Big necks and tone?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by sfletch, Apr 30, 2008.

  1. sfletch

    sfletch Member

    Nov 14, 2007
    Seattle, WA
    Is there any tonal value to a thick-necked guitar? I just picked up a Guild F30, which has a really thick (but with a narrow mut width) sounds pretty good. I had a 50s reissue strat with a big v sounded great. Is that coincidence?

    I know lots of guys like big necks for feel (I'm not attached either way) - but are there any solid tonal arguments for a big neck? More mass? More stability?

    Thanks for any info. or theories.
  2. stuagu

    stuagu Member

    Dec 14, 2007
    i think there is. the 58 & 68 reissues les pauls i have HUGE necks & there is , as ive said before on another thread, more meat on them bones. my thinnest necked les paul is the weediest sounding... & its not the pickups or anything else.
  3. buddastrat

    buddastrat Member

    Mar 20, 2005
    The R0 RI Les Paul can have just as huge a sound as the other RI LP's. I tried several fat necks against a few normal strat necks and there was the biggest sounding was a thinner one. The absolute weakest, tinniest was an Allparts FAT neck. Crap, but that wouldn't keep me from trying another someday. It's wood and it's unpredictable.

    It comes down to the particular piece of wood. Every piece of wood chooses to allow/stifle certain frequencies. So if you have more of that wood, it will allow/stifle more of those certain frequencies. Judge each guitar on it's own, everytime you think you got a formula, it flies up in yer mug.
  4. shuie

    shuie Member

    Aug 11, 2006
    ...down Highway 61
    There are no hard and fast rules or formulas for this stuff. It makes sense to me that the bigger neck would give a bigger sound, but the best acoustically sounding solid body guitar I've ever heard in my life was a friends double cut '60 Les Paul Special with the thinnest neck I've ever played on any guitar. I dont know how they routed it for a trussrod without tearing through the blank. Even with the thin neck, this guitar squirmed and responded like nothing Ive ever played. I don't know how you calculate something like this when picking out wood to glue together, but it was like the body of this guitar was almost tuned to the resonant frequency of the strings. It felt like a big oscillating spring when I played it. Amazing guitar, acoustically. Paper thin neck.
  5. ?&!

    ?&! Member

    Mar 22, 2008
    Portland, OR
    I played a friend's '62 SG Jr. once, and it had a neck like a Louisville Slugger. The neck felt like it weighed twice as much as the body, and it would nose-dive to the floor if you took your hand off the fretboard. Best sounding guitar I've ever played, PERIOD!!!
  6. jaydawg76

    jaydawg76 Supporting Member

    Dec 19, 2006
    York, ME
    There seems to be some truth to the idea that a fat neck and a light body is part of getting the best tone out of classic fender style guitars. Try an Allparts TMO-FAT on a pine body and you'll see what I mean.

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