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How much neck warping is OK?


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How much neck warping is OK?


Ok, I play a POS Squire MB4. I have noticed that my neck seems bowed significantly.


When I hold down my G string on the first and last frets, there seems to be a 2mm gap between the string and the frets towards the middle. Is this OK?


I also notice that when I take one string off the neck is perfectly straight. It makes sense but seems kinda not right to me. Is this just what I get for playing a 200 dollar Squire?


Thanks in advance!

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There's a big difference between warpage, neck bow, and relief...although they all describe various extremes of the neck not being straight. :D


What you want your neck to have is relief, which is a small amount of curveature in the neck--ususally starting at the 9th fret--that keeps the strings from rattling against the frets while allowing for comfortably low action.


Sight down your neck from the headstock like Dan Erlewine in this photo is:



If you're seeing a huge, dramatic curve in the neck, that's too much relief, and the truss rod will probably have to be adjusted. If you've never done this before, take your bass to a repair shop and have them do a setup.


The above photo is taken from this great article by Dan about guitar adjustment.


I also highly suggest you pick up Dan's book:


The Guitar Player Repair Guide, by Dan Erlewine



It's got a lot of wonderful information on how do do these kinds of adjustments yourselves.


Good luck!

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Your truss rod is just loose. Have it adjusted, shouldn't cost much at all. If you want to do it yourself, you need to loosen the string, tighten the trussrod (clockwise) no more than 1/4 turn and retighten string every eight hours until you are happy with where it ends up.

You can stop now -jeremyc

STOP QUOTING EVERY THING I SAY!!! -Bass_god_offspring

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I can live with a slight bow if it means I can play my low strings up to the 14th fret, which I do sometimes. I don't have an exact measurement, I usually lay a steel ruler against the frets and try to sight up and down the neck, but I'm not a fanatic on having a perfectly straight neck. Different instruments require different adjustments.


I also check nut seating, string height and string-pickup distance (passive pickups can be strong enough to vibrate a string slightly out of tune). When I do string changes and intonation on a bass, I prefer playing all the notes up as far as I need to (meaning all the notes on the treble side) to make sure I don't detect buzz or serious intonation problems.


Even though a repair tech can do a more accurate job, a skilled handyperson can DIY.


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put a capo on the first fret. press down on the body fret(the first fret passed where your neck meets the body, on a fender it is usually like the 17th fret.) slide a thick business card(or a feeler gauge of about .015 inches) under the string at the 8th or 9th fret. if there is a gap between the card and the string then you probably will need a neck adjustment. if you do not know what you are doing take it to a shop because if you break it you are out of luck.
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