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Thread: Chinese Gibson clone neck..... makes you wonder?

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    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    Chinese Gibson clone neck..... makes you wonder?

    img_6474.jpg
    So I took a chance and ordered a Gibson SG clone neck from China off of EBay using PayPal for $52 free shipping. It took 2 weeks to get to me. The damn thing looks really good. One piece mahogany, rosewood fretboard, medium jumbo frets. VERY well made. Seems to drop right into the neck pocket of this Epiphone body I had laying around. To bad the finish on the body is poly. Anyway... there are several luthiers (whom I will not name) in my area who are claiming to be building custom made USA guitars costing well above $1k. I know at least one of them is assembling from Chinese bodies and necks. When I get this one finished with a new Gibson waterslide on black headstock it would fool any noob. I may even stamp something goofy on the back for a serial number. img_6475.jpg

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    Serial # suggestion: 5318008
    Stamp it upside down to make it a little easier for the noobs...

    Justin
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justin Thomas View Post
    Serial # suggestion: 5318008
    Stamp it upside down to make it a little easier for the noobs...

    Justin
    Your not still playing with calculators are you?

    nosaj
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    A friend bought one of those suspecting they were made by the Epiphone factory in China. His says "Gibson Made in USA" on it and all that. he took it to a shop to get new pickups put in and the guy there said, this is funny because this Gibson knockoff guitar has a nut that looks just like an Epiphone.

    he got the whole guitar for $200 shipped. Plays pretty good.

    So maybe after hours the Epiphone factory pumps out the "Gibsons" for online sale.

    I can take a few pics if you want

    That thick poly was gross

    edit: it had some funny note that came with it. I can't remember what it said. Something like "Gibson USA guitar but not professional use guitar" or something

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    ToneOholic! big_teee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by olddawg View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_6474.JPG 
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    So I took a chance and ordered a Gibson SG clone neck from China off of EBay using PayPal for $52 free shipping. It took 2 weeks to get to me. The damn thing looks really good. One piece mahogany, rosewood fretboard, medium jumbo frets. VERY well made. Seems to drop right into the neck pocket of this Epiphone body I had laying around. To bad the finish on the body is poly. Anyway... there are several luthiers (whom I will not name) in my area who are claiming to be building custom made USA guitars costing well above $1k. I know at least one of them is assembling from Chinese bodies and necks. When I get this one finished with a new Gibson waterslide on black headstock it would fool any noob. I may even stamp something goofy on the back for a serial number. Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_6475.JPG 
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    Neck to body fit, nut, bridge, and pickups, would be my main sustain concerns.
    Not poly finish!
    BTW, Nice looking counterfeit neck.
    T
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    I asked my buddy he said he got an email message after purchasing the axe something like "Gibson made in USA replica but for professional use consider buying original."

    $220 shipped. Replace the crappy electronics, tuners and pickups and it's a nice axe

    img_1928.jpg
    img_1925.jpg
    img_1926.jpg

    I don't know why it's flipping my images

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    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    IMO $220 shipped from China still involves a bit of a gamble, especially considering that your return options would be expensive if something went wrong. For another $60 I was able to buy a new G&L Tribute ASAT (Indonesia) at GC for $280. That turned out to be quite a steal. It's fit, finish and electronics are excellent. It's a great guitar for the money and if it weren't I had the option to drive it to my local brick-and-mortar store for a refund. IMO there's a lot to be said for local returns.

    We like to reminisce with nostalgia on the Golden Era for tubes, but we're lucky enough now to be living in the Golden Era for guitar manufacturing. Today it's possible to get a very well-made guitar for peanuts. I'm not kidding when I say that the Indonesian G&L that I bought was cheaper, it had better electronics and it's finish quality was better than any of the Mexi Fenders I've looked at. The frets weren't highly polished, so it took a couple of days to play-in, but it plays as well as my Artist Series American Fender guitars after a little truss rod and bridge adjustment.

    Lots of good options out there.
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    Chinese bodies and necks may be pretty low risk, but a whole guitar with another manufacturers name on it? Doesn't customs confiscate those from time to time?

