Texas Guitar Company's How to Replace a Guitar Bone Nut

by Kyle Williams on April 01, 2023

Replacing a guitar bone nut is a common task for many guitarists. The nut, located at the top of the guitar's neck, is responsible for spacing the strings and keeping them at the proper height. Over time, the nut may become worn or damaged, leading to tuning issues and poor playability. In this blog post, we will walk through the steps involved in replacing a guitar bone nut.

Step 1: Gather the necessary tools

Before starting the replacement process, it is important to gather all of the necessary tools. Here is a list of tools you will need:

  • New bone nut
  • Nut slotting files
  • Nut slotting gauges
  • Sandpaper
  • Razor blade or X-acto knife
  • Super glue
  • Small hammer
  • Nut driver or pliers
  • Masking tape
  • Ruler or straight edge

Step 2: Remove the old nut

The first step in replacing a guitar bone nut is to remove the old one. To do this, take a razor blade or X-acto knife and carefully score the edges of the nut to break any glue bond. Then, use a small hammer to gently tap the nut out of its slot. Be careful not to damage the surrounding wood or frets while removing the nut.

Step 3: Clean the nut slot

Once the old nut has been removed, use a nut driver or pliers to remove any remaining glue or debris from the nut slot. Use a razor blade or sandpaper to remove any excess glue or debris, and ensure that the slot is clean and smooth.

Step 4: Prepare the new nut

Before installing the new bone nut, it is important to prepare it to fit the guitar's neck. Use nut slotting files to carefully adjust the width and depth of the slots to match the guitar's string spacing and height. Use nut slotting gauges to ensure that the slots are cut to the proper depth.

Step 5: Install the new nut

Once the new nut has been properly prepared, it is time to install it. Apply a small amount of super glue to the bottom of the nut and carefully place it into the nut slot. Use masking tape to hold the nut in place while the glue dries.

Step 6: Final adjustments

After the glue has dried, use a razor blade or sandpaper to carefully shape the nut to match the contour of the guitar's neck. Use a ruler or straight edge to ensure that the strings are properly spaced and at the correct height. Make any necessary adjustments to the nut slots using nut slotting files.

Replacing a guitar bone nut can be a daunting task, but with the right tools and techniques, it can be done with ease. By following the steps outlined in this blog post, you can ensure that your guitar's nut is properly spaced and at the correct height, resulting in better playability and improved sound quality.