#1
How many string retainers should I have on my headstock. I've seen guitars that have 1 and some with 2. What determines how many you need.
#2
It depends on how much strings you want to have pressed down on the nut and on how much space there is. I'd say it's best to aim for steepening the angle over the nut of as many strings possible. Most of the time this means that you fit two retainers, each able to hold down two of the higher four strings. It would be nice to fit a third one for the upper two strings also, but most of the time lack of space between the nut and the tuner posts prevents that. If there actually is room there, most designers choose to fit one single bar retainer for all six strings.
Anyway; whenever trying to solve a problem like this I can't help to wonder what the heck is wrong with an old fashioned angled headstock. Is it really that important to be able to lay a guitar flat on its back? (just a besides not ment to change the topic)
#3
I want to install a Fender Roller Nut and they say that you cant have a angled headstock with that type of nut. Is it possible to fit a single bar retainer over a strat style headstock?
#4
Quote by bons330
I want to install a Fender Roller Nut and they say that you cant have a angled headstock with that type of nut.

Odd... Do they give you a reason?
Quote by bons330
Is it possible to fit a single bar retainer over a strat style headstock?

Yes.
#5
Quote by Marcel Veltman
It depends on how much strings you want to have pressed down on the nut and on how much space there is. I'd say it's best to aim for steepening the angle over the nut of as many strings possible. Most of the time this means that you fit two retainers, each able to hold down two of the higher four strings. It would be nice to fit a third one for the upper two strings also, but most of the time lack of space between the nut and the tuner posts prevents that. If there actually is room there, most designers choose to fit one single bar retainer for all six strings.
Anyway; whenever trying to solve a problem like this I can't help to wonder what the heck is wrong with an old fashioned angled headstock. Is it really that important to be able to lay a guitar flat on its back? (just a besides not ment to change the topic)


The reason fender's don't have angled headstocks is it's cheaper to make them like that , rather than the extra wood of a one piece angled headstock neck or the extra man hours required to make a scarf joint. Fenders were originally designed to be mass produced as efficiently as possible. Thus the bolt on necks, top routed pickgaurds with all the electronics wired ready to be screwed on the body, and the flat headstock.
#6
I'd thought of getting one of these at one point.....a roller nut that is. This might seem stupid but you can get one of these for a regular fender strat style headstock?

Just the last few posts confused the hell outta me, seemed like you couldn't do

bons330 said:
I want to install a Fender Roller Nut and they say that you cant have a angled headstock with that type of nut. Is it possible to fit a single bar retainer over a strat style headstock?

Strat style headstock? but yet not able for a roller nut? What fender models are rollers nuts for then? Be pretty shi_t if you couldn't get one for a strat
NEW WAVE OF BRITSH HEAVY METAL!!!!
#7
Quote by bons330
.... Is it possible to fit a single bar retainer over a strat style headstock?


Must be no problem. Original Fender Strats sometimes have them when a Floyd Rose is fitted. They may obstruct the truss rod access though. It would be no problem to figure out the possibilities by taking a real close look and do some measurements.

On the other hand there is some subtility to the original strat layout that not readily meets the eye. Evidently Fender has positioned the retainers in such a way that the higher strings go over the nut in an equally shallow angle than the low strings that don't have a retainer. The feeble string pressure on the nut may initially have been a drawback of the original design that was taken as an inevitable trade off, but later became an appreciated feature that for a good part contributes to the particular feel and sound of the Stratocaster.

To find out you can tie wrap an improvised retainer over the strings to pull them really tight to the nut and then see what this does to the sound. Maybe you'll like it or else you'll get to know why this oddball design survives for more than 50 years now.
#8
On my tele I've stuck one of those bar retainers off a floyd rose, and it works well! Surpisingly, it also reduced the string tension slightly and I now no longer have a problem with strings catching on the stupid little metal tree. Dunno why more people haven't tried it, really...
#9
Quote by Rabid Gerry
I'd thought of getting one of these at one point.....a roller nut that is. This might seem stupid but you can get one of these for a regular fender strat style headstock?

Just the last few posts confused the hell outta me, seemed like you couldn't do

bons330 said:
I want to install a Fender Roller Nut and they say that you cant have a angled headstock with that type of nut. Is it possible to fit a single bar retainer over a strat style headstock?

Strat style headstock? but yet not able for a roller nut? What fender models are rollers nuts for then? Be pretty shi_t if you couldn't get one for a strat



FENDER LSR NUT This should help explain what I was talking about when I said you shouldn't have a angled peg head when using the Fender LSR nut.
#10
Another way to have strings closer to the nut is by:

having 2-3 turns of string on the low E tuning peg

3-4 turns A

4-5 turns on the D

As many turns as possible on the G right the way down the tuning peg

3-4 turns on B

and 3 on E

I read this in a book I have and it was a specific way of doing things for strat head stocks, particularly if you have no retainers. I have two string trees and I do it anyway. Makes it more accurate tuning on the 1st fret in my own personal experience. As the pegs go further away from the nut they need to be lower so as they are held as low as possible over it. The more turns you have on a string at the tuning peg the lower down the string will be as it comes away from the peg toward the nut groove.

Bizarrely though the G needs the most turns for some reason. The G for me is the string that is always is hardest to get in tune, had this problem on most guitars. Weird. Even the book I read says this.

This might seem nuts but it's true in my own experience.
NEW WAVE OF BRITSH HEAVY METAL!!!!
#11
Quote by Rabid Gerry
Bizarrely though the G needs the most turns for some reason. The G for me is the string that is always is hardest to get in tune, had this problem on most guitars. Weird. Even the book I read says this.

This might seem nuts but it's true in my own experience.


If you're putting that many turns on it, I wouldn't be surprised. Two to three turns is best.
#12
You really need a string tree on the G. Without it there is insufficient acoustic damping so unwanted overtones caused by sympathetic vibration of the "harp" behind the nut enter the harmonic spectrum of the G.

Roller nuts are a really bad idea. i mean really bad. i have yet to see one which works. My favourite story of design incompetence concerns the LSR nut. Seemed like a good idea at the time; support the strings on two little ball bearings, zero friction, right? Except one of the important functions of the nut is to support the string so that the resonant pulse is reflected back down the string. Without this the pulse travels straight through the nut to the tuners and dissipates in the headstock harp, reducing sustain and creating the enharmonic overtones I spoke of above. To counter this the designers placed a little block of rubber behind the paired bearings, in so doing restoring all the friction they had hoped to eliminate by using the bearings.

Factor in the following flaws:

1) no individual height adjustment for strings so you can't match the string height at the nut to the fingerboard radius
2) if your nut is designed for .010" gauge strings and you put a .009" string i the first position, chances are it will slip through the bearing pair and ground down on the nut frame. It's an expensive fit as well, as the front edge of the fingerboard needs to be trimmed back to accommodate the nut frame. If it's not done with a great deal of skill you can damage your guitar in many ways. The tiny little screws that hold the nut in place require very precise pilot holes; get this wrong and they can seize or snap.

On balance you are better off getting a skilled tech to set your guitar up. A properly cut bone, phosphor bronze or stainless steel nut is completely stable...
Last edited by octavedoctor at May 7, 2008,
#13
Quote by bons330
FENDER LSR NUT This should help explain what I was talking about when I said you shouldn't have a angled peg head when using the Fender LSR nut.

I don't see it, actually. The plastic backing isn't necessary at all, and if you don't put that on then you should have plenty of room to break the strings downwards behind the nut.

Now, I haven't actually seen a guitar with an angled headstock and a LSR roller nut, but I don't see why they couldn't be fittet, because the reason they give is total bullpies.