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    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    It will either work or it won't. I'm sure it will play and intonate correctly. If I like it I have other pickups. If I don't. I'll sell it cheap, give it away, or hang it on a wall, lol. Not much of an investment except a little hobby time. I have a friend who would paisley it over the white. I just have to get it playable first. I need to order some tuners. Probably will get some Grover clones. I had a set of Grovers in the broken headstock I got with the body. But I put those on a kid's reissue Gibson SG who's Klusons stripped out and had a gig that night.

  10. #10
    Supporting Member Steve A.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob p View Post
    IMO $220 shipped from China still involves a bit of a gamble, especially considering that your return options would be expensive if something went wrong.* For another $60 I was able to buy a new G&L Tribute ASAT (Indonesia) at GC for $280.* That turned out to be quite a steal.* It's fit, finish and electronics are excellent.* It's a great guitar for the money and if it weren't I had the option to drive it to my local brick-and-mortar store for a refund. IMO there's a lot to be said for local returns.
    Although we often demonize the Evil Empire for putting so many of the local music stores out of business their 45 day return policy makes me a regular customer. (That and their 24- and 36-month same as cash financing!)

    Their shipping charges on used equipment used to be ridiculously low maybe 8 years ago ó I had amps shipped across the country for under $15! ó but that ended after Bain Capital sold the company as I recall. For awhile their shipping charges got too high for me to consider anything larger than an FX pedal but they eventually came back down to a reasonable amount within the past year or so.

    I mention all of that because it is usually up to the store manager whether to refund the shipping charge to the customer for used items from other stores. I don't expect it to be refunded unless the item is defective or definitely not as described (I usually call the store and have a salesman evaluate the item before pulling the trigger on the purchase.)

    We like to reminisce with nostalgia on the Golden Era for tubes, but we're lucky enough now to be living in the Golden Era for guitar manufacturing.* Today it's possible to get a very well-made guitar for peanuts.* I'm not kidding when I say that the Indonesian G&L that I bought was cheaper, it had better electronics and it's finish quality was better than any of the Mexi Fenders I've looked at.* The frets weren't highly polished, so it took a couple of days to play-in, but it plays as well as my Artist Series American Fender guitars after a little truss rod and bridge adjustment.

    Lots of good options out there.
    Agreed! For the past 15 years or so starting with the PRS SE line for me*** I have been seeing Asian guitars play like a dream right out of the box.

    As for the G&L Tribute line my experience wasn't as good as yours but I don't hold it against them. I started learning how to do professional setups on my guitars 3 years ago, like checking for high frets and adjusting them accordingly.

    Well, I had bought the model with two P-90's from MF on one of their Daily Deals and there were quite a few high frets. Not usually a problem but after tapping them down until they were all perfect the next day some of the same or different frets might be high. After going through that for seven days my conclusion was that the fret slots were just too wide for the tang of the frets used, something I have hardly ever run into before or since.*****

    When I was learning guitar in the 60's ó and for many years after that! óthe US made guitars I bought and tried in the store usually played like crap. You might get lucky and find one that actually played well but there was something I eventually figured out: to meet a desired price point Gibson and Fender do not spend much time or money setting up guitars on their assembly lines. Their reasoning was that a professional guitarist would pay his guitar tech to set it up to his own preferences and that a kid like me wouldn't know any better.

    Over the past ~20 years I think that has changed a lot perhaps as CNC technology has made manufacturing more precise and right out of the box guitars are playing much better than they did back in good old days. It is still a good idea to have a professional level setup done (something most of us should be able to learn) but it is no longer practically mandatory.

    Steve A.

    *** FWIW I was reading how until PRS came along most guitars from the big Asian factories were ordered cafeteria style "we'll take 500 of your strat clones in white with our name on the headstock and 500 of your LP's in sunburst" leaving all of the production details up to the mfg.

    For the SE line PRS gave the factory in Korea very specific instructions and may have even been involved in the CNC programming. In any case it seemed as though each year's batch was better than the previous one. My guess was that they evaluated samples from each batch and had the programming adjusted accordingly.

