Bridge and neck compesation, should i adjust the truss rod?

Okay, I posted couple days ago that something fell from inside the guitar I recently got, I was told it was the truss rod and quickly realized it's function.

Thing is, the guy who sold it to me, told me that the guitar had a very high action and he found himself having to sand the bridge, it really is exaggeratedly sanded, it's about 11mm now, all of its bottom makes contact with the guitar, and still the action was quite high (about 4mm).

I realized the neck was quite bowed, so I adjusted the truss rod by myself which I know was a little risky considering I'm a total newbie on lutheiry and more specially about gypsy jazz, and now the neck is completely straight (With a little tinny small amount of relief at the firsts frets but it dissapears once the strings are off).

I had to fix the intonation again, moving the bridge around and I finally got it at an uneven position, it's quite diagonal but I don't mind that.

Anyway, the guitar played well since with about 2.8 action on 12th fret, but I definitely want a taller bridge, I mean, this one doesn't look like a bridge at all.

He also gave me the guitar with other bridge, almost completely new (19.3mm). I wanna put that one.

I put it, fixed the intonation, tuned up etc etc...but the action is...well... my pinky finger fits in there lol.

I also found it projects sound way more than the other bridge.

So to fix this, I'm thinking of adjusting the truss rod to get the back bowed neck, with a similar action, the same if now my question is if this is doable, I mean, how much can I tighten the truss rod of a Gitane DG-255? Or it's better to sand this bridge as well? if so, what is the best or preferred bridge height?

I know that there's a lot of debates between moving the truss rod to change action, some recommend it others say that you must not touch it as a rule. But hey, what else is there to do?

(I already watched the Guitar Set up video by Bob Holo but he doesn't talk about bridge height...or maybe I missed something...)


  • juandererjuanderer New ALD Original, Manouche Latcho Drom Djangology Koa, Caro y Topete AR 740 O
    Posts: 205
    When you mention the neck is straight, is it parallel to the top? I'm not familiar with the DG-255, but these guitars' necks usually get to the body at an angle at an angle. If yours are parallel, that could explain your action problems.

    Where are you sticking your pinky that it pits under the strings? If it's by the bridge that seems about right.

  • Posts: 18
    juanderer wrote: »
    When you mention the neck is straight, is it parallel to the top?
    Well I tightened the truss rod a little before posting this, and It seems a little led back, but it's still got that ramp close at the nut.

    When I said the pinky fitted in there I meant on the 12th fret, I fitted there without much effort, the action was actually 6.8mm lol

  • BonesBones Moderator
    Posts: 3,318
    Don't mess with it if you don't know what you are doing. Take it to a tech. You can really mess things up if ur not careful. Sounds like the previous owner might have messed things up a bit.
  • Posts: 18
    there are no techs who know about gypsy jazz guitars where I live, They don't even know these things exist and they just see them as flat American acoustics, Luthiers here only make classical guitars, which don't have adjustable truss rod and neither a movable/multiple height bridge. I can't even get the picks used in gypsy jazz. Nothing that you might need to play this style is found were I live.

    All I can count on are the resources I find on the internet and every change has to be done by myself, I would have a already taken it to a Luthier if there was someone who knew. And this is like the only forum on the internet dedicated to gypsy jazz in which actual Luthiers can help, I'm being as careful as possible following their advice.

    And yeah, the previous guy messed up, he sanded the bridge wrongly, and he kept the guitar on its case for years without tuning down the strings, that's why the bow I had to fix by myself...
  • juandererjuanderer New ALD Original, Manouche Latcho Drom Djangology Koa, Caro y Topete AR 740 O
    Posts: 205
    chances are even the techs and luthiers that know nothing about gypsy guitars know a tad bit (probably a lot) more than you.
  • BonesBones Moderator
    edited December 2017 Posts: 3,318
    Neck setup is very tricky and uses certain tools and MANY skills. You can really mess up an instrument if you do it wrong. Like I said, it sounds like the previous owner did just what you are talking about doing which is probably why the setup is in the poor state it is in now. Sure, you can LEARN to do it yourself but DO IT RIGHT. It ain't the proverbial 'rocket science' and anyone who is handy, patient, and methodical can do it. If you MUST try it yourself get some books and tools. Luthier's Merchantile and Stewart MacDonald are good resources. Good luck. It really isn't the kind of thing that someone can really accurately evaluate (your current neck condition) and give you a step by step concisely on a forum like this. There aren't any shortcuts to this. And DON"T overtighten the truss rod!!!
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