COLUMN Shop of Hard Knocks preferences. For example, if a player uses heavy-gauge strings or has a heavy-handed playing style, I leave intonation a few cents flat on the lower three because they'll most likely pull the strings sharp with strong picking action. 7 These things don't need to be done with every change of strings but once every four or five changes can keep an axe performing at a high level and avoid time-consuming, potentially expensive repairs. A check-up once in a while never hurts! 8 VINTAGE GUITAR 70 February 2018 Will Kelly is a guitarist, repairman, and the author of How to Build Electric Guitars. He operates Hard Knocks Guitars in Cary, North Carolina, where he has played host to countless artists, instruments and amplifiers. You can contact him at WillKelly@nc.rr.com.