Greetings Pleasure of Guild fellow-shippers

Jesper

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New to the Forum - HI!

1. Question: First time I opened up to the truss rod on a B302-A - safe to assume it is a 1/4 inch wrench before I order one? (I am stuck in a hospital for mental ill - all the others - so can't leave to visit any shops with the bass as a fine companion, that and Mrs C)
 

Jesper

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My screwdriver for interchangeable bits has the exact size i needed, so at least I am able to adjust the rod - but I would still want to know the name of the size (I am guessing it is a 1/4" ? I am in metric country/Denmark native and naive)
 

fronobulax

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Welcome.

I am comfortable asserting that the truss rod nut is 1/4". That was the standard size at the time. The tool that Guild sold in the '70's for truss rod adjustments was basically a 1/14" nut driver.

GuildWrench 003.jpg


GuildWrench 001.jpg
 

Jesper

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I realize there has been a servere fire at the server storage - hope no person got burned! and the back up servers are working as they should!

Thank you! I think I have found a home for my bass questions - took me 29 years to find you :)

I am trying to move my companion in guild to a better physical shape, me and her both. Adjusting the truss rod being the first thing, as I was having an action assembling the double bass.

Now the action is somewhat improved - but in order to fix a 'complete dead zone' only on the D string from around 12th fret to around the 18th fret (no sound - just muted) I have raised my sadle quite a bit to solve the dead zone. This of course is giving me a higher action set overall and specifically on D & G as the adjustment is more severe on 'the lower sadle adjustment screw'. All in all a way better action (and now more or less in tune at 12th fret as well). The 'middle screw' in the sadle is missing - I am guessing it's purpose is to stabilize the strings pressure on the sadle?

Not sure what curses the dead zone on D. Most likely a combination og curve in the neck and fret hight of the metal.. but this is my gut feeling as a beginner in the department of adjusting her. Any of you guys way further down that road has any thoughts on that issue?

Another question is: I can't find a technical drawing (exploded view) with part specifications - any of you have found one? (need to open up to the electric components at some point - but I am an inexperienced solder with zero knowledge of electrics - but with enough confidence to mess everything up trying, and then fix my bads - usual how I work with stuff like this). But since I am at hospital most of my tools are not here. However - I got what I need now for the trust rod and the small screws on the mic's and the 4 small adjustment screws on the sadle. I need to learn what the parts are called in order to researc solutions for my problems and I need to find a srew for the 'sadle pressure support, and one of the small screws broke in the E strings winding key (again - no idea of the name of the part - exploded drawing with name and tech specs would make a perfect educational blessing so to speak - but I am might asking for way too much here as for what exists on the B302-A).

I am deeply grateful of your time and knowledge - Jesper
 
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mellowgerman

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Welcome Jesper!

Your dead zone seems to indicate that your frets might be worn down, which is common with vintage basses, especially if they were played for many years with roundwound strings -- as opposed to flatwound, which are smooth like upright strings and really don't grind (or wear) down the frets. That results in taller frets, usually closer to the body since these higher notes are typically played less frequently. If this is the case, a luthier can usually level the frets for you by filing the frets until they are all the same height. Sometimes the frets are extremely worn, in which case they may all need to replaced with new frets.
Another possibility is that some of the frets between 12th and 18th frets have sprouted (or lifted out of the groove they are set in), which usually happens when a fretboard dries out. In this scenario, the frets would need to be tapped back into place with a small hammer, but VERY carefully. The frets are made of relatively soft metal and can be damaged if the person doing the work is not experienced.
Finally, it is far less likely but still possible that your fretboard has a hump (or ski-slope), which is a craftsmanship issue that I don't think I've ever heard reported about USA Guild instruments. Essentially the hump or ski-slope issue occurs when the fretboard is not completely planed (or flat) from the nut to the body. In this case all frets would need to be removed and the fretboard would have to be properly planed. In extreme scenarios the fretboard may have to be replaced completely.
Before any of these things though, I would try to tighten the truss rod first. It is possible that your neck is bowed forward too much under tension of the strings and it might just need to be flattened slightly, which would allow you to raise the bridge without the string action getting too high on the fretboard. The bow is often referred to as relief. Some relief is necessary to avoid fret-buzz when playing in positions closer to the headstock. Proper technique for tightening the truss rod is to loosen the strings first and then turn the truss rod clockwise, but only 1/8 turn to avoid the wood cracking. Then let allow time for the would to adjust gradually. Repeat if necessary.

