Fix Your Guitar
Going nuts: learn how to make your own and what goes into it with our DIY guide
Nuts are not as simple as they appear: each one should be made bespoke for the guitar. A bad or worn-out nut can give you an array of symptoms: poor tuning, action and intonation. Sometimes, it’s been bad since the day it was made!
Bone is a traditional material that machines well and has the great advantage of being porous, meaning tuning lubricant is absorbed permanently. It’s also the right amount of tough and it won’t wear out prematurely from tuning and doing tremolo dive bombs.
You’ll need some specialist files for this job – there’s no way around it – but most of the other tools are commonplace. We regularly use the Stewart Macdonald double-edged gauged nut files. Remember, having the right tools isn’t everything: they still require skilful use.
We’ve not yet found a pre-made nut that’s ready to fit with no adjustment. Spend time making yours and you’ll see the benefits of this small, inconspicuous part!