How to Adjust the Truss Rod:

There are normally two basic places to access the truss rod to adjust it. By the headstock, and this one is usually under a cover between the strings:

And at the other end of the neck. On an acoustic guitar, it might be inside the sound hole:

Or on an electric, it might be where the neck meets the body.

Before we start turning the truss rod, it is important that you understand exactly what is going on. The strings pull on the neck of your guitar. If you look at the strings, they pull the neck up. It is the job of the truss rod to counteract the strings tension on the neck. Therefore, if you tighten the truss rod (turning it clockwise, Righty-tighty), it will flatten the neck, or better put, will lessen relief.

If you loosen the truss rod (turn it counter-clockwise, Lefty-loosy), it will allow the neck to bow, or increase the relief.

Note: It is my opinion the you should turn the rod slightly (maybe 1/8 of a turn) and re-check it. Also, if you meet with any resistance at all, seek professional help. The rod may already have been overtightened and damaged. In which case would need replaced. Do not risk further damage by forcing it, please. It may save you a lot of grief.

Sometimes people who didn’t know what to do were actually turning it the wrong way and when they didn’t get what they wanted, they just kept turning it until the rod was stripped, bent, or damaged beyond repair. In some cases, it even damages the neck so that it needs replaced.

Now that you have the desired relief, let’s go on to the next item on the list, Adjusting the Bridge.

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