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Heat is very not good for basses

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by dinghy, Jun 21, 2008.

  1. dinghy


    May 27, 2007
    Saratoga, CA
    I hadn't played my ATK300 for a few days and the last couple days have been 100+ degrees. When I picked it up today I noticed the action was ridiculously high. It reminded me of an upright. I looked down the neck and there was a definite bow that was not there before. I'm assuming the hot weather did this.

    Now I'm pretty sure I have to adjust the truss rod to fix it, but will it go back to normal relief after the weather cools off? Should I just wait it out? Or will it stay like this until I adjust the truss rod?

    And how do I adjust the truss rod? Do I have to take the strings off first? How much do I need to adjust it by? I'd say the action is about 1.5-2mm higher now.
  2. Lossen the strings. If you are looking down the neck from the head stock (asssuming thats where the bolt is) you want to give it about a 1/4 turn, Tune it up, wait over night, see how it is, if it's still high, give it about 1/6 of a turn. DO NOT turn it to much!
  3. dinghy


    May 27, 2007
    Saratoga, CA
    The bolt is at the base of the neck. It looks like this:


    Except the holes are farther apart. Which way do I turn it, if I'm facing the bass, neck up?
  4. GianGian


    May 16, 2008
    Stringed instruments are like that...you will have to adjust them when the weather changes. Some are more affected, some are less.
  5. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    Righty Tighty, Lefty Loosie

    Just like all screws, turn the truss to the right to tighten it, to the left to loosen it. (if you're facing front of the bass)
  6. keyboardguy

    keyboardguy Supporting Member

    May 11, 2005
  7. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Yup, heat and cold will change the adjustment.

    I make it a point NEVER to leave a bass in a car overnight, or during the day when it's hot outside.
  8. dinghy


    May 27, 2007
    Saratoga, CA
    It's not moving... i stuck a fat nail in there and used pliers to turn it and the result is one bent nail
  9. miss g

    miss g

    Mar 30, 2008
    use a small screwdriver
  10. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    Did you loosen the strings first?
  11. dinghy


    May 27, 2007
    Saratoga, CA
    I got it to move but I think it bent the screwdriver a little too. I heard a creaking sound also. I tuned it up and I'll see how it is tomorrow morning. And yes I did loosen them a lot first.
  12. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    Well a creaking sound can be normal as it's just friction of the rod inside the neck. It shouldn't have been that hard to turn though that it bent the screw driver even. I used to adjust fly wheel truss rods like that with a pen :)
  13. Showdown


    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    If you hear a creaking sound STOP and take it to an experienced repairman. With the strings loosened it shouldn't be that hard to turn.
  14. Mark Wilson

    Mark Wilson Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    Toronto, Ontario
    Endorsing Artist: Elixir® Strings
    Very Not Good.
  15. If it's the first time the rod has been adjusted in a long time then it will tend to creak. Though if it's creaking/cracking alot then I'd be worried.

    I'm glad here in scotland the climate is pretty mild in comparison to some places! Never had any weather related problems with my guitars :)
  16. and by the way our winters here go as low as 4 degree c and summers like 40+ degree c
    it does effect the action but not too much. and ofcourse the change in temperature is not sudden its gradual! humidity also keeps going bonkers but my squier is seeming to do ok
    although i adjust the action when i put in new strings mostly because i dont stick one set of strings
  17. DanRJBrasil


    Jun 10, 2007
  18. DanRJBrasil


    Jun 10, 2007
    i only have to take more care for the 5+ strings the four ones are not much affected.
  19. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    I ALWAYS loosen a trussrod a little before tightening it just to "unlock" it in case it's become frozen for any reason.

    Also when tightening the trussrod, I ALWAYS apply some light pressure to the headstock so the neck bows up a bit and then tighten the trussrod nut to hold it in place. I NEVER let the trussrod do the work of moving the neck.

    I've been going through the Summer edition of my twice yearly rounds of seasonal trussrod rod adjustments here at the shore. One thing I noticed is the graphite neck of my Peavey GBass doesn't require any adjustment...that's a refreshing change.