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Set Up Inquiry

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by JWC, May 19, 2001.

  1. JWC

    JWC Banned

    Oct 4, 2000
    This question may sound remedial but.....
    When I look at my action up and down the neck, the strings are higher toward the end and lower toward the top. I know this is ok, but can you get it set so the action is even? And if so will this help anything?
  2. Given that your neck is straight, the condition you've described is perfectly normal. Think of the bass as a large triangle balanced on it's middle point. One point is where the strings are attached to the neck, the second is where they are attached to the body and the third is the point at which the neck attaches to the body. If you enlarge the angle at the center point, the strings will lower themselves in relation to the neck. The way this is done is by "shimming" the neck by inserting some wafer thin material under the portion of the neck that is closest to the bridge. This will have the affect of flattening the angle and lower the strings at the bridge end of the neck. You don't need much thickness since the fulcrum (neck bolts) are so far biased toward the bottom of the neck. Strips cut from business cards will be a good starting point. After getting the neck parallel to the body, you will have to re-intonate and re-tune. You might also have to do some saddle adjustments to get the action to your liking.

    Hope this helps.
  3. JWC

    JWC Banned

    Oct 4, 2000
    That does help. But does it make playing any easier. Plucking at least?
  4. Well, if your style benefits from a lower action higher on the neck then yes, it would help. It wouldn't help with plucking. Besides, what's so hard about plucking anyway?? If you want to change the relative tension you experience while plucking, change the position that you attack the strings. Closer to the bridge has a "tighter" feel than, say, over the pups. It might take some time to get a feel for it but it's not hard.
  5. JWC

    JWC Banned

    Oct 4, 2000
    Ive played for years, but on my new P bass, i cant pluck the damn thing.

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