Hello everyone I have a cheap strat that I replaced the nut on a little while ago, thing is that now the nut doesn't sit in the slot properly-instead it slides out on the side of the low E. Is there a way that I can keep this from happening? It makes the guitar go out of tune a little and also it puts the strings in a less convenient place for my slide playing. Am I going to have to glue it? Putty? Thanks for any and all help
Glue it. I don't really know much about the process but I'm sure there's plenty of info you can find through google; a nut should always be glued in as far as I know.
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I've replaced the nuts on all but one of my guitars and so far simple Elmer's wood glue hasn't failed. Just a dab applied with a toothpick to the nut slot in the neck and allowed to harden (with strings applied) is enough to hold. Some use Crazy Glue, but any kind will do.
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PVA or Elmer's will do. Just a tiny drop, though, because you want to be able to easily remove the nut without tearing out half the neck wood.
Couple drops of super glue.. I use the StewMac stuff but you don't need to get that fancy. Don't use wood glue unless you really don't give a shit about the guitar
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I dont know why there is always so much bad advice about using wood glue for your nut. Wood glue doesnt bond to plastic or bone in any way whatsoever.
Just use 2 dabs of super glue, that will hold it but not keep it from being taken out at some point.

I've never had a problem with it, and I've even used kid's hobby gum, which has even less adhesion.

EDIT Not so sure about "bad advice". I did a bit of Google research, and the majority vote still seems to be PVA. I asked on UMGF, and 4/4 (so far) said PVA, noting that some have no glue at all.
Last edited by Tony Done at Apr 13, 2015,
Plain white elmers glue. Not wood glue, or super glue, if you have to remove it later both will rip wood off either the neck or the tuning head.

The proper way to glue in a nut is to place a small drop of plain white elmers of other glue that is not strong enough to rip wood off onto the vertical surface of the nut facing the fret board. IF the nut fits right you can just put a coupe of strings on top and bottom and let it set overnight, if strings tend to pull it out of place figure a way to clamp it, you don't need it clamped really tight, just enough to hold it in place.

Do not put glue on the bottom of the nut, put it against the vertical surface of the fretboard, between nut and fretboard. That way it pops off pretty easy when you have to remove it, and shouldn't damage anything.
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^^^^ Elmers glue isn't so common here. I was under the impression that it was a basic PVA type wood glue. - And that is what a bit of Googling says that the mian product is.

I just did a quick Google search. Opinions go for superglue, PVA, and Elmer's. It suggests to me that anything really lightweight would do. It might also depend on the mounting system - some don't need any glue at all.
Usually the downward string pressure will mostly hold it in place, but sometimes they will slip side to side, so a dab of Elmers against the fret board will stop that. Elmers because it will not rip chunks of wood off when you remove it. Never superglue, I don't even allow the stuff in the room when I work on a guitar. Most things on a guitar should be put together so you can take it apart to do repairs later on if necessary. Super glue won't do that. That's why hide glue has been used for assembling guitars and violins for a couple hundred years. A little heat and it can be taken apart, repaired and put back together. That's how set necks are replaced. Use super glue and you'll rip out chunks of wood if you have to take it apart. Bad news just about anywhere on a guitar. Suppose you pop a nut off and it rips out a half inch chunk of wood underneath? It's running with the grain, which means you now have a very visible chunk of wood missing on your headstock.

Elmers (not wood glue for the same reason) against the vertical surface of the fret board will not do that. Wood glue is usually stronger than the wood. I've used it for carpenter projects, if you have to take it apart it will rip good sized chunks out of the wood. Not good for guitar work, not many places you can do that and it can't be seen.

I can't find the link now, that was the one method that made the most sense. Hide glue has to be heated, and should not be necessary for a nut. It's very strong, and would work, but a lot of trouble for a nut. The nut takes very little to hold it in place, downward string pressure does most of it, glue is mainly to stop side to side movement. I used white Elmers on my Takamine about 8 years ago, still holding up great. If I have to replace it again, I don't have to worry, it'll pop right off without doing damage to the guitar.
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elmers glue will work just a little, elmers glue is stronger then u think,