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Maurszczyk Paddock 5a truss rod snapped!

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Anybody have this issue with Maruszczyk basses?  It is 1.5 years old and this rod hasn't been turned more than 1/4 turn in that time.  Had a slight bow in the neck and I was tightening the rod not a 10th of a turn and the rod snapped in the threads.  Anybody have this issue?

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If it's only 1.5 years old then it should still be under warranty, (2yrs minimum I believe). I'd get in touch with the manufacturer 

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6 minutes ago, BassBunny said:

If it's only 1.5 years old then it should still be under warranty, (2yrs minimum I believe). I'd get in touch with the manufacturer 

Yes this, although it's the retailer who is responsible, not the manufacturer. (I realize there's fair chance it might be one and the same in this instance, but also it might have been bought through a shop)

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1 hour ago, jrixn1 said:

Yes this, although it's the retailer who is responsible, not the manufacturer. (I realize there's fair chance it might be one and the same in this instance, but also it might have been bought through a shop)

Well.  I have been in touch with both entities.  The Manufacturer stated the bass is under warranty but truss rods are NOT COVERED!  I just can't seem to understand this as a truss rod is not like tires on a car, or spark plugs that are subject to normal wear and tear.  I do understand that if you adjust the truss rod yourself that it can be negligently overtightened to the point where something is going to break and that the manufacturer shouldn't be held responsible.  I can tell  you I turned the nut ever so slightly- very small adjustments since I have owned the bass.  I cherish this thing and I would never make major adjustments to it- small incremental only.  I maintain that I was not negligent and operated the truss rod in a manner consistent with how it is intended to be tuned.  The frustrating thing is that it is my word against his.  I maintain I was careful in adjusting the rod and that either the installation of the rod or the condition of the rod at the time of manufacture was subpar.  He maintains I was negligent and that "I broke the rod", point blank.  I just don't like the hard stance he is taking on this.  The retailer I purchased the bass from is very understanding and is communicating with the manufacturer on my behalf to try and find some amicable solution.  I can tell you that I LOVE my bass guitar, but I will not purchase another Maruszczyk if an agreeable solution is not rendered.  I understand Maruszczyk engineers their own truss rods.  Of course they are going to stand by their quality, but they can't be so protective to not realize that sometimes they are going to get it right 100% of the time.  I feel I got the 1 in 10000 that fail during normal use.  Man, I am torn up over this.  I love my bass and have experienced pride in owning a Maruszczyk.  Sad times!

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No, a truss rod is not a consumable thing that is supposed to die. But I do know what it is like dealing with him. Don't stand for anything less than a replacement.

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Hey - you're not alone! The truss rod on my Maruszczyk 6 string snapped about 6 weeks ago. Bass is a few months shy of 4 years old. I bought direct from Maruszczyk but I didn't get in touch to see if they could do anything simply because it was a 3 and half year old bass and I did it - not much room to argue with that. 

The luthier I've taken it to was surprised there was only one truss rod for a 6 string, and that it didn't have carbon stiffening rods. I spec'd the bass, so again that would be my fault, not theirs. He was also of the opinion that most steel used in truss rods is fairly poor these days. IMHO I do think there shouldn't be an option NOT to have strengthening rods when you order a 5 or 6 string bass from them, or any builder.

So given the tension on the neck, and the lack of strengthening, and my thinking "I've done all my own set ups for 20 something years so I'll be grand" - led to me continually tightening and not thinking I was doing any harm. In fairness, I reckon I turned it a fair bit more than you've done though.

On a side note - here's a similar one: the tightening screw on the end pin of my double bass was stuck once. I kept working at it until I finally felt it give and thought 'yes, loosened it'. And then snapped right off. I'm not a strong guy by any stretch, some metal just isn't as strong as I think it is!

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1 hour ago, Gareth Hughes said:

Hey - you're not alone! The truss rod on my Maruszczyk 6 string snapped about 6 weeks ago. Bass is a few months shy of 4 years old. I bought direct from Maruszczyk but I didn't get in touch to see if they could do anything simply because it was a 3 and half year old bass and I did it - not much room to argue with that. 

