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5, 7, piece necks. . . MTDs don't have them!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by DaveCustomMade, Dec 7, 2006.


  1. I don't believe I have ever seen an MTD that had anything other than a one piece neck. Now, I know that MTD basses are amongst the top instruments that you all love. So my question is, is the 5, 7, (or whatever) piece necks all that necessary when MTDs get great sound without that characteristic? If it DOES add to the sound quality, sustain, or whatever of a bass, why doesn't MTD go with necks such as that?

    Also, does it make much sense to have a 5 piece neck that doesn't go all the way to the top of the head? My Warmoth neck's 5 piece assembly stops before the head. . . . :meh:
     
  2. jasonbraatz

    jasonbraatz

    Oct 18, 2000
    Oakland, CA
    Moduluses and Zons get great tone out of graphite necks, why don't ALL basses have graphite necks?

    Sadowskies (?) and Laklands all sound good with bolt on necks, why don't all basses have bolt on necks?

    Jazz basses sound great with single coil pickups. Why do people use humbuckers?

    See. :)
     
  3. I've owned many basses with both multi-lam necks and single piece necks. I've never experienced a multi-lam neck that was any stiffer or 'better' than a good old chunk of maple or wenge (in MTD's case).

    I do think there is something to the fact that multi-lam necks have the POTENTIAL for more even tone and fewer dead spots, but I've never experienced that... I haven't really noticed that a 3 piece neck was any more stable of even than a well made single piece neck.

    IMO, anything more than a three piece neck is pure aesthetics.

    Edit: Regarding your multi-lam neck stopping before the headstock, that's not unusual. I believe that a glued on headstock is actually stronger than a headstock that is a direct extension of the neck wood.
     
  4. I hope I haven't opened a can of worms with this thread! :bag:
     
  5. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    The more I check out instruments, the more I think that cosmetics are often more at theheart of construction differences than any real acoustic or engineering advantage. The bottom line is that well made instruments sound and play well. Poorly made instruments do not. The type of construction is truly secondary.
     
  6. I dont' think so... it's a valid discussion. As was pointed out in an earlier thread, multi-lam is a different construction process, just like quarter sawn one piece necks, flat sawn, three piece necks, set necks, neck through, bolt on, etc.

    All of these construction methods, as Dr. Cheese points out, when done well with high quality materials, will tend to sound very nice and be stable, etc.

    IMO
     
  7. greenboy

    greenboy

    Dec 18, 2000
    remote mountain cabin Montana
    greenboy designs: fEARful, bassic, dually, crazy88 etc
    More than one luthier I've talked to has suggested that beyond two or three pieces he wonders if one isn't just soaking up / displacing some nice vibrations with those extra glue joints.
     
  8. neptoon

    neptoon Supporting Member

    Jul 25, 2000
    Cape Canaveral, FL


    regarding your edit, and as most of us know already, fred at bee basses does exactly that and believes that joining headstocks at the neck with a scarf joint does something for the sound of an instrument, and he even mixes the headstock woods for different tones...
     
  9. silky smoove

    silky smoove

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    Because then all of us carbon fiber addicts wouldn't be able to snicker at people with wood-necked basses :p

    ...and vice versa of course...
     
  10. Rodent

    Rodent A Killer Pickup Line™ Commercial User

    Dec 20, 2004
    Upper Left Corner (Seattle)
    Player-Builder-Founder: Honey Badger Pickups & Regenerate Guitar Works
    whatever method is used (multi-piece ... flatsawn ... quartersawn ... angled headstock ... etc ...) it's important that the wood is properly chosen for the application. Wood should have grain orientation, mechanical properties, and moisture content that meets the requirements of the application it's used for. Proper selection for the application coupled with solid construction methods = quality neck.

    Beyond this, making the 'right construction method' choice all depends on the luthier's vision, preferences, and client requests.

    I prefer bolt-on necks with a flat Fender-ish headstock. Other luthiers prefer an angled headstock, and other prefer none ... we're all making the right choice if we have first done our homework.


    and for those who say that 3+ piece loses too much to glue ... go play a Kubicki X-Factor sometime. Now there's a LOAD of laminates! Hmmm ... thinking of this Kubicki - maybe glue actually sounds better than wood! :eek:

    all the best,

    R
     
  11. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY
    HI

    I really think its relative to the luthier. You could give me the coolest stuff and design and Id make it crappy. You could give a great luthier a simple design and a one or two piece neck and he'd make you an instrument for life. Thats all there is to it. If you prefer hippie sandwich type basses with multi lams and the such, you should play them. Many are wonderful and others plain sound and play mediocre. Get yourself and nice player with kickin' tone and leave the rest to your hands and ears

    Rob
     
  12. greenboy

    greenboy

    Dec 18, 2000
    remote mountain cabin Montana
    greenboy designs: fEARful, bassic, dually, crazy88 etc
    Actually at least two of these luthiers thinks some glues mixed evenly with wood product filler can be pretty nice. But joining on mutliple flats between woods, they prefer not so much.

    For myself, I've kinda liked the sound of Danelectros ; }
     
  13. EricTheEZ1

    EricTheEZ1

    Nov 23, 2004
    Clawson, MI
    I'm surprised that no one has mentioned this yet: Michael Tobias of MTD (of course) is considered one of the best luthiers in the world. His knowledge of tone woods and build quality is also way up there. Tobias was known for it's 3,5,7, and 9 piece necks and he stopped doing it. I think we all know why.

    It's because a 9-piece laminate neck will sound so similar to a regular slab of maple that the only reason to spend the extra grand is for yourself. It's the placebo of the bass world, IMHO.

    -Eric.
     
  14. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY
    HI

    Yea. His basses used to be neck through and two octave, also. Now, 21 frets and bolt on. HMMM?? Maybe someone knows something

    Rob
     
  15. ras1983

    ras1983

    Dec 28, 2004
    Sydney, Australia
    you have that the wrong way around - EBMM's sound great with humbuckers. why do people use single coils/p's?:p :D
     
  16. Rodent

    Rodent A Killer Pickup Line™ Commercial User

    Dec 20, 2004
    Upper Left Corner (Seattle)
    Player-Builder-Founder: Honey Badger Pickups & Regenerate Guitar Works
    hmmmm ... could it have nothing to do with construction method superiority one way or the other, and more instead to do with the business transaction deal of having sold his Tobias company, and certain kinds of non-compete clauses that were part of the deal?

    naw, it's more appealing to believe that the changes all have to do with somthing more sinister like a neck construction method

    all the best,

    R
     
  17. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY
    HI

    and building philosophies.

    Rob
     
  18. yeah its the brainchild of a guy called leo fender, skill and genius hehe

    oh yeah he also made these too hehe
     
  19. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY
    HI

    Thats my point. A good bass is a good bass. Having multi lamed necks, 6 strings, mid controls, etc doesnt make one better than another. Its either kickin' or its not

    Rob
     
  20. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    This makes the most sense to me.
     

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