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Fender P Bass Specs

String Height @ 17th fret 3/32, 0.094", 2.38mm +/- 1/64, 0.0156", 0.397mm
Neck Relief @ 7th fret 0.014", 0.356mm + 0.001", 0.025mm - 0.002", 0.05mm
Neck relief measured with a capo @ 1st fret and fretting the 17th
fret
String height @ 12th fret 0.060" +/- 0.002"
String to 1st fret clearance 0.02" +/- 0.002"

Fender Guitar neck relief specs


7.25" radius

0.012"

0.3mm

9.5" to 12" radius

0.010"

0.25mm

15" to 17" radius

0.008"

0.2mm

Fender Bass neck relief specs


7.25" radius

0.014"

0.35mm

9.5" to 12" radius

0.012"

0.3mm

15" to 17" radius

0.010"

0.25mm

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------there's several variations on how to get strings the right height at the nut, some more
"technical" than others. Here's a practical method Ritchie Fliegler used to recommend
(Ritchie Fleigler has been a player, a famous tech, and now he's Senior VP for Market
Development at Fender - so he probably knows a thing or two!):
Barre the strings at the first fret. Look at the height of the strings above the second fret.
That is the height they should be above the first fret when the barre is removed. Best is
to take automotive feeler gauges and actually measure those heights precisely. The nut
slots need adjusting to achieve these heights.
Next. Barre (or better capo) the strings at the third fret and look at the clearance of the
strings above the first fret. Higher than the measurements you previously took? So now
lift a string up out of the slot onto the top of the nut and have at the slot with the correct

sized nut file a touch. Return the string to the slot and recheck the measurement. Once
all the strings are the heights above the first fret that you measured at the start, remove
the capo and give it a try. You should have a correctly set nut.
This is by no means the only approach, but it is a simple way that works. Dan Erlewine's
method, for instance, is much more exacting.
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FENDER BASS ADJUSTMENT AND CARE


The following setup procedures and specifications are for you Fender bass as equipped
with the strings that come on the instrument as standard equipment from the factory. If
you plan to change string gauges, you may need to adjust the specs somewhat to
compensate for the changes in string sizes. Modifications of the specs may also be
made (within limited parameters) to adjust for your individual playing style or application
(i.e., how hard you pick, finger, slap, pop or fret the bass).
Note: These are minimum specifications that are meant as a guide; they should not be
construed as hard and fast rules, as we realize that every player's subjective
requirements often differ.

TOOLS NEEDED
-

Set of automotive feeler gauges (.002-.025) (0.051 mm)

6" (150 mm) ruler (with 1/32" and 1/64" increments) (0.5 mm increments)

Light machine oil (3-in-1, toy locomotive or gun oil)

Phillips screwdriver

Electronic tuner

Wire cutters

Peg winder

Polish and cloth

STRINGS
New strings can breathe new life into your bass. Much of the thump and pop you expect

from your bass starts right there. For strings to stay in tune, they should be changed
regularly. Strings that have lost their integrity (worn where pressed against the fret) or
have become oxidised, rusty and dirty will not return to pitch properly. To check if your
strings need changing, run a finger underneath the string and feel for dirt, rust or flat
spots. If you find any of these, you should change your strings.
Fender offers a variety of bass stringssmooth, vintage-sounding pure-nickel Original
Bass 7150s; Super Bass 7250s; bright, snappy Stainless Steel 7350s and others. They
are available in long, medium and short scales; taper-wound; and top-loading or stringthrough-body types
Because of the amount of tension on the neck, it's advisable to replace and tune each
new string before removing the next string. After the whole set is changed and tuned,
stretch your strings properly by holding them at the first fret and hooking your fingers
under each string (one at a time) and then tugging lightly, moving your hand from the
bridge to the neck. Re-tune and repeat several times.

TUNING KEYS
How you wind the strings onto the pegs is very important. Start by loading them through
the bridge and then loading them onto the appropriate keys as follows:
Standard keys. Pre-cut each string for the proper length and desired amount of winds.
Pull the fourth string 3" (76 mm) past its tuning post and cut it (make sure to pull each
string taut). Insert through the eyelet in the tuning key, allowing approximately 1/16" (1.6
mm) of the end to extend through the eyelet, then wind neatly in a downward pattern,
being carefull to prevent overlapping. Pull the third string 3 1//2" (89 mm) past its tuning
post, cut it, and repeat the winding procedure. Pull the second and first strings 3 1/2" (89
mm) past their tuning posts and cut and wind as noted. For five-string basses, cut the
fifth string 3" (76 mm) past its tuning post and repeat the same cutting and winding
procedure.
Vintage keys. Pre-cut each string for the proper length and desired amount of winds.
Pull the fourth string 4" (102 mm) past its tuning post and cut it (again, make sure to pull
each string taut). Insert into the center hole of the tuning key, bend and crimp to a 90
angle, and wind neatly in a downward pattern, being carefull to prevent overlapping. Pull
the third string 4 1/2" (114 mm) past its tuning post, cut it, and repeat the winding
procedure. Pull the second and first strings 4 1/2" (114 mm) past their tuning posts and
cut and wind as noted. For five-string basses, cut the fifth string 3 1/2" (89 mm) past its
tuning post and repeat the same cutting and winding procedure.