The luthier I've taken it to was surprised there was only one truss rod for a 6 string, and that it didn't have carbon stiffening rods. I spec'd the bass, so again that would be my fault, not theirs. He was also of the opinion that most steel used in truss rods is fairly poor these days. IMHO I do think there shouldn't be an option NOT to have strengthening rods when you order a 5 or 6 string bass from them, or any builder.

So given the tension on the neck, and the lack of strengthening, and my thinking "I've done all my own set ups for 20 something years so I'll be grand" - led to me continually tightening and not thinking I was doing any harm. In fairness, I reckon I turned it a fair bit more than you've done though.

On a side note - here's a similar one: the tightening screw on the end pin of my double bass was stuck once. I kept working at it until I finally felt it give and thought 'yes, loosened it'. And then snapped right off. I'm not a strong guy by any stretch, some metal just isn't as strong as I think it is!

Thank you for caring enough to respond.  The retailer I bought it from is stepping up to Maruszczyk and trying to work something out with Adrian.  I think they should just take the bass back and offer me a store credit.  This truss rod should NOT have broken the way it did.  Absolutely not!

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16 hours ago, Gareth Hughes said:

...IMHO I do think there shouldn't be an option NOT to have strengthening rods when you order a 5 or 6 string bass from them, or any builder.

I think if the neck profile is very thick (front to back) and made with a suitable wood, or it's made with tough enough wood multi-laminate left thick It should be extremely stiff, even with 6 very high tension strings. The problem is those necks will only suit a minority of players, who feel those beefy necks are way too much.

Many of the modern slim neck profiles make steel or carbon fibre re-enforcement rods required if you want a stable neck IMHO. Even if you have a multi-laminate neck made from the stiffest woods (ebony, wenge, paduk, purpleheart etc.) A super thin neck front to back is just too close to a veneer to be acceptably stable at bass scale lengths, at least with natural woods alone. To be fair maybe not in a conventional tuning, but shouldn't you want your 4 string neck to be so strong it can be converted to an 8, even if it's headless or fretless where that's very unlikely? I think skinny necks need to be overbuilt for stiffness if they want to avoid issues. It's more for the manufacturer than the player IMO, where a pattern of returns and repairs will damage the companies reputation.

I think every maker ought to do some R&D and come up with a minimum neck thickness they'll make without reinforcement for each neck construction, or install them in everything, or just go full on composite lol. I don't think any manufacturer will be viable making only very thick profile necks, the market probably won't support that.

 

EDIT: How Warmoth do re-enforcement makes sense to me.

Warmoth_JBass_Neck_Reinforcement_Options.png

Edited by PlungerModerno
Pic for clarity added
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Great points. I’m kicking myself that the €50 cost for the rods I didn’t pick is now a repair cost many times that. The upside is that I’ll know for again. The option of thicker neck/no rods and thinner neck/with rods would be very helpful for potential buyers who aren’t well versed in construction limitations/practicalities.

Edited by Gareth Hughes

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6 hours ago, LeftyJ said:

Here's an interesting read: https://unicornbass.se/site/m-total-neck-recovery/ 

This luthier describes the neck as very poorly and crudely made, with a very old-tech compression truss rod with so much excess glue in the thread that it just gets stuck when turning. 

Outch... I believe Maruszczyk should make something really quickly to avoid sales drop before this tread gets all over the place. I would contact them again sharing this, saying that you know you're not the only case... And let's see what happens. 

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9 minutes ago, Gareth Hughes said:

Great points. I’m kicking myself that the €50 cost for the rods I didn’t pick is now a repair costs many times that.

Thing is, you shouldn't have to. You shouldn't have to specify you wanted something that would stop your truss rod from breaking. If it isn't good enough on its own it shouldn't be an option.

My ibanezes have titanium rods and double action truss rod in them on all the premiums and prestige (which is all I have now). I didn't specify them, that is what ibanez decided was necessary. And they were cheaper.

