callaham hardtail saddle height adjustment with tele deluxe body


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This is my first guitar that came in more than one piece.  I wanted a tele deluxe and couldn't find one I liked for less than $2k (and apparently bill nash won't take custom requests anymore).  Anyway, I am virtually there...except it appears that my warmoth vintage modern cbs strat neck (warmoth finished) + warmoth tele deluxe body (warmoth finished) + the callaham stainless hardtail isn't quite workable out of the box.  I got it strung up and let it rest for a few days but it appears that the normally supplied callaham saddle height adjustment screws aren't quite long enough for me.  I wanted to check in here with some more experienced builders to make sure I wasn't crazy.  Looking at the neck relief/truss rod setting it appears to be nice and I'd rather not disturb it just until I have more adjustment available in the bridge.  The thing plays beautifully...but I need a few more hairs (at the most) on the saddle height adjustment screws.  I've ordered some longer ones from callaham but I wanted to come in here to make sure something else wasn't wrong - or that I hadn't overlooked something really basic.  I have been utterly spoiled at how well this whole thing worked out - and feel a bit guilty even bothering you folks with this.  Nevertheless, I will never buy a guitar in one piece again  :)

** in case someone is searching: hard tail rather than hardtail **
that definitely doesn't sound quite right, but it could be that the screws really were a fraction of a fraction too short. i'm curious, as i always wanted to put together a tele deluxe

OH and before somebody beats me to it. pics or it doesn't exsist  :toothy12:  don't tease me with a nice tele deluxe, and then not show me pictures
Sounds like a real nice guitar there!

Sounds a bit funny - a photo of the bridge and where the strings are in relation to the body would really help us figure it out.
Hmmm. I have one of those bridges and no problems with it. A pic would help, as would a measurement of your relief at the 8th fret (distance between top of fret and bottom of low string) and the nut height.
I need to find my feeler set but my relief at the 8th fret is in the neighborhood of 1/16" on the low e.  The angle at the neck pocket appears perfect with a strait edge - like amazingly perfect.  If I run my aluminum ruler from the 12th fret down to the bridge it just looks flawless - it just seems like the neck pocket needs to be 1/16" less deep?  I'm not shimming it.  I just figured my saddle height screws needed a few more hairs.  I'm going to find my feelers and report back with some specific relief numbers.  Thank you!




Wow!  that's a nice guitar.

Not sure if it's just me, but the neck seems to be a bit high - the fretboard overhang is supposed to be flush with the top of the pickguard and from your pics it looks like it's 1/16 or so above that.  This would account for the problem - but I find it hard to believe that W would make that kind of slip.

In any case, yea, longer screws are what you need to make it all work.
My neck pocket is about 9/16" deep (maybe plus a 64th) and my neck depth at the 16th fret is 15/16" - which one of those sounds too big?  This isn't worth sending anything back for shaving/routing is it?
BTW, thanks for complimenting the guitar!  It's nothing fancy compared to some of the amazing things people show on this forum but one has to appreciate its simplicity!  With the fralin P-92s it sure is a riot to play!  I'm going to build another with real 70s wide ranges...I just need one more.  I recently put a set of old ones in my friend's bill nash tele deluxe and it is quite dreamy...
Nice axe. That neck does look a touch high but it could be the angle. Mine are not actually flush, but that looks like it's sitting up just a bit.

1/16th relief is huge though! 1/16th - That's .0625! If you have never done it before, I highly recommend going 'no relief' and getting your nut slots down to exactly the height of your first fret - any fret imperfections will stick out but you'll be shocked by the kind of action you can get. I go for .005 in relief - basically, just a hair of daylight between the top of the fret and the bottom of the string. Definitely less than the thickness of your high E. The only reason I can see for 1/16 relief is if your a big slide player or you just like really high action. Getting your neck straight may give you the space you need to not buy new saddle height screws.
FYI Vintage Modern have about .050 more room between the fret board and the body then Warmoth Pro necks. Not exactly sure why. By the way that's a really awesome build. :icon_thumright:
I had the same issue on my Fender-Am Strat.  The longer screws were definitely the ticket.
Thanks Blue313 - I'm glad I stumbled onto the right path.  I feel a bit silly - when I was measuring relief I wasn't fretting anything.  Is the standard when measuring relief to fret 1 and 12 or 1 and [22/etc]?  I've read both about fretting 1 and 22 on the D string and measuring at 12 and too 1, 12, and 8 respectively.

Blue313 said:
I had the same issue on my Fender-Am Strat.  The longer screws were definitely the ticket.
vintage modern neck and a compound radius = taller fretboard... longer bridge adjustment screws will take care of this.... great looking build!