    ***** In retrospect I should have either gotten an MRA to exchange the guitar for another one for free, or followed the advice at StewMac.com for gluing the frets in with superglue:

    Super glue your frets for better tone! | stewmac.com

    But I was gung ho about learning luthiery back in 2014 so it became my 3rd victim in leveling and recrowning frets. It did not turn out very well at all so it was added to my ever-growing stack of guitars to be refretted. ) Live and learn, but no hard feelings toward G&L. (I've been jones-ing for their 2 HB carved-top tele. GC or MF had the P90 model on sale earlier this year but after reading reviews decided I'd rather have the HB model.)

  11. #11
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    I'm with you, Steve. Learning to do your own lutherie can make all the difference in the world when it comes to getting a great guitar on the cheap. Today I think it's more the rule than the exception, that an import guitar will need some attention in order to be a great player. That's one of the reasons that the high end guitars cost so much -- they pay more attention to the setup and you have to pay for that.

    My G&L Tribute ASAT Classic (tele -style) guitar was purchased as a GC deal of the day. It arrived with a broken pickup selector switch, which GC replaced for me. They tried to get me to return the guitar for a replacement, but the fretwork on my specimen was so good that I wouldn't let it out of my hands, as that would subject me to the risk that I might get a lesser gutiar in exchange. So I opted to just get a Fender switch as a replacement part and do the replacement myself.

    As good as my ASAT turned out to be, I have run into some problems with Cort-factory G&L guitars:

    FIT & FINISH. Flawless. Nothing to complain about.

    NUTS. Nuts are a common problem on the cheaper imports. My ASAT came with a soft plastic nut that I won't be keeping. It's just not durable -- the strings literally cut through it to lower the string height. I'm going to replace it with one of the pre-cut TUSQ products for Strats and do whatever fine-tuning is needed. Realistically speaking, I think this is something that should be done for all of the G&L imports. Their nuts just aren't very good.

    NECK ADJUSTMENT. I own two G&L Indonesia guitars. Both arrived with a flat neck, high action, and frets that weren't adequately polished. Playing-in for a day took care of the polishing problem, but the flat neck, high action and nut left me with buzzing on the first few frets. Adding a little neck relief cured the buzzing problem and I was able to get a decent action that most people would consider low. Truss rod adjustment is going to be mandatory on one of these -- they always seem to be over-tightened so that the guitar can be shipped with a straight neck and a high action.

    FRETWORK. I ran across all of the frets with a fret rocker and I didn't find any that were troublesome. Maybe I got lucky.

    BRIDGE LOCATION. My tele was nearly perfect out of the box. No adjustments needed. After being so happy with the tele, I bought a strat and it wasn't quite as good. The bridge was located too far off to the treble side, such that the high E is too close to the edge of the fretboard and the low E is too far away. I've removed the bridge and pulled the LP-type bushings for the tremolo studs out of the guitar. I'm going to plug the two holes for the bridge bushings and drill two new holes to relocate the bridge 2mm toward the bass side. that should take care of the alignment problem. Granted, this might be a deal breaker for some people, but for me it's not a big deal to move a bridge. I've had to do it on more Mexican Fenders than I'd like to admit.

    In the old days when you were shopping for a guitar you had to play several at the music store to find one that was decent, because as you said, the big guitar makers didn't spend a lot of money on setups. They expected the customer to take care of that. They're willing to do that today on the higher priced instruments, but you have to pay for that.

    I think that the bottom line is that if you want a guitar that's not going to need any work out of the box, that guitar is going to be expensive. The other side of the coin is that any cheap guitar is going to require some work. There's a sweet spot to be found in an inexpensive guitar that will only require a minimal amount of attention. In my case I got lucky with the G&L Tele in that it only needed a nut change. The Strat will take a little more work, but IMO it's still worth every penny of the $300 that I paid for it.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

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    Quote Originally Posted by bob p View Post
    I bought a strat and it wasn't quite as good. The bridge was located too far off to the treble side, such that the high E is too close to the edge of the fretboard and the low E is too far away. I've removed the bridge and pulled the LP-type bushings for the tremolo studs out of the guitar. I'm going to plug the two holes for the bridge bushings and drill two new holes to relocate the bridge 2mm toward the bass side. that should take care of the alignment problem.
    That sounds a bit drastic. Couldn't you just slacken off the neck screws and tap the head over towards the bass side to centre the strings on the fretboard?

