How do I set up my .strandberg* instrument?

In this guide, we'll walk you through the fundamental steps for setting up your .strandberg* guitar or bass. It's important to follow the instructions in the order provided below for optimal results.

If you need more detailed instructions on any adjustment, you can always refer to our more detailed support articles. And of course, feel free to reach out to our customer support team for assistance at any time.

.strandberg* setup procedure
  1. Tune to pitch
  2. Adjust neck relief
  3. Adjust string action
  4. Adjust pickup height
  5. Adjust intonation

1. Tune to pitch

When changing to new strings, start by tuning to pitch, stretching the strings and tuning again before making any other adjustments.

When replacing strings on a tremolo guitar, we recommend changing them one by one to prevent the tremolo bridge from popping out of place. It’s also convenient to place a shim or a stack of picks under the base plate of tremolo-equipped guitars to keep the bridge level with the body when performing setup.

For a detailed guide on how to change strings, please see this article.

2. Adjust neck relief

The neck on your instrument should not be perfectly straight, but have a slight forward bow. The neck relief is adjusted by turning the dual-action truss rod; counter-clockwise for more and clockwise for less relief. Check the tuning between adjustments.

In playing position, press down the G-string (D-string for bass) with a capo at the first fret and by hand at the last fret and measure the relief at the 9th fret. 

Our factory specs are listed below, but if you have changed string type or gauges, you might need to experiment with other measurements.

  • 6, 7 and 8-string guitar: 0.10 - 0.13 mm (0.004 - 0.005")
  • 4 and 5 string bass: 0.15 - 0.20 mm (0.006 - 0.008")

It's recommended to adjust the truss rod a quarter of a turn at a time to avoid over tightening. If you feel excessive resistance while turning, please get in touch with our customer support.

If you need a more in-depth guide on how to adjust the truss rod, we have one here.

3. Adjust string action

In playing position, check the string height at the 19th fret, measuring from the top of the fret to the bottom of the string. If you want to set your instrument up to factory specs, use the measurements below as reference.

If the exact numbers can't be obtained due to the adjustment limitations of the saddle screws, assure that the lower adjacent string to the higher string (ex. - B to high-E, G to B, A to low-E, etc.) is not lower in string height. For example, the high-E should not be higher than the B, B should not be higher than the G, G should not be higher than the D and so on.

6, 7 and 8 string guitar
  • 1-E: 1 mm
  • 2-B: 1.10 - 1.15 mm
  • 3-G: 1.25 mm
  • 4-D: 1.25 mm
  • 5-A: 1.35 - 1.40 mm
  • 6-E: 1.50 mm
  • 7-B: 1.60 mm
  • 8-F#: 1.75 mm
4 and 5 string bass
  • 1-G: 1.25 mm
  • 2-D: 1.40 mm
  • 3-A: 1.40 - 1.45 mm
  • 4-E: 1.60 mm
  • 5-B: 1.75 mm

For detailed instructions on how to change the action on our different instruments, see these articles:

.strandberg* EGS Tuner parts and adjustments

How do I adjust the string height on the Boden Bass

Getting to know the EGS Arc hardware on the Boden Essential

4. Adjust pickup height

A common mistake is to adjust the pickups too close to the strings, causing problems with string pull. The strings can start to wobble and vibrate up and down instead of sideways which leads to false overtones, incorrect intonation, poor sustain, string buzz etc.

Measure the distance between the pickup polepiece/screw and string held down at last fret, and adjust for the measurements below.

6, 7 and 8 string guitar 4 and 5 string bass

Neck humbucker

Bass side: 2.8 mm (7/64") 

Treble side: 2.4 mm (6/64") 

Bridge humbucker

Bass side: 2.4 mm (6/64")

Treble side: 2.0 mm (5/64") 

Single coil pickups

Bass side: 3.2 mm (8/64")

Treble side: 2.4 mm (6/64") 

Neck pickup

Bass side: 2.8 mm (7/64")

Treble side: 2.4 mm (6/64") 

Bridge pickup

Bass side: 2.4 mm (6/64")

Treble side: 2.0 mm (5/64")

After setting the pickups to the height specified above, fine tune the height by ear to achieve a proper output balance between bridge, middle and neck pickups.

5. Adjust intonation

Play the 12th fret with a medium pick attack and compare it to either the open string or the 12th fret harmonic. If the fretted note is flat, the string needs to be shortened. If the fretted note is sharp, it needs to be extended. 

For players who generally are spending more time on the higher frets than the lower, intonation can be checked and set on the 19th fret instead. 

The process of adjusting intonation on our instruments are described in detail in the articles linked below.

Adjusting the intonation on .strandberg* instruments

How do I adjust the intonation on the Boden Bass?

Getting to know the EGS Arc hardware on the Boden Essential

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