
    The very reason I like my sig. It is True!!

    tk
     
  17. Great post, I never thought about using a block of wood. I'm going to try it on a Yamaha that could use a little more relief.

    I would like clarification on the string tension thing. From the D'Addario site, their .105 E string requires 41.5 lbs of tension. Their heavier .110 E string requires 44.8 lbs of tension. The conclusion I get is that for more tension, go with heavier strings, not lighter.
     
  18. I agree that heavier strings cause more tension.

    My point about lighter guage strings was that they would help with this persons situation for a "quick fix", instead of neck relief.

    The buzzing on the board could have been fixed by adjusting the string height. But, then the action would have been to high......:meh:

    Harrell S, knows his stuff, you can see this by reading many of his posts here in the setup forum, he knows what he's talking about, seems he has a lot of experience.

    [​IMG]
    Treena