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Author Topic: Setup/Maintenance Issues.  (Read 6279 times)
Caleb
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« on: November 12, 2015, 04:23:27 AM »

It seems to happen every few years, and now it has happened again: my guitar will just go dull and out of whack, it won't sound quite in tune, and the overall dynamics just go sort of "blah."  I'll take it in to my local repairman (wonderful fellow), he will do some adjustments, and voila! (and about $40 later), I'll have back the old guitar I love. 

My question is: Why does this happen?  And does it happen to you? 
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JohnM2001
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« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2015, 05:26:47 AM »

Probably years of humidity & string tension throw it out of whack just enough to bug us   angry
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D-02E
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« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2015, 05:31:34 AM »

Are you storing it in a case?  There's really not a lot that a basic $40 set up does for an acoustic so maybe it's a combination of fresh strings, minor adjustments, and psychology?  Next time it happens, I recommend getting familiar with the truss rod tool.  That might help your guitar play better year-round, year after year.  Mine rarely change due to controlled RH and minimal temp swings.  If it's out of the case or if the environment changes a lot, the wood is expanding/contracting more.
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D-02-12
Used to own and love; SD-50, J70 maple Mermaid, SD60sbt, D03R, LV03E.
L07 Shooting Star
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« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2015, 06:22:48 AM »

Are you storing it in a case?  There's really not a lot that a basic $40 set up does for an acoustic so maybe it's a combination of fresh strings, minor adjustments, and psychology?  Next time it happens, I recommend getting familiar with the truss rod tool.  That might help your guitar play better year-round, year after year.  Mine rarely change due to controlled RH and minimal temp swings.  If it's out of the case or if the environment changes a lot, the wood is expanding/contracting more.

I agree.  You wouldn't normally expect such a "dullness" in the guitar all of a sudden.  Change in environment seems to be the cause, most likely.  And a tweak in the truss rod adjustment seems to be the most likely solution.  Just my 2 cents.
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broKen
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« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2015, 06:34:21 AM »

Every time I get a little dissatisfied with a guitar and contemplate selling it, I put on new strings. Big change and loving my Larrivee again.  It happens
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Mr_LV19E
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« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2015, 12:11:05 PM »

High humidity makes mine sound muffled, sustained high 60's to low 70's% relative humidity. Mid 60% and lower just gets better and better.
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Roger


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Caleb
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« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2015, 02:39:24 PM »

I have a pretty new set of stings on now, but they might be duds.  Hard to imagine since I use those bulk, unpackaged Martins and it would be unlikely to grab all duds from the bag at one time - especially since I've had no other duds from that stash of 2 dozen sets. 

The cooler weather is setting in here, but it hasn't affected my mandolins, and they are nice, solid wood instruments too. 

I always keep my guitar in the case when I'm not playing. 

I have a Larrivee truss rod tool, but have no idea how to properly adjust a truss rod.   
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broKen
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« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2015, 03:17:14 PM »

Is your guitar equipped with a UST?
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A Hebrew, under the Spell
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Caleb
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« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2015, 05:27:37 PM »

Is your guitar equipped with a UST?
I don't know.  What is UST?
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broKen
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« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2015, 07:28:28 PM »

I don't know.  What is UST?

Under saddle transducer. A pickup under the saddle
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A Hebrew, under the Spell
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Caleb
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« Reply #10 on: November 12, 2015, 07:59:11 PM »

Under saddle transducer. A pickup under the saddle
It has a K&K Pure Western in there somewhere, but I don't know anything about the PUP. Just know it's in there and has been for about 12 years.
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Danny
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« Reply #11 on: November 13, 2015, 03:15:01 AM »

Heh Caleb, next time you head south bring your guitar with you, It's time we meet anyway, and maybe I can show you a few things to adjust.
     I'm happy to do it and would enjoy finally having a face to face.
     Today Tuffy called me and I have to say it made my day. I guess what I'm saying is y'all come see us, ya hear?
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George
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« Reply #12 on: November 13, 2015, 03:27:06 PM »

Danny is right Caleb, it is not terribly hard to do setup work yourself with a minimum amount of tools and measurement aids, and you can keep your guitar sounding bright and clean all the time.  Best thing I ever learned to do, and it was fun learning how to do it.  Now if I just was not so OCD about it...
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George
Caleb
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« Reply #13 on: November 13, 2015, 06:45:49 PM »

Danny, that sounds like fun.   I'll keep it in mind next time I come to Austin.  In the meantime, how would a person go about learning how to do his own setup work? 
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Danny
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« Reply #14 on: November 13, 2015, 06:50:33 PM »

Dan Erlewine has a book called GUITAR PLAYER REPAIR GUIDE. I have had the third edition for quite awhile and refer to it often for tips, technique and specs.
  It's worth having around.
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B0WIE
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« Reply #15 on: November 15, 2015, 12:13:59 AM »

I thought someone posted a link to a Larrivee repair tips video but that post seems to have been deleted.  Anyone know what happened or am I in the wrong thread?
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D-02-12
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Danny
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« Reply #16 on: November 15, 2015, 12:16:21 AM »

I thought someone posted a link to a Larrivee repair tips video but that post seems to have been deleted.  Anyone know what happened or am I in the wrong thread?
There was a link right after my post, guess it got deleted.
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Caleb
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« Reply #17 on: November 15, 2015, 03:41:46 PM »

I'm not sure if it was humidity on that particular day, or the fact that my guitar hadn't been out of the case much in several weeks, but I played quite a bit last night and the majority of the problems I had been experiencing seem to be gone.  Perhaps it needed to warm up a bit?  It still seems just a tad "off" but nothing like it was.  Strange!
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Mr_LV19E
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« Reply #18 on: November 15, 2015, 03:48:09 PM »

What's your humidity, haven't you been having a lot of rain lately in Texas?
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Roger


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Caleb
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« Reply #19 on: November 15, 2015, 03:49:41 PM »

What's your humidity, haven't you been having a lot of rain lately in Texas?

I don't know the humidity level or how to measure it.  It hasn't rained here in a couple weeks, but the Autumn air is very damp, and my A/C is still running for part of the day. 
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