Peavey Milestone Truss rod question

Quick truss rod question. As some of you may have read, I brought home a Peavey Milestone III JJ bass last Wednesday.

The good is that the tone, even with dead old strings is fantabulous, and the neck is a joy to play. Who knew a scrawny little jazz neck could be so much fun? That said, I think the selfsame is my problem.

The previous owner kept the strings under tension but with the truss rod disengaged. I don’t know for how long, but the strings managed to rust, and as you can imagine there was a ton of front bow and the action at the 21st fret was about 1/2" or more.

I took off the old strings (haven’t yet put the new ones on), and unfortunately the neck has retained its banana shape. However, the truss rod does work, and I was able to crank the neck into straightness. That said, when I release the truss rod all the way, it bananas back a bit, though it stays straight when I crank it 3/4 of the way to the right. I don’t think that it’s a dual action truss, because at one point the wheel disengages and spins loosely to the left.

Anyhoo, my thought is that I’ll let it rest for a bit (a week or two) with the truss rod engaged to 1/2 to 3/4, so that the banana strain will slowly correct and set into the wood of the neck. The theory is that at the end of the period the neck will retain its straight shape when I disengage the truss rod.

Any thoughts/advice? I unfortunately don’t have a way of heating the neck like Dave of DWoFS.


Not sure why you want to keep the truss rod ‘disengaged’.
Is there some advantage I don’t know about?
If the truss rod keeps the neck straight as it should, I think you are good, no?

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Thanks @John_E . Sorry, too many words, not enough meaning.

My understanding is that without strings on and with the truss rod not engaged, the neck should be straight. Correct?

As it is, if I have the truss rod dialed down, the neck has a visible front bow without strings on. Not huge, but noticeable.

My question is whether I should let the neck sit unstrung with the truss rod forcing it straight until the wood settles, or whether it doesn’t matter.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that with the old strings on, I couldn’t get the neck relief down to what I want no matter how hard I cranked down the truss screw.

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This I do not know, sorry.

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My knowledge of this is also limited, but my understanding is that the truss rod is NOT intended to change the bow/relief of the neck when there are no strings on the bass, i.e., when it’s not under tension!

Also, it seems to be a general consensus that ANY setup you do ONLY makes sense with ALL strings mounted.

So, yeah, perhaps let it rest a bit, but the truss rod setting should have little effect on what the neck is doing during that time.

Personally, I would put new strings on the bass, and then perhaps let it sit a while before performing a setup. The necks on my basses are under tension all the time.


Agree with this, as nothing really matters with no strings on (unless using your bass as a weapon or kindling).


When you have a severe bow without string tension, it’s a good idea to loosen the truss rod nut, clamp the neck straight and then set the nut to hold the neck straight. That way the nut only has to hold the tension and doesn’t have to do the actual work of removing the bow, meaning that the threads are less likely to strip.


If a picture is worth a thousand then a video is worth a million. :smiley:


Thank you, @Korrigan , @John_E and @joergkutter for the advice.