Help needed - neck crooked sideways

Discussion in 'Tech-Talk' started by Shaytan, Sep 23, 2018.

  1. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    425
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    I've bought my Jackson a little over a year ago. I've noticed the high E string would sometimes slip off the fretboard, but I always assumed it was down to the fact the locking nut was mounted a bit over that side. Being lazy like I am, I decided to just wait until I changed the strings to fix that, but recently a friend of mine visited me and that was the very first issue he noticed right away.

    Worried, I decided to investigate. Placed the nut properly and even set the neck properly in the pocket. The problem was still there. But, looking more carefully, I noticed the strings sat perfectly in place both at the nut as at the last frets. Confused, I placed a straight long ruler on the side of the neck and look and behold, the neck was crooked to one side at the middle!

    Could this perhaps be fixed by tightening the truss rod? I don't have the key for it but I'll take it to the luthier when I go get my classical back from the setup and new bone nut and saddle I've ordered, I've noticed it also needs to be tightened a bit, but on the only thread I've found online about this, it seemed the neck is pretty much worth throwing in the fireplace in such a case...

    Any help and advice would be highly welcomed!

    IMG_20180912_010350.jpg IMG_20180912_010152.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2018
  2. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier-holic

    Sep 27, 2014
    Canada
    Nothing to do with truss rod...it's neck alignment....

    If this is a bolt on neck you string it up with 6 new strings (looks like 1 is missing in your pic), tune it up like normal, and then loosen all 4 neck screws 1/4 to 1/2 a turn or so....then pull the neck into alignment so the high E and low E are the same distance from fretboard edge....then re-tighten the screws.....

    EDIT - if you say the strings are aligned at the nut AND at the neck heel area but not in the middle.....that means the neck is WARPED and shot.....no good....
     
  3. Triple Jim

    Triple Jim Squier-holic

    Feb 16, 2018
    North Central NC
    I have no idea what Jackson's warranty is, but it might be worth sending some good photos to their customer service department to see what they have to say. That much side to side warpage is pretty rare, and they might be willing to send you another neck to keep up their reputation.
     
  4. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    425
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    Sadly I bought it used and it's a decade old, so I doubt they'd have a warranty that long LOL

    I forgot to mention this detail but that said luthier is from whom I bought it. I thought the used guitar selection were all his and so he had made sure they were all in good condition, but actually he sells them on commission and basically only markets them in his website and keeps them in the store; his actual business is more just repairing guitars. He's a very honest and friendly guy, I'm not exaggerating his store has a solid 5 star rating both on Google Maps and on Facebook, plus I've already sent two other classical guitars from the tuna for major repairs and he was super cool, great price and very well made repairs. I'll try and see whether he'd accept to buy it back or at least either accept it as rebate for another guitar or resell it for me with no commission.

    I mean, I love the guitar, wouldn't the bow be so huge and I'd just get the nut adjusted and the frets polished so that the high E wouldn't slip out of the fret so easily, but in such case I'd probably do these in order for it to be as good as possible and eventually either selling or trading it for less value and accept the loss as lesson learned to always check a guitar regardless from whom I buy it.
     
    dbrian66 likes this.
  5. Triple Jim

    Triple Jim Squier-holic

    Feb 16, 2018
    North Central NC
    You never know until you ask. Some things are so bad that a company will fix them many years after a normal warranty runs out. A sideways warp that bad should never happen. Send them good photos and ask what you can do to get this great guitar to be playable again.

    I bought used a high end bicycle seat off eBay and found it had a crack in a small plastic part that supports the top. I emailed the company and asked if I could get that small part to fix it. It was not the current model, and they didn't have the part available, so based on the photos they sent me a brand new seat.
     
  6. Dave M

    Dave M Squier-Meister

    491
    Feb 27, 2017
    Mira Loma, CA
    neck be bent for sure.! lots of room for the Low E !in the middle o_O
     
  7. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    425
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    I think the photos make it look worse than it actually is, I accidentally didn't took them right in front of it, but when I get home in a couple days I'll get some better pics.
     
    dbrian66 likes this.
  8. Jay Jackson

    Jay Jackson Squier-Meister

    Age:
    65
    286
    Sep 1, 2018
    sanluisobispo CA (3401
    do you mean that around the 5th to 10th fret the neck actualy sag's down. and not just twisted.eather way to fix it you would need to build a straight rectangle Box Jig that could be adjusted close to put the neck in , Probly easyer to replace the neck. I have heard of using a heating Pad wrap it around the let it go under the strings put it on Low seting and its possible for the wood to return to its original shape.dont over heat it. I think it was 3 days then turn off heating pad and let cool naturaly.The person said he has done this twice to fix twisted neck
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2018
    Kenneth Mountain and dbrian66 like this.
  9. DrBeGood

    DrBeGood Squier-holic

    Dec 9, 2014
    Sutton QC, CANADA
    If this is a bolt on neck, just reposition it.
     