  13. #13
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    That sounds a bit drastic.
    Hi Dave.

    you cut out part of my comment that I thought was material:

    "Granted, this might be a deal breaker for some people, but for me it's not a big deal to move a bridge."
    Indeed, that may be drastic to some people but it's not drastic to me. It all depends on your comfort level. I build guitars out of lumber. I have a complete wood shop and I know how to use it. So why do I bother with Asian guitars? Primarily because I like to have a "beater" that I don't have to worry about, and it's cheaper from a time and effort perspective for me to buy a finished Asian guitar and address it's defects than it is for me to build one from scratch. Plugging a hole in a solid body and drilling a new one is like making a free-throw to me.

    I bought my "strat" for $300 on a clearance sale. I couldn't exchange it for another because the model had sold out. My only other option would have been to ship back the $300 guitar to return it and pay $450 for another guitar that wasn't on closeout. Then I'd be taking a crapshoot on what I'd get in exchange. To me plugging and drilling is less work than filing a warranty claim. YMMV.


    Couldn't you just slacken off the neck screws and tap the head over towards the bass side to centre the strings on the fretboard?
    Good question. That suggestion comes up every time I've discussed bridge relocation. It seems that most people would rather wrangle the neck than address a bridge location problem by relocating the bridge -- especially when the bridge relocation requires dealing with large holes like those for LP-style bushings. I guess there are a lot of people who prefer the neck tweaking sort of fix because it sounds so quick and easy that anyone can do it without "molesting" the guitar with woodworking.

    Neck tweaking might have been an easy way to try to fix the problem, but it would not have been the right fix for this particular instrument. Examination of the guitar showed that there is nothing wrong with the position of the tenon and mortise, that the fit was sufficiently tight that forced repositioning was not an option, and the neck was already in proper alignment on the axis of the instrument with the pickups. The real problem was that the mounting holes for the bridge studs were mislocated. The problem didn't lie anywhere else.

    Correcting a problem like this needs to take into account the position of the bridge, the position of the pickups and the alignment of the neck. Simply tweaking the neck wasn't an option because there wasn't any play in it's mounting. The position of the neck in the body was already tight and no amount of force was going to put the neck in the "right" position. To move the neck to a "proper" position would require relieving some of the wood in the mortise and then plugging the 4 holes in the neck and drilling 4 new ones. Aargh.

    I like a tight fitting neck. I don't really like a neck that fits so sloppily that it's possible to wrangle it far enough to cure a bridge placement problem. A properly fit neck is not at all mobile. IME a neck that is sufficiently mobile to allow changes in alignment is inherently unstable -- it's not guaranteed to stay put and it's likely to move back to it's original position especially if it gets jolted. If I had a neck that fit that badly, I'd be plugging 4 holes in the neck, and maybe 4 more in the body, then drilling new ones to that it wouldn't have a sloppy fit. That's even more work than plugging 2 holes in the body. (In reality, I'd probably go "drastic" by dispensing with the wood screws by plugging the neck holes and putting threaded inserts in their place, to anchor the neck with machine screws.)

    When the bridge has been mislocated by improper location of the mounting bushings, IMO the proper fix involves moving the holes to their proper location. IMO anything less amounts to a kludge fix. In this case the neck fit is already nice and tight and prohibits relocating it, so moving the bridge is the obvious choice. The other option -- returning the guitar -- is probably the best option for most people.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

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    Quote Originally Posted by bob p View Post
    A properly fit neck is not at all mobile.
    Agree.
    Because it's not a bolt on.
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    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve A. View Post
    Well, I had bought the model with two P-90's from MF on one of their Daily Deals and there were quite a few high frets.
    Was it this one? It came up on a Stupid Deal at MF last month about 10 days after I bought my Olympic White Asat Classic (tele). I like P90 so I gave it some serious thought, but I was already waiting for the Legacy (strat) to go Stupid and there's a limit to how many new guitars I want to add to the herd all at once. As it turned out the Legacy came up about 10 days later, so I'm glad I waited. Now I've got both the strat and tele versions of the G&L Tributes and I'm hoping that will quench my gear fever, at least for a while...

