String height.

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Donald Wormuth, Mar 24, 2021.

  1. I did my own set up on my Washburn. I used their factory settings. Now according to the spec sheet. When it was set up at the factory standard tuning. It came with 105-45 strings 7/64 on #4 5/64 #1. Now I put 110-55 on it. Inset string height to their specifications. Now since I use the larger gauge screen should I have changed the string height. Or is that just standard height. I'm amazed how much better it sounds and plays.. I did the complete action setup truss rod action. I used John Caruthers videos to do it. Checked truss rod action height at 7th. With feeler gauge .015 Action height at the 7th fret. Check and set my string heights at according to his video. Where neck meets the body. Even though other videos said checking at the 12th. I have a brand new Jackson js2 Spectra and their specs are identical. Now I'm going to set it up for D standard. With 110-55 because I'm using a heavier gauge string. Does that change the string height? I also set the intonation. Because the action on this new thing is extremely high. In the intonation is horrible. I haven't checked yet check the neck relief for the truss rod action. It looks like it's off just my eyeball. Now also I have a BC Rich Warlock. But I am going to set up to play in drop B. Which is already got the strings in it it's already turned to drop B. The action is a little high. I imagine I'm going to have to probably file the nut or buy one for the specific strings I'm using. I have a Luthiers toolkit. With pretty much everything I need to do it files everything. by putting my next straight edge on my jacks and I can see that the relief is pretty heavy. I guess what I'm trying to get at when setting the action does anything change by the thickness of the strings. Plus or minus. I'm pretty comfortable doing it myself done one or two myself over the years. I'm going to check pick up height. But I probably won't touch it unless it's really far off because it sounds great. Plays great 200% than it did. Oh yeah one more thing the bridge saddle on the E. Can't go any lower than where it's at. It is bottomed out. Is that ok. The others have very minimal amount to go lower. Maybe a 32nd.
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2021
  2. JKos


    Oct 26, 2010
    Surprise, AZ
    That action at the 7th fret sounds really, really high to me. You should easily be able to go down to that at the 17th fret.

    What does it currently measure at the 17th fret?
    Donald Wormuth likes this.
  3. 7/64 5/64 is at 17th. 7th was done with a feeler gauge according to the video. .015 inch. I checked that by putting a capo across the strings on the first fret. And threading the e at the 17th. Measured the distance between the bottom of the string and the top of the 7th fret. The fractional measurements were done at the 17th fret
    Zooberwerx likes this.
  4. JKos


    Oct 26, 2010
    Surprise, AZ
    Ah, ok. What you checked at the 7th fret is called relief, not action height.
  5. According to google, Sting is 5'11"
  6. Yeah I know but the video calls it truss action height I just worded it wrong. Yeah my Jackson to relief is way bowed. I put my notch straight edge flat straight edge on it. it's pretty messed up coming from the factory. In the action at the 12th fret is like 12/64 on the Bass side and 8/64 is on the treble side. Action is super high.
  7. I tried changing it but it won't let me edit that. That's pretty funny though thanks I needed the laff/laugh
  8. Oh! ... I have an edit for ya. Well, more like an inclusion:
  9. Any factory setup numbers are a guideline. Use those and adjust from there. I have some instruments that seem happy and play well at the factory numbers and others that end up different. If you’re lowering the pitch on the same gauge of strings I suspect you may end up raising the string height and/or adding a little relief but start with the factory numbers and change as needed.
    Donald Wormuth and Zooberwerx like this.
  10. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    On the high side IMO. Ay way you can nudge it lower, perhaps .012"?

    boggus likes this.
  11. baileyboy

    baileyboy Inactive

    Aug 12, 2010
    Sting is approximately 6' tall.
  12. dwizum


    Dec 21, 2018
    That's 1.55 Precision basses tall!
    macmanlou and Guzzi Toad like this.
  13. RStanger


    May 13, 2010
    Is it possible that the larger diameter strings are riding a bit higher in the nut? That could fractionally raise the action.
  14. Dirk Diggler

    Dirk Diggler Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Anytown USA
    Yes larger diameter strings (not sting's LOL) will always raise the action.
    The largeness happens on both the playing side and the saddle side, and the nut of course as well but only half the amount.
  15. The Washburn was a hand-me-down, someone gave it to me after my house burnt down. Burned up all my equipment. I sent that to factory specs with larger gauge strings and it plays amazing now. I couldn't believe the difference in tone, how sustained increase in the held the note in tune for a very long period of time compared to where it was. Before you plug it in a couple seconds and stay in tune then it would fluctuate a lot. Now it stays even for a while. But the only thing is is at the factory specs. the bridge saddle on the E is bottomed out. Couldn't lower it anymore if I wanted to. Unless I was to upgrade the bridge, which I have contemplated. The A&D I've got maybe a 32'd or two. The G I got a little bit of space. Today I'm going to either work on my Warlock, or my Jackson. Thank you for the reply.
  16. I have a question, I read in a forum that if you measure the length of your scale.You can preset the basic intonation of your bass by taking a tape measure and measuring from the inside of the nut to the center of the 12th fret (the fret wire itself; not the fingerboard). Double that measurement to find the scale length of your bass. And use that measure from the nut to the middle of the bridge saddle. Does that work better. I just left from where they were and then adjusted the intonation afterwards. Which seems to have worked fine. I didn't measure anything but this question just came to mind right now. I figured I could measure it and check the how accurate it is to what the The forum said. I was going to use that if it's better way to do it. On my Jackson just to see if there's a difference. But if it's better to do the way that I did do it and I would just do the same way.

  17. If the saddles need to be adjusted lower that would be the point where you’d need to shim the neck, assuming it’s a bolt on. If it’s not a bolt on you could also grind some off of the bottom of the saddles or route a recess in the body for the bridge.
    Donald Wormuth likes this.
  18. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    Factory specs are essentially meaningless. A bass isn't a car engine. If anything setup is like the adjustment of the driver's seat. Different for every person.

    Straighten the neck until there's too much buzz below the 12th fret then dial a little more back in until you have exactly the amount of buzz you want. Do the same with lowering the bridge saddles for buzz above the 12th. Then correct the intonation with an accurate tuner.

    That results in the right setup for you as an individual, the kind of strings you're using and how level the frets are on that individual bass.

    You locate the bridge when replacing it or building a body to fit a premade neck with the nut to 12 x2 distance. You measure intonation with an accurate tuner.
  19. Bass Ameg

    Bass Ameg

    Mar 9, 2019
    If you use heavier gauge strings you must readjust the neck relief, because thicker strings need more tension to tune up. Without readjusting the relief, you'll get an increased neck bow causing higher action that cannot be adjusted by simply lowering the saddles because it'll buzz like hell.
  20. I did the set up with the strings 110-55 on it. Not with 105-45 its perfect and saved my self around $100.00