  10. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    425
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    Ah, I've actually read that thread as well, trust me I was so stocked with this I've already went through the whole web (I only haven't gone to the dark web... yet) in search for similar cases and solutions. There's also the other side of the story with tales of necks getting split along the grain and the finish burnt, so I'd rather look at all the other options (namely, either selling/trading it and compensating the problem by moving the nut to divide the issue by the two E strings and to recrown the frets so the string doesn't roll over the edges so easily) or at least seeing if the luthier at least offers to do that repair himself free of charge.

    That was the first thing I've done, I'm aware of that rather common adjustment, but with a straight ruler I've confirmed the neck is really crooked, it's not poor adjustment that is causing the problem. Thanks for the suggestion anyways.
     
  11. MikeyH

    MikeyH Squier-Meister

    Age:
    64
    250
    Jan 2, 2017
    Hawaii
    You're right, judging from the photos. The neck is curved laterally, not set at an angle in the pocket. Conventional truss rods can't correct that. I'd say the neck has to be replaced. What a disappointment. Hope it's still under warranty.
     
    Kenneth Mountain and Shaytan like this.
  12. kjmac

    kjmac Squier-Nut

    Age:
    62
    680
    Aug 14, 2017
    Omaha, NE
    I could be way off here, but in closely looking at the photos, it appears that the high E string is too far over in the nut. The Low E looks perfect but there is quite a bit more distance between the E and B strings than the rest of the strings. I guess it could be an optical illusion but I wold try to adjust the #1 E string up about a 3/32 at the nut. The neck appears to be straight from what I can see.
     
    Kenneth Mountain likes this.
  13. Jay Jackson

    Jay Jackson Squier-Meister

    Age:
    65
    286
    Sep 1, 2018
    sanluisobispo CA (3401
    here is what could have caused this. I have seen Guitars stored for longer periods of time standing up in a position that has the guitar leaning side ways and the neck is resting on the wall so over time the neck will bend.
     
    Kenneth Mountain likes this.
  14. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    425
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    UPDATE: I got it back from the luthier earlier this week (I could only take it there last week) and luckily it's fine now. As I've said, I think the photos exaggerated the problem given the apparent bow wasn't even on the area where the string got closer to the fret edge. He placed in better in the neck pocket (I didn't bolted it down properly when I tried to do so, he showed me he could easily move it around even with the strings on) and shimmed it (to get good action, I'd have to lower the bridge completely) and it plays a lot smoother now.

    I'm so happy that it's fine, not only I really like the guitar and it was on my nerves during all this time, but also I feared this could hurt my relationship with the luthier, since he made great jobs on both mine and the tuna's classical guitars I've taken there (one of which had the top with a giant crack, nearly all split apart and has been playing perfectly ever since) and with bargain prices, and so I planned to pay him visits often - he not only took care of the issue, but also gave it a full check-up and a set-up (it only needed the strings lowered just a bit) for the price of just the strings, because I bought it from him. No wonder his store has a solid 5* rating and a bunch of guitars getting serviced all the time!
     
  15. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    425
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    So, turns out my Jackson may be toast after all... After the last trip to the luthier, it played a lot better than before yet something still felt odd about it... I expressed at the time my concerns to him that the original problem - the high E string slipping - was still present. He told me it was the way these guitars were built, having a thin neck, and that was something I would perhaps need to adapt to technique-wise. Well, today it was Jackson playing time and as I was planning to block off the trem temporarily to play a Drop D song in it, I realized the neck also has a twist in it... it becomes quite obvious once you look at it... F...

    I may pay him a visit this week, since that friend of mine of the Mexican Fender will get it from servicing and asked me if I could go with him, and in the meantime message him again about it. It's quite of a PITA because the guitar will always play weird, then, so as much as it saddens me to say this, I believe it will have to go eventually. I'll try and see if I can get a partial refund off it, if I got around 100 euros back it would allow me to buy a "new" neck for it, or at least sell it for a more reasonable price without suffering a loss, or at least a trade-in: he has this pretty interesting 94 Jackson Fusion Pro for sale for quite a while now, though it has definitely seen some love (and a repaint) over the years, but it seems like a decent price for these given its condition. I doubt about this latter option, as he sells the guitars out of commission and so he'd be paying the actual owner out of his own pocket, while keeping for himself mine.

