Do truss rods need tightening or loosening in the summer?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by gnugear, Jul 3, 2006.

  1. gnugear

    gnugear Member

    Messages:
    398
    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    Do necks generally need to be tightened or loosened in the hotter summer months? I ask because I just got a new Allparts neck that plays fantastic and is totally straight ... but the truss rod is also completely slack in the counter clockwise position (it's a traditional one way truss rod). I'm worried that it'll need more adjustment and I won't have the range ... but I'm not sure what kind of adjustment I'll need to anticipate in the cooler winter months.

    I love the neck and don't want to return it ... but a non-fixable back bow is out of the question. Is there a way to modify the rod so it'll have more range?
     
  2. ZX-Matt

    ZX-Matt Member

    Messages:
    116
    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2004
    Location:
    10PC
    I'm thinking in the summer the fretboard swells slightly and the neck gets "flatter". So that would probably mean it needs loosening (adding bow).
     
  3. schmit

    schmit Member

    Messages:
    386
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2004
    I have an Allparts neck....SRF I think....and have the same problem....my theory is that the neck is worthless and useless.....if you can't adjust the trussrod ...what good is it?....I luckily have some relief, but I could use a bit more. I ordered a USAGC neck and it had the same problem. The boys out there said its the nature of the beast.....the maple will "settle in" and if it settles to where there's no more adjustment on the trussrod, then that's that...they were quite apologetic and offered to build me a new one or refund my money.....I went with the refund....who knows if the new one won't have the same problem. Im not bashing Allparts or USAGC....if its the nature of the beast....what's one to do? Im just keeping my eyes open for a Fender neck that has the specs Im looking for.....but again if there is a way to get the trussrod on my Allparts neck to work like gnugear asks....Im ALL ears....
     
  4. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    3,458
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Location:
    MD
    Put heavier strings on the guitar. I don't know how long you want to wait, but it will eventually pull the neck around.
     
  5. Karmateria

    Karmateria Member

    Messages:
    580
    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2005
    Location:
    Midwest
    Humidity is the problem, perhaps it is too humid in your home. I try to keep my room at 50% humidity and don't have problems. My Gibsons are usually close to but not all the way slack in the summer. After owning them over 20 years, I have not experienced "settling in" so I think that's a myth. Same with my Strat. My Hamer has a 2-way adjustment on the rod. I tiggten them all in the winter and loosen them in the summer. Not a big deal.

    Karma
     
  6. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    3,458
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2004
    Location:
    MD
    I think settling is more prevalent with maple necks, due to the nature of the wood. If you apply tension to a piece of wood over a long period of time, it'll move. You can raise the action to pull it around faster.

    EDIT: Also, thicker profile necks tend to move less and have less back bow. But I agree, once you get it where you want, it should rarely need any further adjustment.
     
  7. Rich

    Rich Member

    Messages:
    900
    Joined:
    May 23, 2002
    In the summer, necks will straighten. So trussrods need to be loosened.

    All the way slack is not a good situation on a brand new neck that you know nothing about (e.g., you havent seen it go through the seasons so you dont know how its going to react and whether the rod will correct for changes).

    I would definitely contact Allparts to get their take on it and also their policy on returns down the road.
     
  8. Brien

    Brien Member

    Messages:
    1,124
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2006
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    Most of my guitars need loosening in the summer.
     
  9. LaXu

    LaXu Member

    Messages:
    2,517
    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2004
    Location:
    Finland
    Really depends on where you live and the weather/humidity etc. conditions there. I haven't adjusted the truss rods on most of my guitars since the initial adjustments when I bought them. The necks are still perfectly fine after many years. All I notice is that the fret ends on some (mainly newer guitars with maple necks) may poke out a bit during spring but as time goes on they settle down.
     
  10. gnugear

    gnugear Member

    Messages:
    398
    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    I also have mine tuned to Eb so that might be part of the situation ... I'm using .10s so I'm not going to go any heavier than that. It is hot and a bit humid, so hopefully it'll "settle in" as you mentioned.
     
  11. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

    Messages:
    6,478
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Mudge
    Well, that's mostly true. But it does have an indirect effect. What affects wood is relative humidity, which (I think) goes up as temperature drops and falls as temperature rises. That or vice-versa... I forget which.

    That's why a glass of ice water "sweats" in hot weather but not cold. Also why your house seems too dry when heating season kicks in but not when the AC starts up.
     
  12. ptecat

    ptecat Member

    Messages:
    273
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2004
    Location:
    Home is where the guitar is!
    I just received a G&L Legacy through an ebay transaction and the truss rod is not adjustable. A local luthier could not get it to budge and now I have a guitar that can not be set up properly. The seller does not return my emails.

    I am going to contact G&L to see if they will repair/replace the neck but I am not too hopeful. Supposedly the guitar was never retailed as I have a blank warrantee card. It is one of those new Fullerton Standards with the matching painted headstock and a soft gig case.

    Anyway, I guess you cannot win them all. Does G&L sell necks? Does Warmoth, etc?

    Thanks

    :jo
     
  13. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

    Messages:
    6,478
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Mudge
    Yeah, that's what I said: "...falls as temperature rises."
     
  14. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

    Messages:
    6,478
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Mudge
    ???
     
  15. ptecat

    ptecat Member

    Messages:
    273
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2004
    Location:
    Home is where the guitar is!
    The luthier was trying to set up the guitar for 10's and could not adjust the truss rod to get the proper neck relief. The truss rod is frozen or maybe is adjusted out as far as it will go. As it stands now, note's fret-out past the 10th fret. The neck is bowed inward so that the distance between strings and frets is less near the nut and 22nd fret then in the middle.

    I was told that the neck can be heated to get the wood to expand and the truss rod possibly could loosen and then be adjusted. A re-fret may also be needed. That is why I am going to talk to G&L first.

    By my description above you can tell I do not set-up my guitars. I know I need to learn how to do this. But right now I have a Legacy that is about as useful as a door stop.
     

Share This Page