What happens with the truss rod?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Rambazamba, Mar 18, 2018.

  1. Rambazamba


    Dec 14, 2012
    I've got 2 Squier Jazz basses. One is a Classic Vibe. I haven't adjusted the truss rod in years, actually I can't even remember the last time. The other bass is a Standard Series (the limited edition in satin pewter with matching headstock) and I need to tighten the truss rod every 7 or 8 weeks. It's not a big deal but I wonder how long I can keep on doing so. It's usually over a full turn. Can anyone tell me what's happening with my truss rod? Is it really the pull of the strings that bows the neck so hard that I constantly need to tighten the truss rod? If so it's a matter of time until I run out of available leftover truss rod, right? Or is it possible that the pull of the strings loosens the nut of the truss rod and a bit of loctite will solve my problem?
  2. wvbass

    wvbass Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2004
    West Virginia
    The truss rod nut could be slipping, but I wouldn't use loctite on it. That sounds like a really bad idea. The ends of the truss rod could also be compressing the wood, which may eventually lead to trouble. If the neck just keeps moving more and more, it won't be too long before you tighten the truss rod as far as it will go.

    It could also be a poor quality truss rod, I suppose, and maybe it is stretching or bending in ways that it shouldn't?
  3. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    New England
    I own 4 basses. 2 bolt ons and 2 neck thru. IME
    one bolt on & one neck thru have very stable necks, an ocasional tweak.
    The other two seem to react to weather change in my area more and need
    truss adjustment monthly, 1/2 - 1 full turn.
  4. If you are tightening the tr that frequently, it is most likely crushing the wood at the end. You can use a washer or two but eventually it may either stabilize or deform the wood/fretboard around it. A full turn is a lot on a neck that was setup prior.
    Gilmourisgod likes this.
  5. And no loctite.
  6. Rambazamba


    Dec 14, 2012
    Ok! :thumbsup:

    So I'll just have to wait until I reach the final turn of the truss rod and eventually replace the neck. I'm just glad Leo invented the bolt-on neck! :D

    The quality gap between the Standard Squier and Classic Vibe is really astounding...
  7. 96tbird

    96tbird PLEASE STAND BY

    Every piece of wood is different. Even top shelf basses can have neck problems. But yes, lower cost do use greener wood, less desirable cuts, younger trees etc.

    What you describe really sounds like woid crushing under the truss nut. Get some washers under there. They give a bit more surface area against the wood. Fender makes and sells the right size washers for that purpose; get em.
  8. Slight zombie thread here, but I'm running into a similar issue. I'm in the process of rescuing a 2000 Squier Standard Precision - one of the PJ ones with a Jazz-width neck and Sherwood Green paint. The neck was really bowed, but I've been able to straighten it most of the way out with about 5 complete truss rod turns over the past couple of weeks. My target relief is .12 / .13, but for the past few days I need to add a 1/4 to keep it there -and by the end of the day it's more around .15. Am I in danger of snapping the rod or is this common with long-neglected basses? (The relief was more like a 1/4 in. when I found it.)
  9. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    The truss rod is designed to counter the tension of the strings, not to straighten a bowed neck. So the question is what's the condition of the neck when it's not under string tension and when the truss rod is loosened? Is it bowed? if so, that problem should be corrected first. But if it's flat, then the wood of the neck is not stiff enough - stiffening bars may be in order. But one has to wonder if it's worth the cost.
  10. hotbass57


    Nov 27, 2011
    I have a J neck that seems to move more. Noticeable here when it's hot and humid. My 72 Pbass hasn't been touched in years and still has awesome action.
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    Primary TB Assistant

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