Guitar setup: what do you like?

Cirrus

Roadie
Messages
270
I didn't care for years, but in the last 5 I started paying more attention, bought a gauge for measuring action, and learning how to do basic stuff myself.

And it turns out;

2mm on the low E, 1.75mm high E. Nothing crazy.

11-52 gauge strings

Ideally, action that doesn't really change after the 12th fret.

You?
 
Regardless of the tuning/gauge, I try to get all my guitars playing the same. Not a lot of tension in the strings, the only thing I get really picky about is the action and I’ll go between neck relief and adjusting saddle heights to find the perfect marriage. For the most part I want everything straight up to the 12th fret, then a little extra height from 12-whatever so I can get my fingers under the strings.

I don’t measure anything, I can tell just by fretting a note and bending if it’s where I want to be and different fret sizes/fingerboard radii require different heights, but I’m sure if checked it’d be the difference of mm’s.
 
Depends on scale and tuning for me, as far as what strings - I have all my guitars in D Std now, which required some flip-flopping/testing to get everything about the same tension, much as @DrewJD82 said. 10-46" on 24.xx, 9.5 ish on 25.00" and 9-42 on 25.5" seems to work best for me. Too much tension gives me fits, finger agility not what it once was nearing 56 ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I set for minimal relief but don't measure it, I capo the 1st and hold at the neck/body joint - then test for a good ping at the 7th/8th. I do go for 3/64" (wound) and 2/64" (unwound) 12th fret action and can get that on 98% of my guitars.
 
I didn't care for years, but in the last 5 I started paying more attention, bought a gauge for measuring action, and learning how to do basic stuff myself.

And it turns out;

2mm on the low E, 1.75mm high E. Nothing crazy.

11-52 gauge strings

Ideally, action that doesn't really change after the 12th fret.

You?

Pretty much the same as yours. I start off with the string height about 2mm across the board then see how it feels. I then adjust by feel but it's normally just lowering the G, B and high E down a bit while playing it in.

I use 11-52 on all mine as well though sometimes use a 10 in place of the 11 on my strat if I've been playing a lot and my fingers are getting sore.
 
Each of my guitars is setup different. I might adjust my shredder guitars for lower action and something like a Strat to favor those blues bends.

10 or 11 gauge strings, 12s on acoustic.
 
As low as works on what ever the guitar. A starting point would be 50,000" to 70,000" E to E and if this doesn't work I will see why. But no buzz no choke .
 
As low as I can go, juuussssttt when fret buzz starts, and as flat a neck as possible, with juuusssttt a touch of relief.

I feel the flat neck makes for the best possibility of the lowest action with the least amount of localized fret buzz, and the low action makes it easiest to play.

It does however make bends a bit more challenging, but I can deal with that with practice.
 
As low as I can go, juuussssttt when fret buzz starts, and as flat a neck as possible, with juuusssttt a touch of relief.

I feel the flat neck makes for the best possibility of the lowest action with the least amount of localized fret buzz, and the low action makes it easiest to play.

It does however make bends a bit more challenging, but I can deal with that with practice.
Fret hight is super important for bending when the action is low. What frets do you use?
 
The biggest thing for me is nut slot height. No matter how well you set up the action and the neck relief, the nut action is the one thing that will still affect feel across most of the neck.

Many people don't realize how critical this is, and I've encountered many guitars where people said it didn't feel "slinky" or "had too much tension," when the real problem was nut action. A difference of only 0.005" can make a guitar feel crappy or great. And they generally come from the factory cut too high, either to make up for shoddy fret leveling or to give the purchaser room to customize the setup.

Quality nut slotting files are expensive, but you can use a set of inexpensive steel feeler gauges if you're only making small adjustments. First use a file to round off the sharp edges of the feeler gauge, and then use a coarse file or coarse sharpening stone to roughen up that now-rounded edge.

It'll take a while to remove material with it, but that's a good thing, because there's nothing worse than cutting a nut slot too deep and having to make a whole new nut.
 
Medium Jumbo. It's what standard on the Majesty.
That is a bit meaningless because so many things are described as that. I would be very surprised if JP didn’t have Jescar 57110 ss on his own instruments. This is industry standard jumbo and very close to 6100 ( 55 high) . If you use this bending is no issues with a low action.
 
The biggest thing for me is nut slot height. No matter how well you set up the action and the neck relief, the nut action is the one thing that will still affect feel across most of the neck.

Many people don't realize how critical this is, and I've encountered many guitars where people said it didn't feel "slinky" or "had too much tension," when the real problem was nut action. A difference of only 0.005" can make a guitar feel crappy or great. And they generally come from the factory cut too high, either to make up for shoddy fret leveling or to give the purchaser room to customize the setup.

