Case Studies

Case Study 3

Ibanez Acoustic
Heres an Ibanez acoustic electric that's never been serviced and not played much because of extremely high string action, so let's get to work.

Ibanez 12 Fret
String height is .120 and specification is .090. This means there is only one remedy and that is to remove the saddle from the bridge and file it down, but only if there will be enough string angle from the bridge pins so the strings won't buzz on the saddle when playing.

I measured the bridge, saddle and height of the neck where it joins the body and determined how much drop I should be able to go. So I measure the side of the bridge and mark it by using a nut file and running it back and forth. Then I use a marker to fill the notch I put in the side of the saddle; then wipe off the excess and I have a nice clear line to go by. I use a special vise that has angled up sides so I can see the work much better than in a regular vise. I use a heavy rasp to knock it down and a smooth file to put a nice edge on it. This is important because the saddle sits on top of the pick up in the bridge.

After all the filing, I check for square because equal pressure throughout the saddle is important so all strings are picked up equaly in volume by the pick up under the saddle.

Ibanez Final String Height
I put the old strings back on in case I needed to go over something and I could test it out. So this guitar started out with a string height of .120 at the 12th fret. Specification is .090. Now I got it down to .082. It turned out playing beautifully. All I need to do was set the neck releif for the extremely low action and change the strings. Steve was amazed when he played this guitar. He said, "I was ready to just sell it but now I don't think I could find one to play as nice as you got this to play."