#1
Hey,

I am just wondering how often people get their guitars set-up? I don't play as often as I used to but I still want to keep my guitars in good shape. I am also on a fixed income so I can't do it all the time but what is a good time frame? Just so you know, I have 2 acoustics and 1 electric hollow body.

Thanks!
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#2
I set them up if/when I change string gauges. If I do not change string gauges I set them up when they don't feel right anymore.

Most guitars that are taken care of should last years with out a set-up
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#3
Quote by Robbgnarly
I set them up if/when I change string gauges. If I do not change string gauges I set them up when they don't feel right anymore.

Most guitars that are taken care of should last years with out a set-up


^ Same as this.

If it ain't broke...
#5
I check intonation during a string change. Otherwise, I really don't do much to my guitars, unless I notice a problem. I do my own setups - learning to do it yourself will help you save money and teaches you a valuable skill.
#6
Firstly, I don't take my guitars anywhere to be set up. Guitar set up is very personal. No tech can guess what is the best action for your fingers, what will buzz or not buzz with your playing style, etc. Learn how to set up your guitars yourself. A full set up takes <30 minutes, even if you have to change a lot of things. There's nothing complicated and nothing you need special tools for; a few allen keys and a couple of screwdrivers is the most you'll ever need.

Second, I set up guitars when they need it. For some guitars that is once every four months; for others, once every couple of years. How you store your guitars, how they are constructed the weather, humidity and generally how they are treated all effect how frequently you'll need to make adjustments. Typically, I set the action and intonation for the string gauge and tuning when I first get a guitar, then the only thing I need to change over time is the neck relief.
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#7
Set up your guitar whenever it needs it.
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I also have to do that. Cottaging this weekend
#8
Quote by MrFlibble
A full set up takes <30 minutes, even if you have to change a lot of things. There's nothing complicated and nothing you need special tools for; a few allen keys and a couple of screwdrivers is the most you'll ever need.

Usually this is true, but occasionally maybe one has to dress the frets a bit, or file the nut. Which can be quite the risky procedure to take on without much prior knowledge. Then again, if you do it once and succeed, you know you can do it again. Maybe this falls under the category of repair to some, I'd probably call it part of the setup but not a standard procedure setup.
REGGIE
#10
Quote by LeakyFlask
Usually this is true, but occasionally maybe one has to dress the frets a bit, or file the nut. Which can be quite the risky procedure to take on without much prior knowledge. Then again, if you do it once and succeed, you know you can do it again. Maybe this falls under the category of repair to some, I'd probably call it part of the setup but not a standard procedure setup.

I can understand taking a high fret to a tech to resolve, but replacing a nut is easy. Tons of tutorials online on how to do it and it doesn't require special tools. All you need is a sharp knife, a hammer, a drift, some glue and some sandpaper.
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I also have to do that. Cottaging this weekend
Last edited by T00DEEPBLUE at Apr 21, 2013,
#12
I'll check the intonation whenever I change strings, but if it ain't off, I don't touch a thing.

A setup for me is:

Check the neck, check for uneven frets, tune to pitch and then check intonation to see if it's good.
#13
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
I can understand taking a high fret to a tech to resolve, but replacing a nut is easy. Tons of tutorials online on how to do it and it doesn't require special tools. All you need is a sharp knife, a hammer, a drift, some glue and some sandpaper.

Indeed, if you're just going to replace the nut or file it down from beneath it's not gonna require much. If you need to file down the different slots though, you're going to need some special tools which I've found, to my horror, are quite expensive.
REGGIE
#14
Quote by LeakyFlask
If you need to file down the different slots though, you're going to need some special tools which I've found, to my horror, are quite expensive.

Welding torch tip cleaners. They cost pennies and do the job just as well.

You can do something similar with nothing more than a small, sharp blade and a steady hand too. I've done that in the past and it works.
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Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

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I also have to do that. Cottaging this weekend
Last edited by T00DEEPBLUE at Apr 21, 2013,
#15
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Welding torch tip cleaners. They cost pennies and do the job just as well.

Ah yes, that is true. Recently when I was in need of a nut fix I searched around for some cheap tools and heard about this method. Unfortunately, I couldn't find any round where I live. At all. It seems any given Home Depot is about 16x larger than any Swedish equivalent.
And so I was left with the option of a $100+ file set, or nothing. I still haven't fixed that nut.

EDIT: Holy shit, I found one online store directed at end user customers who actually have these things in stock. For less than $10! Thanks for reminding me.
REGGIE
Last edited by LeakyFlask at Apr 21, 2013,
#16
The overpriced files that are marketed as nut files are nothing special. Guitarists are told that the nut is this holy relic which must not be touched by anything other than these blessed tools, but really you can go to any hobby shop and pick up a set of tiny files for half the price of what one 'nut file' costs, and they'll do the same thing (and in fact are likely better quality).

I get all my guitar, amp and bass tools from this little shop that sells model trains, tabletop war game figures, that sort of thing. Next to it is an independent photography shop which is where I get my fine cleaning items and down the road from that is a Halfords where I can get the more heavy-duty buffing compounds and such. I never have to buy any expensive gear marketed for guitars.
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#17
Quote by MrFlibble
The overpriced files that are marketed as nut files are nothing special. Guitarists are told that the nut is this holy relic which must not be touched by anything other than these blessed tools, but really you can go to any hobby shop and pick up a set of tiny files for half the price of what one 'nut file' costs, and they'll do the same thing (and in fact are likely better quality).

You know, I do believe you. The problem is, however, finding these tools. For a small towner like me there aren't too many specialty shops around, and the big chain stores won't have these things in stock. The internet is a blessing, I guess.

EDIT: It's a bit funny, population-wise Bath isn't much bigger at all than my hometown. Different countries, different needs I assume.
REGGIE
Last edited by LeakyFlask at Apr 22, 2013,
#18
I only set up my guitar when I hear intonation is out... Everything else is pretty damn solid. I've played my SG for 6 years without changing anything other than string height/intonation when I change guages
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#19
I get a lot if humidity change so I have to do small adj all the time