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 Re: Set-up 
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Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2007 1:08 pm
Posts: 1673
Post Re: Set-up
From another thread:

...I've even had problems with my PGM301 with a set of 11s. The 'F' chord at first fret always seemed sharp and the intonation was out. I took it in to a shop, and I was immediately greeted with the answer:

Whilst the truss rod obviously needed adjusting, the strings were not sitting in the nut properly - they were resting 'more' on top of it. The result being that by fretting at the first fret I was actually bending the string sharp relative to how much the strings should bend when playing F. Fuuuu!

I should be collecting my guitar tomorrow. Apparently the action was very high and I also wanted them to sort out a choke issue on the G string. It'll be interesting to see how it plays when it's returned, I'm always very weary that people 'who know better' will try and rip you off.... but they seemed nice enough so here's hoping it comes back like a beast!

A few people have voiced interest in this so I thought I'd respond in a new thread.

So, today I finally received my guitar back. I was told they had done just about 'everything' to it other than adjusting the frets. This included, from a non-exhaustive list:

- adjusting the saddle heights
- tweaking the truss rod
- calibrating the intonation
- "the low E-string was waaaay out, we fixed that"
- shaving down the nut (!!!!)

The last one had me a bit nervous, but I paid a sum of £50 (I handed them cash, then the lawyer in me reminded me to pay by card...) in total which included a new set of elixir strings. I've then taken it home and had a play around.

Jeez, they were really right about that nut being high. Visibly, it looks like they have taken a good few mm off and it has completely solved the issue I was having with dodgy sounding 'F' chords. I can finally play a delightful, fully in tune F. Hooray!

The intonation is not perfect and is slightly sharp at the 12th fret, although it is more consistent amongst all the strings. It's certainly better than what it was.

Perhaps the biggest improvement for me is whatever they have done to the low E string. I didn't actually notice there was a problem before, but my god, the improvement! It's very hard to describe, but before, the low E didn't sound quite as loud, tight or aggressive as the other strings. Thus master of puppets never seemed to sound convincing. Now this baby is possitively bursting with life. It sounds 500% better and how an ideal guitar should sound. Amazing!

So all in all, I am extremely happy.


I noticed when playing the chord stabs from Raining Blood that there was a strange springy, metallic noise coming from somewhere. Instantly thinking 'oooo shit' I had a mini investigation. It didn't seem to be buzzing at the frets, and I identified the sound to behind the nut. If I muted the low E string behind the nut, there isn't an issue. The problem is not detectable without distortion. The problem has been temporarily fixed with the tiniest blob of blue tack sitting behind the nut on the low e-string.

Naturally, I'm quite concerned. It would appear, although please correct me, that they have somehow made the hole in the nut, by a fraction, too wide for the string. Knowing that nuts do not grow back, I'm fearing they have made a bit of a boo boo. However, I'm willing to play the guitar in just to see if it's just the new string causing issues. I wouldn't mind so much in the sense that many people place foam behind the nut to totally mute their strings, but I have not had this issue with my guitar before.

Comments welcome! I shall return the guitar to the shop in due course.


Fri Apr 09, 2010 6:24 pm
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Joined: Thu Aug 24, 2006 4:18 am
Posts: 394
Location: Portland, Oregon
Cool, sounds like you like the setup. A good setup can change a decent guitar into a great one. I just had SS jumbos put on my 800 and setup on a PLEK machine. Nice guitar before, but now it's unbelievable.

Check the intonation between 5th and 17th fret and see how it reads. Also, you need to use a strobe tuner like petersons. Normal tuners don't have the accuracy to do intonation in my experience.

I'm not sure on the ringing - might as well take it back and tell them to look at it. They might have cut the nut slot too wide.

That's good they lowered the nut for you, that can improve the tuning quite a bit.

Sat Apr 10, 2010 3:50 am
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