Setting up a Guitar

If, like me, you own a guitar that has never been properly set up, the chances are high that it could really benefit from a bit of maintenance.

You may be of the opinion that since you never changed anything since buying the guitar from the shop, it couldn’t possibly be set up incorrectly. Well that’s not really true. Factories just pump them out to a set specification. It is up to you to adjust the set up to be specific to your playing style and preference. Some players like the action lower than others, for example.

It’s not just cheap, beginner guitars that require the set up, either. I have a friend who spent a fair bit on a guitar, he played it for a couple of years and loved it. Then, after getting it set up correctly, said it played like a totally different guitar!

So what could be wrong with your current set up? Perhaps the action is too high/low, the neck is warped, the frets need replacing, the saddles are in the wrong position. But how do you tell, and what can you do if you find out that there is a fault?

Luckily we have the internet! Some of the users of the internet are pretty skilled in this area and have kindly shared their knowledge with us.

Here are two resources that cover the same ground, but I figured it could be handy to have a couple of references, rather than just one.

Audiotuts+: 7 Steps to Setting Up Your Guitar

Wikihow: Setting up a guitar

Good luck!