    On the subject of the 2 pickup humbucker version: is this the one you're thinking about? I have also been looking for a decent 2-humbucker beater, so I've been keeping my eye on last year's Epi LP Tradional Pro I that MF/GC are trying to unload now that they have the Traditional Pro II. They seem like a good deal when they're the Stupid Deal at $329 (most recently monday and today), but I just can't bring myself to love those skinny Epi "Slim-Taper" necks. I do like the G&L Tribute necks, so maybe that 2-humbucker ASAT Deluxe would be a good option for me. If only the scale were shorter...
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob p View Post
    you cut out part of my comment that I thought was material:

    Indeed, that may be drastic to some people but it's not drastic to me. It all depends on your comfort level. I build guitars out of lumber. I have a complete wood shop and I know how to use it.
    Sorry for over editing your post. I don't have a workshop. It would be too drastic for me to attempt to move a bridge working on the kitchen table. The old three bolt Strat I had came with the strings hanging off one side of the fretboard. It had enough slop in the neck pocket to easily allow the neck to be pushed over to line it up. In fact it had too much slop everywhere. Fender should have been ashamed. My favourite 'cheap' guitar is the Yamaha Pacifica. There's no problem with the fit and finish on those.

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    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    img_1750.jpgimg_1753.jpgimg_1751.jpg

    I'm going to have to plane about a 1/4" or so off the back of the neck tenon I believe. It already fits together fine in the pocket.... just the fretboard is setting a bit to high. Also worried about routing it for the neck pickup. I don't know where and how the truss is anchored. Will clamp and set it up with monofilament fishing line before I glue it. Deciding if I will shave the heal too.
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    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Fishing line -- great idea. I've been using colored thread.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

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    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    What glue do you recommend? I'm over hide glue...

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    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Hide glue. Any glue made of polyvinyl acetate will creep and shift under tension. Bad for a guitar neck. With hide glue you can get it apart again when you need to reset it. Can't do that with PVA or epoxy.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=pva+glue+creep
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    Senior Member Sowhat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob p View Post
    With hide glue you can get it apart again when you need to reset it. Can't do that with PVA or epoxy.
    If you get the PVA or Epoxy up to around 150 degrees F or so it will let loose, just need to get it a little hotter. But I agree, PVA or Epoxy is not the glue to use for neck setting. Hide glue being nice and stinky is great and so is just plain old Titebond.

    I remember Ben Crowe of Crimson Guitars was a big advocate of PVA for years until one day he pulled a fingerboard right off a neck with a little tug, he was quite embarrassed and was gratious enough to show his blunder in a Youtube video. Since then he has stopped using PVA and is back to using more traditional adhesives.
    Last edited by Sowhat; 08-21-2017 at 06:35 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob p View Post
    Any glue made of polyvinyl acetate will creep and shift under tension.
    I learned that lesson the hard way. I built an electric guitar in my twenties out of necessity - I didn't have the money to buy one. It was built around the neck from a cracked (cheap) archtop acoustic guitar that a classmate gave me. I carved the end of the neck into a dovetail, and glued - with white PVA glue - into a piece of teak that formed the centre of my guitar body.

    That joint continued to creep slowly for the next twenty-odd years, particularly in warm weather. I could move it back with slow pressure (weights, etc), but it would just start to creep out of place again as soon as I took the corrective pressure off.

    -Gnobuddy

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    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Dawg -- if you don't want to deal with hide glue, then the Fender bolt-on method is an option.
    "Stand back, I'm holding a calculator." - chinrest

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    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    So I’m finally getting back to my projects after some heath issues. My biggest problem now is having to remove a 1/4” off the bottom of the neck tenon where it faces the bottom of the neck pocket. It has to be accurate and level. I did have a buddy with a power planer but he’s evaporated. What’s the best way to do it by hand? A big sanding block and a lot of patience?