    In last case scenario, it may be sold... eventually. Not having the most time available to deal with that, plus these mid-range guitars often go on and on in the listings for ages without anyone picking them, so I may at some point trade it for something else.

    IMG_20190121_182030.jpg IMG_20190121_181903.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2019
  16. Jay Jackson

    Jay Jackson Squier-Meister

    Age:
    65
    286
    Sep 1, 2018
    sanluisobispo CA (3401
    yep its twisted and bent. I would get a different neck. You could try and fix it but it would more likely return to the twist once under string tension for a while. and would cause other problems with the frets taking the twist out.
     
    Shaytan likes this.
  17. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    425
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    Thanks for your confirmation, it's good to know it's not just me going crazy... :p I've already spoke to him and tomorrow I'll pay him a visit and discuss how may we get this situation sorted out. The ideal and most no-brainer scenario would be having him getting a new neck for it, and so I'd just get the guitar I already like fixed - thing is, even though I am aware he knows many people in the business, it's still hard to find a neck off a discontinued line that doesn't sell for an arm and a leg (trust me, the second-hand prices for these necks are absolutely ridiculous), and so it would be a PITA for him because #1 he'd have to go through the hassle of finding a neck for sale, which may take from a couple weeks to many months, and #2 he'd be paying off his own pocket for a part that won't cost less than 100 bucks.

    The partial refund possibility is also hard to happen, it's a one person store and the luthier surely has to put food on his family table, I don't think he'd be willing to take cash out of his own pocket to solve that - not to speak that it would then be me having to go trough the trouble of getting a replacement neck. Finally, the exchange idea, which he had told me on my last visit that in a last case scenario is an option he always offers in cases of a defective guitar. If so, and given that other Jackson costs virtually the same price I've paid for this, it could be a good solution.

    Assuming we'd go that path, I'm still not certain whether that's a good option. Those Fusion Pros are very praised and that decade is often considered the "golden era" of Jackson. However, minus the fooked up neck, mine's in near-mint condition, and I'm not exaggerating when I say it has zero kinks or scratches. On the flip side, that one was definitely a live played instrument, and not only that, but it was also refinished (quite well, as I've seen it in person, and though I like it more than the original flat colors those sold for, it would be troublesome when trying to sell it, so I had to be certain this would be something to keep). Also, the whole "Gibson-style scale" is super cool in paper, but I'm not certain whether I'd like it over the Fender-style scale I'm well used to, mainly when playing with light gauge strings. Finally, one of my absolute favourite aspects of my guitar are the Duncan pickups that sound amazing for the type of music I play, but I'm not familiar with the Jackson-branded ones it comes with. If by any chance this option is considered, I'd try and ask to have the pickups of mine swapped into it (I suspect the safest bet for him would be then selling it online for parts, and if so it wouldn't be such a big deal).

    On a final note, keep in mind I'm not in the right of complaining if he just says "well, too bad, come back if you need anything else". When I've bought it I knew he only offered 3 months of warranty, so the sole fact of him having already helped me has to do because he knows the problem had to be there from the start, and out of his generosity. It was my fault for not properly inspecting it in a timely matter and instead rarely taking it out of the case (the problem of buying my first real good guitar...), so I don't want to sound entitled.
     
  18. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    425
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    NEW UPDATE: Back from the store, turns out to be nothing. We've looked the guitar and it was an optical illusion, if when looking at the pic you ignore the strings, nut and bridge, you'll see it's dead flat. The luthier assured me on my first trip there he had checked with flat edges across all the neck and there were no problems at all with it.

    In the end he suggested me perhaps I simply wasn't adapting to the neck and it wasn't the right guitar for me and so having trouble with that issue of the high E string being pulled off the edge of the frets. I may attempt getting new locking nut with reduced width to see if that helps out, it's an easy thing to try, anyways.

    At least, once again I have some peace of mind knowing the guitar is fine, but I'll have to think to myself if perhaps he's right. I did tried that Fusion and the neck felt quite better, though it was definitely not in the best condition to be worth that price. Maybe one day I'll come across something else that pleases me more, who knows.
     
    squierbilly likes this.
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