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Loose truss rod nut

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by fourstringdrums, Jun 10, 2005.


  1. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    I just got a Warwick Corvette Std. Fretless and after letting the neck acclimate for a few days, I decided to put alittle bit more relief in the neck. However, I noticed that when turning the truss rod, it felt really loose...too loose, like the nut was loose. So I turned it clockwise until it snugged up a bit and left it there.

    Should I be worried about this? I still would like a teeny bit more relief in the neck, but if I go counter clockwise the nut is going go loose again, and the neck is pretty darn straight as it is.

    Suggestions?
     
  2. Ebay?
     
  3. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    No, straight from Warwick
     
  4. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    No one has any idea about this?
     
  5. I was suggesting Ebay as a possible solution....

    But if you just got it straight from Warwick, I'd contact them before you do something that might void the warranty. Sounds pretty fishy, maybe defective....

    Randy
     
  6. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    Well It's snug now and it turns left or right with tension. I don't know maybe the neck already had more relief than I was seeing and it couldn't get any more.
     
  7. All of the Warwicks I've worked on had double action rods. When you turn the rod clockwise, it bends the neck backwards like a normal rod. If you turn it counterclockwise from the slack, or middle spot that you seem to be in now, it bends the neck the other way, increasing relief. Try 1/4 turn counterclockwise from the slack point, and you should get a little more relief.

    All the usual rules apply. Tune to pitch, don't force anything, proceed very slowly, and check your progress constantly. Those rods will snap!

    I always shoot for a straight or nearly straight neck on fretless basses, to maximize the growl and mwaah effect. That doesn't work for everyone!
     
  8. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    Yea as I play it more there seems to be a bit more bad buzz coming from the upper frets, so I think that I may need a straighter neck. I straightened it a bit, but I'm noticing that it doesn't straighten as quickly as I'm used to. Do Warwicks sometimes take a few days before a straight adjustment takes affect? I'm used to somewhat immediate results, although I know not to go cranking it. 1/4 at a time.

    Why is there a middle or "slack point" with these rods? I guess I'm just not understanding how these type of rods work. You turn clockwise for less relief and counterclockwise for less right? (looking down toward the bridge of course).
     
  9. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Bad buzz from the upper frets? Get a better handle on your neck relief before you continue. Here's an easy way to check relief: Fret the G string at the 1st and last fret, there should be a gap approx. the thickness of a cardboard match between the G string and top of the 9th fret (~middle of the fretboard). A near-straight neck is undesirable as it will create fret buzz. Once the neck relief is set, adjust your string height at the bridge saddles to taste.

    Riis
     
  10. I never noticed Warwicks to be slower to respond to rod adjustments than other basses. I have found the necks to be nice and stiff, and I've seen Warwicks that play great with no rod tension at all! Those particular basses, with the particular strings that were on it, arrived at the optimum relief (or lack of relief) for the individual player, with just string tension and neck shape working together. I just adjusted the rod snug in one direction or another to prevent it from rattling around in there! Yours might not be moving much, or seem to be moving slowly, because you are applying very little tension, just starting from the slack point. Be patient!

    The area between tension in one direction or another, the middle or "slack" area, is caused by loose manufacturing tolerances. One industry term, commonly used by journeyman machinists and engineers, is "slop". We also encounter it when we tune our machine heads in one direction, then turn them in the opposite direction. You can feel a temporary looseness that is caused by looser tolerances than might occur in a watch, for instance. This makes it easier to assemble the units, keeps the costs down, and while it would be nice if it weren't there, we can still get along fine. Don't worry about it!

    I would strongly recommend that you read the sticky entitled "All truss rod questions answered here" or something like that on the top of the setup forum. If you want to get serious about this stuff, get a copy of The Guitar Player Repair Guide and a copy of How To Make Your Electric Guitar Play Great! These manuals are on point and easy to use. JK Lutherie or StewMac handle them and they are out of sight!

    Zoob's comment on straight vs. relief are well taken when we're talking about fretted necks, but I think if you check out a lot of fretless basses and fretless bass players, you will find that the tendency is for less relief. Brett Carlson of M.V. Pedulla talks about this in TGPRG. It is a matter of personal taste, of course. There are a heck of a lot of variables, and the most important one is your idea of great tone! Your voice will probably require a different setup than mine, or most other players. This is one reason to buy those books and read them, so you can search for different setups to accomodate your playing style, bass, strings, etc. without having to pay someone to perform the tweaks!

    Did this help? Please let us know what works for you, because that might get someone else started in the right direction.
     
  11. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    Yes this did help. I did try what the above poster said about getting the relief right first, so I went back to the slack point and turned a bit until it felt snug and gave a 1/4 turn or so, so we'll see what happens here.
     
  12. I've never gotten a fretless neck to play exactly the way I want it to all over the neck. The best I can do is get the sweet spots where I want them. Settle on a string brand and gauge and start experimenting. The tone is in there, it's just a matter of getting relief and saddle height dialed in so it works with your playing technique.

    Another thought: most factory basses ship with higher than optimal nut slots. Fretlesses usually do fine with a very low nut, so that's where I usually start. It affects the overall action height. Warwicks I've worked on are generally good basses, but they have to set them up at the factory with "NO BUZZES" as their first priority, so don't feel bad if it takes some tweaking to get it near perfect!
     
  13. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    Yea I'm still tweaking :) I notice there is an overall buzz or growl to the E string especially, and I'm not sure if that's the Warwick growl I keep hearing about. It's strange though, on the E at the 14th fret position, there seems to be more buzz than everywhere else on the neck...only in that one spot though..the 13th or 15th fret there is nothing.