Action adjustments with a thumbwheel

Recess

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
118
Despite playing guitar for a very long time, I've never made my own action adjustments. However, my local luthier has a multi week wait for setups right now, so I'm thinking about try to adjust my new Collings a tad lower (it's higher like a lot of Collings).

Does anyone have tips or considerations for adjusting the thumbwheel saddle? It's probably really obvious for most, but I'm just trying to be very cautious.

 

gkoelling

Member
Messages
17,153
I've done it. Take some (not a lot) tension off the strings and turn the wheels to the right but go just a little at a time. Then tune to pitch and check intonation. If you're lowering or raising the action by a small amount it shouldn't cause any problems.

EDIT: if you want less string tension, consider top wrapping the strings, too.
 

poppunk

Member
Messages
772
OMG, just turn the wheel. You can always turn it back.
Yeah this is about as minor as it gets. Just turn the wheel, and count how many 1/2, 1/4, or 1/8 turns you make (or whatever estimate you're comfortable with). Write that number down and if you want to put it back to where it was you just reverse it.

I get that some people are too timid to touch a truss rod, but bridge height wheels are something I could teach a four year old to do.
 

dukeh62

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,404
Probably the easiest and most unobtrusive setup adjustment you can make. Just grab yourself a good ruler and keep track of where you start and where you end. Easy peasy to go back.
 

Trebor Renkluaf

I was hit by a parked car, what's your excuse?
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
13,560
Clockwise to lower the action, counter-clockwise to raise the action. It's not rocket science. It helps to slacken the strings a bit both so you're not trying to overcome the increased tension when raising and because of increased friction when raising/lowering. Take some accurate measurements so you can get back to where you are should you mess it up. Other than that, go for it! How the truss rod? The neck should have the proper amount of relief before adjusting the action.
 

rjpilot

Member
Messages
2,495
It’s a screw so righty-tighty (clockwise)...will drive the screw further into the body ...lowering action. Check relief as well just to be sure youre not fighting a bow in the neck
 

Windup 43

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,298
Probably the easiest and most unobtrusive setup adjustment you can make. Just grab yourself a good ruler and keep track of where you start and where you end. Easy peasy to go back.
You can even just take a pic of where you started, couldn’t be simpler.
 




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