View Full Version : Neck hits top of Strat pickguard....
04-18-2011, 05:46 AM
I just ordered a tort-shell pickguard for my strat. I put it on, and as I was putting the neck back on (I had taken it off because I didn't want to waste my strings), I noticed that the top of the pickguard (where the neck joint cut is on a normal pickguard) overhangs the beginning of the body.
Do I need to dremel down the top? Or is it just OK how it is? Is there a fix? I know theres not much to work with... :huh
04-18-2011, 07:01 AM
I've had this problem several times; the only option is to trim the pickguard. If the pickguard extends into the open area of the neck pocket, it can keep the neck from seating in the pocket correctly. A dremel should work fine for trimming.
04-18-2011, 08:00 AM
It might be safer to use hand tools (sharp knife and chisel). Or a router with a flush trimming bit.
04-18-2011, 08:20 AM
21-fret neck? Or 22 with the overhang shelf?
You definitely need to trim the pickguard but that 22-fret overhang will hide a LOT of mistakes :cool:
+1 on the handtools. Plastic is soft so go slow.
04-18-2011, 08:23 AM
Yeah, I usually just use my pocketknife, especially if it's just a tiny amount.
04-18-2011, 10:20 AM
The best tool I've found for fine scraping things like binding and pickguards is a new single edge razor blade. If you really want to, you can rub it against a piece of steel and turn a burr, like a regular scraper, but I find that to be completely unnecessary. You must be careful to scrape and not move the blade sideways or you will make an ugly slice. Also, be careful to do the edges just as much as you do the middle. The natural tendency is to scrape the middle more than the ends, and you end up with an amateurish looking curve.
As always, a little practice on an old piece of junk goes a long way :) Maybe try a few swipes on a control cavity cover first to get the feel.
04-18-2011, 12:22 PM
Pickguard material melts pretty easily, so a 20,000 RPM Dremel may just leave you a melted edge with a glop of thick plastic. A thin, fresh Xacto type blade trims PG's real nice, or a razor blade or scraper held upright, like the post above says. I mark a reference line with a sharpie on the back so I know how far I have cut.
04-18-2011, 05:52 PM
A high speed cutting bit on a dremel will remove material so fast that a couple of passes should do it without melting anything, but there is always the chance of slipping and doing some damage.
I've tried razor knives of various types, and it's easy to slip and cut the material. Although I've never tried one on a pickguard, a diamond needle file is probably the safest option; a set can be purchased at Harbor Freight for less than 10 bucks.
04-18-2011, 06:12 PM
Well I took you guys' advice on the Exacto, but with the assistance of a lighter :D
Worked very well. Uou just have to be careful that you don't burn the sh*t out of the neck pickup. Looks just fine, and I have noticed a huge improvement in upper fret buzz :)
04-18-2011, 11:52 PM
Fwiw, when using a dremel (or any power tool) with plastic, set it at the slowest speed if possible - like already stated, that stuff goes quick...
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