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 Post subject: Straight Neck?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:40 pm 
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Walnut
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I have a Les Paul Studio that has been sitting for a few years. Recently getting back into it.
It doesn't seem to be playing as well as it used to and I would like to straighten the neck to see if that helps.
It seems pretty close to me but I am no expert.
Can anyone tell me from the photo below if this needs to be straightened or not?
I have a set of light gauge strings on it currently (9-42).

https://1drv.ms/u/s!Ak6Z9f6YtvHXkz2K9a4PvlENApyN


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 Post subject: Re: Straight Neck?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 07, 2018 3:10 pm 
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It looks straight in the photo, but a more complete description would be helpful.

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 Post subject: Re: Straight Neck?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 07, 2018 3:42 pm 
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Brazilian Rosewood
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No.
Yer gonna need a straight straightedge and a set of feeler gages. Then you will be able to tell...

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 Post subject: Re: Straight Neck?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 07, 2018 5:26 pm 
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Koa
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You do not want a perfectly straight neck, you need some "relief". Gibson's factory spec is 0.012 measured at the 8th fret, most of us would like a whole lot less - say 4 to 6 thousands. And while there might be some people with micrometer eyes who can gestimate that much relief, I sure can't. So, like Haans, I reach for my feeler gauges


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 Post subject: Re: Straight Neck?
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2018 5:29 pm 
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Cocobolo
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Using a straightedge is the best way to assess it, if you have got one. Next best is to use the string as a straight edge. With the strings at normal tuning tension, fret the low E string at the 1st fret and simultanously at the 14th fret (or do one of them with a capo to keep a hand free). Look at what is happening in the interval in between. There should be a slight forward bowing of the neck under string tension so that at the 7th fret there is a very small gap between the string and the top of the fret, even though they are touching at 1 and 14. You will be able to feel the gap if you push the string down at the 7th. If the string is actually sitting on the 7th fret it means that you have a neck that is too straight, or is bowed backwards. You can measure the gap at the 7th using feeler gauges (which is what Freeman and Haans were talking about). If you don't have them a rough guide is that the gap should be about the thichness of a business card (do you have one of those?). You can adjust the relief using the truss rod adjuster.

"It doesn't seem to be playing as well as it used to" - is not a very specific symptom. Can you identify it a bit more? Is the action high, frets buzzing? Do you think there could be any player factors in the equation after a couple of years away from it?


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