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Leonard McCoy

The Temptation Is Great... Should I Do It?

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At last she arrived. (The post office didn't care to deliver her to my doorstep.) I'll need a little more time for my sitting down with the guitar before I'll drop the NGD post with my first impressions.

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Terrible news! A beautiful-looking (without being overbearing) and -sounding guitar but the truss rod is nigh-maxxed out.  It is impossible to get the neck straight enough for a guitar of that caliber. What a disappointment!

Edited by Leonard McCoy

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You got Gibsoned? Sorry 'bout that- it happens sometimes. 

Did the action come in too high, or _ ? What direction were you looking to go with the height, does the guitar have a tall saddle, and have you put a straight edge on the fretboard to see where it contacts the bridge? 

It would be good if you could get some string height measurements. And- is it terribly humid this time of year in Katmandu? That could puff up the top (although it is common enough to ship 'em high).

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The action at the 12th fret and 1st fret was rather good; it was the neck relief. In my experience Gibsons don't usually suffer from this. I couldn't get the neck straight enough for my preferences. Perhaps I'm too spoiled by the Custom Shop Gibsons in that regard but I don't think so. I like to start out with a perfectly straight neck and add the tiniest amount of relief from there (.004).

The truss rod of the J-45 Deluxe wouldn't allow for that; it was stiff and had surprisingly little reach and would start squeaking early before you could get the neck straight. You could see in the truss rod cavity that the truss rod nut had used up most windings already or was too advanced there for its age. This was a used guitar in an otherwise pristine condition. Too much neck relief affects playability greatly and makes the guitar a rather bad investment in the long run since the situation would only worsen over time.

I still do have the photos and the experience playing the thing but doing the NGD now would leave an even worse taste in my mouth. The guitar is already on its way back; the retailer has been informed and took notice. I wish it wasn't so.

Edited by Leonard McCoy

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46 minutes ago, Leonard McCoy said:

The action at the 12th fret and 1st fret was rather good; it was the neck relief. In my experience Gibsons don't usually suffer from this. I couldn't get the neck straight enough for my preferences. Perhaps I'm too spoiled by the Custom Shop Gibsons in that regard but I don't think so. I like to start out with a perfectly straight neck and add the tiniest amount of relief from there (.004).

The truss rod of the J-45 Deluxe wouldn't allow for that; it was stiff and had surprisingly little reach and would start squeaking early before you could get the neck straight. You could see in the truss rod cavity that the truss rod nut had used up most windings already or was too advanced there for its age. This was a used guitar in an otherwise pristine condition. Too much neck relief affects playability greatly and makes the guitar a rather bad investment in the long run since the situation would only worsen over time.

I still do have the photos and the experience playing the thing but doing the NGD now would leave an even worse taste in my mouth. The guitar is already on its way back; the retailer has been informed and took notice. I wish it wasn't so.

Hopefully it will just open the door for something in better shape down the road.

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