INTONATION (ROUGHING IT OUT)


You can preset the basic intonation of your bass by taking a tape measure and
measuring from the inside of the nut to the center of the 12th fret (the fret wire itself; not
the fingerboard). Double that measurement to find the scale length of your bass.

Adjust the first-string bridge saddle to this scale length, measuring from the inside of the
nut to the center of the bridge saddle. Now adjust the distance of the second saddle
back from the first saddle, using the gauge of the second string as a measurement. For
example, if the second string is .060" (1.5 mm), you would move the second-string
saddle back .060" (1.5 mm) from the first saddle. Move the third saddle back from the
second saddle, using the gauge of the third string as a measurement. Adjust the fourth
saddle in the same manner (and fifth if you have a five-string bass).
Note: If you're using a taper-wound fourth string (and fifth if it's a five-string bass), use
the actual gauge of the string for your measurement rather than the dimension of the
tapered portion of the string.

TRUSS ROD
First, check your tuning. Affix a capo at the first fret and depress the fourth string at the
last fret. With a feeler gauge, check the gap between the bottom of the string and the top
of the 8th fretsee the spec chart below for the proper gap.
Caution: Because of the amount of string tension on the neck, you should loosen the
strings before adjusting the truss rod. After the adjustment is made, re-tune the strings
and re-check the gap with the feeler gauge.
Adjustment at headstock (allen wrench): Sight down the edge of the fingerboard from
behind the headstock, looking toward the body of the instrument. If the neck is too
concave (action too high), turn the truss rod nut clockwise to remove excess relief. If the
neck is too convex (strings too close to the fingerboard), turn the truss rod nut counterclockwise to allow the string tension to pull more relief into the neck. Check your tuning,
then re-check the gap with the feeler gauge and re-adjust as needed.
Adjustment at neck joint (phillips screwdriver): Sight down the edge of the fingerboard
from behind the body, looking up toward the headstock of the instrument. If the neck is
too concave (action too high), turn the truss rod nut clockwise to remove excess relief. If
the neck is too convex (strings too close to the fingerboard), turn the truss rod nut
counter-clockwise to allow the string tension to pull more relief into the neck. Check your
tuning, then re-check the gap with the feeler gauge and re-adjust as needed.
Note: In either case, if you meet excessive resistance when adjusting the truss rod, if
your instrument needs constant adjustment, if adjusting the truss rod has no effect on
the neck, or if you're simply not comfortable making this type of adjustment yourself,
take your instrument to your local Fender Authorized Dealer.

Neck Radius

Relief

7.25"

.014" (0.35 mm)

9.5" to 12"

.012" (0.3 mm)

15" to 17"

.010" (0.25 mm)

ACTION
Players with a light touch can get away with lower action; others need higher action to
avoid rattles. First, check tuning. Using a 6" (150 mm) ruler, measure the distance
between bottom of strings and top of the 17th fret. Adjust bridge saddles to the height
according to the chart below, then re-tune. Experiment with the height until the desired
sound and feel is achieved.

Neck Radius

String Height
Bass Side

7.25"

Treble Side

7/64" (2.8 mm) 6/64" (2.4 mm)

9.5" to 12"

6/64" (2.4 mm)

5/64" (2 mm)

15" to 17"

6/64" (2.4 mm)

5/64" (2 mm)

SHIMMING/MICRO-TILT ADJUSTMENT
Shimming is a procedure used to adjust the pitch of the neck in relation to the body. A
shim is placed in the neck pocket, underneath the butt end of the neck. On many
American series guitars, a Micro-Tilt adjustment is offered. It replaces the need for a
shim by using a hex screw against a plate installed in the butt end of the neck. The need
to adjust the pitch (raising the butt end of the neck in the pocket, thereby pitching the
neck back) of the neck occurs in situations where the string height is high and the action
adjustment is as low as the adjustment will allow.
To properly shim a neck, the neck must be removed from the neck pocket of the body. A
shim approximately 1/4" (6.4 mm) wide by 1 3/4" (44.5 mm) long by .010" (0.25 mm)
thick will allow you to raise the action approximately 1/32" (0.8 mm). For guitars with the
Micro-Tilt adjustment, loosen the two neck screws on both sides of the adjustment
access hole on the neckplate by at least four full turns. Tightening the hex adjustment
screw with an 1/8" hex wrench approximately 1/4 turn will allow you to raise the action
approximately 1/32". Retighten the neck screws when the adjustment is complete. The
pitch of the neck on your guitar has been preset at the factory and in most cases will not
need to be adjusted.
Note: If you feel that this adjustment needs to be made and you're not comfortable doing
it yourself, take your guitar to your local Fender Authorized Dealer.

PICKUPS
Setting pickups too high can cause a number of unusual occurrences. Depress strings at
last fret. Using a 6" (150 mm) ruler, measure the distance from the bottom of the first and

fourth strings to top of the pole piece. A good rule of thumb is that the distance should be
greatest at the fourth-string neck pickup position and closest at the first-string bridge
pickup position. Follow the measurement guidelines from the chart below as starting
points. The distance will vary according to the amount of magnetic pull from the pickup.
Note: Larger string gauges need wider vibrational allowances. If you have a five-string
bass or are using heavier-gauge strings, your measurements must be increased
accordingly.

