#1
hey guys, sorry but this is probably the 5th or 6th idiotic question i've asked but i was looking at my guitar and noticed that there is a whole lot of space between the fret board and the strings and on a couple of my friends guiatar the strings are almost laying flat up against the fretboard and switching chords is sooooo much easier. is there any way i can get the strings lowered or since my guitar is kinda cheap just wait and get a new one? or can you not even lower strings. Im just asking because im having a hard time with barre cords on my guitar and not so much on other peoples.
#2
You might have to adjust the action or the neck. What kind of guitar is it?
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#3
its most likely a bridge problem because your guitar is cheap this is usual, depending on whether or not you're getting a new guitar sooner or later you could lower the bridge, this is a simple procedure but you should have a professional or technichan do it at a store
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#4
You could lower the action on your guitar. (The distance between the strings and the neck.) This is simply a matter of twisting a screw usually. But you can really screw things up if you dont know what you're doing. You should take it to a shop and they can do it for you.

The first time I adjusted the action on my guitar, the neck came apart from the body and I freaked out because I didnt realize what I had done.


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#6
Yeah shops usually charge I dunno, $30 for what is called "setup," appropriate string adjustment etc. Nothing in this world comes for free my friend.

Yeah I would just play with your action to get the best feel for the guitar
#7
It would be helpful to know what kind of bridge your working with. I've noticed on floyd rose tremolos theres a couple of allen bolts that allow you to lower the bridge to adjust the action and saves the trouble of adjusting the neck (note: I'm not talking about balancing with the screws in the back)
#8
The first time I adjusted the action on my guitar, the neck came apart from the body and I freaked out because I didnt realize what I had done.


What you had done is mess with the wrong thing

To adjust the action there'll either be two height adjustment posts if it's a tune-o-matic bridge (stop-tail) or individual height adjustable saddles for a tremelo or telecaster-type bridge. You'll just need a large, flathead screwdriver for a hardtail, you'll need a small allen key for the others which should have come with the guitar.

And will people stop going on about adjusting the neck - you don't need to adjust the neck to change the action!
Actually called Mark!

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#9
^^^ Seagull, you HAVE to be kidding... right? In a way, you're correct...you don't have to adjust the neck when adjusting action...HOWEVER....
If the neck is not properly adjusted, the strings will only go so low...when in reality the strings MIGHT go even lower if the neck is adjusted properly. That's no gaurantee, though...it depends on the size of the frets and the fretboard's radius. Necks like the Wizard series on Ibanez guitars have an almost flat radius which can lead to some seriously low action.
I've been setting guitars up for years, and I ALWAYS adjust the neck. I start with it arrow straight and lower them as far as they'll go without buzzing. Sometimes doing that results in buzzing on the first few frets no matter how I adjust the action. If that's the case, I loosen the tension on the truss rod just a hair to allow a little forward bow....some necks need a little forward bow, some don't. It's trial and error.
I got insane action out of a $100 Dean EVO XM once and it was because I adjusted the neck. It played better than anything I owned...Les Paul included. You just breathed on the strings and they touched the frets...that close. That was how the kid wanted it, and that's how I set it up.
Here's another thing....if you're gonna lower the bridge, saddles, whatever...you HAVE to re-set the intonation...that's a plain FACT. And while it's not hard, for a noob this can be really confusing.
Philly, if you're new at this take our advice....have it done by a pro. Get the money however you can and do it. Because once you start tinkering around with no idea what you're doing, it leads to chain reactions...moving this screws this up and changes something else and by the time you're done you're gonna want to tear your hair out and smash your guitar.
Also, go to http://www.stewmac.com and order the book "Guitar Player Repair Guide" by Dan Erlewine. It's $22.95 and tells you EVERYTHING you need to know about setting up a guitar. It's the best book I've ever read on this stuff, and I've read quite a few. Pay that once and you can set up your own guitars for the rest of your life for free!
#10
Seagull, you HAVE to be kidding... right? In a way, you're correct...you don't have to adjust the neck when adjusting action...HOWEVER....


Exactly my point The truss rod, as you pointed out, adjusts the neck relief which is an important factor in determining the playability of the guitar. However, whilst it will have some bearing on how low the action can be it doesn't directly affect it. Too many people mess with the truss rod and think it's some magical action-lowering tool when all their doing is bending the shit out of their neck.

I wouldn't recommend somebody adjust their truss rod simply because there's a chance of causing some serious damage, however bridge height adjustments are pretty straightforward and harmless...every player should know how to adjust their bridge, but i don't think you necessarily need to know how to adjust the truss rod, just know what it does.

And I still can't figure out how somebody's neck nearly fell off when trying to adjust the action....
Actually called Mark!

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#11
^^he probably played with the screws that the neck was bolt on with...
anyway, to threadstarter, if you're a patient guy you can do everything yourself. i did, and the only thing i would not do alone is mess with the electronics or fret job. but that'll come someday too...
however, if you're not that patient, then raising and lowering the bridge is the only thing you should do. don't mess with adjusting intonation or neck...