Installing a new neck in a guitar?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by James M, Aug 22, 2008.

  1. James M

    James M Supporting Member

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    Hi...this may be a dumb quesiton, but I'm curious as to how hard it is to properly install a new neck in an electric. It seems simple enough (just line up the holes and screw together) and I keep seeing guitar bodies on Ebay that just need a neck...so, is this something I could do myself or if there is something specific set-up/intonation wise (etc) that a luthier needs to do?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Structo

    Structo Member

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    Well I assume you are talking about Fender guitars.
    Yep pretty easy although sometimes you can run into inconsistencies that will cause problems.
    For example, a lot of the times the screw holes in the neck won't line up properly on the body. So you have to plug them with dowels and glue and re drill.

    Sometimes the neck pocket on the body will be deeper or shallower than the standard Fender dimension.
    So you may have to shim the neck, but heck Fender did that to a lot of guitars back in the day.
    Tuner holes can also be different from the vintage size to the modern 10-10.5mm size.

    Also the heel of the neck may not fit the neck pocket on the body real well.
    I just finished a strat using a Mighty Mite swamp ash body and installed an Allparts 21 fret neck.
    The radius on the heel of the neck did not match up to the radius in the pocket.
    After about 5 minutes with a drum sander on my dremel they matched perfectly.

    So it's kind of the luck of the draw, sometimes you don't have to do anything but install fours screws, tunersand a nut, but other times it can be a bit of a challenge to get everything right.

    The best way to ensure compatibility is to buy a body and neck from the same manufacturer.
     
  3. James M

    James M Supporting Member

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    Very helpful reply....thanks!
     
  4. Bob V

    Bob V Member

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    You're venturing into parts-caster territory. Do you know about the tdpri forum?
     
  5. James M

    James M Supporting Member

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    Hmmm....no, haven't heard of it, but just googled it. I'll check that out too!
     
  6. codyj84

    codyj84 Member

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    Great post Tom.

    Also, dont forget that in installing a new neck, there will likely be fretwork to be done (crowning, leveling, polishing), nut work, and intonation to set up. These are just things to keep in mind....and all good things to know how to do.
     

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