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Concerns About Repaired Break Below the Nut?

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by OldFenderPlayer, Jan 10, 2018.


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  1. I'm going to check out a 50 year old John Juzek bass that is for sale. The owner posted the picture below, which shows a repaired break in the neck below the nut, which he said occurred before he purchased the bass 6 years ago; he said there have been no issues with the repair.

    Is this a common break? Is it something this is often repaired successfully and long-lasting? Based on a quick search of the interweb, the asking price seems extremely reasonable, but this might be the reason.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Eric Hochberg

    Eric Hochberg

    Jul 7, 2004
    Chicago
    That repair may be solid as a rock, but there are plenty of basses for sale without neck breaks/repairs, especially in that location. Personally, I'd walk away, but you could ask a couple of luthiers about it and the price of a neck replacement if needed, and figure that into the price for the bass. This would only be worth it if that Juzek is all solid wood and sounds great.

    Definitely, run this over to a pro before buying!
     
  3. I have an older Strunal 5/35 with a neck break and repair at pretty much the exact same spot.

    Sold to me with the same disclosure by the seller as stable and without problem after repair.

    And...?

    It’s been proven true in my three years with it!

    Not knowing the specifics as to price and ambition, my suggestion is pretty much the same as Eric’s.
    A trip to more knowledgeable luthier will give you a better assessment, but don’t walk away from what sounds like may be a opportunity without a little due diligence.

    Sometimes even the blind pig finds an acorn!
     
    OldFenderPlayer likes this.
  4. The cure is a neck graft for three grand or so, or a new neck for maybe a little less.

    The bass itself, in repaired condition, might be worth four or five grand.

    Tread lightly.
     
    OldFenderPlayer likes this.
  5. Steve Swan

    Steve Swan

    Oct 12, 2004
    Burlingame, California
    Retailer: Shen, Sun, older European
    This kind of repair requires more monitoring over time. The strength in this area comes from what a thick ebony fingerboard offers for support in bridging the old damaged area. As a new board is planed thinner and thinner, support drops off significantly and the broken area is more prone to new injuries. The more permanent repair is a scroll graft, which doesn't come inexpensively. Good luck!
     
    OldFenderPlayer likes this.
  6. bengreen

    bengreen

    Jan 26, 2016
    San Diego
    I'd be curious about what's under the fingerboard.

    I repaired an antique spindly furniture leg once that broke like that. I glued the two pieces together, then routed a deep, wide channel lengthwise along the back of the leg and glued in a heavy hardwood piece bridging the gap. Long grain to long grain glue joint. Very strong.


    Do any luthiers do this in lieu of a neck graft? It would seem a lot faster and cheaper to pop off the fingerboard and reinforce what's there rather than fit a new neck. I'd feel more confident about this repair if something like that had been done.
     
    OldFenderPlayer, s0707 and Fretless55 like this.

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