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    Quote Originally Posted by olddawg View Post
    Whatís the best way to do it by hand? A big sanding block and a lot of patience?
    Oh geez, that sounds like one of the twelve labours of Hercules. I can't even begin to summon the patience needed to sandpaper away a quarter of an inch of hardwood.

    Is it possible to saw a number of closely spaced parallel cuts, say 3/16" deep, into the bottom of the tenon, chisel off the wood, and then just sand down the remaining 1/16" till it's flat and level? I've used this technique a few times, but never on a guitar neck.

    Even better, any chance of getting access to an end-mill? It will then be a matter of finding a way to clamp the neck, bottom-up, with the underside of the tenon level, and milling off that 1/4" in several small passes.

    -Gnobuddy

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    Quote Originally Posted by olddawg View Post
    So Iím finally getting back to my projects after some heath issues. My biggest problem now is having to remove a 1/4Ē off the bottom of the neck tenon where it faces the bottom of the neck pocket. It has to be accurate and level. I did have a buddy with a power planer but heís evaporated. Whatís the best way to do it by hand? A big sanding block and a lot of patience?
    Seems like a power planer would be a wild ride. How about putting the neck in a vise or workmate and using a belt sander? Watch both sides as you go.

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    Supporting Member Chuck H's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob p View Post
    I bought a strat and it wasn't quite as good. The bridge was located too far off to the treble side, such that the high E is too close to the edge of the fretboard and the low E is too far away. I've removed the bridge and pulled the LP-type bushings for the tremolo studs out of the guitar. I'm going to plug the two holes for the bridge bushings and drill two new holes to relocate the bridge 2mm toward the bass side. that should take care of the alignment problem.
    Sometimes you can shift the neck in the pocket. Even if you need to do some shaving or plugging and drilling this is something to consider because the work would be invisible under the neck heel and screw plate. Because of the length of the neck a very small shift here can make a huge difference in string alignment at the heel. If your strings line up with the pickup poles this would be my first approach.
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  28. #28
    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    Well. I have a mounted circular sander, an oscillating sander, and a block plane. I may have to find someone with a table saw (as mentioned earlier) and make a hundred passes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by olddawg View Post
    I may have to find someone with a table saw (as mentioned earlier) and make a hundred passes.
    If he/she has a dado blade ( CMT 6" Precision Dado Blade 230.020.06 - Mike's Tools ), you'll only need ten passes!

    Also, this might be useful (though I'm not sure I would be brave enough to try it on a guitar tenon): Cut Big-Time Joints with a Small-Time Saw

    -Gnobuddy

  30. #30
    Supporting Member John_H's Avatar
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    The mahogany isn't very hard. If I had to do it without any power tools, I'd scribe an accurate line around the perimeter, and sand it down.

  31. #31
    Better Tone thru Mathematics bob p's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by olddawg View Post
    I did have a buddy with a power planer but he’s evaporated. What’s the best way to do it by hand? A big sanding block and a lot of patience?
    Is your rotary sander handheld or table mounted? A table mounted rotary + belt sander might be a great too for this sort of job, though 1/4" is a lot of wood to remove by just sanding alone.

    Personally, I'd use a jointer.

    Woodworking Jointers

    if I had to do this in my woodshop I wouldn't use a power planer. I'd use a jointer. it's like a planer, but its a freestanding table designed for squaring large pieces of wood on end, to provide clean edges for preparing joints. it has a horizontal rotary blade, like a planer, but on a fixed table. you lower the rotary blade along with either the input or the output plane of the table to adjust the cut depth. most of the time a jointer used to square off the edges of boards for edge joining, though it's what I'd use to shave the back of a neck tenon. it allows very small amounts of wood to be removed with precision.

    i guess the other option you had thought of would be to try to pass a handheld power planer across a clamped neck, or to clamp the planer upside down and try to pass the neck across it. i don't like the instability of trying to move a torquing power tool over a stationary object. i prefer to move a small object like a guitar neck across a stationary tool, and use a power planer on a larger object like a door that needs a little bit shaved off of an edge.

