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Oooops, looks like the old strings were .008's LOL

setup_trem_angle1.jpg (54201 bytes)

If you can't tell why you should vist the Trem Angle part of the Tech section. The trem is angled far forward and I'm not close to tune yet. One quick look inside the trem cavity tells me the claw is way too far out. Screw the claw in to add enough string tension for 009's. I'll eyeball this in to about where I know it should be.

setup_trem_cavity1.jpg (63168 bytes)

This is normally where it should be with a .009 setup.

setup_trem_cavity2.jpg (61130 bytes)

After getting the strings in perfect tune could you believe the angle was perfect, I never touched the claw again! ;-) Check out that knife edge. Where's the knife edge? You didn't visit the Tech Section did you?

setup_trem_angle2.jpg (61481 bytes)

Time to clean the nut pads and get them back on the nut, do not tighten yet. A huge part of a double locking trem keeping tune is stretching in the strings. Just grab the string around the end of the fretboard and yank it back and forth with vigor! I'll usually work the string from nut to bridge from around the 9th fret to the pickups, and back again. The high E you have to be 'delicate' with but it won't stretch much anyway. The bigger the string the more it will stretch and they need to be stretched hard until you can stretch them good 2 times in a row with miniscule change in tune. Have fun with the low B! LOL I pull harder than shown, I just can't do it and take a picture at the same time.

setup_string3.jpg (61577 bytes)

With all the strings stretched and at aproximate pitch it's time to check the neck bow. I do this by eye, sighting down the edge of the neck into the glare of a light, getting the glare right on the edge of the frets illuminating just their end edge. This I can't show you in a pic or explain how much bow I want to see. Preferrably on the bass side I want to see minisclue bow from the end to about the 7th and then smooth bow to the nut, with the trebble side straight. That's a perfect situation, but not all necks cooperate. You can also check bow by fretting at the 1st and 24th fret and checking the gap in the center of the neck, around the 9th. (try fretting at the first and fretting at the 24th with your elbow while you try and take a picture!:)

setup_relief.jpg (40703 bytes)

This neck has a little more bow than I like, and it's very smooth even bow down the whole neck, both trebble and bass sides, a little more on the bass. I'll give the truss a few 1/4 turns and see what happens.

setup_truss.jpg (51215 bytes)

Just slightly straighter but as I figured, it starts to backbow from the 3rd to the nut, this neck is destined to the bow it has. This isn't a problem, it's just not *perfect*. Guitar necks will take on many different personalities and you need to adjust them to play as well as that neck will. Minor inconsistencies can be taken care of with fretwork. I checked to see if any serious fretwork would be needed as that would be done before the board was polished. That way you clean all the fret dust, which can be considerable, out of the woods pores with the steel wool when you polish the board. I'm moving on to the action.



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Revised: June 24, 2009.