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String space

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String space

Post  NEDMInsane on Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:42 am

Hey guys new to the forum, been playing for 3 years, but i have a question.

I have changed string quite a few times by now and the first time i changed from the factory strings, the strings near the higher notes rose off the neck significantly. I became almost impossible to tap, now other techniques like walking and slapping/popping are fine i just need a bit more pressure to push them down, i was just wondering if there's something wrong here. How far off the bass should your strings be near the higher notes?

I had also read on the internet that the rod inside the neck might need adjusted. i never messed with it because i heard you can really screw up your bass that way. so would that need to be adjusted at a music store, or would it be okay to try it myself?

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Re: String space

Post  Stryfer on Thu Jan 05, 2012 9:02 am

I'd recommend taking it to a music store for the neck adjustment. However, strings can be lowered at the bridge and this you can do yourself as it won't really screw up your bass. Even if it does, you'll quickly figure out how it works and can fix it right away.

As for string height, it's a matter of taste. I prefer to go as low as possible, but there's always a limit. If you follow a string across the neck playing each note, it should sound clear. If the strings are too low you will notice fret buzzing when you play some of the notes.
Play around with it until you find your ideal height.

I would recommend that the strings be about the same distance from the fretboard at the 1st and last fret. I've seen players where the strings are a fair bit higher as they reach the last fret and I can tell they struggle as they play.

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Re: String space

Post  Smaz on Thu Jan 05, 2012 10:00 am

The rod inside the neck is called the truss rod. This runs through the whole of the neck, and is designed to counteract the pressure put on the neck by the strings.

Adjusting the truss rod too much, too quickly or incorrectly could potentially damage the neck.

Adjusting the truss rod can be quite a lenthy process - although you can tell immediatley if the adjustment has made an improvement, the neck will slowly adjust further over the next day or so under the new pressure. There is also more to setting up your bass than the truss rod - you may need to adjust the bridge afterwards too.

My advice:

If this is your only bass, take it to a professional. You could make the bass harder to play if you don't know how to adjust the bass correctly, and take days if not weeks trying to get the right setup. The professional will not only adjust the neck, but then adjust the bridge and set the intonation etc. which is important.

If you do decide to adjust the truss rod, be sure to make the adjustments slowly - turn the allen key slowly, and no more than 1/4 of a turn in one movement. If your strings are too high, you'll likely need to turn the truss rod in a clockwise direction to tighten it.

Some guides / information the subject:
http://www.tunemybass.com/bass_setup/
http://www.jerzydrozdbasses.com/akcndfr54jdhrei567/Ultimate_Guide_ver100.pdf

If you have any questions, just ask!

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Re: String space

Post  Admin on Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:50 pm

Yup, and I echo what Mr Smaz above says as well.

Smile

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Re: String space

Post  NEDMInsane on Mon Jan 09, 2012 1:24 pm

Thanks guys helped out a lot. Ill probably take it to the music store down the street to see if i cant get it set up.

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Re: String space

Post  DubHertz on Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:09 pm

Have a read through this

Bass guitar setup guide

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