Truss rod problem

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by waygorked, Sep 17, 2017.

  1. waygorked

    waygorked Senior Member

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    Folks,

    I built a Precision Kits arch top a few months back. It turned out great, and I was very happy with the final product. When I first set it up it didn't seem to need any truss rod adjustment. I just strung it up with 11-49s, dropped the bridge to an appropriate level of action, and it surprisingly had exactly the correct amount of neck bow.

    A few months in, my action has been getting higher. I'm adjusting the rod, and can't get rid of the current excessive neck bow. The rod is as tight as it wants to go without risking damage. The bow starts at the edge of the neck heel, and it seems to climb up from the heel to the last fret.

    I fear that letting it sit with a truss rod that was apparently too loose may have distorted the shape of my neck. Either that, or the truss rod was not properly installed. I've never heard of a PGK with a bad truss rod installation, so I'm assuming this is my fault somehow.

    Any suggestions on how to deal with this?
     
  2. Leña_Costoso

    Leña_Costoso Senior Member

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    One thing to always try, is to take the tension off the strings, and see if you can get any further adjustment.
     
  3. waygorked

    waygorked Senior Member

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    That was the first thing I tried. It's currently sitting with no strings on and the rod fully tightened in the hopes that it will straighten again. I've been reading about heating it up with an iron for 10 minutes and then clamping it hard to a straight edge. Any other thoughts?
     
  4. vetteman

    vetteman Member

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    I think the iron gimmick is bad advice and destined to ruin the neck. Have you considered lighter string gauges for less "pull"?
     
    D Rhinehart likes this.
  5. D Rhinehart

    D Rhinehart Senior Member

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    Do you have any pics ? are you talking a back bow or excessive relief?
     
  6. waygorked

    waygorked Senior Member

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    I'm not sure if this was something from construction, or something I did (I'm assuming the latter), but the rod did not seem to have the range to correct the excessive relief. I removed the truss rod nut and threaded in a couple of washers. This gave me the half-turn I needed, and now everything is fine, with tremendous low action.

    In the process I tore out a chunk of the ebony veneer where it meets the nut. Now I'm off to fabricate some kind of PRS-esque truss rod cover to hide the damage.
     
  7. The Ballzz

    The Ballzz Senior Member

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    What you did is exactly what I would have suggested. Well, all except for tearing out a chunk of the ebony veneer! :doh: Oh well, they say sh!t happens, and at my age, I just hope it happens every day! :p
    Best Of Luck To Ya,
    Gene
     

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