Reducing the string height on a 70’s Guild D35 acoustic
Love the guitar but string height too high? This is a pretty common problem with acoustic guitars, particularly older ones.
This Guild acoustic is actually my own guitar and I have had it since new. It is a great guitar and I have always loved the rich middle and bottom presence that it has.
But like many acoustic guitars it has developed quite a high action. Many years ago I reduced the saddle height in an effort to improve the action. But despite that, it still had a string height of a little over 3mm (measured on the bottom E string at the 12th fret). As a consequence it was quite a struggle to play. Particularly when making chords above the 5th fret
So I decided that it was time to do to my guitar what I do to customers guitar and make it proper playable again.
But it was going to need some serious surgery on the guitar to achieve a reasonable string height. In effect, I needed to change the neck to body angle.
In this video I explain how I approached this task. I also decided that it was time to give this guitar a re-fret and replace the old Fishman under-saddle pickup.
The guitar is now so much easier to play and is much more tuneful. By replacing the saddle and raising the overall height of the saddle I have also improved the top-end sparkle of this guitar.
Overall, the work has massively improved the tone and play-ability of this old Guild acoustic. It’s definitely a keeper!
So does your acoustic guitar also need attention to make it more playable or have the string height reduced? It may not need the major overall that I have given this guitar. So why not contact me. I can assess your guitar and give you some advise as to what can be done to make the guitar easier to play.
I have posted another article on reducing the string height on a Martin guitar. You might want to look at that article as well.