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Neck bow and Fret level

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Waabs, Oct 8, 2004.


  1. Waabs

    Waabs Employee, Musical Instrument Retail

    Aug 1, 2004
    Australia
    I like a little bow on the neck of my bass but I've been wondering how this relates to the level of the frets. If the frets are levelled when the neck is completely straight and then the bass is strung up and the bow added to the neck is this right? Or should the frets be levelled with the same bow that is desired when the bass is strung up?

    Sorry if this seems like a dumb question!
     
  2. especially since the situation sounds like a big contradiction!

    Frets are leveled with the neck adjusted to as perfectly flat as it can be. On a well adjusted neck, leveling has more of an effect on the first 3 or so frets closest to the fretted note. It doesn't much affect the relationship between frets at far ends of the neck. By that I mean, between neck relief bow and neck angle, the strings clear the frets by a wide margin. If the 19th fret is a little high, it won't likely be evident when playing in the first position. That's why leveling is done with a straight neck - no matter what the actual shape (bow) of the neck is, the group of frets around the fretted note are relatively the same height and if one is substantially higher, you'll get the buzz.

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Waabs

    Waabs Employee, Musical Instrument Retail

    Aug 1, 2004
    Australia
    Exactly what I was looking for and very helpful. Much appreciated. :)