Lazy Maintenance Routine?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by malthumb, Apr 28, 2002.

  1. This routine is wierd

    2 vote(s)
  2. This routine is lazy

    1 vote(s)
  3. This routine is wierd and lazy

    0 vote(s)
  4. This routine is efficient

    3 vote(s)
  5. Why on earth would you let a guitar player in your house

    9 vote(s)
  1. malthumb


    Mar 25, 2001
    The Motor City
    A friend who's a spare time guitarist, like I'm a spare time bassist, was over to the house while I was watching a game and doing some routine maintenance on my basses. He proclaimed my polishing process to be "lame, lazy, wierd, and just plain wrong". Using my six string as an example, you be the judge:

    1) Loosen B, E, and A strings enough to remove them from the bridge, but leave on the tuning posts.

    2) Polish the "bass" side of the bass.

    3) Reattach the B, E, and A to the bridge.

    4) Tune the A string relative to the D, then E to A and B to E.

    5) Loosen D, G, and C strings enough to remove them from the bridge, but leave on the tuning posts.

    6) Polish the "treble" side of the bass.

    7) Reattach the D, G, and C to the bridge.

    8) Tune the D string relative to the A, G to the D, and C to the G.

    9) Polish the back.

    He claims I should totally remove all strings, then polish, then restring and readjust my action. My response was something like " :p "

    Whaddaya think?


  2. Why remove your strings to polish your bass ? jou know.. strings can also move sideways..
  3. chucko58


    Jan 17, 2002
    Silicon Valley, CA, USA
    I paid for all my gear myself. Well, me and MasterCard.
    You want lazy? Don't bother to polish your bass at all. :)

    I will oil the fingerboard every other time I change strings or so. That works out to about every 9 months.

    I don't worry about fingerprints under the strings on the body.
  4. I can see where you're coming from James. I do it too sort of. When i change strings i leave 2 or 3 of the 5 on there to keep the tension. So i don't have to adjust the truss rod often. ;)

    So too i take off the B and E, clean it all, then restring, then do the next two etc.



    I'll leave this here for a while. It seems ok, thanks for the PM.
  5. malthumb


    Mar 25, 2001
    The Motor City
    Exactly!! Also, I'd just as soon not fool with rewinding strings around the posts if I know I'm not changing them.


  6. Haha cool someone agrees with me on this board... *bookmarks thread* lol


  7. I think the routine is fine if that's what you like to do. The only thing that I have always been contrary to is the idea that the neck must have tension on it at all times to maintain it's setup.

    I just don't believe it at all! Here's why:

    We all know that weather changes are the main reason that we have to adjust our truss rods. And even that is usually a simple 1/8 or 1/4 turn at the most. We then recommend letting the adjustment sit awhile to "set-in". When I change strings, I completely remove them from the bass so that I can clean the fretboard more efficiently. How long are the strings off of the bass? Probably 30 minutes at the most. Now, if we insist that an adjustment of the truss rod takes several days to "set-in" then I fail to see how 30 minutes without string tension is going to have an effect at all on the neck relief. Additionally, how would a truss rod get out of adjustment with this process? It can't turn by itself - it can't do anything by itself. If there is a slight backbowing during string installation then it will immediately return to it's original position when the strings are put on. And, it will come to rest against the truss rod tension just as it was 30 minutes prior when the strings were removed.

    No, don't get all excited about leaving the strings on during cleaning - it doesn't have any discernible affect on setup.
  8. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    I restring basses about every 6-8 weeks or so.

    In 16 years of playing, (that would make for well more than 100 re-strings) I have ALWAYS removed all the strings, polished the frets, cleaned the dust and goo out of the hard to reach places and then installed the new strings.

    In all my experience, I have never once had to re-adjust the truss rod as long as I installed the same make, model and guage of string.

    Of course any variation in the string that you use can change the relief at tension and thus require a truss adjustment.

  9. Aaron


    Jun 2, 2001
    Bellingham, WA
    I don't see why it is lazy... Why do extra work to get the same job done? I think for it to be lazy, there has to be a half-assed outcome.
  10. you say lazy like it's a bad thing. think about it: being lazy takes a lot more thought and energy to come up with than the standard job would to just do..........if that makes sense. i'm always impressed by the lengths lazy people will go to to avoid doing a job the expected way.
  11. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    Tell your buddy that the "hard" way isn't necessarily always the best way. Doing something the "easy" way can save time, energy, expense and a helluva lot of aggravation on your part! FWIW, I think the way you polish your fretboard is the hard way! Why not just worry 'bout the polishing when you change your strings? Now, if you never change your strings...

    If you want lazy, my ex-guitarist was so lazy, when the 9-volt battery went dead on his wah-wah pedal, he used his backup wah instead of changing the battery in his main one (this wasn't at a gig either, it was at practice)!
  12. malthumb


    Mar 25, 2001
    The Motor City
    The routine I described is for polishing all but the fretboard. I do the fretboard with lemon oil every other string change.

    I use this routine to polish the body and neck (except fretboard) generally once a month, all three basses, irrespective of string changes.


  13. You do what works for YOU.
  14. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    If you're just polishing the bass, why take the strings off? I polish my basses often & I never take off the strings.:confused: My cloth goes under the strings.

  15. Aww but i do get excited! about as much fun as laying the smackdown in problem threads! :)


  16. malthumb


    Mar 25, 2001
    The Motor City
    Just to avoid gunking the strings up with finish polish. I figure if sweat and moisture can deaden strings, polish build up would probably do it even quicker. I wouldn't mind being wrong on this one.