Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Constant tweaking do to weather changes?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Deep, Apr 28, 2005.


  1. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    Hey guys. Besides the usual seasonal trussrod adjustment. Does anyone experience needing to tweak weekly at times? Sometimes every couple of days? I'm talking about being out there giggng alot. Not the bass sitting in the house in the same environment.
    I'm very in tune to when the set-up changes on my bass. I can tell when it feels different quickly. So when I pull it out of the case and it feels different I always check it and see that it has changed. Then of course I make the trussrod tweak to get it back. Sometimes it can be a pain. But I notice it changing often. It's a maple neck with a birdseye board, graphite reinforcement with a tung oil finish on neck.
    I read somewhere and heard from some people where birdseye can be reactive to even slight changes in humidity/dryness. This would happen from expanding and contracting from the changes in moisture. Is this just the nature of the beast? Would a rosewood board be more stable?
    Maybe a poly type finish on the neck instead of tung oil for better sealing against the environment?
     
  2. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    Joshua....I just wanted to change the title slightly. I tried to edit the title but I couldn't change it. So before there were more posts added I changed it. I should have just left it alone. :meh:
     
  3. RLT

    RLT

    Jul 10, 2004
    South Central OH
    Here in Ohio with our crazy weather. I've had a couple of basses that needed daily tweaking. But we were 80's last week and snow over the week end with 40's to 50's this week.
     
  4. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    I hear what you're saying. This time of year is crazy with the constant weather changes as it moves into the season. It justs bugs me when even going from the house to a club the set up can change. From car to an air conditioned studio etc. Sometimes I think maybe tung oil type finishes don't really give it all that much of a seal against changes in environment. It's like the neck reacts faster than if it had a poly type coating where it would take more time for the change in environment to really get to the wood. My early 70's P-bass only on occasion needs any tweaking when the seasons change. Sometimes it doesn't even need that. But after that it stays put until another major season comes around.
     
  5. Man, I know just how you feel. I can almost tell how my bass's action is gonna feel by the temp and humidity. Wood likes the same temps and humidity as people do. Mid 70's with moderate humidity. When wood gets cold it contracts, and it expands when warm. Wood expands with moisture/humidity and contracts with very dry air. It's good to have a small amount of humidity. Dry air, such as what you have in a house in the winter with the heater going, is hard on them.

    Strings add to the mix too. Temperature plays a part in how much tension they need to reach a particular tune. If a string requires just slightly more tension, this is gonna pull on the neck and truss, and you'll end up with a higher action.
    I've noticed that older and dirty strings require more tension to reach a particular tune.

    For what it's worth..

    Mag...
     
  6. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    Magneto....Ditto to evertything you said. You're right on.
    I'm just wondering about oil type finishes on necks. In my case tung oil. It feels great. but does it really seal the neck from the environment as well as a poly or nitro finish? I'm thinking that tung oil, while it does seem to seal a bit, does not really offer a heavy duty barrier between the wood itself and the weather. I always know that when it rains my neck is going to need a truss tweak right off the bat. And visa versa.
     
  7. Joshua, I believe you're right. I've owned basses with different neck finishes, and all of them needed pretty-much the same tweaking.
    I do think that the type of finish could affect the amount of moisture wood can absorb, but most neck woods have some type of sealing finish, and I'm no expert.

    Mag...
     
  8. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    Yes. That's what I mean. Sure the wood will react. You can't get away with that. But I think a more protective seal can shield the neck a bit better so the wood does not have a chance to react as "quickly" from a change in weather or environment.

    Kind of like, if it rains on a certain day and gets humid, then the relief won't change that "one" day and have to be tweaked, cuz it would have a better seal. But if it rains and is humid lets say, all week, then sure you'll need some tweaking with almost any type of finish.

    So basically, I'm just saying you may not have to constanly tweak every time the "wind blows" so to speak, with a more protective finish. But anyway, you guys are all right on what you're saying. :D