I could be wrong, but I think what you mean when you say "saddle" is actually the bridge. The saddle is a small part of the bridge and there is one for each string. The typical bridge that was installed on these basses in the factory was called a Mueller bridge, as the one shown in the photo below.

I did my best to name all of the parts of the bass and hopefully these photos are helpful to you. I'm sure you already know some of these terms, but I wanted to be as detailed as possible. There are sometimes multiple names for different parts, so I tried to list any variations I could think of. The photo of the "Wiring Harness" that I labeled is not from a B302 bass but from another Guild guitar from the same time period. The last photo IS of a B302 Wiring Harness, but since it was previously labeled by somebody else, I did not want to clutter it up with more names.

Front View
1981-guild-b-302-black-finish-4-black-1 (1).jpg


Back of Neck
v679392517.2 (1).jpg


Mueller Bridge
mueller bridge (1).jpg


Tuner
b302 tuner (1).jpg


Wiring Harness (Not from a B302 but still a Guild from the same time period)
unnamed (3) (1).jpg


Wiring Harness, as mounted on pickguard. Copper foil tape is for "shielding"
(This photo was labeled by somebody else, but I thought it could also be helpful)
AF1B5E1B-CA27-4FB3-A66C-9874A386FD3A.jpeg.e9408bf4b7ad3383855e3555f6acb74b.jpeg
 
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Jesper

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MellowGerman..! Thank you!! New to forums - how can I 'value' your input in other ways than: Deeply grateful! You just gave me a whole new language!! (yes, I have been living most of my life on a deserted island) - and you are spot on with your assumption of me calling the bridge for a saddle.

I will look closer to your long answers in the coming days (and am grateful my father in law is a furniture carpenter). Heck of a 'thing' if I need to replace frets - but I'll take it one by one and keep it slow ;)
 

mellowgerman

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I'm happy to help! If anything is unclear, feel free to ask any other questions you may have. I also want to point out that I added another paragraph to my previous post after you had already responded (in regard to the dead zone).
 

mellowgerman

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Thank you for the kind offer! I have never been very good at photography, so the only camera I have is my cell phone camera. Luckily it is fully automatic and does a decent job without me having to put in much effort. I always thought it would be fascinating to get into real photography, developing film, and so on, but I spend all of my spare money on basses, amps, and tools... and my cats. 😁
Someday I will get into film photography, though maybe not until retirement.
 

Jesper

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"Before any of these things though, I would try to tighten the truss rod first. It is possible that your neck is bowed forward too much under tension of the strings and it might just need to be flattened slightly, which would allow you to raise the bridge without the string action getting too high on the fretboard. The bow is often referred to as relief. Some relief is necessary to avoid fret-buzz when playing in positions closer to the headstock. Proper technique for tightening the truss rod is to loosen the strings first and then turn the truss rod clockwise, but only 1/8 turn to avoid the wood cracking. Then let allow time for the would to adjust gradually. Repeat if necessary."

MellowGerman: How long time should i let it rest in between 1/8 turn clockwise? I am 300 m from the sea and have a temperature around 7 degree celsius - and no clue of the humidity (but guessing around 70-80%) I have been giving 5 x 1/8th clockwise treatments with one-two hours in between each 1/8 turn. Knowing me to be impatient and her to be an old lady.. and unadjusted truss-wise since '95 give or take.
 

Jesper

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very
sympathetic
ways to spend
your money!

I spend a good deal of my time between age of 16 and 25 with the bibles 'the negative' 'the print' by Ansel Adams, so if I am still alive ('68) when you retire - feel free to contact me ;)
 

mellowgerman

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MellowGerman: How long time should i let it rest in between 1/8 turn clockwise? I am 300 m from the sea and have a temperature around 7 degree celsius - and no clue of the humidity (but guessing around 70-80%) I have been giving 5 x 1/8th clockwise treatments with one-two hours in between each 1/8 turn. Knowing me to be impatient and her to be an old lady.. and unadjusted truss-wise since '95 give or take.
I think one to two hours should be plenty of time in between turns, especially if you loosen string tension first, so the truss rod and neck don't have to compete with the string tension.
However, I would be careful not to over-tighten the rod. Five 1/8 turns seems like an unusually high amount of adjustment. Sometimes this is necessary though if the truss rod is completely loose from the start -- if it turns without any resistance at all.
If there is tension on it already before the five 1/8 turns, then I would be careful not to overtighten. It is possible that the neck has developed too much bow over the years. That scenario could require a "neck reset", which is either done by heat-pressing the neck or clamping it to correct the bow. Both of these are more extreme, difficult and time-consuming tasks. I would rather have a professional luthier do it than attempt it myself.
 

