How to adjust the action?
How to adjust the action
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The Squier Stratocaster is an electric guitar manufactured and sold by Squier, a marque of Fender. It is essentially a re-branded Fender Stratocaster.
Your guitar has what's called a truss rod running the length of the neck. There is a hex nut under a plastic cover on the headstock that gives access to this truss rod. Use the appropriate sized allen wrench (you do NOT want to strip the nut) and first loosen the truss rod (turn it 1/8 of a turn counterclockwise). Then, if you want lower action, adjust 1/8 of a turn at a time clockwise until you are happy with the result. If you want higher action, adjust 1/8 of a turn at a time counterclockwise.
Be warned that a stripped or broken truss rod results in a VERY expensive repair (usually the neck is replaced)!
To adjust the action you can also use a small allen wrench and lower the settles of the bridge.
You can also consider replacing the nut.
One last thing you can do is remove the screws that atach the neck to the body of the guitar and place a small piece of papper on the outter screws place to give it a little raise angle.
Adjusting action properly involves several facets, and is not a job for a novice, as much as I like to encourage people to do their own work. The frets must be leveled, the fingerboard angle must be set correctly to the guitar body, and the nut and saddles for each string must be adjusted. In addition, all this will most likely change the intonation, so where the saddle pieces sit under each string must be set for that. And, yes, the truss rod might be involved as well, or maybe not. Complicated interaction between all these parameters. OK, you still want to give it a go. I'm saying Bravo! But, please do it mindfully. Watch some youtube videos on it before you start. There's a wealth of info out there. The easiest thing to do, if your guitar has an adjustable bridge/saddle, is to lower the saddle pieces a bit until you get string buzz. Then raise it back up a bit. Fret the string up and down the neck, and set it as low as possible with no buzzing anywhere. Do this for all strings. Then, play the instrument like you normally do, and see if your style of playing produces any buzzing. If so, figure out which string(s) and raise their saddles slightly until you get no buzzes. Last, using preferably a strobe tuner, but other kinds will get you pretty close, play each string open, then fretted at the 12th fret. The two notes should be an octave apart. If the 12th fret note is lower, move the saddle piece closer to the nut. If higher, move the saddle away. Do this for all strings one at a time. This is a shortcut, incomplete method, but I have done it this way and it works pretty well. For a first class action set, either learn what is involved and do it properly, or go to a qualified luthier. Have fun! Please no criticism from the purists out there. I know darn well this is a shortcut method, and I think I have provided a proper disclaimer about it.
Do not make any changes to the truss rod unless the neck has a curvature!!
Action adjustment must be made by adjustments on the bridge to each string height. Not a job for someone unfamiliar with the procedure.
Everyone has been taught that “truss rod is bad. Danger, dangetr!” If you understand the mechanics of it, the why and how, you can fo some really great things to improve a cheaper guitar. Just use a soft touch, remember a little goes a long way, and be careful. If its part of your rig, you should know how to do most if it.
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