Capri truss rod question

Early years of Rickenbacker Guitars prior to and including 1972

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Capri truss rod question

Postby (nmiller) » Mon Jul 03, 2017 10:24 am

Sorry if this has been asked & answered a hundred times; I found lots of info on adjusting the dual truss rods from the 1960s, but nothing helpful so far on this earlier system. I'm not sure if it's functionally any different.

I just acquired a beautiful 335 from 1958, and it has a tiny back bow that I'd like to correct. Loosening the nut like a conventional truss rod has had no effect. Is this like the later truss rods where the relief has to be set manually?

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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (Ontario_RIC_fan) » Mon Jul 03, 2017 2:49 pm

I don't own a Capri...

I think it certainly an old Style truss rod.

Do a search here on "adjusting old style Truss rods"

You loosen the rod. Then manually move the neck into position. Then you tighten the truss rod to hold it in place.

You DO NOT turn the truss rod to adjust the neck. Trying that may pop the fretboard or crack the neck.

I would love see more images of your Capri. :)
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (nmiller) » Mon Jul 03, 2017 3:47 pm

Thanks - I managed to put a little relief back into the neck. I think what's left is due to a hump in the fretboard, but it's so tiny that it's not even worth dressing the frets over.

Ontario_RIC_fan wrote:I would love see more images of your Capri. :)


I can accommodate that:

Image Image Image Image
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (maxwell) » Mon Jul 03, 2017 3:48 pm

It looks like there are two nuts there, and then (probably) the spacer. Did you loosen both nuts?

PS - The photos just popped up. Very nice guitar!
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (nmiller) » Mon Jul 03, 2017 4:07 pm

Strange as it may sound, that larger-diameter nut is actually just a spacer that spins freely.
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (jps) » Mon Jul 03, 2017 5:24 pm

Does the spacer actually spin freely? I would think the force of the ends of the rods would be bearing against it.
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (maxwell) » Mon Jul 03, 2017 5:32 pm

Not so strange; a smart way to regain potentially usable threads on the rod.

(Man, can't get over how nice the guitar is....)
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (nmiller) » Mon Jul 03, 2017 5:33 pm

It spins only when the nut is loosened, not when everything's tightened up.
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (antipodean) » Mon Jul 03, 2017 7:36 pm

Correcting a chronic back bow (however small) when you have no truss rod adjustment left can be done the hard way or the easy way. The hard way involves heat treatment and expense. The easy way is to move to higher tensions strings. I went the easy way on an old Fender Jaguar and it works fine, as long as you're happy with higher tension strings.

What gauge do you have on the Capri at the moment?
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (nmiller) » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:17 am

I have 11s on it now. I'm going to leave the neck as it is; it's perfectly playable now.
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (antipodean) » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:01 pm

nmiller wrote:I have 11s on it now. I'm going to leave the neck as it is; it's perfectly playable now.

Good to hear. If it's perfectly playable, it's perfect! :D
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (chefothefuture) » Tue Aug 01, 2017 2:20 am

maxwell wrote:It looks like there are two nuts there, and then (probably) the spacer. Did you loosen both nuts?

PS - The photos just popped up. Very nice guitar!


It is not a spacer. It is a thrust bearing. When the adjusting nut is tightened it needs a bearing surface, otherwise it would bind up or move off of the passive end of the truss rod.
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Re: Capri truss rod question

Postby (libratune) » Tue Aug 01, 2017 1:55 pm

Very nice early Capri. I have one from early 1959 that looks very similar, though the soundhole on yours appears to be a bit longer:

4-fullsize.jpg
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