Jesper

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***DISCLAIMER: I habitually go back through threads after I post, reread my posts, then add more wordy stuff or edit what I previously wrote to improve my grammar or make the post more enjoyable to read.*** "Spot On Good to know info!"

"I think one to two hours should be plenty of time in between turns, especially if you loosen string tension first, so the truss rod and neck don't have to compete with the string tension.
However, I would be careful not to over-tighten the rod. Five 1/8 turns seems like an unusually high amount of adjustment. Sometimes this is necessary though if the truss rod is completely loose from the start -- if it turns without any resistance at all.
If there is tension on it already before the five 1/8 turns, then I would be careful not to overtighten. It is possible that the neck has developed too much bow over the years. That scenario could require a "neck reset", which is either done by heat-pressing the neck or clamping it to correct the bow. Both of these are more extreme, difficult and time-consuming tasks. I would rather have a professional luthier do it than attempt it myself. "

I had a mid neck action of around 5-6 mm. on e-string (approx. 1/4"), before 'my 5x 1/8 clockwise turns'.

Without other means of measurement than my eyes I would say I could have fitted 4 credit cards in between E and fret - more or less - if at all a legit means of unproved measurement..
 

mellowgerman

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"Spot on good to know info!"
This thread inspired me to add this disclaimer in my signature field! Though I had long been aware of my somewhat obsessive habit.

A good way to measure the relief of your neck is to hold down the string at the 1st fret and at the 15th fret (some also say 17th fret), then measure distance from string to fret in the middle. I find that at this mid-point, while the string is depressed at 1st and 15th, I would say that roughly one credit card is just about ideal (assuming that all the frets are level). This suits my personal playing style anyway; I like to play dynamically, sometimes with a soft touch, sometimes digging in. I don't think much of showy solos in a rock context and am much more into the groove/pocket and listening to how band members interact and play off each other. I like my action relatively low but never try to "shred" solos. It's just not a style of playing I've been interested in adopting, so super super low action has never been a necessity for me.
I should add that I never actually measure my string action or relief. In over 10 years of doing my own set-ups, I've found that "ideal" amounts vary for just about every one of my basses, so I simply adjust it until it feels and performs right. I also don't have calipers or any special guitar/bass action ruler. I know these are probably good tools to have, I just haven't gotten around to buying them, but have found that I'm getting along just fine without them in the meantime.

Are you familiar with talkbass.com? That is the bass forum that was heavily affected by the server fire on April 4th (I don't think letstalkguild was affected). Talkbass was completely down for 5 days.
Anyway, below is a link to a thread I found there, in which the person had to replace the front height adjustment screw on the bridge of his Guild B302. His screw wasn't missing, but it was turned too hard and stripped the threading of the screw hole, since the bridge is made of relatively soft brass. He replaced the old screw with a slightly larger size screw made of a more rigid metal and it seems to have worked for him. If you are unable to find the exact size you need or potentially find that the threading in the hole is damaged or stripped, this fix might be an option!
 
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Jesper

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YES!! (and i am just confusing one community with another - first time in bass communities trying to 're-shape' my guild, so to speak)

I was afraid that the bridge should actually have the strings resting on it - as it seems like on the picture?
 

mellowgerman

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Just fulfilling my duty, sir.
872419bacc5cc5c4-elvis-in-g-i-blues-1960-elvis-wearing-military-uniforms-in (1).gif


I was afraid that the bridge should actually have the strings resting on it - as it seems like on the picture?
No, though it has been quite a while since I've played a bass with a Mueller bridge, I'm quite certain that there should be enough forward tilt for the strings to clear that little ledge there.
 

Nuuska

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Jesper

Greetings from Finland

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