Question on Shimming as neck to body angle adjustment

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Groovecenter, Nov 17, 2004.

  1. I've read of shims being used of course to raise the neck in the pocket when a bridge bottoms out, but for those who shim, do you also use shims to adjust the neck to body angle? By putting a shim behind the last two bolts (closest to the bridge) I've noticed the angle of the neck changes. When this angle changes the action drops higher on the fretboard while changing less down low.

    Also this is more theoretical, but would there be any benefit to shimming one side of the neck more than another. For example on a five string bass one might want the B string to have a little more height than their G string.

    Im tired and probably worded this somewhat horrendously so please ask questions if any clarity is needed.
  2. bazzanderson


    Oct 7, 2002
    Austin, TX
    I've only shimmed for this reason in the past...neck to body angle. If you needed one side of your FB action raised shimming would do the trick. Just be careful as a little bit of shim goes a LONG way.
  3. Lyle Caldwell

    Lyle Caldwell

    Sep 7, 2004
    If a string needs to be higher, raise the saddle. Use a shim if the saddles can't go low enough.

  4. Shimming just the back of the heel in the pocket, essentially "lowers" the headstock. This accomplishes the same thing as raising the entire neck in the pocket. However, it's better because:

    1. Pickup height won't be changing much if at all.
    2. A very small shim can make a huge difference in the drop at the headstock. To get the same kind of rise from a full pocket shim would require a pretty thick one. Less is more in this case.
    3. Increasing the relief in the neck will only raise the strings a small amount at the heel of instrument. If the whole neck were raised (and the fretboard kept perpendicular to the body plane) adding relief will raise the strings a lot at the heel of the neck.
  5. Thanks for the replies guys, Hambone you pretty much nailed that for me.