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new to fourm and need help

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by jimi86, Feb 17, 2013.

  1. jimi86


    Feb 17, 2013
    I just got back from Iraq, 5 years gone. now Im home. My boy (14) wanted a bass. I found a Fender p-bass I got for 100 Bucks, after stringing it up I saw the neck was bowed up. I tryed to tighten the truss rod and It poped. it was lose but I did get it to tighten. but it is still bowed ( action to high). Did I brake the truss rod? It is tight. what do I need to do? thanks for any feedback.
  2. jimi86


    Feb 17, 2013
    any help?
  3. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    If the truss rod literally popped when you tightened it, I'd venture a guess that it could be broken.

    How much did you turn it when you tried to adjust it?
  4. jbossolo

    jbossolo Supporting Member

    Sep 22, 2011
    First, thanks for your service bro! ARMY reserve MAJ here, retired. It sounds like the truss rod gave up the ghost. I'd post this on the lutherie section. Take care, and glad you're back home!
  5. Uncle K

    Uncle K The bass player doesn't get a sandwich Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2011
    Erie, PA
    Sounds like the truss rod broke or maxxed out. If so I recommend buying a used neck here on the classified for $100-$150.

    Good luck, and thanks for your service.
  6. jimi86


    Feb 17, 2013
    Thanks all and thats what I thought. but the truss is tighting. just not boing back. And I can tune it and play it, its the action is high.
  7. Welcome back, if I can say so from England. A mod will probably shift this to setup, maintenance and repair section for you; they're very helpful.

    In the meantime, it sounds to me like the truss rod is now just spinning around in its channel and turning the allen key won't straighten the neck. This advice is almost certainly too late for this neck, but trussrod adjustment is something to take slowly - I do a 1/4 turn and leave it for a while, or a day, or longer - never fighting more than moderate resistance. A pity, as a Fender P for $100 was a very good deal. A Mighty Mite neck would get it up and running again, without costing as much as you've already spent but it depends on what bass you got - it might be worth spending some more.

    Have you got details on the bass from the headstock?
  8. Do you have a picture of it? Guess you broke it (stripped of the nut). There are two ways of fixing, depending on the type of damage. You could drill out the hole around the nut and try to remove the whole rod through that hole and insert a new one. Or you could re-do the nut attachment with a StewMac repair kit: http://www.stewmac.com/shop/Tools/Special_tools_for_Truss_rods/Truss_Rod_Rescue_Kit.html?actn=100101&xst=3&xsr=1232. This enables you to thread the rod that's left and install a new nut.

    Another tip on tightning the rod: bow the neck by hand in the right position and then tighten the rod. This takes the stress away from the nut. You could just place it on your knees and push it in the opposite direction with your elbow while having your hands free to tighten the nut. Of course you have expensive tools for this as well, but this works for me :D.

    If the bow is severe, don't do it at once but every few days a bit.
  9. Floyd Eye

    Floyd Eye Banned

    Feb 21, 2010
    St. Louis
    Thanks for your service brother. It is very much appreciated.

    Please post pictures of the bass if possible. Surely someone here will be able to help you out.
  10. jimi86


    Feb 17, 2013
    It dose tighten.
  11. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    How much are you turning the rod?

    I'm asking, because if you're turning it more than say 1/4 turn at a time, it's too much. If you've turned it significantly more than that in one shot, I'd be concerned.
  12. Okay, by this I think you mean it still works? If so, great, then just do what I said above: bend the neck before tightening the rod in the position you want it, tighten the nut, check your progress, bend again, tighten et cetera. If you feel it's getting a bit too much, let the neck sit for a day and proceed with this process, until you've reached the desired setup.
  13. Sonicfrog

    Sonicfrog Supporting Member

    Jan 4, 2008
    Fresno, CA
    Neck is bolt on, correct? If it's stripped, just replace the neck. easier, and probably cheaper.
  14. jimi86


    Feb 17, 2013
    like 3 turns
  15. jimi86


    Feb 17, 2013
    Yes and Thats what Im thinking, but need to find a fender p-bass neck. and come up with some money
  16. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    The truss rod will only straighten the neck, it will not lower the action. If the neck is straight, then you might have to lower the bridge saddles to lower the string height. Here's how to check if the neck is straight, or near straight: Fret the E string at the first fret with your left hand, then fret it at the last fret with the right hand. Now, how much gap exists between the string at the 9th fret? If there is a slight gap (about the thickness of a couple of business cards) then the neck is as straight as is should be. If the gap is much bigger than that, then you might need to consider a replacement neck. If there is no gap (read: the strings are resting on the 9th fret), then the neck is "backbowed" and you shoud loosen the truss rod.
  17. Bassist4Eris

    Bassist4Eris Frat-Pack Sympathizer

    I was just typing this, only not as succinct. Glad I refreshed first. So, +1.

    If it turns out that your truss rod is broken, here's a fairly inexpensive replacement neck. No personal experience, but they have a good reputation:

  18. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    3 full turns? That's a lot.

    When you turn the rod clockwise does it spin freely?
  19. Bobster


    Mar 27, 2006
    Austin, TX
    First, based on your lack of experience with this (no offense intended) I'd recommend you take it in to a guitar ship for a setup.

    Secondly, if truss rod adjustments are still working, and the rod isn't spinning freely (no resistance at all) there is a fair chance it's not broken. Sometimes a neck will make noise when being adjusted, but I don't recommend you continuing to tighten it under pressure.

    Loosen the strings a lot (or remove) and see if you can see the headstock end of the neck moving very slightly as you loosen and tighten it and verify the resistance increases as you tighten.

    If it passes this test, take it in for a setup. After that's done, you can read through here and learn how to set it up yourself.

    All the best!

  20. It seems like you've had a lucky break (my puns are awful, today). Bobster's advice to pay for a setup is sound; they don't charge a great deal considering how much the bass is improved. In the meantime, if you like a visual runthrough, I think you'd gain from going to Youtube and typing "John Carruthers bass setup". Watch all four steps (although step 3, nut filing, is not cheap to get files the right size and can still be messed up. That's why a recommended tech is a good thing. Search here on TB; there is a "recommend a tech" thread).