mid-60's 335 nut widths and neck profiles

STRINGSNAPPER

Member
Messages
12
Say fellow pickers...

After finding precious little regarding this subject on the net, and apologies if it has already been covered here; can you guys who have owned them give me a bit of description about the relative nut widths and neck characteristics/profiles (skinny, flat, medium, round, fat, chunky etc) of mid 60's 335s, specifically '65,'66,'67 and '68? Can't afford anything earlier anyway, and I am pretty familiar with earlier dot sizes and the '63, '64 blocks. Most seem to have 1 9/16" or 1 5/8" nuts and I heard '68s make up for the thin nuts with fatter backs, but I played a '67 the other day that was quite tolerable. Also a blurb about their weights would be informative. Thanks in advance for your help. Bill
 

gtrfinder

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,694
Hey buddy. You might get a little more interest in your question if you post it over at the Les Paul Forum. There are some really knowledgeable dudes over there. One in particular litcrit is even a member of TGP.

Have you ever played any of the thinner nut width Gibsons? I don't find them as bad as some people make them out to be, even with a thinner back shape. If you've played any necks based off of old Fender guitars and can deal with them I don't think you'd have a problem. The thinner nut width would probably drive the price down too.
 

Jahn

Listens to Johnny Marr, plays like John Denver
Silver Supporting Member
Messages
29,179
Yep, my '69 ES-345 has the narrowest nut width out of my guitars, but it's very comfortable due to the vintage radius and full "C" neck carve back there. But yeah, try a barre chord and sometimes I slip that high E string right offa the board!
 

jackaroo

Member
Messages
5,142
Never bothered me...

I like them all- the real gibson carves- skinny 60, full and deep 50's no prob. I just can't dig the R7s and some R8s. Those necks are pretenders to the throne. Cartoonish representations of the real thing. Sorry in advance to those who love 'em.
 

Drew816

Chupacabra Psychiatrist and Meme Thief
Silver Supporting Member
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5,610
I have two '67s, one 335 and the other a 330 and the necks are identical; just over 1 9/16th nut width and a big mid to full C profile. Because of the nut width I can tolerate the bigger profile. I just checked my records and I don't have the actual measurements on either, but the setup is very 'tolerable' as mentioned above, it just seems to work. Hand me a modern 335 w/ 1 11/16th nut width and this same neck profile and my left arm is killing me within minutes but the more narrow nut really works for me. But I prefer 1 5/8th nut widths on my guitars, crazy I know but there you have it...
 

mad dog

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
10,998
My '66 ES-335 has that just over 1 9/16 width, a rather well-shaped medium C shape to the neck. It's as good a player as I've ever come across. When I got it years ago, I never even noticed the neck thing, how this one compared to earlier '60s models I was trying at the same time. It's a non-issue for me.

This guitar is on the light side for 335s. Lighter than most of the newer ones I've tried. Every time I pick it up, have to laugh at this "conventional wisdom" about mid-late 60s neck sizes. Let your own hands and ears decide.
 

STRINGSNAPPER

Member
Messages
12
Thanks guys,

Let me simplify: Basically I realize the nut widths are gonna be 1 9/16" or 1 5/8"
and I probably won't find a '65 for the money; so briefly:

Yeah your answer kinda helps, I know they are thinner and narrower, but there seems to be a fairly standard difference between the neck backs of a '66, '67 and '68...I read one guy who was selling a '68 on EBAY say his had the 1 9/16 nut but the fatter back that '68s are KNOWN FOR to make up for it. Since Larry Carlton and more recently Robben Ford both play '68s, I was wondering what the difference is between a '66, '67 and '68 neck profile would be??

Update: It appears there just seems to be no real standardization through those years ('66-'68). I remember going to look at a '67 I believe it was, and it had one of those "pencil" profiles and I thought although it played easily, it was cramped; especially if you wanted to do a lot of single line stuff involving any kind of bending. Then about 6 mos ago I went to a concert at Eselen and this cat had a sunburst '67 that (he let me play it) had a nice rounded profile on it that seemed almost modern specs; thinner, but good wood from board to back. Then I heard the blurb about '68s being known for being fatter and thought I was on to something. In the end and unfortunately, it seems I'll have to treat each guitar individually, which sucks if you are buying online., or take the seller's decription, which is often subjective; they'll say its "just right" or 'fits their hand perfect", its like asking them the weight, and getting the calibrated response, "its lighter than a Les Paul and heavier than a Strat", which means very little really. Pauls usually go from around 8.5 to 10lbs and strats are all over the place; I have a 9lb Strat and a chambered 7lb Les, which is even more confusing.
UPDATE; WELL AFTER HEARING ABOUT 4 MORE PEOPLE SAY IT IN POSTS AND EBAY IT APPEARS THAT STANDARDIZATION DID START TO OCCUR IN '68 AND THE NECK BACKS ARE FATTER.
 
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