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Strat setup question.

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by toolshed, Dec 11, 2017.

  1. toolshed

    toolshed Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    39
    72
    Jun 11, 2011
    tennessee
    Thank you very much for taking the time to look at it. I really appreciate that
     
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  2. heltershelton

    heltershelton ROCKIN FOREVER Strat-Talk Supporter

    Jun 5, 2013
    Not Florida
    youre welcome
     
    CigBurn likes this.

  3. heltershelton

    heltershelton ROCKIN FOREVER Strat-Talk Supporter

    Jun 5, 2013
    Not Florida
    it looks like some of your saddles are higher on one side than the other. I . know thet are set at different heights to follow the radius, but they need to be the same height on both sides.
     

  4. toolshed

    toolshed Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    39
    72
    Jun 11, 2011
    tennessee
    Just fixed it..... Must have been leaning to one side when I set them...
     
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  5. Ebidis

    Ebidis Providing the world with flat bends since 1985 Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    51
    Nov 14, 2013
    Alabama
    I don't know about your Tele, but the Les Pauls, the Carvin, and the PRS all have a flatter fretboard radius than your Strat. That lends itself to lower action.

    If you get a pro fret leveling done on the Strat, it may help, but I have never in my life seen a Strat that will achieve as low an action as a Les Paul unless it has a 12 inch or flatter fretboard radius. It's the nature of the beast.
     
    toolshed likes this.

  6. thomquietwolf

    thomquietwolf Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    76
    Dec 2, 2010
    Peardale CA
    Or
    The unexamined life is not worth living
    Or
    The unopened beer
     

  7. The Ballzz

    The Ballzz Senior Stratmaster

    Feb 26, 2014
    LAS VEGAS , NV
    Please explain the method you used to measure relief/check for neck straightness.
    Thanks,
    Gene
     

  8. toolshed

    toolshed Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    39
    72
    Jun 11, 2011
    tennessee
    Capo the first fret and press down on the 13th.... I can also look down the neck to gauge it and see the bow
     

  9. jpmist

    jpmist Strat-Talker

    415
    Mar 26, 2010
    Decatur
    Yes.

    I know there are 88 posts in front of mine contradicting and agreeing, but honestly, putting a shim to adjust the neck angle isn't rocket science has a high probability of improving the situation if done correctly, and is well worth the 20 minutes.

    Having put together partscasters for several years I swapped necks routinely and often found that neck from body A would not set up the same on body B. Neck and pocket carvings are done by the factory very accurately, but a bit of thick finish here, a wood splinter there can alter the angle of the neck off the body to where it won't set up properly.

    If your strings are too high with the saddles, bridge and relief as you say, then the nut of the neck is too high relative to the body. To lower the strings you need to shim the neck pocket to drop the nut lower. That means you add a shim to the inside pair of the neck screws. To be clear, by "inside pair" I'm referring to the two neck screws closest to the bridge.

    A wide variety of shim materials can be used, but note that Fender itself uses business card type thick paper so that's what I'd try. To start with, I'd fold over the card so you end up with a double thickness and cut a inch long section that's almost as wide as the neck. This may be too thick, but it's a starting point. Scotch tape it to the neck, use a hole punch if you need to so as to not cover the screw holes.

    When you tighten the neck be sure to screw all four in an "X" sequence a few turns at a time. Restring it and see if the strings are lower and within a range that your saddles can adjust where you want it. If strings are now too low than you can remove the second layer of your shim and try again. If strings are still too high, add one more layer of card stock. I'd be very surprised if you had to do more than that & if 3X cardstock didn't fix it, it's time to visit a guitar tech.

    Good luck with it, let us know how that works out.
     

  10. heltershelton

    heltershelton ROCKIN FOREVER Strat-Talk Supporter

    Jun 5, 2013
    Not Florida
    hmmmm.
    i learned differently.
    i learned to capo the first fret and fret that last fret at the same time, then check the distance between the string and the 8th or 10th fret.
     
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  11. Thrup'ny Bit

    Thrup'ny Bit Antisocial Curmudgeon Strat-Talk Supporter

    17th fret, the truss rod doesn't affect anything higher than that. Best to fret at the 17th fret up and set the saddle height as low as it will go and still give a clear note.You cant get lower action than that.
     

  12. PastorDATM

    PastorDATM Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    61
    80
    Aug 2, 2017
    Maryland, USA
    This is correct if you use the string as a straightedge. What luthiers use are tools like this String Action Gauge (http://www.stewmac.com/Luthier_Tools/Types_of_Tools/Straightedges/String_Action_Gauge.html) and this Notched Straightedge (http://www.stewmac.com/Luthier_Tools/Types_of_Tools/Straightedges/Notched_Straightedge.html). The string action gauge is a high quality measuring tool that has many uses. If you buy one of these tools, beware of cheaper and lower quality tools. You get what you pay for... Dave