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When you setup your guitar, do you wing it or use one of these...

Hippæ

Member
Messages
23
I have used the gauges before, but my preferred method is to adjust the string, see how it feels under play, adjust it some more, and see how it feels in relation to the other strings. Its time consuming, sure, but in the end its worth it
 

MartinPiana

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,466
Hippæ;3736559 said:
I have used the gauges before, but my preferred method is to adjust the string, see how it feels under play, adjust it some more, and see how it feels in relation to the other strings. Its time consuming, sure, but in the end its worth it
I typically do that when I first get an instrument, then make a note of the string height at the 12th fret for future truss rod adjustments.

Alternately, I'll measure the height to what I think it should be, then play it and make fine tuning adjustments from there.
 

a1briz

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
1,751
I bought that string action guage a while back. No regrets. Handy little tool. Comes handy for pickup height adjustments too.

I always use 'recommended' or 'standard' settings (use the tool) as a base point. I adjust from there (with no tool, by feel instead).

However, I once read the entire manual that came with my bicycle before I actually rode it. And I'm also a closet neat freak. :)
 

deoreo

Member
Messages
303
Always, a straight edge and ruler.
But, I don't make the guitar conform to a set measurement, I play and listen to the instrument, and set it up accordingly.

But, um, yeah, always a straight edge and ruler for precise, repeatable results.
 

whitehall

Member
Messages
5,255
I have a good assortment of tools but none came from SM--love their catalogs BTW. For example his $35 dollar straightedge I got in a home depot for 8 dollars. Most all his stuff can be duplicated for less than 1/2 if you know where to look. A lot of cycling tools are highly adaptable to guitar repairing. I love Dan though, he's the only guy I know who requires a welders mask and a snap-on truck full of tools to change a set of strings.
 

Bluewail

Tone curmudgeon
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,907
Yes. I use these plus radius gauges & fine tune from there.
Dan Earlwine is a godsend.
+1.

Tools first and then fine tune by feel. Add a set of feeler guages to the kit for relief adjustment and clearance at the 1st fret too.
 

edward

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,725
IMHO, gauges are for consistency and speed (to reduce your labor time). This is for techs that make a living on such work and maximizing their labor. For an indiv owner, you can get it right w/o such tools.

When yout hink about it, a good setup doesn't depend on a numerical measurement ...a given "value" is irrelevant. What you want is that it plays as best as it can, for you, given what you've got.

Edward
 

bazooka47

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
860
I have all those tools but I use the straightedge the most, and usually for fretwork. For setups, I guess I am in the "wing it" camp.

One of the best things I have gotten from STEWMAC is that nut-string- spacer-template-whatchamacallit. It REALLY helps get the string spacing right on new nuts, especially for a non-pro tinkerer like myself.
 




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