Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Truss Rod Adjustments

This can be a complex issue, but really doesn't have to be. The most important thing to remember is that you want to see a slight relief in the neck. That is looking down the headstock toward the 12th fret. You want to see a slight 'dip' in the neck between the 4th and the 9th frets. This maintains fret clearance to the 12th fret. After that the bridge takes over and maintains clearance up scale. How much relief? Depends on the type of the guitar, the wood the neck and fretboard is made from, string gauge, and a whole lot of other things. Acoustics are different from electrics and require slightly more relief to allow for string clearance on the first three frets.
When storing guitars, it's always a good idea to back off the string tension a couple of tones to allow the truss rod to rest. Adjustments to the truss rod should only be made when they are really necessary. (i.e. fret buzz, resetting action, or intonation problems)
Hope this helps.




  1. Replies
    1. The thing with dual acting truss rods is that there is still only one adjustment for both rods. The reason they use these is for instruments with wider, thicker necks, like basses. Most often, because of their nature, very little adjustment is ever required.