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Fender American Deluxe Jazz - action?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Jeremy5000, Aug 20, 2012.

  1. Jeremy5000


    Feb 25, 2008
    So I'm close to picking up a 2012 American Deluxe Jazz 4 string.
    All the ones at the shop are set up with really high action, hard to get an idea of a final setup - so just a quick shout out to anyone who has one of these babies -

    Can you get the action low/lowish? (assuming that's how you like it).
    I heard somewhere - can't find the post now - that the bridge configuration does not allow for very low action but with such a solidly re-enforced neck, (I'm just assuming that because of the touted graphite rods), that you have some leeway with straightening out the neck too.
  2. pacojas

    pacojas "FYYA BUN"

    Oct 11, 2009
    ask the store to lower it! they will spot clean it to make a sale. ;)
  3. 73jbass

    73jbass Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2004
    Just bought a 2012 USA Deluxe Jazz 5 a few weeks ago,and I could have gigged with it straight out of the box. I put a different set of strings on it which required a tweak of the truss rod and that's it. If you don't know how to set one up properly,let a qualified tech do it.
  4. sratas


    Dec 15, 2007
    Parma, Italy
    the little room for adjustment on a 1700 euros bass (and other minor lacks) is what constituted a deal breaker for me. I tested two basses, they sounded quite good, both had high action and the bridge saddles were almost all down on the E and G especially (as always with a curved board...). the neck was overbowed to a certain extent but not so much that I could figure out an easy way to solve the issue. I mean, to straighteen the neck to its correct values (there are suggested values, the rod is not there to be used freely, too little and two much lead to incorrect bow and bad playability-issues) could probably solve some issue in the first positions but i would have had high and excessive arising action from the 8th fret to the end of the neck, because as you go up the neck, what influences more the action is the bridge setting related to neck leveling in the neck pocket.
    If, like many others, you can adapt to less than optimal action and playability, it's ok.
    I decided not to buy, and for certain not to buy a new dollars bass and pay a luthier to take care for it.
  5. Jeremy5000


    Feb 25, 2008
    Thanks for advice all - yes paco you are right. They have an in house repair shop and I'm going to ask them to bottom out the saddles and flatten the neck out as much as they are willing.
    I think it's a misconception that Fenders have to have a largely bowed action as I've played some early '70s, (one P I wish I still had:rollno: ) that was straght as an arrow with great playability and how 'bout those custom shops?? some of the lowest flatest action I've ever seen...
    Cerio likes this.
  6. Gougedeye

    Gougedeye Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2008
    Central Washington
    I have a 2010 American Deluxe Jazz V. This bass was ready to play right out of the box. The neck is straight and the action is low. I'm sure you could get it set up any way you wish. Good Luck.
  7. zachbass02

    zachbass02 One Hairy....squatch.

    Jan 3, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    my (2) 2011 american standards and the 2011 Am. Deluxe J5 I had have some of the lowest action of any basses I've ever owned.
  8. I would ask them to "adjust the action lower" or "lower the action". The way it's worded above will leave you (and them after you don't buy it) with an unplayable bass. A Fender AS with a flat neck and bottomed out saddles...nope.

    So the store had two ASs with high action. That leads me to think the store reset the action higher for noobs and poor technique-ers who aren't compatible with low action and won't buy a bass with low action because they are "too buzzy".

    American Standards don't come from the factory like that.
  9. Wallace320

    Wallace320 Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2012
    Milan, Italy

    and, to the OP

    Ask! You buy, so just ask... I love an American Deluxe Jazz in a shop near here (black and maple N3 pickups) I'd kill for it!

  10. FunkRenegade


    Jul 7, 2012
    Fenders usually need a nut job to make it play low and easy. No matter how much you lower the action at the bridge, lower frets by the nut are hard to play.

    Fat saddles on the HMV bridge don't give you much room for adjustments, compared to older american bridge saddles.
  11. jay loren

    jay loren Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2011
    After I bought mine (new, online) I set it up to my liking, very low.
    It can be done but the store should do it for you if you buy it there.
  12. corsa


    Jul 12, 2010
    Fort Wright, KY
    I may be a little late to the party here but -

    I just bought a 2012 American Deluxe Jazz four string. It was quite playable out of the box but I'm more of a soft touch/low action player so I set to work on it.

    First, I discovered that the Fender strings are terrible. The bass sounded so bad that I considered sending it back. I got over my brief panic and put a set of Rotosound 66s on and it was a whole new bass.

    With the Rotos, I tightened the truss rod about 1/8th of a turn to get just a hint of relief. I then worked on the saddles and the E and G were bottoming out before I could get the action as low as I wanted.

    I shimmed the neck with two playing cards and that was a bit much so I took one out and that did the trick. I set the action where I liked (low) on the E and G and then set the A and D heights to match the 9.5" radius. After intonating for the new strings and saddle positions, I'm extremely pleased.

    It sounds like this was a lot of work but I have to say that the bass was one of the most pleasant set-ups I've done. Everything was easy to adjust and all the adjustments stayed where I put them. I love my Rick 4001 but setting that up is a fight. This was a pleasure by comparison.

    I couldn't be happier with the American Deluxe Jazz.
  13. Suntory


    Jun 8, 2012
    I can't believe how good Fenders feel out of the box these days. 20 years ago they were a mess, I could of used mine for archery the strings were so far from the fret board. Please don't get me started on the instruments intonation.
  14. MarthaSamira

    MarthaSamira Banned

    Apr 29, 2012
    20 years ago they didn't have to worry about Lakland, SX and so many others. And Sadowsky was just too small.
  15. I looked at the Am Dlx Jazz 5 the other day. I don't like the pre-amp in it. I DO like the binding & inlays, though.
  16. Suntory


    Jun 8, 2012
    I bought a fender "long Horn" in 92. I was thinking it was trying to compete with the more modern Jazz clones. The problem was that the the upper wing or "horn" was enormous, it never felt like a Jazz bass. I was young and I thought newer must be better.

    Attached Files:

  17. malicant


    Oct 14, 2011
    I bought a deluxe jazz bass back in 2005 and it was wonderfully well set up. Now, I did lower the action a little as I like the action on my basses to be a slow as possible. Lowering the action on a bass is a pretty simple job and it's something every bassist should learn.

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