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Old 02-14-2014, 01:13 AM   #1
RyanMW2010
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Join Date: Aug 2012
took guitar out in cold, now it won't stay in tune :(

Hey guys.

I play open mic/open jams every weds, and i live on long island. we've been experiencing a pretty intense winter here , so it gets pretty cold. I drive about 3 minutes to the bar where i play, and bring my guitar right in. I leave it in there the whole time and then bring it back out into the car to take it home. It's a fender strat, american, and i use a fender gig bag. It's never really had problems staying in tune in the past, but now it's a little finicky. the strings are rotosound blues and they're newish. how can i tell if the cold has damaged the guitar? how fix? thanks.
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Old 02-14-2014, 04:10 AM   #2
darrenram1
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I honestly don't think 3 mins would do anything too serious(if anything at all) to your guitar. Is it in your car or in the trunk/booth. Put it in your car.

Newish? How newish? <1 week or >3 weeks.
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Old 02-14-2014, 04:24 AM   #3
Reinima
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These couple of minutes in the cold can't damage your guitar. Your neck is a solid piece of maple, a pretty hard wood. There shouldn't be a problem.
New strings much more so
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Old 02-14-2014, 05:48 AM   #4
ESBlonde
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A few minuets will not do any permanent harm although it might need tuning once after it warms up again.
So the issue is likely to be one of the normal 'problems' with a strat. Is the trem set properly? are the nut slots lubricated? How old are the strings? If you tune the guitar with a good electronic tuner are the harmonics correct proving the intonation is on (can only be checked with new strings. If the intonation is out, has the neck joint had a knock and moved?
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Old 02-14-2014, 05:53 AM   #5
RyanMW2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ESBlonde
A few minuets will not do any permanent harm although it might need tuning once after it warms up again.
So the issue is likely to be one of the normal 'problems' with a strat. Is the trem set properly? are the nut slots lubricated? How old are the strings? If you tune the guitar with a good electronic tuner are the harmonics correct proving the intonation is on (can only be checked with new strings. If the intonation is out, has the neck joint had a knock and moved?


what's interesting, is that the trem was set flush to the body by a tech about two months ago. now it isn't flush anymore at all. i haven't changed string gauge or tension in any way. the strings are about a month old. intonation is good currently. i keep it in the car, right next to me in the passenger seat, wearing a seatbelt if i can, lol. that's my baby. to my knowledge the neck joint is okay. my favorite guitarists have all played strats, so i got this one because of that..but it seems to be a pretty flawed design. maybe i made a bad decision

oh and just before anyone suggests--i'm left-handed so i couldn't try before i buy. double sad
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Old 02-14-2014, 06:56 AM   #6
azrael4h
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanMW2010
what's interesting, is that the trem was set flush to the body by a tech about two months ago. now it isn't flush anymore at all.


On my Blacktop Strat, I had the Trem do exactly that, and just like yours, it wouldn't stay in tune for a million dollars. I got it flush again, now it stays in tune. I added a couple springs while I was back there as well. Next time, I'll just block the stupid thing.
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Old 02-14-2014, 09:58 AM   #7
RyanMW2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azrael4h
On my Blacktop Strat, I had the Trem do exactly that, and just like yours, it wouldn't stay in tune for a million dollars. I got it flush again, now it stays in tune. I added a couple springs while I was back there as well. Next time, I'll just block the stupid thing.


do i need to buy more springs to set it flush? know of a good tutorial? I'm wary of working on my baby by myself, but i'm also broke...
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Old 02-14-2014, 10:34 AM   #8
Mephaphil
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Just screw it down to the body.
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Old 02-14-2014, 09:58 PM   #9
RyanMW2010
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Originally Posted by Mephaphil
Just screw it down to the body.


Wait, what? Which screws?
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Old 02-14-2014, 10:18 PM   #10
dspellman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanMW2010
Wait, what? Which screws?


I'm not sure what Doctor Phil is talking about, but if you open the cavity in the back, you have the trem on one end of the springs and a "claw" with some wood screws on the other end. If you've changed strings/string tension, the butt end of the trem is either too high or too low. Use the handle to get the trem level. Put something under the butt end or in the cavity between the sustain block and the body (depending on whether you had to move the thing up or down to get it level) and tune the guitar. Then screw in (or unscrew) those wood screws on the claw until the trem just *barely* releases the blocking piece. REtune (you should only need to *slightly* retune) and the trem should pretty much stay in place.
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Old 02-14-2014, 10:19 PM   #11
dspellman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanMW2010
the strings are rotosound blues and they're newish.


"Funny. You don't LOOK Newish..."

Did you change the gauge of the strings from what was on there?
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Old 02-14-2014, 10:49 PM   #12
ethan_hanus
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As a gigging man myself, sever temp changes will jack your tuning all up no matter what. It's not the guitar, it's the strings. The classic, metal contracts when cold, expands when hot is very true for guitar strings.

Invest in a hard case and you wont have to worry about temp changes so much since the case will insulate the guitar form the temperature. You should have a hard case for that thing anyways, it's a sin to transport an American strat in a gig bag.
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Old 02-14-2014, 11:10 PM   #13
dspellman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ESBlonde
A few minuets will not do any permanent harm


Here's a Minuet you can try just to make sure...




It takes about a minuet and a half...
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