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Lowering the action on acoustic  

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Eric Reinhardt
(@rinny51)
Estimable Member

Has anyone had their guitar worked on? The strings on my Gibson are pretty high off the fretboard. Where do you find someone to work on it, or is it something I could do myself. Maybe I should check out YouTube.

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Posted : 02/06/2020 8:46 am
jerseychicadee, Marc Piechowicz, rg and 2 people liked
Susan Wagner
(@shysue)
Estimable Member

YouTube for sure has videos on how to do a set up on your guitar. Sometimes just adjusting the truss rod will help get the neck angle back to where it needs to be to get the strings closer to the fretboard. 

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Posted : 02/06/2020 7:35 pm
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 3 people liked
Eric Reinhardt
(@rinny51)
Estimable Member

That sounds complicated, but i guess since my Gibson is my backup guitar i cant really mess it up too bad LOL

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Posted : 02/06/2020 10:57 pm
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 3 people liked
rg
 rg
(@rg)
Estimable Member

@rinny51 Hey Eric, On some guitars the truss rod is in the sound hole and on others there’s a cover plate, usually with some Phillips screws, that is a small access panel to the truss rod. Take it off and use an Allen and turn it just a 1/4 turn to the right. Play it a bit and then let it sit for a good day so the wood can adjust to the tension. The key is to make small adjustment. If it’s still high after that tighten it again and turn it about half of what you turned it the first time and try it again. If you get fret buzz turn it back the other way. I have found that adjusting the truss rod usually does the trick but if it doesn’t just look up luthiers in the local area or even a tech a guitar center can do set ups for you if needed.

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Posted : 03/06/2020 12:36 am
dom
 dom
(@dom)
Eminent Member

How much space do you have on the saddle? You can sand down the plastic/bone piece that the strings sit on to lower the strings too. Of course sanding completely straight is not that easy, and you'll want to draw a line where you intend to sand up to keep it flat. I believe some manufacturers put shims under the saddle which you can take out without having to sand, but no idea whether that applies to yours.

 

There's also the truss rod adjustment mentioned above. And filing of the nut too, but that's a last resort. I strongly advise you to watch numerous youtube videos and/ or read up before you do any of these things! It is possible to wreck a guitar by playing with the truss rod. (Don't ask me how I know😲 )

 

Here's another potential - but unlikely - problem. Some guitars have neck problems that cannot be fixed without spending more than the value of the guitar, as happened to me a long time ago with a beautiful used Yamaha I bought only to find it was a lousy guitar to play. The Tech I took it to told me it involved major surgery and was not worth it unless it had great sentimental value. I played with the truss rod and filed all the bits and nothing worked. I think I ended up lending it to a friend and I never saw it again.

 

Probably your best bet is to take it to a tech at your local store and get them to have a look. If you do decide to tweak the truss rod, by all means do so but do not force it! And let it settle down after each tweak. A quarter turn each time is more than enough.

 

If you have a nice guitar and some cash, I recommend paying someone else to do a proper set up for you.

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Posted : 03/06/2020 6:28 am
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 4 people liked
dom
 dom
(@dom)
Eminent Member

By the way Eric. A full set up can be seen in the videohere titled "What happens to every guitar sold at Rguitars.co.uk."

 

I bought my Eastman from Richard and it came with the full set up included. Hope this helps.

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Posted : 03/06/2020 10:44 am
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 4 people liked
Eric Reinhardt
(@rinny51)
Estimable Member

@dom this guitar is about 30 years old. I am gonna check out the videos and see if I can make it better.

how much do they charge at guitar center?

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Posted : 04/06/2020 1:01 am
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 3 people liked
William Pearson
(@jaybird0730)
New Member

@rinny51  about 50 bucks, which I had done recently at Guitar Center and they did a good job.  Admittedly, my guitar is a newer acoustic but the results were worth it.  The turnaround time was about a week at my local GC store.

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Posted : 05/06/2020 2:58 pm
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 4 people liked
Susan Wagner
(@shysue)
Estimable Member

Wow, $50 would be worth it. I had them quote $120 for a set up on a Gretsch I bought there. Granted, the Gretsch is an electric guitar, but still, it was brand new. Guess it depends on which Guitar Center you take your guitar to.

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Posted : 05/06/2020 5:35 pm
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 3 people liked
rg
 rg
(@rg)
Estimable Member

@jaybird0730Man that’s cheap for a set up. That’s awesome.

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Posted : 05/06/2020 6:43 pm
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 3 people liked
Eric Reinhardt
(@rinny51)
Estimable Member

@jaybird0730 maybe i will have to check out my local guitar center and see what they say

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Posted : 05/06/2020 7:55 pm
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 3 people liked
rg
 rg
(@rg)
Estimable Member

@rinny51Thinking I might take mine in as well. Maybe get some lower gauge strings put on as well.

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Posted : 06/06/2020 12:56 pm
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 3 people liked
Eric Reinhardt
(@rinny51)
Estimable Member

I tried giving the tension rod a quarter turn, got some buzzing noises and the strings towards the middle are high. It’s a cheap Guitar not sure if it’s worth trying

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Posted : 06/06/2020 9:16 pm
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 3 people liked
rg
 rg
(@rg)
Estimable Member

@rinny51Not sure if it’s worth the Money to take it in but that’s probably what I would do if I played it a lot.

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Posted : 07/06/2020 12:23 pm
jerseychicadee, John, Marc Piechowicz and 3 people liked
Eric Reinhardt
(@rinny51)
Estimable Member

@rg since it’s kind of my backup guitar and just sits in the closet probably not worth it

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Posted : 08/06/2020 12:14 am
jerseychicadee, John, johnny S and 3 people liked
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