Bass Side
Vintage style
Noiseless Series

Treble Side

8/64" (3.6 mm)


8/64" (3.6 mm)

6/64" (2.4 mm)

6/64" (2.4 mm)

Standard "J" or "P"

7/64" (2.8 mm)

5/64" (2 mm)

Special Design Humbuckers

7/64" (2.8 mm)

5/64" (2 mm)

INTONATION (FINE TUNING)


Adjustments should be made after all of the above have been accomplished. Set the
pickup selector switch (if your bass has one) in the middle position, and turn the volume
and tone controls to their maximum settings. Check tuning. Check each string at the
12th fret, harmonic to fretted note (make sure you are depressing the string evenly to the
fret, not the fingerboard). If sharp, lengthen the string by adjusting the saddle back. If
flat, shorten the string by moving the saddle forward. Remember, basses are tempered
instruments! Re-tune, play and make further adjustments as needed.

ADDITIONAL HINTS
There are a few other things that you can do to optimize your tuning stability that have
more to do with playing and tuning habits.
Each time you play your bass, before you do your final tuning, play for a few minutes to
allow the strings to warm up. Metal expands when warm and contracts when cool. After
you've played a few riffs and done a few slaps and pops, you can then do your final
tuning. Rememberwith most tuning keys, it's preferable to tune up to pitch. However,
with locking tuners, go past the note and tune down to pitch. Finally, wipe the strings,
neck and bridge with a lint-free cloth after playing. When transporting or storing your
bass, even for short periods, avoid leaving it anyplace you wouldn't feel comfortable
yourself.
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INTONATION AND ADJUSTMENT FOR

STRATOCASTER GUITARS
There are two types of locking tremolos found on Fender guitars. The Floyd Rose
tremolo uses a fine-tuning system at the bridge in combination with a locking nut. The
American Deluxe locking tremolo is used in combination with an LSR roller nut and
locking tuning keys. Though both are locking tremolos, they are strung, intonated and
adjusted slightly differently.
Determine if your bridge is free-floating or flush-mounted to the body. If it's free-floating,
we recommend that you place a block or stop-piece under the bridge to prevent it from
collapsing when removing strings. The block must have soft foam or cloth on the
underside to prevent damage to the finish. A tremolo block device can easily be
purchased at your local music store or made at home.

INTONATION (ROUGHING IT OUT)


With a locking tremolo system, it's desirable to preset your guitar's basic intonation
before installing the strings. With a tape measure, measure from the inside of the nut to
the center of the 12th fret (the fret wire itself; not the fingerboard). Double that
measurement to find the scale length of your guitar.
On a Floyd Rose locking tremolo, loosen the hex nut on top of the saddle. On an
American Deluxe locking tremolo, the hex lock-down screw is found beneath the bridge
plate. Adjust the first-string bridge saddle to the scale length, measuring from the inside
of the nut to the center of the bridge saddle. Re-tighten the lock-down screw. Now adjust
the distance of the second-string saddle back from the first-string saddle, using the
gauge of the second string as a measurement. For example, if the second-string gauge
is .011", you'd move the second-string saddle back .011" from the first-string saddle.
Move the third-string saddle back from the second-string saddle, using the gauge of the
third string as a measurement. The fourth-string saddle should be set parallel with the
second-string saddle. Proceed with the fifth and sixth strings in the same manner used
for the second and third strings.
Note: Remember to re-tighten each lock-down screw as you make your adjustments.

STRING INSTALLATION
To properly install strings on both types of bridges, the hex screw located on the end of
each individual saddle must be loosened. Cut the ball-end of the string off directly above
the tie-off windings, insert the string as close to the center as possible and tighten the
hex screw, locking the string in place. Caution: Do not over-tighten the hex screw.
If the locking system incorporates a locking nut, remove the nut lock-down pieces while
installing the strings and going through the setup procedures. After the setup is
complete, replace the nut lock-down pieces, check your tuning and tighten the hex

screws to lock the strings at the nut. Caution: Do not over-tighten. Use the fine tuners at
the bridge to compensate for any tuning changes.

TREMOLO ADJUSTMENT
After the strings are installed, remove the tremolo back cover. Check your tuning.
Allowing the bridge to float freely (no tension on the tremolo arm) and using the claw
screws in the tremolo cavity, adjust the bridge to your desired angle (on most freefloating systems, it is recommended that the bridge sit parallel to the body). You'll need
to re-tune periodically to get the right balance between the strings and the springs. For
the flush-mounted bridges, you might want to adjust the bridge to rest on the body. You
can adjust the spring tension to an equal string tension, with the bridge resting on body
(you might want to put an extra 1/2 turn to each claw screw to ensure that the bridge
remains flush to the body during string bends). Finally, you may wish to apply a small
dab of lip balm or petroleum jelly at the pivot contact points of the bridge for very smooth
operation.
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STRATOCASTER ADJUSTMENT AND CARE


The following setup procedures and specifications are for your Stratocaster as equipped
with the strings that come on the instrument as standard equipment from the factory. If
you plan to change string gauges, you may need to adjust the specs somewhat to
compensate for the changes in string sizes. Modifications of the specs may also be
made (within limited parameters) to adjust for your individual playing style or application
(i.e., how hard you pick, strum or fret the guitar).
Note: These are minimum specifications that are meant as a guide; they should not be
construed as hard and fast rules, as we realize that every player's subjective
requirements often differ.

