Truss rod adjustment on new guitar

brianbzed

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I was in a local guitar shop today and started playing a 2017 LP traditional that caught my eye. I immediately realized that there was way too much neck relief, so I asked the tech there to tighten the truss rod on it. After that it played and sounded great. My question is, if a brand new guitar needs a substantial truss rod adjustment, could that be a sign of some underlying problem or is that within the realm of normal?
Not usually a problem, ALL my Gibsons needed a little tweaking when I first got them. I've only bought one new guitar (solidbody) that didn't need any adjustment.....my Carvin DC.
 

chasenblues

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Not sure what you mean by this. Comparing the height of the bridge to the width of a dime/nickel?

Something like this,

Guitar-Tone-8.jpg
 
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Just bought the guitar, I'll post pics when I get the chance.

I measured the action directly and it's about 5/64" on the low e and a hair under 4/64" on the high e (I start getting too much buzzing on the b string of I go lower), so pretty good to me.
 

Cjsinla

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I think it's within the realm of normal. I gotta tell you, I wanna take tools with me every time I go to GC for that very reason. Every Gibson I seem to try out has high action (easy enough to tweak while nobody's looking) and needs a neck adjustment.

I used to take a tuning fork in. They play slinky in the store and differently at home i found out they frequently tune down 1/2 step.
 

endial

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Just bought the guitar, I'll post pics when I get the chance.

I measured the action directly and it's about 5/64" on the low e and a hair under 4/64" on the high e (I start getting too much buzzing on the b string of I go lower), so pretty good to me.

We'll need photographic evidence. (Congratulations!)
 

Thumpalumpacus

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Not sure what you mean by this. Comparing the height of the bridge to the width of a dime/nickel?

Nah, what he does is lays a nickel on the 12th fret low E and lowers the bridge until the strings hold it in place, then repeats the process on the high E with the dime. I don't do it that way myself -- I use the Mk I eyeball and a little playing -- but I end up spec'd out pretty much as he describes his setup, maybe a tad higher.
 

PierM

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I was in a local guitar shop today and started playing a 2017 LP traditional that caught my eye. I immediately realized that there was way too much neck relief, so I asked the tech there to tighten the truss rod on it. After that it played and sounded great. My question is, if a brand new guitar needs a substantial truss rod adjustment, could that be a sign of some underlying problem or is that within the realm of normal?

Totally normal. Guitars are using a trussrod because they need it.
 

marksoundguitars

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Every new build I ship has a basic setup. I advise my customers that a new guitar needs to settle in and might need further adjustment. If they have a favorite tech, they should take it in for a full custom setup to their preference.
 

Leña_Costoso

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US Dime - .054 inches. As close to 3.5/64ths as you can do by eye.
US Nickel - .077 inches. Just an RCH shy of 5/64ths.

Nice trick. Not bad starting points at all! Dunno about the "holds the coin in place" thing, that would imply tension, which would upset the measurement. To me its more like "just rests on the coin". But still... nice pocket gauge to go by.

Thanks for mentioning that!
 
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I've been playing with the action a little more and I can get the high e down just a little under 4/64", then the b string starts buzzing more than I'd like. Is that normal?
 

grayd8

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Completely normal, seems like the longer I have a guitar the less I adjust the truss rod.
 

endial

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I've been playing with the action a little more and I can get the high e down just a little under 4/64", then the b string starts buzzing more than I'd like. Is that normal?

Yup.
That, to me, is the signal to stop. Adjust it right around where you can tolerate the "buzzing" (plug in and check what your amp tells you, too), and from that point is where you can tweak the truss rod to give maybe juuuussst a liiiiiiiitle more relief to get the action a hair lower, IF at all necessary. Ultimately, you should begin with the neck straight(ish) and do this.
 

Thumpalumpacus

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US Dime - .054 inches. As close to 3.5/64ths as you can do by eye.
US Nickel - .077 inches. Just an RCH shy of 5/64ths.

Nice trick. Not bad starting points at all! Dunno about the "holds the coin in place" thing, that would imply tension, which would upset the measurement. To me its more like "just rests on the coin". But still... nice pocket gauge to go by.

Thanks for mentioning that!

You'd have to ask @Malikon how he does it exactly, and whether he prefers pre-1964 silver dimes. :p
 

Thumpalumpacus

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I've been playing with the action a little more and I can get the high e down just a little under 4/64", then the b string starts buzzing more than I'd like. Is that normal?

You should be able to get 1/16" action there. Can you isolate the fret where it's buzzing?
 
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You should be able to get 1/16" action there. Can you isolate the fret where it's buzzing?

You mean 1/16" at the high e? I can get to 1/16" (4/64") on that string. When I go much lower the b string starts getting too buzzy, mostly around the 12th fret. 1/16" feels like a good height though. I checked my other guitars and it's about the same.
 
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