Kiesel: "That's what makes our necks so good, that we don't use a PLEK machine"

Promit

Silver Supporting Member
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2,630
At 14:15 if the timestamp doesn't work:

Manual transcription for those who don't want to watch:
A PLEK machine's great, like, if you take a neck that was rushed and wasn't perfect. You can get the frets filed down and take an inexpensive neck and make it a lot better. So if you have an overseas line or something like that, a PLEK machine is a great thing. But if you start and build things and spend more time - more cost to the company, more cost to us - there's no need for a PLEK machine, because you're taking all this precious metal and you're removing it. Not just that, if you have frets at different heights, that means your fretboard is at different heights to your finger when you're playing. It's not okay, it's not good, you're going to get drag on there where you can feel that, and it's just not going to feel right, it's not going to play as good. I'm not trying to knock a PLEK machine, I think they have a purpose, but we want to build our necks and go through the extra process and we think this is the way to do it. We feel like it is the best way, you know, if we were having to make something for fix, six, seven hundred bucks and couldn't spend the time and manpower then we'd invest in a PLEK machine for sure. But a PLEK machine takes an imperfect neck and makes it better. It doesn't make it perfect, because a perfect neck wouldn't have the issues to begin with, but it does make them better and more playable.
Is he right? Is he wrong? I own two Kiesels, I own lots of other guitars, and I am decidedly unqualified to evaluate his statement.
 
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1,162
I don’t know. I think he’s got a point if, and only if, your finger board isn’t cut properly. But how often does that happen?

I find it hard to believe, considering how many manufacturers use a CNC machine to cut their fingerboards, that this is really an issue.
 

Moony

Member
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1,025
Yes he is right.

That's exactly, what I've said in the "Gibsons are PLEK'ed" thread before > Klick <


If you glue on the fretboard on the neck (like every manufacturer does except Gibson), then sand it to the desired radius (without leaving some bumps in the fretboard), then put in fret after fret in a nice way, chances are there that you need to remove only a tiny little bit of the frets when leveling them.
 

LikeLinus

Member
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944
At 14:15 if the timestamp doesn't work:

Manual transcription for those who don't want to watch:

Is he right? Is he wrong? I own two Kiesels, I own lots of other guitars, and I am decidedly unqualified to evaluate his statement.

Never owned a Kiesel so I couldn't tell you from personal experience. Seems like he's saying all fretboards/necks are bad if you use a PLEK machine. Saying they are rushed or imperfect. Implying that anyone who uses a PLEK machine has an inferior neck to his. Sounds like a bunch of marketing spew to me. Also, he's not even getting into the fact that humans are humans! They are imperfect and they are going to make mistakes and introduce imperfections.
 

cap10kirk

Member
Messages
9,663
I mostly agree with him...not entirely, but mostly. As far as PLEK vs no PLEK, the quality of the work is entirely dependent on the skill of the person using the tools. I've played guitars that have been on a PLEK machine that still needed work, I've played others that were perfect. And the same goes for guitars that had things done by hand with no PLEK.
 

diogoguitar

Member
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1,008
idk, I think he is shooting himself on the foot on this one. A skilled worker can do a job as good as a skilled Plek technician ... Also: I understand Kiesel can be as good as it gets, but I saw some sloppy fretwork from Kiesel guitars...
 

Moony

Member
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1,025
I guess what he wanted to say is that he doesn't need a PLEK machine to fix sloppy work that have been done before.

But - if a guitar is crafted in a nice way, the fretboard has no bumps, the frets are set in properly - a PLEK machine wouldn't hurt if it's properly set up to that individual guitar, which includes ia. a analysis and a re-adjustment of the truss rod and a re-analysis.

You can buy very fine guitars with a PLEK job like the S and T style guitars from Erik van de Haar.
Gibson on the other hand is a negative example.
 

makerdp

Member
Messages
697
A PLEK machine lets you churn out consistent high-quality work faster than doing it by hand... just like the CNC machines that make Kiesel's necks... so pretty hypocritcal IMO.

No one way is better than the other... I know because I've had refrets done by highly-skilled luthiers and guitars done by a PLEK machine. I can't tell you if one is better than the other because all of the guitars are great!
 

steve_man

Member
Messages
2,517
Meh, I’ve owned Carvins (same thing), and saying that they have neck work “down” is laughable, IMO. Not a fan of the company, and really not a fan of the guy running it now. There are guys here who love Kiesels, but I am not one of them. They can be just as sloppy as any other manufacturer.
 

andrekp

Member
Messages
7,096
The output of a plek machine is not, ideally, different from the output of a good luthier doing the same work by hand, so his point is, effectively, we do it by hand and charge you extra for it.

Thanks, but I’d rather have a machine go ahead and do it for cheaper.
 

jdel77

Member
Messages
10,852
I’ve played a few Kiesels.
Great guitars, and the necks are nice, but they don’t strike me as being any better or any worse than PRS, Suhr, good Custom Shop Gibson or Fender etc… etc…
 

gotguitar

Member
Messages
46
Typically statements that genreallize and tries to define something as either this or that are incorrect. I know I just did that with my statement but in my experience there is always a conditional portion to any statement.

Additional PLEK is a tool, It's only doing what a human is telling it to do.
 




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