TOOLS NEEDED
-

Set of automotive feeler gauges (.002-.025) (0.051 mm)

6" (150 mm) ruler (with 1/32" and 1/64" increments) (0.5 mm increments)

Light machine oil (3-in-1, toy locomotive or gun oil)

Phillips screwdriver

Electronic tuner

Wire cutters

Peg winder

Polish and cloth

STRINGS
For strings to stay in tune, they should be changed regularly. Strings that have lost their
integrity (worn where pressed against the fret) or have become oxidized, rusty and dirty
will not return to pitch properly. To check if your strings need changing, run a finger
underneath the string and feel for dirt, rust or flat spots. If you find any of these, you
should change your strings.
No matter what gauge of strings you use, for the best tuning stability we recommend
using Fender Bullet strings. The patented bullet-end is specifically designed for all
styles of tremolo use, from extreme dives to smooth vibrato passages. The design
allows the string to travel freely in the bridge block channel during tremolo use and
return afterwards to its original position, seated snugly in the bridge block. This is
accomplished by eliminating the extra string wrap and the ball-end (the ball end doesn't
fit properly into the string channel). The bullet end has been shaped and sized to match
the design of the bridge block channel.
Make sure to stretch your strings properly. After you've installed and tuned a new set,
hold the strings at the first fret and hook your fingers under each string, one at a time,
and tug lightly, moving your hand from the bridge to the neck. Re-tune and repeat
several times.

TUNING KEYS
How you wind the strings onto the pegs is very important, whether you're using locking,
standard or vintage tuning keys. Start by loading all the strings through the bridge and
then loading them onto the keys as follows:

Locking tuning keys. Picture the headcap of the neck as the face of a clock, with the
top being 12:00 and the nut being 6:00. Line the six tuning machines so that the first
string keyhole is set at 1:00, the second at 2:00, the third and fourth at 3:00, the fifth at
4:00, and the sixth at 5:00. Pull the strings through tautly and tighten the thumb wheel,
locking the string in. Now tune to pitch.

Standard keys. To reduce string slippage at the tuning key, we recommend using a tie
technique. This is done by pulling the string through the keyhole and then pulling it
clockwise underneath and back over itself; creating a knot. You'll need to leave a bit of
slack for the first string so you have at least two or three winds around the post. As you

progress to the sixth string, you'll reduce the amount of slack and the number of winds
around the keys.

Vintage keys. For these, you'll want to pre-cut the strings to achieve the proper length
and desired amount of winds. Pull the sixth string (tautly, remember) to the fourth key
and cut it. Pull the fifth string to the third key and cut it. Pull the fourth string between the
second and first keys and cut it. Pull the third string nearly to the top of the headcap and
cut it. Pull the second string about a 1/2" (13 mm) past the headcap and cut it. Finally,
pull the first string 1 1/2" (38 mm) past the top of the headcap and cut it. Insert into the
center hole in the tuning key, bend and crimp to a 90-degree angle, and wind neatly in a
downward pattern, being carefull to prevent overlapping of the strings.
If your tuning keys have a screw on the end of the button, check the tightness of the
screw. This controls the tension of the gears inside the tuning keys. Do not over-tighten
these screws. They should be "finger-tight." This is very important, especially on locking
tuners.

TREMOLO
Stratocaster guitars can have four distinctive types of bridges. The most well-known
bridge is the vintage-style "synchronized" tremolo. The other three are the American
Series bridge, which is a modern-day two-pivot bridge; the non-tremolo hardtail bridge;
and a locking tremolo, such as the American Deluxe or Floyd Rose locking tremolos. If
you have a non-tremolo "hardtail" bridge, proceed to "Intonation (Roughing it out)."
First, remove the tremolo back cover. Check your tuning. For a vintage-style tremolo
bridge, a great way to enhance its performance is to pull the bridge back flush with the
body using the tremolo arm. Then loosen all six screws located at the front edge of the
bridge plate, raising them so that they all measure approximately 1/16" (1.6 mm) above
the top of the bridge plate. Then tighten the two outside screws back down until they're
flush with the top of the bridge plate. The bridge will now pivot on the outside screws,
leaving the four inside screws in place for bridge stability. For a two-pivot model such as
the American Series bridge, use your tremolo arm to pull the bridge back flush with the
body and adjust the two pivot screws to the point where the tremolo plate sits entirely
flush at the body (not lifted at the front or back of the plate).
Allowing the bridge to float freely (no tension on the tremolo arm) using the claw screws
in the tremolo cavity, adjust the bridge to your desired angleFender spec is a 1/8" (3.2
mm) gap at rear of bridge. You'll need to retune periodically to get the right balance
between the strings and the springs. If you prefer a bridge flush to the body, adjust
spring tension to equal string tension, while the bridge rests on the body (you may want
to put an extra 1/2 turn to each claw screw to ensure that the bridge remains flush to the
body during string bends). Caution: Do not over-tighten the springs, as this can put
unnecessary tension on the arm during tremolo use. Finally, you may wish to apply a
small dab of Chapstick or Vaseline at the pivot contact points of the bridge for very
smooth operation.

INTONATION (ROUGHING IT OUT)


You can preset the basic intonation of your guitar by taking a tape measure and
measuring from the inside of the nut to the center of the 12th fret (the fret wire itself; not
the fingerboard). Double that measurement to find the scale length of your guitar. Adjust
the first-string bridge saddle to this scale length, measuring from the inside of the nut to
the center of the bridge saddle. Now adjust the distance of the second-string saddle
back from the first saddle, using the gauge of the second string as a measurement. For
example, If the second string is .011" (0.3 mm), you would move the second-string
saddle back .011" (0.3 mm) from the first saddle. Move the third saddle back from the
second saddle using the gauge of the third string as a measurement. The fourth-string
saddle should be set parallel with the second-string saddle. Proceed with the fifth and
sixth saddles with the same method used for strings two and three.

