Notes: Guitar Set-up Session with Greg Voros
Posted 22 August 2009 - 03:01 PM
Posted 17 August 2009 - 01:22 AM
Repeating course with Bonus DVD's
Posted 13 August 2009 - 10:16 PM
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Set-up with Greg Voros
(The setting: Greg Voros changed strings, cleaned and made set-up adjustments to the guitar as he described what he was doing and answered questions.)
Three most famous guitar stores in the U.S.: Gruhn Guitars (Nashville), Elderly Instruments, and Mandolin Bros. (New York)
Set-up involves adjustments to:
- Bridge and saddle
Actually, the heavier the string gauge, the lower the action. Folks have a misconception that lighter strings will make the fretting easier.
The nut is cut to be string specific, so don't change the gauges of your strings. A too-thick gauge could over-stress and damage the nut.
The truss rod is embedded in the neck. Adjustments here only affect the 1st to the 12th frets.
Tools for set-up:
- Truss rod tool (if guitar has an adjustable truss rod)
- Peg winder
- 6" rule (with 1/32 and 1/64 measures)
- Flat head screwdriver
Is the neck straight? For sighting the neck, crouch down to the level of the guitar as it is lying flat. Press the string simultaneously at the 1st and 14th frets. There should be 5/32" relief (business card thickness) between these frets.
Signs that you need to change strings:
- They sound dead
- A string breaks
Fingerboard care: Guitar Honey recommended for wiping on fingerboard each time you change strings. Do not use oil on maple fingerboards.
Dressing frets is a $100 job, versus $400 for a refretting job.
Greg likes to unwind all the strings at once, to facilitate the cleaning. (Some people advocate doing only one string at a time, to avoid sudden, drastic changes in the tension.)
He uses 0000 grade steel wool to lightly clean the fingerboard. Finish strokes should be parallel to the frets--errant strokes could result in scratchy noises as you fret.
Worn frets can affect intonation.
He recommends John LeVan(sp?) for instrument repair in Nashville, and John Griffin the San Francisco Bay Area.
He uses Gloss Sauce (only with a clean, dry cloth) to polish the guitar (but not for satin finishes). He also always cuts off the printed part of polish cloths, to avoid any possibility of scratching the guitar surface.
Stringing the guitar (he demonstrated on a solid head electric guitar):
1. Insert string all the way through hole in tuning post.
2. Hold hand under the string at the 7th fret. There should be one hand-width's slack, to leave enough string length for winding at the post.
3. Wrap the string once over the top, and pull the end straight up.
4. Hold the string taut as you use the pegwinder to turn the peg. String winds over the end, to hold the string securely.
5. Clip the excess string.
The strings wound properly on the headstock should look like a "flower." (Note from kt: Left side strings wind counter-clockwise around the pegs; right side strings wind clockwise. --I think.)
Trebles: 2/32" or 3/64"
Bass: 2/32" with line exposed
(Disclaimer/note from kt: I don't exactly remember what the above means.)
Pickup height: 3/32"
Always adjust intonation while in the playing position.
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