Washer trick not working on my ‘78 P-Bass...

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Jason Allender, Nov 24, 2020.

  1. Jason Allender

    Jason Allender

    Jan 11, 2020
    So, I bought 1978 Yamaha Lawsuit P-Bass (Pulser Bass 400) a few months back. It has a bowed neck, but I wasn’t too worried as it wasn’t that bad.

    The seller was cool (it was shipped from Japan) and gave me a partial refund for the inconvenience since he advertised the neck as straight in the listing.

    Now that I’ve had time to mess with it, the bow isn’t coming out very easily. I tried putting it in clamps after removing the truss nut and then reinstalling the nut after I achieved appropriate back bow...went right back.

    Then, I tried adding washers...I’m up to 5 (thin) washers and it’s made a dent in the bow, but not much.

    I have read about maybe leaving it in the clamps for several days, but haven’t tried that yet.

    anyone else dealt with a neck this stubborn?!
  2. Lownote38


    Aug 8, 2013
    Nashville, TN
    Yes, and heat treatment can solve the problem.. Eric at warpedneck.com can help. Look it up.
  3. Jason Allender

    Jason Allender

    Jan 11, 2020
    Here’s a picture of my 70’s Princess

    Attached Files:

  4. 96tbird

    96tbird PLEASE STAND BY

    First: washers. They are used when your nut runs out of threads. Add a washer and it adds about 1mm threads available. Maybe a full turn. That quite a gain. Two washers will probably get you near three turns; that’s a whole lot. That’s considering a 1mm thick washer.

    Five washers and you’ve likely entered overkill by three. They aren’t going to help combat a bad neck. They only solve the problem of “run out of threads”.

    Second, it seems to me that isn’t your main issue. You clamp the neck, snug the nut, then put it all back together and string tension pulls it into relief. It seems to me that you didn’t get enough back bow into it to counter string tension in the first place. Set it to hold a good visible back bow with the nut snugged up before assembly. Bend that neck!

    This all assumes that the truss rod is secure and functioning properly. Do you consider that your rod seems secure and functional: no rotating freely, odd sounds as you tighten it up etc?
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2020
    Fishheadjoe and RSBBass like this.
  5. Jason Allender

    Jason Allender

    Jan 11, 2020
    Sorry I’ve went awol for a while...this year I’ve been spread so thin doing so many odd and/or real jobs it’s crazy...anyway...

    I actually did put quite a bit of back-bow into it. Enough that it started to worry me-and still only reduced bow by a little over half.

    I decided to get some maple, full heel neck shims to take the repair the rest of the way, and it plays beautifully now.

    It’s not what I’d call perfect, but it’s very highly acceptable to me. So much so, that it’s my favorite bass to play lately.

    Thanks for all the suggestions everyone!
  6. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician
    Shims won't fix a neck bow. Your solution is a poor compromise. I recommend that you get the neck heat treated to that it is straight without string or trussrod tension then set it up properly.
    Lownote38, 96tbird and Zooberwerx like this.
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    Primary TB Assistant

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