LUBRICATION AND STRING BREAKAGE


Lubricating all of the contact points of a string's travel may be one of the most important
elements in ensuring tuning stability during tremolo use and in reducing string breakage.
The main cause of string breakage is moisture collection at the point of contact on the
bridge saddle. This can be attributed to the moisture and acidity that transfers from your
hands, or it can be a direct effect of humidity in the air. Another factor is metal-to-metal
friction and fatigue. Metal components react to each other over time because of their
differences and help break down string integrity. A stronger metal will always attack a
softer metal (this is why a stainless-steel string will wear a groove or burr in a vintagestyle saddle). You'll also find that different string brands break at different points of
tension because of the metal makeup and string manufacturing techniques.
Since Fender manufactures its own strings, they are designed to perform well during
extreme tremolo techniques.
One of the best ways to reduce string breakage is to lubricate the string/saddle contact
point with a light machine oil (we prefer 3-in-1 oil because it contains anti-rust and anticorrosive properties) every time you change strings. The oil insulates against moisture
and reduces friction and metal fatigue. String trees are another point of contact and
should also be lubricated; a small amount of lip balm applied with a toothpick works well.

TRUSS ROD
There are two different styles of truss rod found on Fender instruments"standard" and
"bi-flex" truss rods.
Most Fender guitars and basses are equipped with a standard truss rod (of which there
are in turn two types: one that adjusts at the neck heel and one that adjusts at the
headstock; both operate on the same principle). The standard truss rod can counteract

concave curvature in a neck that has too much relief, for example, by generating a force
in the neck opposite to that caused by excessive string tension.
Fender also uses a unique bi-flex truss rod system on some instruments. Unlike
standard truss rods, which can only correct a neck that is too concave (under-bowed),
the bi-flex truss rod can compensate concave or convex (over-bowed) curvature by
generating a correcting force in either direction as needed.
First, check your tuning. Affix a capo at the first fret and depress the sixth string at the
last fret. With a feeler gauge, check the gap between the bottom of the string and the top
of the 8th fretsee the spec chart below for the proper gap.
Adjustment at headstock (allen wrench): Sight down the edge of the fingerboard from
behind the headstock, looking toward the body of the instrument. If the neck is too
concave (action too high), turn the truss rod nut clockwise to remove excess relief. If the
neck is too convex (strings too close to the fingerboard), turn the truss rod nut counterclockwise to allow the string tension to pull more relief into the neck. Check your tuning,
then re-check the gap with the feeler gauge and re-adjust as needed.
Adjustment at neck joint (phillips screwdriver): Sight down the edge of the fingerboard
from behind the body, looking up toward the headstock of the instrument. If the neck is
too concave (action too high), turn the truss rod nut clockwise to remove excess relief. If
the neck is too convex (strings too close to the fingerboard), turn the truss rod nut
counter-clockwise to allow the string tension to pull more relief into the neck. Check your
tuning, then re-check the gap with the feeler gauge and re-adjust as needed.
Note: In either case, if you meet excessive resistance when adjusting the truss rod, if
your instrument needs constant adjustment, if adjusting the truss rod has no effect on
the neck, or if you're simply not comfortable making this type of adjustment yourself,
take your instrument to your local Fender Authorized Dealer.

Neck Radius

Relief

7.25"

.012" (0.3 mm)

9.5" to 12"

.010" (0.25 mm)

15" to 17"

.008" (0.2 mm)

ACTION
Players with a light touch can get away with lower action; others need higher action to
avoid rattles. First, check tuning. Using a 6" (150 mm) ruler, measure the distance
between bottom of strings and top of the 17th fret. Adjust bridge saddles to the height
according to the chart, then re-tune. Experiment with the height until the desired sound
and feel is achieved.

Note: For locking tremolo systems, the individual string height is preset. Use the two
pivot adjustment screws to achieve the desired overall string height.

Neck Radius

String Height
Bass Side

Treble Side

7.25"

5/64" (2 mm)

9.5" to 12"

4/64" (1.6 mm)

4/64" (1.6 mm)

15" to 17"

4/64" (1.6 mm)

3/64" (1.2 mm)

4/64" (1.6 mm)

SHIMMING/MICRO-TILT ADJUSTMENT
Shimming is a procedure used to adjust the pitch of the neck in relation to the body. A
shim is placed in the neck pocket, underneath the butt end of the neck. On many
American series guitars, a Micro-Tilt adjustment is offered. It replaces the need for a
shim by using a hex screw against a plate installed in the butt end of the neck. The need
to adjust the pitch (raising the butt end of the neck in the pocket, thereby pitching the
neck back) of the neck occurs in situations where the string height is high and the action
adjustment is as low as the adjustment will allow.
To properly shim a neck, the neck must be removed from the neck pocket of the body. A
shim approximately 1/4" (6.4 mm) wide by 1 3/4" (44.5 mm) long by .010" (0.25 mm)
thick will allow you to raise the action approximately 1/32" (0.8 mm). For guitars with the
Micro-Tilt adjustment, loosen the two neck screws on both sides of the adjustment
access hole on the neckplate by at least four full turns. Tightening the hex adjustment
screw with an 1/8" hex wrench approximately 1/4 turn will allow you to raise the action
approximately 1/32". Re-tighten the neck screws when the adjustment is complete. The
pitch of the neck on your guitar has been preset at the factory and in most cases will not
need to be adjusted.
Note: If you feel that this adjustment needs to be made and you're not comfortable doing
it yourself, take your guitar to your local Fender Authorized Dealer.