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24 minutes ago, Gareth Hughes said:

Great points. I’m kicking myself that the €50 cost for the rods I didn’t pick is now a repair costs many times that. The upside is that I’ll know for again. The option of thicker neck/no rods and thinner neck/with rods would be very helpful for potential buyers who aren’t well versed in construction limitations/practicalities.

Do we know for certain that the truss rod would still be intact if you had got the stiffening rods?

I think any manufacturer, no matter how good the QC will produce lemons or defective parts or goods/services. Even the best truss rods have a failure rate in normal usage, wood being wood it's not possible to achieve perfect consistency.

I can see the difficulty a maker faces, since there's no way a manufacturer can prevent a person from tightening a truss rod to breaking point (not saying that's what happened in this case), they can just use very tough truss rods and make very stiff necks that need minimal interaction with the truss rod within the warrantee period to keep the failure rate as low as possible.

23 minutes ago, A.G.E.N.T.E. said:

Outch... I believe Maruszczyk should make something really quickly to avoid sales drop before this tread gets all over the place. I would contact them again sharing this, saying that you know you're not the only case... And let's see what happens. 

I hope they will support and stand behind their work. I doubt they need to offer a free replacement neck or repair, in UK or EU consumer law, but should consider this opportunity to offer a reduced cost repair or better yet, only have the owner pay shipping!

I would like to see every manufacturer go down the road of insisting on overbuilding necks for stiffness and strength, only allowing normal/thin necks without reinforcement as aftermarket sales (bolt on only) or as second necks in addition to a super stiff stock neck. Those necks should be sold as decorations and explicitly excluded from any warrantee to free the maker from the consequences.

EDIT: Obviously a manufacturer can just decide to keep making necks traditionally, and just hope for the best, replacing more of them for free than if they had gone with a stiffer design, or charge the customer at the cost of reputation and reduced sales.

Edited by PlungerModerno

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It’s impossible to know, and given my bass was 3.5 years old at the time, that’s why I didn’t pursue anything with the maker. The OP sounds like a different story altogether. 
 

The Warmoth picture you posted should be a standard manufacturing approach I think - the options being reinforced and very reinforced. 😀

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14 minutes ago, Gareth Hughes said:

I completely agree. I think it’s an oversight on their, or any builders, behalf.

I think the cheaper end of the market where margins are super tight it's probably cheaper to just give a free replacement instrument or neck for the one in a few thousand that fails than to spend extra in making them reinforced. I would say it's building to a price rather than an oversight.

For custom instruments I can't see the logic in not adding the re-enforcement. Even if the customer explicitly asks for it to be left out... will they X-ray the neck? Saw it up during the warrentee period? I can see why an individual luthier or company builder might be tempted to lie and just put them in anyway to build a stiffer neck they'll hopefully never have to work on again.

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True. Along the same lines, in both Maruszczyk basses I have I spec’d plain maple for the neck wood and received beautifully figured wood, one with quite a bit of flame and some bird’s eyes. Who knows why I got these upgrades? Maybe the wood wasn’t extensively figured enough to be classed as flamed or whatever.

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6 minutes ago, PaulThePlug said:

Arn't stiffining rods gonna fight against the truss rod input to the neck relief?

That's an interesting question... I may be wrong but I always understood it that a stiffer neck would reduce the amount of turns and hence the pressure on the steel of the truss rod. It would reduce the amount of deflection due to the strings and thus mean less work for the truss rod. But if that work is straightening a much stiffer neck is it the same or perhaps more work in a smaller range of motion i.e. fewer turns with more force needed in each turn?

What about dual action truss rods? It's an interesting question. Maybe my theory about always adding stiffening rods to thin necks might create additional problems. Ibanez have been mentioned by @Woodinblack and I would take their descisions seriously given their vast experience with thinner necks and their reputation, especially the higher end stuff. 

