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Carvin needs a shim . . . maybe?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Snarf, Sep 20, 2005.

  1. Snarf


    Jan 23, 2005
    Glen Cove, NY
    So I've gotten my Carvin B4's neck pretty damn straight. Unfortunately, no matter how high I raise the action, the strings rattle at around the 5th fret. It's horrible! I was thinking maybe it would be possible to shim the neck to tilt it BACK instead of forward. Seems like that would even out the string height (toward the top of the range it gets much higher than the bottom). Or am I thinking backwards?
  2. Snarf


    Jan 23, 2005
    Glen Cove, NY
    To answer your questions:

    I've had this bass since April, so it's fairly new. It never had a previous owner, I ordered it right from Carvin. The truss rod on the first neck had a fatal flaw (ie it came loose), so they sent me the one I'm currently using. All the strings buzz, though it gets worse as you go from G to D to A to E. Buzzing is worst on the 5th fret of every string, but it is present on most every note.

    Oh, and I don't know how to measure relief, nor do I know how to check for a raised fret.

    I'm going to head over to the Berklee repair place that's never open, see if anyone's in there can take a look at my bass.
  3. Quality


    May 7, 2003
    Long Beach, CA
    Try Fretting the first and seventh or ninth frets at the same time.
    There should be a slight relief between the string and fret at the fifth fret. If not you might need to put some bow in the neck.
    If there is some relief, you should be able to do the same type of thing to check other frets.
  4. Snarf


    Jan 23, 2005
    Glen Cove, NY
    I checked out those links. I just can't really be bothered to measure 1.5 mm out and all that. The bass never did play without some buzz unless I set the action like an upright bass. Which is not what I'm looking for from this bass.

    Best solution for me looks to be the tech route.
  5. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    Friends, ANYTIME and EVERYTIME you get a new bass through mail order shipment, it will need to have the neck relief and saddle heights adjusted for optimum performance. More often than not, there is too much difference in temperature and humidity between the seller and the final destination. The action of the neck WILL change. You have to adjust for that.

    If you don't know how to measure and adjust neck relief, take it to a competent local shop.

    . . . . and don't ever, EVER talk about shimming the neck if you don't know how to properly adjust a truss rod first . . .
  6. Snarf


    Jan 23, 2005
    Glen Cove, NY
    Good points.

    I do know how to adjust my truss rod though. That and saddle height I'm pretty good at. But I haven't really found a playable balance between action and buzz by adjusting those two things. Makes me think someone needs to go further on this bass.