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Thread: Stingray Neck-Heel Shim?

  1. #1
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    Stingray Neck-Heel Shim?

    Hi there. I couldn't for the life of me remember my password for this forum and apparently made my account so long ago that it's registered to my old email address I don't have access to anymore, so I had to make a new account...anyways:

    I do all of my own set-up work on my basses. Nothing fancy like fretwork or serious wood work, just basic neck cleaning, truss rod, intonation, and action adjustments along with electrical work. For years now I've struggled to make my Stingray feel as nice as I'd like it to, mainly to have it have nice action without a ton of buzzing. It hasn't been my #1 bass for awhile so I've just sort of dealt with it, but this weekend I was working on it and getting really frustrated. I figured it must need some legitimate fret/neck work I'm not capable of (it still might) and I'd just have to bring it to a luthier to check it out.

    I then had a random flashback to years ago when I was young and stupid and for some reason took the neck off my Stingray just out of curiosity. I remember there being what seemed like a small piece of sandpaper between the neck and the body, thinking to myself "Hmm that's weird" and disposing of it.

    So today I did some online reading to realize that was a shim to adjust the neck joint angle. I had some fine (P220) sandpaper lying around, so I cut a little square of that, folded it in half (it seemed too thin to do anything without it being folded, could be wrong), and placed it between the body and neck at the heel, and I did find it helped a lot! That said, I'm not super confident the arbitrary piece of sandpaper I put there is the right thickness for this use, and I'm wondering if anyone could advise on this issue.

    TL;DR years ago without realizing what I was doing I removed a shim from the neck joint of my Stingray. Wondering if anyone has info/advice on what to place there to minimize buzz with low action.

    Thanks!
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    Formerly MSilvers but forgot all my log-in info...

    2012 Game Changer Bass
    2008 Stingray 4 HH

  2. #2
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    Removing it would explain a lot. Making shims is very much trial and error (Not that you want to keep talking the neck on and off for obvious reasons). There is a small shim in the neck pocket of one of my StingRays. It’s made from wafer thin plastic. About the thickness of perhaps two sheets of paper so not thick at all. That’s about the gauge to increase or decrease by. A tiny little nothing that just gets the neck sitting just right so that once the relief in the neck is set it brings the very last fret that little bit closer to the strings allowing for a lower action while maintaining the same amount of relief.

    StingRay 4H Buttercreme 2005 L.E. ("Leighton")
    StingRay 4H Light Blue over Vintage Sunburst. 2005 ("SunBlue")
    GENZ-BENZ & ORANGE AMPS.

  3. #3
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    StewMac makes wood shims specifically for bass. Might give them a try myself.

  4. #4
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    Customer Service will send you some, which will make it easier.

  5. #5
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    Currently, EBMM uses three different shims from the factory:

    .010 - Brown
    .015 - Pink
    .020 - Yellow

    I have an SR5 that I could not get the action low enough on. It had a brown shim. Changing to the pink and now it's golden.

    I have a Luke III that had really high action. It also had a brown shim, and now with the pink shim, it's golden.

    The one thing I do always wonder is, if you do have to use the Yellow shim, should you then put a brown shim over the middle set of screws?
    2007 Stingray 5 HS Cherry Burst / Maple fretboard / 3 Band EQ / Ceramic Pickups
    2012 Stingray 5 H Pearl Blue / Rosewood Fretboard/ 3 Band EQ/ AlNiCo Pickup
    2012 Steve Morse Signature Morse Blueburst / Rosewood FB
    2012 Luke III SSH Vintage Sunburst / Rosewood Neck

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by tbonesullivan View Post
    Currently, EBMM uses three different shims from the factory:

    .010 - Brown
    .015 - Pink
    .020 - Yellow
    Do you know what those measurements are in? Millimeters? Inches?

    Also do you generally place the shim as close to the body end of the neck pocket as possible? I didn't think about placement when I did my quick replacement, kind of just put it in the middle but it's possible it slid down as I was re-attaching the neck.

    Thanks for the input, I'll probably email customer service to see what they say as well.
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    Formerly MSilvers but forgot all my log-in info...

    2012 Game Changer Bass
    2008 Stingray 4 HH

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manny_Silvers View Post
    Do you know what those measurements are in? Millimeters? Inches?

    Also do you generally place the shim as close to the body end of the neck pocket as possible? I didn't think about placement when I did my quick replacement, kind of just put it in the middle but it's possible it slid down as I was re-attaching the neck.

    Thanks for the input, I'll probably email customer service to see what they say as well.
    The shim generally goes at the back, nearest the body as it’s being used to tilt the neck.

