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Home : Tools : Special tools for Nuts and saddles : Nut Slotting Gauge

Nut Slotting Gauge

Read 69 Reviews   |   Write a Review

A revolution in guitar setup! Precisely measures string heights, so you can cut accurate nut slots for consistent playability.

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Nut Slotting Gauge

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  Item# Description In stock Price Quantity
2003 For guitar and most instruments Yes

2006 For bass Yes

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Related items

Neck Relief Gauge and Nut Slotting Gauge Set

String Lifter

Double-edge Nut Files

String Action Gauge

String Spacing Rule

Neck Relief Gauge and Nut Slotting Gauge Set
String Lifter
Double-edge Nut Files
String Action Gauge
String Spacing Rule

This device that will revolutionize the way you set up a guitar.
The Nut Slotting Gauge quickly and precisely measures string heights over the first fret. When filing nut slot depths, you see your results more accurately than ever before. No more guesswork or "eyeballing" the string heights, and no more searching for elusive combinations of feeler gauges. You can custom-tailor the playability with consistent, repeatable results.

At last! A precision tool for establishing string heights!

The Nut Slotting Gauge was designed by Don MacRostie here in our R & D shop. It features an easy to read dial indicator with adjustable zero point, and it's super accurate to .001". The machined brass base fits over the strings to rest on the fingerboard, and it works with most acoustic and electric guitars, mandolins and banjos. A larger brass base is machined to fit bass string spacings. Both have gently arched bottoms to follow most any fretboard radius. Instructions are included.

The Nut Slotting Gauge is included in this money-saving set:
Nut Slotting Gauge and Neck Relief Gauge Set

Putting the new Nut Slotting Gauge to work on a "burn victim" guitar
A new nut on a "burn victim" guitar
Putting the new Nut Slotting Gauge to work on a "burn victim" guitar Read more

In this issue:
Dan Erlewine shows a before and after of a 1958 Gibson that’s (barely) survived a house fire. It needs a new nut, and he’s using the Nut Slotting Gauge to get it right the first time.

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 Ratings and reviews
Nut Slotting Gauge
Nut Slotting Gauge
4.5 out of 5 stars
Based on 69 ratings Write a Review
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Displaying 21 – 30 < 1  2  3  4  ...  7 >
5 10-04-2012
nut slot gauge

this gauge is easier to read then a steel ruler, i also use it to measure sting action @ the 12 fret before i restring a customers guitar.

juanleggcraig  philadelphia Read my reviews (5)
5 9-14-2012
A great facilitator

This tool makes the process of nut slotting a lot easier. A-must-have-tool for exact accuracy!

Kroeber  Japan Read my reviews (6)
5 9-06-2012
Perfect for accurate setups

This is the single most-used tool in my shop. I use this tool on virtually every guitar that comes in for repair or setup. It's perfect for setting string height at the nut, so you get good, consistently low action, with fewer intonation issues due to string deflection resulting from too-shallow nut slots. I also use it for setting action at the 12th fret, and it works great.

I use the nut slotting gauge to take measurements at the beginning of a setup, and then again after the setup is complete. This allows me to show quantifiable improvement - for my own edification, as well as to provide documentation for the customer.

I tried a similar tool from a different vendor, and gave my StewMac gauge to my brother, thinking I wouldn't need it any more. After a couple of days with the other brand, I quickly ordered a new replacement from StewMac. My brother wouldn't give back my old StewMac gauge!

If you work on guitars for a living, or even as a hobby, you'll save time and get better results with this tool. It works much better than feeler gauges, and is so much quicker!

ReZone Guitar Works  Pasadena, CA
5 8-20-2012
No more guessing

For about a year I would look at the Nut Slotting Gauge in the catalog and think it would be cool to get one, but it was just too pricey. Finally, one day I said the heck with it and pulled the trigger and bought one. Now I'm kicking myself for not getting one sooner.

I've fussed with using feeler gauges, and would finally get to where I wanted, but always played it a bit cautious (we all know what it's like to over-file a slot and have to fill it, yada). And it just gets tougher using feeler gauges as the fretboard radius becomes more severe.

