For all of us novices, I just wanted to relate something that happened to me in the hope someone will benefit from it. I have learned a whole lot on this forum, but have never been warned about checking the truss rod adjuster on a bass (this could even apply to a new one). I bought an absolutely mint bass from a trusted dealer, I swear this thing looked like it had never even been picked up. The action was a little higher than I liked, but it was still a very good playing bass. I did notice I would get a little sloppy during the 3rd or 4th set, but figured it was endurance. Eventually, I decided to decrease the relief, but found out I would need a special tool. Since by then I had a Lakland, I put off getting the tool for quite a long time. Long story short, the end of the truss rod was stripped. At worst, this could require a rod replacement. My advice is to always take off the truss rod cover, ask for the truss rod tool, and give it a little turn to make sure all is right. It could save you a lot of grief.