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Bolting a neck without threaded inserts...

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by asnutter, Apr 20, 2006.

  1. asnutter


    May 11, 2005
    Southwestern PA
    I have a replacement fender neck that I would like to install on a jbass body...

    is there anything wrong with using the four wood screws and a neck plate to mount the neck to the bass without using threaded inserts???

    The holes in the neck are not drilled yet, and the truss rod is accessible from the headstock, so removing the neck for adjustments would not be a problem...
  2. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Wood screws are, per definition, wrong. The function of these screws are to trash the material in a semicontrolled way to get the grip. The actual threads are normally so dull, that they actually press the fibres, which softens the wood.
    An insert is normally much sharper and will thus cut a very nice thread in the wood. It is also significantly larger in diameter - an insert for a 3mm screw is 6 or 7mm in outer diameter - and will thus have a better thread in the wood. And yes, you can use a tiny 3mm screw, which gives better stretch and thus better function in the screw. If you use wood scres, you must go up to 5 or 6mm, in order to have a big enough thread, and teh stretch of the screw will be insufficient.
    Finally, insert and machine screw is much nicer to work with.
  3. There is nothing wrong with using wood screws to attach a neck. Dozens of builders have used it for over 50 years! Unless you intend to remove the neck many times, there would be no problem at all.
  4. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
  5. nateo

    nateo Schubie Fan #1

    Mar 2, 2003
    Ottawa, Ontario
    You could use even stronger language than that. In fact, I might go out on a limb and say EVERY builder who used bolt on necks did it that way up until relatively recently. As far as I know the threaded inserts came into vogue with the botique builder craze.

  6. Sundogue


    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    Unless you are constantly swapping out necks, I wouldn't worry about it. In fact, even if you do swap out necks a lot, I wouldn't worry about it.

    If you think those four wood screws weaken the wood, or won't hold...Go ahead and try ripping the neck off the body after it's screwed down with wood screws. I dare ya!

    I'd go so far as to say that once screwed down, you'd break the neck before it ever came loose.

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