All Instruments Checked and Setup by Us BEFORE Despatch
Guitars and other string instruments bought from most other retailers and especially the big “box shifters” and eBay / Amazon do not come setup and ready to play. They will generally receive a cursory setup and check over from the manufacturer before they are packed. After living in a container and warehouse often for many months they arrive at the retailer or distributor most of whom will send the guitars out to you as they have arrived with them.
We do things differently! At Jimmy Egypt and Sons we examine and properly and fully setup each instrument BEFORE it is dispatched to you. If you have special requirements with regard to setup, string selection or tuning, we are happy to take this into consideration and set the instrument up to your requirements before we send it to you. Often we can do this at no extra cost to you. Just leave a note in the relevant shopping basket text field or contact us as soon as you order the instrument. This is a service that we generally charge £60 for in our workshop. Indeed we have customers come to us for this service having purchased the instrument online from another source. Save yourself some money and grief and if possible buy the instrument from us. You’ll be glad you did.
Some string buzz on a guitar is normal! Depending on a combination of factors such as how hard you hit the string, string gauge, string brand, string height, and more a slight buzz is to be expected. This is most common when playing an electric guitar acoustically or on low tension strings such as the bass strings where the string envelope or excursion of the string will “kiss” the upper frets at the node of it’s travel.
A neck with a slight curve IS NOT WARPED. A slight curve as detailed above is not only normal but is REQUIRED for correct operation of the instrument. When the truss rod is too tight, the neck will be too straight or may even is have a backbow. This lowers the string height and increases string buzz. When the truss rod is too loose the action of the guitar will be high and the neck will have an excessive bow or too much “relief”.
A common misconception is that the truss rod exists to adjust the action of the guitar.
This is incorrect. The truss rod exists to control and adjust neck “relief” or bow only. Adjustment of the truss rod will have an AFFECT on the action and this can be quite pronounced depending on various factors. Adjustment of a guitar’s action is achieved by adjusting a number of things including adjusting the height of the bridge saddle(s) and also nut slots.
We carry out a premium setup with all necessary adjustments so that the instrument arrives at you in a first class playable condition. We are proud to boast a highly reputed in-house workshop facility and set-up service with years of experience in playing, repairing, setting up and designing instruments.
The workshop service that we provide with every instrument purchased from us includes checks and adjustments by our specialist workshop technicians in:-
- Cosmetic detail
- Neck relief
- Fret profiles
- Playing action at the nut
- Playing action at the 12th fret
- Bridge position
- Correct Hardware Adjustment
- Correct Electrical OPeration
- Tuning and playability
What is a Truss Rod and How Does it Work?
A truss rod is an interior metal bar running the entire length of a guitar’s neck.
It is designed to counteract the tension that the guitar strings exert on the neck when tuned to pitch.
Although not all instruments have an adjustable truss rod fitted to counteract the tension created by the strings. When tuned to pitch the strings exert a force of some 60lbs tension pulling the neck into a bow or a curve. Proper use of the truss rod enables you to “balance” the tension of the neck in relation to the strings and to adjust the amount of bow to suit different string gauges, different playing styles, and perhaps slightly worn frets. Most modern instruments these days have a one way or 2-way adjustable truss rod.
Different types of truss rod
- Single action or one way truss rod – will tighten the rod only and relies on the tension the strings exert to pull the neck into “relief”.
- Double action or 2-way rod – enables the relief of the guitar neck to be adjusted in both directions.
- Non Adjustable Rods – Older or traditional instruments often have a reinforcement such as a steel hollow rod
- Also modern materials such as carbon fibre can be utilised in manufacture and entire necks can be made of materials such as alloy or aluminium.
Occasionally with thicker necks and when using light gauge or low tuned strings the tension of the strings themselves will fail to pull the neck and enable the “relief” required for proper playability…this is when a 2-way adjustable rod is advantageous.Typically, a properly adjusted truss rod will leave a neck with a slight bow or curve otherwise known as “relief”. You can use your strings as a “straight edge” to gauge the amount of bow by pushing them down to both the 1st and 14th frets simultaneously. You should observe a sight gap between the bottom of the string and the top of the frets in the middle of the string you are holding down…perhaps around the 6th fret. A gap slightly thinner than a business card is about right although this might be slightly more or less depending on certain factors such as:
- String gauge and tuning you are using
- The action or height of strings above the frets
- How even or level the fretting is or if there is any fret wear
- Your playing style
You can read about what we do in more detail here – Setup Work