Nuts redux...

Please put your pickup/wiring discussions in the Electronics section; and put discussions about repair issues, including "disappearing" errors in new instruments, in the Repairs section.
Post Reply
Brian Evans
Posts: 922
Joined: Sat Aug 30, 2014 8:26 am
Location: Tatamagouche, Nova Scotia

Nuts redux...

Post by Brian Evans »

So I got my third and final nut blank out, started to fit it, and decided to mix it up from my normal. I usually rough shape the nut way too high, hence with a quite deep slot the file chipped off the shoulder of my first try. This time I got out a pencil that I had sanded flat to a fine point, so I can slide it over the first and second frets and scribe an equal height line on the nut. Did that, and rough shaped to around .050" above the line, put a nice radius on the back side, and fit that to the neck. Drew on my 1/8" inset lines for string clearance to the sides of the neck, and remembered to not start the sixth string slot in the middle of the mark, but to the inside of the mark, so I didn't lose the half string diameter clearance that I always lose. Got it really close in about half the time I usually take, then measured and cut the slot for the high E string. Put those strings on, tuned them up with a temporary bridge, and then I used my calipers (the old fashioned two pointy compass calipers) to space out the inner four strings. No measuring, calculating, no ruler with funny markings, just walking the calipers back and forth until they are perfectly spaced. Mark, rough in the slots, nut off and finesse the nut's height and back radius so the slots will be just barely string depth or a little less. Then to focus on the bridge...

Bridge is a TOM type of some aftermarket variety that I bought at least 10 years ago, replacing a rosewood topper since this is going to be an electric guitar now. I need to fill in some holes in the ebony bridge base, re-drill and tap for the threaded studs (it's a weird bridge, has these threaded sleeves that the bridge sits on). So I do that, fit it all together, and put the bridge on the top (it's an archtop bridge so it's not fixed), get all the strings on, and randomly twiddle the height so I can tune up to pitch. I tune it up, finish setting the nut height, quick look at relief, no adjustment needed yet (I like to let it sit with strings on up to full tension for a day or so to let the neck do it's thing), and check out action height and intonation. Remember that I quite randomly set the bridge in place and twiddled with the action height. I check and it's set to 3/64 high E and 1/16 low E. No buzzes on any fret, so I'm like "Wow, no frets to fix". Check intonation, and initially think my tuner is broken, because the intonation is completely perfect on every string. Weird. guitar gods are shining down on me today. Quickest setup of a new guitar I ever did. Now I need to wire the pickguard, install a jack plate and pickup, and maybe play it!

Post Reply

Return to “Solid-Body and Chambered or Semi-Solid Electric Guitars and Bass Guitars”