So when I used the gauge for the first time, it was like all the hassle went out of the process, cause there was no guesswork - just dead on accuracy.

But the really cool thing I found was that dialing in on accurate nut slot depth goes a long way towards good intonation. When I'd put the tuner on the rig after I was done, I definitely noticed that nut slots filed to real tight specs (I use Erlewine's specs of .015 to .009) pretty much eliminated "note sharpening" that occurs when the nut slot is too high, and the notes goes sharp as you press down on the first fret. The gauge is also handy for checking string height at the 12th fret as well. Plus, the dial indicator is removable - you can use it in custom made rigs.

If your waffling on whether to buy the gauge or not, just do it - you'll be glad you did.

Hagbone  Montrose PA Read my reviews (3)
4 8-15-2012
Great But Poor Insructions

This product is a great tool - a must have. A five star tool...

The only thing is that the micrometer used is meant to measure depth - not deflection. So, when the instructions tell you to read the dial, the number actually shown is the opposite of the number you need i.e. the deflection. The needle moves backwards versus the dial face. A simple correction to the instructions that tells you to count the amount the needle moves backwards across the dial wold correct the problem.

axeshredder  mckinney, texas
5 8-14-2012
A must have if your making nuts.

After messing up 2 nuts using feelers, I sepnt the extra $ and glad I did. Now my new nut is spot on perfect and was so much faster to make. Easy to use and worth every cent. I also use it to measure my relief and fret heights. The only bad thing is when I mesured the nuts on all my guitars I found ever factory nut was sloppy and needs to be replaced.

abilbay  Ft Worth, TX Read my reviews (12)
5 8-12-2012

Hands down, the best tool in my shop. Period.

Dave Harper  Georgia
4 8-04-2012
Great when they work properly....

I got this more as a treat, usually I find feeler gauges acceptable for this job, albeit on the two outer strings, the inner strings can be a wee bit of a faff at times. Regrettably, the one I got didn't work properly, the vertical measuring column was stiff and wouldn't ride up or down smoothly. So I called Stu-Mac, and they were great about it, very apologetic, and said they'd dispatch a replacement straight away, so no grumbles there. Meanwhile, wondering if perhaps a little puff of PTFE lubricant might help matters I took the back off, and immediately saw what the problem was. The vertical measuring column has a tiny screw in it that acts as a travel stop. This had not been properly seated and was protruding out so far as to cause it to catch on the inside face of the back cover-plate. A couple of gentle turns with a pair of forceps and it now worked fine. I thought I'd share that, just in-case any of you other Gents (and Ladies too) might encounter the same problem. Over time I guess it's conceivable that the screw might just work loose. Now it works....great, very useful; and it doesn't need a lot of fiddling about to get it to measure action height really accurately, and neck relief as well.

Quentin Howarth  Cumbria, England. Read my reviews (5)
1 7-22-2012
Product packaging: non-existing!!!

I recently bought tools worth of ca 500 US dollars from you guys at StewM including this nut action gauge. To my disappointment my 60$ nut action gauge did not come in any kind box but in an envelope in which it was banging around!! Hoping to use this gauge a bit longer than a few months I was expecting it to come in a decent box for safekeeping while not in use. My cigar cutter I bought for 6€ has that guys. Of course I could make myself one and line it with styrofoam for the same purpose, but honestly guys, for a 60-dollar asking price you could spend a few cents a piece wholesale for some plastic boxes and put these in before shipping them off in an envelope to customers across the globe. If you mean business claiming you guys are out to provide a good service, send me and everyone else here who didn’t get one now please before the things gets damaged!

CriticalGabe  Croatia
5 7-17-2012
Yes it's worth it.

Set ups and nut work are no struggle now for my older eyes. Feeler gauges cannot match the speed and accuracy of the nut slotting gauge. I'm all in now and do not regret it.

hbgb  New Braunfels,Texas Read my reviews (6)
Displaying 21 – 30 < 1  2  3  4  ...  7 > /\ Top of Reviews

Shown on page 18 of our latest catalog.
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