PRS Nut Height?

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by LJD, Nov 11, 2012.

  1. LJD

    LJD New Member

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    The nut on my new HBII is a little higher than every other guitar I own. I noticed it right away and so did my guitar luthier/tech (I'm not a tech, just know how a guitar feels). He suggested we make an action adjustment and file it down, but knowing PRS nuts are made of a certain blend of material and aren't easy to come by we decided to wait. I had a chance to ask a PRS tech about it and he told me not to touch it, but I didn't get a straight answer why I shouldn't mess with it. Can someone explain why? What's the risk? Fret buzz, tonal loss, etc.? I've had nuts filed & dialed on my other guitars and I've never noticed any problems, only improvements. The HBII sounds amazing, I'd hate to lose anything tonally.
     
  2. Mikegarveyblues

    Mikegarveyblues Cream Crackered

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    When you say the nut is higher are you referring to the nut as a whole or the slots aren't deep enough?

    One is only an issue cosmetically if you're used to the slots being shallow whereas the other could lead to fretting / tuning problems.

    Fret the string around the 3rd fret. There should be a tiny amount of clearance between the string and the top of the fret.
     
  3. LJD

    LJD New Member

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    sorry, the slots aren't as deep (the action is higher).
     
  4. MykeWright

    MykeWright Bridge constructor

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    If the nut slots are cut too high, it's wrong, no matter who tells you that it's not. If you trust your tech, let him recut the slots, there's nothing special about PRS nuts that prevent this as long as the correct tools are used and the job is done well. If you don't do it, your intonation on the lower frets will be out and notes will be sharp.

    And Mike Garvey is spot-on with the method to check the height. You can use feeler gauges, but by eyesight and touch is good enough for me most of the time.
     
  5. LJD

    LJD New Member

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    By the fretting test above, it seems like the distance between the fret and the string could be cut in half and there would still be a (slight) movable space between them.
     
  6. Shawn@PRS

    Staff Member Moderator

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    Hi LJD,

    If the slots are too high you can certainly cut them deeper, just make sure it is done properly. An improperly cut nut can really make a otherwise awesome guitar a real turd.
     

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