    another method might be to route out the mortise in the body, if there's enough wood for that.

    depending on how much you need to remove: if you only needed to remove a small amount of wood and you didn't have access to precision tools, perhaps you could do it with a belt sander or a rotary sander. again, a table mounted sander is better than one that's hand held.

    if you needed to remove more wood than a sander could handle, then find someone who is skilled with a tablesaw or a bandsaw. people who are skilled with those tools would have no problem building a jig to hold your guitar neck to a fence, and to pass the heel end of the neck across the blade to shave off material, leaving only finish standing for the final step. with a precision fence/jig it would be no problem to take of 3/16" to 1/4".

    Me? I used to use a table saw to do these sorts of things before I had the jointer. But I understand that precision table saw work is not for everyone, and a jointer is a tool that not many people would have access to.

    John, do you think there's a better way?
    Last edited by bob p; 10-17-2017 at 02:03 AM.
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  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by John_H View Post
    The mahogany isn't very hard. If I had to do it without any power tools, I'd scribe an accurate line around the perimeter, and sand it down.
    I'm with John H. Don't forget to adjust the saddle about half way up and put a straight edge down the neck and make sure you're neck angle will be where you want it.
    I got an SG at a yard sale with the neck popped out of it's pocket. Took the opportunity to do a fret dress with the neck off (rare w/ an SG), and glued it back in and it's a keeper. Gibson had left a lot of slop in the fit so I used epoxy for it's gap filling ability with yellow glue at the edges to glue the wood to wood. You've got a decent fit on yours, so no need for gap fill. Titebond used to make a premixed hide glue in a bottle. I've used that in the past for neck glue backs with success.

  33. #33
    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    I finally ended up using a wood working vise, a ridge back miter saw, a block plane, and a sanding block. I made a cut from each side using the miter saw angled a few degrees so it would be high in the middle. Then I leveled the middle with a block plane. Now Iím using a sanding block and a square to get it perfect. Since itís mahogany it wasnít THAT difficult. I wouldnít be sure recommending doing it that way for maple. I kept telling myself people made legendary instruments with hand tools. I can trim a little mahogany. Lol. Will be assembling it soon. Hope it isnít a wall hanger. We will see.
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  34. #34
    Supporting Member John_H's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob p View Post
    John, do you think there's a better way?
    I make that cut with a router. The setup is simple. I clamp boards to both sides, parallel to the fingerboard surface, and leave enough room on the bottom to use a top bearing guide bit on the router. With this setup, you can make very precise depth cuts while staying perfectly square, and parallel.

    Quote Originally Posted by olddawg View Post
    I finally ended up using a wood working vise, a ridge back miter saw, a block plane, and a sanding block. I made a cut from each side using the miter saw angled a few degrees so it would be high in the middle. Then I leveled the middle with a block plane. Now I’m using a sanding block and a square to get it perfect. Since it’s mahogany it wasn’t THAT difficult. I wouldn’t be sure recommending doing it that way for maple. I kept telling myself people made legendary instruments with hand tools. I can trim a little mahogany. Lol. Will be assembling it soon. Hope it isn’t a wall hanger. We will see.
    Bravo! I'm sure it'll be fine. I'm happy to see you doing battle with the wood.

    I've never had a SG, but a few months ago I picked up an old Epi Standard. I'll have to rehab it soon.
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  35. #35
    Old Timer olddawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John_H View Post
    I make that cut with a router. The setup is simple. I clamp boards to both sides, parallel to the fingerboard surface, and leave enough room on the bottom to use a top bearing guide bit on the router. With this setup, you can make very precise depth cuts while staying perfectly square, and parallel.

    Bravo! I'm sure it'll be fine. I'm happy to see you doing battle with the wood.

    I've never had a SG, but a few months ago I picked up an old Epi Standard. I'll have to rehab it soon.
    Damn! That never entered my mind. I have a router! I may set that jig up just to clean it up and make it perfectly flat!
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