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1 hour ago, Woodinblack said:

Thing is, you shouldn't have to. You shouldn't have to specify you wanted something that would stop your truss rod from breaking. If it isn't good enough on its own it shouldn't be an option.

My ibanezes have titanium rods and double action truss rod in them on all the premiums and prestige (which is all I have now). I didn't specify them, that is what ibanez decided was necessary. And they were cheaper.

While I don't think the maker can predict the outcome of every neck perfectly, they can stack the deck heavily in favour of strength. I think Ibanez making reinforcement universal on the higher end models is a smart move, having it as an option may be more profitable, but I can see it creating issues, especially if you don't go for the removable style of truss rod (like Warwick used to use).

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I bought parts to my luthier, because the shop happened to be few hundred meters from my place. The truss rod was dry like a desert. I put some thicker grease to the threads and it changed its behaviour totally. When the bass was ready, the setup couldn't have been easier.

A dry thread can be extremely sticky, even some thin oil can help the situation.

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1 hour ago, PlungerModerno said:

Do we know for certain that the truss rod would still be intact if you had got the stiffening rods?

The stiffening rods wouldn't have had much of an impact on the truss rod at all, but if they were stiffening the neck correctly, the chance of having to adjust the truss rod would have been reduced.

 

1 hour ago, PlungerModerno said:

I hope they will support and stand behind their work. I doubt they need to offer a free replacement neck or repair, in UK or EU consumer law, but should consider this opportunity to offer a reduced cost repair or better yet, only have the owner pay shipping!

After 18 months I would assume they would. It would not be reasonable for a truss rod to fail in that time. However, there is the issue that it is hard to prove user error, without looking at it.

Certainly following the link that was supplied, that truss rod failed due to manufacturing defect, but hard to prove without having already taken it apart.

 

46 minutes ago, PlungerModerno said:

What about dual action truss rods? It's an interesting question. Maybe my theory about always adding stiffening rods to thin necks might create additional problems. Ibanez have been mentioned by @Woodinblack and I would take their descisions seriously given their vast experience with thinner necks and their reputation, especially the higher end stuff. 

Note that they also have titanitum truss rods as well, rather than what appears to be steel for the mzk ones.

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43 minutes ago, itu said:

I bought parts to my luthier, because the shop happened to be few hundred meters from my place. The truss rod was dry like a desert. I put some thicker grease to the threads and it changed its behaviour totally. When the bass was ready, the setup couldn't have been easier.

A dry thread can be extremely sticky, even some thin oil can help the situation.

Good to know you should have a smoothly operating truss rod for the foreseeable future. I wonder if you can grease a two way truss rod nut once it's installed? I know the single action ones just come off like any other nut.

40 minutes ago, Woodinblack said:

The stiffening rods wouldn't have had much of an impact on the truss rod at all, but if they were stiffening the neck correctly, the chance of having to adjust the truss rod would have been reduced.

 

After 18 months I would assume they would. It would not be reasonable for a truss rod to fail in that time. However, there is the issue that it is hard to prove user error, without looking at it.

Certainly following the link that was supplied, that truss rod failed due to manufacturing defect, but hard to prove without having already taken it apart.

 

Note that they also have titanitum truss rods as well, rather than what appears to be steel for the mzk ones.

I'd say you're probably right.

I hope your right about Maurszczyk, that they'll make it right. That link does lead to a very damning impression of the work done on that one neck at least. I'm not confident that is representative of their work, given you would expect QC oversights to show up for major repairs much more often than the average example from the manufacturers.

If the truss rods are thick enough and made carefully, and installed in a carefully engineered neck, a good steel ought to be more than strong enough. Even titanium alloy or the best steel for the job will occasionally be the victim of a manufacturing error, which will in rare occasions be missed by even the best QC. I think the brutal stress tests you'd need on each neck to guarantee the neck up to a certain tension would cause more issues than they'd solve.

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7 minutes ago, PlungerModerno said:

Even titanium alloy or the best steel for the job will occasionally be the victim of a manufacturing error, which will in rare occasions be missed by even the best QC.

Like United Airlines 232

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