PICKUPS
Set too high, pickups can cause myriad inexplicable phenomena. Depress all the strings
at the last fret. Using a 6" (150 mm) ruler, measure the distance from the bottom of the
first and sixth strings to the top of the pole piece. A good rule of thumb is that the
distance should be greatest at the sixth-string neck pickup position, and closest at the
first-string bridge pickup position. Follow the measurement guidelines in the chart below
as starting points. The distance will vary according to the amount of magnetic pull from
the pickup.

Bass Side

Treble Side

Texas Specials

8/64" (3.6 mm)

6/64" (2.4 mm)

Vintage style

6/64" (2.4 mm)

5/64" (2 mm)

Noiseless Series 8/64" (3.2 mm)

6/64" (2.4 mm)

Standard Single-Coil

5/64" (2 mm) 4/64" (1.6 mm)

Humbuckers

4/64" (1.6 mm)

Lace Sensors

As close as desired (allowing for string vibration)

4/64" (1.6 mm)

INTONATION (FINE TUNING)


Adjustments should be made after all of the above have been accomplished. Set the
pickup selector switch in the middle position, and turn the volume and tone controls to
their maximum settings. Check tuning. Check each string at the 12th fret, harmonic to
fretted note (make sure you are depressing the string evenly to the fret, not the
fingerboard). If sharp, lengthen the string by adjusting the saddle back. If flat, shorten the
string by moving the saddle forward. Remember, guitars are tempered instruments! Retune, play and make further adjustments as needed.

ADDITIONAL HINTS
There are a few other things that you can do to optimize your tuning stability that have
more to do with playing and tuning habits.
Each time you play your guitar, before you do your final tuning, play for a few minutes to
allow the strings to warm up. Metal expands when warm and contracts when cool. After
you've played a few riffs and done a few dive-bombs, you can then do your final tuning.
Rememberwith most tuning keys, it's preferable to tune up to pitch. However, with
locking tuners, go past the note and tune down to pitch. Finally, wipe the strings, neck
and bridge with a lint-free cloth after playing. When transporting or storing your guitar,
even for short periods, avoid leaving it anyplace you wouldn't feel comfortable yourself.
-_-_-_-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-==-_-==-_--_-==-_-==-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-_-_-_-

The Fender Bi-Flex Truss Rod


The Bi-Flex Truss Rod (used on most American and American Deluxe Series
instruments) was designed by Fender in the early 1980's. Unlike most truss rods, which
allow only convex neck adjustments (back bow), the Bi-Flex allows you to adjust for
either a concave or convex bow. If you tighten the truss rod nut it bows the neck
backwards. As you loosen the nut you will find the neck's neutral position (the truss rod

is not in use). If you continue to loosen the nut you will feel a renewed tightening as the
rod pushes against the walnut dowel causing the neck to bow forward.
-_-_-_-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-==-_-==-_--_-==-_-==-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-=-_-_-_-_-

TELECASTER ADJUSTMENT AND CARE


The following setup procedures and specifications are for your Telecaster as equipped
with the strings that come on the instrument as standard equipment from the factory. If
you plan to change string gauges, you may need to adjust the specs somewhat to
compensate for the changes in string sizes. Modifications of the specs may also be
made (within limited parameters) to adjust for your individual playing style or application
(i.e., how hard you pick, strum or fret the guitar).
Note: These are minimum specifications that are meant as a guide; they should not be
construed as hard and fast rules, as we realize that every player's subjective
requirements often differ.

TOOLS NEEDED
-

Set of automotive feeler gauges (.002-.025) (0.051 mm)

6" (150 mm) ruler (with 1/32" and 1/64" increments) (0.5 mm increments)

Light machine oil (3-in-1, toy locomotive or gun oil)

Phillips screwdriver

Electronic tuner

Wire cutters

Peg winder

Polish and cloth

STRINGS
For strings to stay in tune, they should be changed regularly. Strings that have lost their
integrity (worn where pressed against the fret) or have become oxidized, rusty and dirty
will not return to pitch properly. To check if your strings need changing, run a finger
underneath the string and feel for dirt, rust or flat spots. If you find any of these, you
should change your strings.

No matter what gauge of strings you use, for the best tuning stability we recommend
using Fender strings, which are designed to provide superior performance. Make sure to
stretch your strings properly. After you've installed and tuned a new set, hold the strings
at the first fret and hook your fingers under each string, one at a time, and tug lightly,
moving your hand from the bridge to the neck. Re-tune and repeat several times.

TUNING KEYS
How you wind the strings onto the pegs is very important, whether you're using locking,
standard or vintage tuning keys. Start by loading all the strings through the bridge and
then loading them onto the keys as follows:

Locking tuning keys. Picture the headcap of the neck as the face of a clock, with the
top being 12:00 and the nut being 6:00. Line the six tuning machines so that the first
string keyhole is set at 1:00, the second at 2:00, the third and fourth at 3:00, the fifth at
4:00, and the sixth at 5:00. Pull the strings through tautly and tighten the thumb wheel,
locking the string in. Now tune to pitch.