Quality nut slotting files are expensive, but you can use a set of inexpensive steel feeler gauges if you're only making small adjustments. First use a file to round off the sharp edges of the feeler gauge, and then use a coarse file or coarse sharpening stone to roughen up that now-rounded edge.

It'll take a while to remove material with it, but that's a good thing, because there's nothing worse than cutting a nut slot too deep and having to make a whole new nut.
I really don’t recommend using anything home made to cut nut slots. If you have a trem you are asking for friction in the high strings or slop in the slots. Just bite the bullet and buy a set of quality nut files you will only ever need one set and you will have them for all your subsequent guitars. It’s very unlikely that you can make a nice smooth round slot with a modified feeler gauge.
 
That is a bit meaningless
Well..., sorry bout that. Don't know what else to tell ya.

That's why I said it's what's on the Majesty. I'm not the luthier in this conversation. I figured my comment would give you enough info. I did however do a search before I answered, but 'medium jumbo' was all I found. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Maybe I should've just said, "Whatever comes stock on a Majesty." Either way, I'm fine with how my guitar plays. Even without knowing the exact model of frets it has. :crazy

;)
 
I really don’t recommend using anything home made to cut nut slots. If you have a trem you are asking for friction in the high strings or slop in the slots. Just bite the bullet and buy a set of quality nut files you will only ever need one set and you will have them for all your subsequent guitars. It’s very unlikely that you can make a nice smooth round slot with a modified feeler gauge.
Like most technical tasks, it depends on the skill level of the person doing it. I have a full set of nut slotting files for electrics and acoustics, and sometimes still use modified feeler gauges because they are more accurate in thickness than my expensive files. One of my files is 0.002" thinner than it claims to be, and once caused me to cut a nut slot too deep because it was pinching the string when it should've been a free-fit. Since then I've learned to measure any files with calipers before trusting what is printed on them.

Regarding the feeler gauges, as long as you shape them well before use, they work great, and leave behind a smooth polished slot because their cutting action is so slow. It's more like burnishing the material away rather than filing it. That's why I wouldn't recommend them for making a new nut, but if you're just trying to remove a few thousandths from an existing nut slot, and you're competent with this sort of work, you can get a great result.
 
Well..., sorry bout that. Don't know what else to tell ya.

That's why I said it's what's on the Majesty. I'm not the luthier in this conversation. I figured my comment would give you enough info. I did however do a search before I answered, but 'medium jumbo' was all I found. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Maybe I should've just said, "Whatever comes stock on a Majesty." Either way, I'm fine with how my guitar plays. Even without knowing the exact model of frets it has. :crazy

;)
I’m not blaming you for not knowing . I was surprised that it wasn’t specific on the website.
 
Like most technical tasks, it depends on the skill level of the person doing it. I have a full set of nut slotting files for electrics and acoustics, and sometimes still use modified feeler gauges because they are more accurate in thickness than my expensive files. One of my files is 0.002" thinner than it claims to be, and once caused me to cut a nut slot too deep because it was pinching the string when it should've been a free-fit. Since then I've learned to measure any files with calipers before trusting what is printed on them.

Regarding the feeler gauges, as long as you shape them well before use, they work great, and leave behind a smooth polished slot because their cutting action is so slow. It's more like burnishing the material away rather than filing it. That's why I wouldn't recommend them for making a new nut, but if you're just trying to remove a few thousandths from an existing nut slot, and you're competent with this sort of work, you can get a great result.
It’s more dependent upon how well you make a file. What make of file was off size?
 
It’s more dependent upon how well you make a file. What make of file was off size?
StewMac. I have every thickness of nut slotting file they sell and several of them are 0.001" off, and a couple others are 0.002" off.

I still sometimes prefer feeler gauges if I'm making factory-cut slots deeper though, because even with my full set of files they don't always match the existing width of the factory slots perfectly. So you either end up with a ledge near the bottom of the slot, or you widen the whole thing slightly, or you rock the file in the bottom of the slot (which kinda defeats the purpose of a shaped file)... With a well-made feeler gauge file, you can match the factory slot width perfectly.
 
I’m not blaming you for not knowing . I was surprised that it wasn’t specific on the website.
I wasn't saying that. I just thought you'd know. Although I have noticed it seems like you haven't had any Majesties come through your hands. At least I've never read you talking about any.
 
I wasn't saying that. I just thought you'd know. Although I have noticed it seems like you haven't had any Majesties come through your hands. At least I've never read you talking about any.
No I have had a few but I don't like them personally .
 
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