another Warmoth question: Graphite neck rods? (thanks BEADGC)

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by sheepdog, Oct 1, 2005.

  1. sheepdog


    Feb 20, 2003
    Birmingham, AL
    inspired by another thread...

    Has Warmoth or will Warmoth ever consider the option of using graphite rods in the neck instead of the metal bars?

    Yes, I know I could PM bwbass and find out, but I am usually not the only person with this question. Last time I tried this type of thing with Warmoth, we found out they now allow MOP blocks on a maple fretboard. See if I can be 2 for 2.

  2. beadgc


    Oct 10, 2003
    Brooklyn, NY

    you're right, this deserves it's own thread.

    Warmoth addresses the questions on their website, in explaining why they moved away from the vintage fender aproach:

    "To remedy these problems, we began with the double-expanding truss rod. This design proved excellent at eliminating virtually all the previous problems with notable exception of the dead spots. We continued to experiment with stiffening the bass necks. First we tried graphite which we found to be expensive and not a cure-all. Then we tried hardened T-6 aluminum which was much less expensive but still did not yield the desired result. Finally we tried steel bars. Well, they worked! Steel provided the even responsiveness with virtually no dead notes. Two steel stiffening bars, plus our double-expanding truss rod, together make for our exclusive "Triple Reinforced" Super Bass system that creates an extremely sturdy and reliable neck."

    My $0.02 is that the steel isn't optimal either, because of the weight.

    I currently have a sadowsy five and a spector six that have graphite bars. These two guys are widely acknowledged to be two of the top bass gurus, and I assume that they've settled on graphite as the best answer.

    So for Warmoth -- why not at least make it an option? I speak as a former and potential future customer.
  3. ebladeboi123


    Jul 11, 2005
    Oberlin, Oh
    Honestly, the steel is not heavy at all. I have a double truss rod in my bass. (warmoth). And there isn't any neck dive, the bass feels and plays great. I'm also useing a very light body (Swamp ash with quilt top). The extra few pounds won't kill you. That's just my opinion. As long as there isn't a great amount of neck dive, low action, good woods, good pups, i'm a happy man. And with the warmoth neck/body construction i used, i did just that.
  4. danomite64


    Nov 16, 2004
    Tampa, Florida
    My Warmoth neck is perfect to me. I don't think it weighs more than a regular Fender neck at all, but I'm sure it's an ounce or two heavier. OTOH, I had a Fender MIA P-bass that had graphite rods in it's neck, and the neck was a complete dog.
  5. beadgc


    Oct 10, 2003
    Brooklyn, NY
    I don't want to give the impression I'm knocking Warmoth. Over the years, first as g***t*r*st and for the last five years as an obsessive bassist, I've bought at least $2k worth of stuff from them, includuing two bass bodies on one bass neck. I think they make wonderful stuff, and I also credit them with being one of the real innovators in the guitar&bass-parts business.

    Plus, I don't think there's anything necessarily bad about the steel-rod necks. They work as advertised, play great, and obviously, lots of people like them. I like everything else about them.

    My questions are more general, like:

    1. If steel rods were obviously superior to graphite, why do many if not most of the top boutique bass makers use graphite?

    2. If graphite can work as well or perhaps even better than steel with significantly less weight, why not offer it as an option?

    On the thread where this first came up
    thedoctor wrote a post which, if I'm reading it right, suggests warmoth's steel rods add up to 10.3 ounces more weight than graphite. I figure that's something like 10% of the weight of a light (<8 lb.) bass, less the heavier you go.

    So it's not a vast difference, but in my case, if and when I put together another bass, iit would be enough for me to look for alternatives.
  6. phxlbrmpf


    Dec 27, 2002
    I'm confused. I always thought graphite rods were supposed to improve stability, but according to that quote from Warmoth, their main purpose seems to be to get rid of dead spots. Or maybe both?
  7. bwbass


    May 6, 2002
    Oops, I answered in the other thread before I saw this one.

    In a nutshell, graphite is great but steel is cheaper, sounds great, and has proved reliable in thousands of our necks.
  8. sheepdog


    Feb 20, 2003
    Birmingham, AL

    ditto on my other response

  9. Johnny Fila

    Johnny Fila Formerly "The Crusader"

    Nov 21, 2004
    Elmont, NY (near NYC)
    It's been my personal experience that Warmoth necks are usually 8+ ounces heavier than a competitor such as USACG, and the necks do have a bulkier feel to them. However, they (Warmoth necks) are extremely well made and you can get them with a nut cut right into them, which not every company will do for you, even though it's a pretty simple thing. The warmoth angled necks are a plus too, one that i haven't seen other companies do.
    But if weight matters to you, like it does to me, you may wish to consider alternatives; like the previous poster said.
  10. BassJunkie730


    Feb 3, 2005
    +1 on USA Custom Guitars' necks

    My current build is a Warmoth PJ body and a USACG neck. check out my gallery for pic of just how tight those two parts fit together.

    I will only buy necks from USACG. It's a matter of preference. Sure their neck are a bit more expensive- but IMO it's worth it.

  11. I had heard that warmoth was looking to add this as a feature(a bwbass post in 2003). Is this still on the menu?