Standard keys. To reduce string slippage at the tuning key, we recommend using a tie
technique. This is done by pulling the string through the keyhole and then pulling it
clockwise underneath and back over itself; creating a knot. You'll need to leave a bit of
slack for the first string so you have at least two or three winds around the post. As you
progress to the sixth string, you'll reduce the amount of slack and the number of winds
around the keys.

Vintage keys. For these, you'll want to pre-cut the strings to achieve the proper length
and desired amount of winds. Pull the sixth string (tautly, remember) to the fourth key
and cut it. Pull the fifth string to the third key and cut it. Pull the fourth string between the
second and first keys and cut it. Pull the third string nearly to the top of the headcap and
cut it. Pull the second string about a 1/2" (13 mm) past the headcap and cut it. Finally,
pull the first string 1 1/2" (38 mm) past the top of the headcap and cut it. Insert into the
center hole in the tuning key, bend and crimp to a 90-degree angle, and wind neatly in a
downward pattern, being carefull to prevent overlapping of the strings.
If your tuning keys have a screw on the end of the button, check the tightness of the
screw. This controls the tension of the gears inside the tuning keys. Do not over-tighten
these screws. They should be "finger-tight." This is very important, especially on locking
tuners.

BRIDGE
Telecasters can have two distinctive types of bridges. The most well-known type is the
vintage-style three-section bridge. The other is the modern-day six-section bridge, such
as the American Standard Telecaster bridge. Check your tuning before proceeding with
intonation.

INTONATION (ROUGHING IT OUT)


You can preset the basic intonation of your guitar by taking a tape measure and
measuring from the inside of the nut to the center of the 12th fret (the fret wire itself; not
the fingerboard). Double that measurement to find the scale length of your guitar.
For a vintage three-section bridge, a series of adjustments must be made to compensate
for the lack of individual string intonation. Adjust the first bridge saddle to the scale
length, measuring from the inside of the nut to the center of the bridge saddle.
Now adjust the distance of the second saddle back from the first saddle, using the
combination of the gauges of the second and third strings as a measurement. For
example, if the second string is .011" (0.3 mm) and the third is .013" (0.35 mm), you
would move the second saddle back .024" (0.65 mm) from the first saddle. Move the
third saddle back from the second saddle, using the gauge of the fifth and sixth strings
as a measurement.
For the six-section bridge, you will make adjustments for each individual string. Adjust
the first-string bridge saddle to the scale length, measuring from the inside of the nut to
the center of the bridge saddle. Now adjust the distance of the second-string saddle
back from the first saddle, using the gauge of the second string as a measurement. For
example, If the second string is .011" (0.3 mm), you would move the second-string
saddle back .011" (0.3 mm) from the first saddle. Move the third saddle back from the
second saddle using the gauge of the third string as a measurement. The fourth-string
saddle should be set parallel with the second-string saddle. Proceed with the fifth and
sixth saddles with the same method used for strings two and three.

LUBRICATION AND STRING BREAKAGE


Lubricating all of the contact points of a string's travel may be one of the most important
elements in ensuring tuning stability and in reducing string breakage.
The main cause of string breakage is moisture collection at the point of contact on the
bridge saddle. This can be attributed to the moisture and acidity that transfers from your
hands, or it can be a direct effect of humidity in the air. Another factor is metal-to-metal
friction and fatigue. Metal components react to each other over time because of their
differences and help break down string integrity. A stronger metal will always attack a
softer metal (this is why a stainless-steel string will wear a groove or burr in a vintagestyle saddle). You'll also find that different string brands break at different points of
tension because of the metal makeup and string manufacturing techniques.
Since Fender manufactures its own strings, they are designed to perform well for all
playing techniques.
One of the best ways to reduce string breakage is to lubricate the string/saddle contact
point with a light machine oil (we prefer 3-in-1 oil because it contains anti-rust and anti-

corrosive properties) every time you change strings. The oil insulates against moisture
and reduces friction and metal fatigue. String trees are another point of contact and
should also be lubricated; a small amount of lip balm applied with a toothpick works well.

TRUSS ROD
There are two different styles of truss rod found on Fender instruments"standard" and
"bi-flex" truss rods.
Most Fender guitars and basses are equipped with a standard truss rod (of which there
are in turn two types: one that adjusts at the neck heel and one that adjusts at the
headstock; both operate on the same principle). The standard truss rod can counteract
concave curvature in a neck that has too much relief, for example, by generating a force
in the neck opposite to that caused by excessive string tension.
Fender also uses a unique bi-flex truss rod system on some instruments. Unlike
standard truss rods, which can only correct a neck that is too concave (under-bowed),
the bi-flex truss rod can compensate concave or convex (over-bowed) curvature by
generating a correcting force in either direction as needed.
First, check your tuning. Affix a capo at the first fret and depress the sixth string at the
last fret. With a feeler gauge, check the gap between the bottom of the string and the top
of the 8th fretsee the spec chart below for the proper gap..
Adjustment at headstock (allen wrench): Sight down the edge of the fingerboard from
behind the headstock, looking toward the body of the instrument. If the neck is too
concave (action too high), turn the truss rod nut clockwise to remove excess relief. If the
neck is too convex (strings too close to the fingerboard), turn the truss rod nut counterclockwise to allow the string tension to pull more relief into the neck. Check your tuning,
then re-check the gap with the feeler gauge and re-adjust as needed.
Adjustment at neck joint (phillips screwdriver): Sight down the edge of the fingerboard
from behind the body, looking up toward the headstock of the instrument. If the neck is
too concave (action too high), turn the truss rod nut clockwise to remove excess relief. If
the neck is too convex (strings too close to the fingerboard), turn the truss rod nut
counter-clockwise to allow the string tension to pull more relief into the neck. Check your
tuning, then re-check the gap with the feeler gauge and re-adjust as needed.
Note: In either case, if you meet excessive resistance when adjusting the truss rod, if
your instrument needs constant adjustment, if adjusting the truss rod has no effect on
the neck, or if you're simply not comfortable making this type of adjustment yourself,
take your instrument to your local Fender Authorized Dealer.

