Neck warping issue, need some confirmation

Discussion in 'Pickups, Electronics & General Tech' started by MatiasTolkki, Mar 4, 2018.

  1. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    I took my Ibanez RG750VP into the shop today to get it looked at as I had some crazy buzzing on the first and second strings (High E, B) on the first fret. I had the truss rod adjusted but that same side (high E, B) is still got some warping (it's bowing around the middle of the neck) but the Low E side is perfectly straight. I was told that if I loosen the tension on the 3 low strings (Low e, A, and D) and keep full tension on the high strings (G, B, High E) that it can correct itself over time. Is this true? I dont wanna try something if it's not going to work and while I understand the reason why it could work, I am not sure if it actually will.

    I'm sure someone has seen this problem before, but how did you deal with it? Any advice would be MUCH appreciated as I absolutely love this guitar and I want to use it a lot more than I have recently.
     
  2. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Have you actually measured the relief on both sides of the neck with a notched straight edge? Checked all the frets with a rocker?

    Just using the strings, holding down the first and last frets, what's the feeler gauges saying?

    I guess what I'm asking is: has warping of the neck been verified? A very slight variance in relief isn't warping on it's own.

    I've received a ton of guitars over the years with "warped" necks just to find out there were other, much more simple and easier to fix issues. A lot of folks, some techs and "luthier" included, just label a difficult neck as "warped" and move on.

    If neck is warped, it's important to know just how warped it is. The more extreme, the less likely it can be "fixed" but there are many ways to make a warped neck playable, even ones that last many many years.

    I've heard of trying to fix the neck with string tension, and in nearly two decades I've never seen it actually work. It might somewhat mask some of the slightest cases, but I don't think it's going to do anything long term.
     
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  3. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    The guy looked it over, did the finger check (how much space between the string and the fingerboard) and I even looked at it myself because he had said it was pretty bad. I saw a visible difference between both sides.

    He said that the "best" way would be a fret level to compensate for the bow, but after a truss rod adjustment it DID help a bit. Maybe if I give it a couple days to settle it might fix itself?
     
  4. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Did he measure with feeler gauges? Actually measure the difference in relief on both sides?

    You can mess with shims, which can help compensate before you take the plunge on a fret job.

    Either way, I'd wait it out. Buy a set of gauges, they're cheap, and keep track of how the neck is doing. If it starts to get worse over time, you'll have to make some tough decisions about how far you want to take it. Between fret jobs, fretboard planing and heat pressing you have options, but none will for sure stop the neck from warping and none are a guarantee you'll get something playable.
     
  5. elkoki

    elkoki SS.org Regular

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    I have a guitar with a bit of a warp, or I guess the correct term is a hump or high spot? It's around the second through fourth fret of the bass side. It mainly causes fret buzz when I play the first fret of the B,E and A.

    I took it to a well known luthier in my area who's worked on guitars for many famous musicians. Pretty much he said there's not much you could really do if it's a set neck. He talked about trying to level the high side to compensate, but it wasn't a guarantee he could fix it. So he didn't even try . He did say a PLEK would completely fix it. It's $200 though.

    Obviously if your neck is a bolt on, you could just buy a new one. I've heard of people fixing twists in necks with clamps and all kind of other weird methods, I don't know if its permanent though, I hear many times the twists just end up returning.
     
  6. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    I'm not even sure a plek job is available here in Japan. I'd have to do a LOT of research to find out.

    Luckily it's a bolt on, so I COULD just try to find a good condition neck, or go thru Pearle and order a maple or ebony fingerboard since it wouldnt get caught up by CITES (the original neck has a rosewood board).
     
  7. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    Also, mine is a dip, not a hump. However, the truss adjustment did help enough to be able to play it so I can just play it.
     
  8. elkoki

    elkoki SS.org Regular

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    Well that's good to know. and you're lucky enough to have a bolt on, so if the buzz keeps bothering you , you can swap it. I live in California like literally a few miles away from a PLEK machine, so that option is always there, but $200 is more than i'd prefer to spend. I know it would fix it for sure though. For the moment I started using heavier gauges, and I added a little more relief to the neck and the problem is hardly noticeable now. Guitars are far from perfect anyway so I can live with it for now
     
  9. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    Actually, where I live in Japan has WILD differences in humidity between winter (dry, around 40% humidity) and summer (90% or more). Not the friendliest environment for necks lol
     
  10. cardinal

    cardinal Strat 7 Guy

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    If it’s actually warped, often the fix would be to pull the frets, level the board, and then refret.

    If it’s very badly warped, the fretboard will end up uneven looking, so you’re going to want to have some more specific measurements in mind I think. Using a botched straight edge and feller gauges to really see how much of a dip or hump is happening.
     
  11. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    Yeah I'm going to get a straight edge this weekend to be sure. I think if I play it a little more it might help as well, but I also need to see how the truss adjustment yesterday has effected it. Gonna play it in a little while.
     
  12. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    is there anything i could use as a substitute for a straight edge just to get an idea of the bow issue, like a cd jewel case or something?
     
  13. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    A regular straight edge isn't going to do a whole lot to measure the neck itself. You need a notched one that bypasses the frets to measure the board/neck itself.
     
  14. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    ah okay. I'll see what I can find right now.
     
  15. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    The tech should have one to use.

    There are cheap ones on eBay, but while simple they are a precision tool and the cheaper ones tend to be too thin and slightly flexible which makes getting accurate measurements difficult, if possible at all.

    Honestly, the string method is perfectly fine, if a little cumbersome and less accurate. Capo your first and the highest fret you can capo and measure with feeler gauges in the middle. Do this with the first and last string to see the difference.
     
  16. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    Well I wont be able to go to the tech until Saturday at the earliest. I just checked on Amazon.jp and wooooo they're pricey :eek:
     
  17. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Yeah, good tools are buy once, cry once. Folks brag about thier rigs on here, but I probably have close to as much in hand tools. :nuts:
     
  18. MatiasTolkki

    MatiasTolkki Burn In Agony

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    Yeah I can imagine. Wish I didnt buy so many guitars and focused on getting good tools to work with.

    I can't find any straight edges over here. Probably because I never learned how to say it in Japanese so it's hard to find lol
     

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