    StingRay 4H Buttercreme 2005 L.E. ("Leighton")
    StingRay 4H Light Blue over Vintage Sunburst. 2005 ("SunBlue")
    GENZ-BENZ & ORANGE AMPS.

  8. #8
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    EBMM shims have two holes in them, as they are designed to go around the securing screws in the end of the neck pocket closest to the bridge. This way you don't have to worry about them moving out of place while you put the neck back on.
    2007 Stingray 5 HS Cherry Burst / Maple fretboard / 3 Band EQ / Ceramic Pickups
    2012 Stingray 5 H Pearl Blue / Rosewood Fretboard/ 3 Band EQ/ AlNiCo Pickup
    2012 Steve Morse Signature Morse Blueburst / Rosewood FB
    2012 Luke III SSH Vintage Sunburst / Rosewood Neck

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by tbonesullivan View Post
    EBMM shims have two holes in them, as they are designed to go around the securing screws in the end of the neck pocket closest to the bridge. This way you don't have to worry about them moving out of place while you put the neck back on.
    Hmm interesting, I could be wrong but I'm pretty sure the thing I pulled out of the bass years ago didn't wrap around any screws or anything like that, I remember it seeming like a basic piece of sandpaper. Maybe EBMM has changed how they shim over the last decade?

    I emailed Customer Support and ideally they'll point me in the direction of where to get a proper shim (or offer to ship me one).
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    Formerly MSilvers but forgot all my log-in info...

    2012 Game Changer Bass
    2008 Stingray 4 HH

  10. #10
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    CS can definitely help you. I just got a set of shims and some screws for my Luke III a month or so ago. only cost a little bit. Their CS really is pretty awesome.
    2007 Stingray 5 HS Cherry Burst / Maple fretboard / 3 Band EQ / Ceramic Pickups
    2012 Stingray 5 H Pearl Blue / Rosewood Fretboard/ 3 Band EQ/ AlNiCo Pickup
    2012 Steve Morse Signature Morse Blueburst / Rosewood FB
    2012 Luke III SSH Vintage Sunburst / Rosewood Neck

  11. #11
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    Sandpaper is a home brewed shim.

    High friction is not need for EBMM
    shims cuz the neck heel has nearly
    zero side to side play in the socket
    ... IOW sandpaper is a Fender bass
    "tradition" :-)
    S.U.B. SL4 - SR4p FL [x2] - SR4HH FL [Moses neck]
    SL4p FL [x2] - SL4HS FL - SL4HS FL [Moses neck]
    SR5HS alnico - SR5p FL ceramic [x2] - Bongo4Hp FL

    "Too many basses is never enuf"

    Golem is NOT engaged in social networks.

  12. #12
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    My SR5 neck pocket is SUPER tight. I'm amazed I got the neck out of there to re-shim it.
    2007 Stingray 5 HS Cherry Burst / Maple fretboard / 3 Band EQ / Ceramic Pickups
    2012 Stingray 5 H Pearl Blue / Rosewood Fretboard/ 3 Band EQ/ AlNiCo Pickup
    2012 Steve Morse Signature Morse Blueburst / Rosewood FB
    2012 Luke III SSH Vintage Sunburst / Rosewood Neck

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by tbonesullivan View Post
    My SR5 neck pocket is SUPER tight. I'm amazed I got the neck out of there to re-shim it.
    That’s definitely not a bad thing

    StingRay 4H Buttercreme 2005 L.E. ("Leighton")
    StingRay 4H Light Blue over Vintage Sunburst. 2005 ("SunBlue")
    GENZ-BENZ & ORANGE AMPS.

  14. #14
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    CS is sending me all three shim sizes they use in factory, so I'll report back to which one I decide to use. CS also told me they normally don't put shims on four string Stingrays. It's interesting, I definitely remember the thing I pulled out of the neck pocket years ago seeming like sandpaper and not some professional piece that screws fit through. I wonder if sometime between the bass leaving the factory and me purchasing it at the store (which theoretically should have only been about a month) someone setup the bass and decided to put the sandpaper shim in there.
    ------------------------------------------------------
    Formerly MSilvers but forgot all my log-in info...

    2012 Game Changer Bass
    2008 Stingray 4 HH

  15. #15
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    That's possible. My 4 string sting ray did not have a shim when I had the neck off. 5 string came stock with a Brown Shim. I have not had the neck off my other 5 string stingray.
    2007 Stingray 5 HS Cherry Burst / Maple fretboard / 3 Band EQ / Ceramic Pickups
    2012 Stingray 5 H Pearl Blue / Rosewood Fretboard/ 3 Band EQ/ AlNiCo Pickup
    2012 Steve Morse Signature Morse Blueburst / Rosewood FB
    2012 Luke III SSH Vintage Sunburst / Rosewood Neck

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