Neck Radius

Relief

7.25"

.012" (0.3 mm)

9.5" to 12"

.010" (0.25 mm)

15" to 17"

.008" (0.2 mm)

ACTION
Players with a light touch can get away with lower action; others need higher action to
avoid rattles. First, check tuning. Using a 6" (150 mm) ruler, measure the distance
between bottom of strings and top of the 17th fret. Adjust bridge saddles to the height
according to the chart, then re-tune. Experiment with the height until the desired sound
and feel is achieved.

Neck Radius

String Height
Bass Side

Treble Side

7.25"

5/64" (2 mm)

4/64" (1.6 mm)

9.5" to 12"

4/64" (1.6 mm)

4/64" (1.6 mm)

15" to 17"

4/64" (1.6 mm)

3/64" (1.2 mm)

SHIMMING/MICRO-TILT ADJUSTMENT
Shimming is a procedure used to adjust the pitch of the neck in relation to the body. A
shim is placed in the neck pocket, underneath the butt end of the neck. On many
American series guitars, a Micro-Tilt adjustment is offered. It replaces the need for a
shim by using a hex screw against a plate installed in the butt end of the neck. The need
to adjust the pitch (raising the butt end of the neck in the pocket, thereby pitching the
neck back) of the neck occurs in situations where the string height is high and the action
adjustment is as low as the adjustment will allow.
To properly shim a neck, the neck must be removed from the neck pocket of the body. A
shim approximately 1/4" (6.4 mm) wide by 1 3/4" (44.5 mm) long by .010" (0.25 mm)
thick will allow you to raise the action approximately 1/32" (0.8 mm). For guitars with the
Micro-Tilt adjustment, loosen the two neck screws on both sides of the adjustment
access hole on the neckplate by at least four full turns. Tightening the hex adjustment
screw with an 1/8" hex wrench approximately 1/4 turn will allow you to raise the action
approximately 1/32". Retighten the neck screws when the adjustment is complete. The
pitch of the neck on your guitar has been preset at the factory and in most cases will not
need to be adjusted.
Note: If you feel that this adjustment needs to be made and you're not comfortable doing
it yourself, take your guitar to your local Fender Authorized Dealer.

PICKUPS

Set too high, pickups can cause myriad inexplicable phenomena. Depress all the strings
at the last fret. Using a 6" (150 mm) ruler, measure the distance from the bottom of the
first and sixth strings to the top of the pole piece. A good rule of thumb is that the
distance should be greatest at the sixth-string neck pickup position, and closest at the
first-string bridge pickup position. Follow the measurement guidelines in the chart below
as starting points. The distance will vary according to the amount of magnetic pull from
the pickup.

Bass Side

Treble Side

Texas Specials

8/64" (3.6 mm)

6/64" (2.4 mm)

Vintage style

6/64" (2.4 mm)

5/64" (2 mm)

Noiseless Series

8/64" (3.6 mm)

6/64" (2.4 mm)

Standard Single-Coil

5/64" (2 mm)

4/64" (1.6 mm)

Humbuckers

4/64" (1.6 mm)

4/64" (1.6 mm)

Lace Sensors

As close as desired (allowing for string vibration)

INTONATION (FINE TUNING)


Adjustments should be made after all of the above have been accomplished. Set the
pickup selector switch in the middle position, and turn the volume and tone controls to
their maximum settings. Check tuning. Check each string at the 12th fret, harmonic to
fretted note (make sure you are depressing the string evenly to the fret, not the
fingerboard). If sharp, lengthen the string by adjusting the saddle back. If flat, shorten the
string by moving the saddle forward. Remember, guitars are tempered instruments! Retune, play and make further adjustments as needed.
Note: If you have a three-section-style bridge, compensate between the strings to
minimize the percentage that any one string that may be sharp or flat. Listen for an
aurally pleasing intonation.

ADDITIONAL HINTS
There are a few other things that you can do to optimize your tuning stability that have
more to do with playing and tuning habits.
Each time you play your guitar, before you do your final tuning, play for a few minutes to
allow the strings to warm up. Metal expands when warm and contracts when cool. After
you've played a few riffs, you can then do your final tuning. Rememberwith most
tuning keys, it's preferable to tune up to pitch. However, with locking tuners, go past the
note and tune down to pitch. Finally, wipe the strings, neck and bridge with a lint-free
cloth after playing. When transporting or storing your guitar, even for short periods, avoid

leaving it anyplace you wouldn't feel comfortable yourself.