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Do neck plates have a purpose?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Kabal, May 15, 2011.

  1. Kabal


    Nov 8, 2007
    Do they have any real measurable function? Do they keep the screws from loosening or keep the neck together better?
    Do they add sustain???
    Is tone really all in the neck plate?????

    I wanna hear from YOU!!!
  2. Bread Knife

    Bread Knife

    Oct 8, 2010
    Seattle, WA
    I would say they probably reduce the risk of cracking the screw holes in the body by distributing the force of the screw heads over a much larger area.
  3. Foamy


    Jun 26, 2006
    Sac Area
    Yes, they certainly do.
    For the reason above. The screws could not be tightened into the neck with (almost any) body wood alone.
  4. gradim


    Jun 8, 2010
    To me it's like a mix between a big washer and a license plate;-)
  5. GeneralElectric


    Dec 26, 2007
    NY, NY
    Laklands don't have neckplates. They came about as a place to toss in the serial number.
  6. bottomend!


    Oct 23, 2007
    The spread the torque of the screws out across a larger area than would be afforded by just the head of the screw.
  7. Combined with a "Fender" headstock decal they're great for "upgrading" your Squier. :smug:

  8. CapnSev


    Aug 19, 2006
    Coeur d'Alene
    They have individual nuts for each neck screw though, instead of the neck plate which acts like one giant "nut".
  9. Hi.

    My guess would be that Leo put a plate there as the screws sunk into the pine body of the prototype Broadcaster, and the trend continued from there.

    From an engineering standpoint, the single piece neck plate offers no advantage over individual washers/ferrules.

  10. SLaPiNFuNK

    SLaPiNFuNK SUSPENDED Commercial User

    Jul 28, 2006
    LA California
    The Brains: FretNation.com
  11. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    Early Fender Precision Basse and Telecaster guitars had neck plates but the serial number was on the bridge plate.
  12. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    I would guess that its less time consuming to just drill four holes and use a neck plate than it is to recess four ferrules into the body.
  13. Electricblue


    Feb 1, 2011
    Try standing on some muddy ground. The first time, stand on it in shoes. The second time, stand on a plank of wood. Which sinks in (cracks your body's finish) first?

    Think of it like that.
  14. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    Not really, they could just use a different bit with two steps, one for the through hole and one for the ferrule recess.
  15. GrapeApe

    GrapeApe Banned

    Nov 9, 2009
    Richmond, Va
    So, I guess I should ask... what is the best "tone plate"?
  16. Kabal


    Nov 8, 2007
    Are there any physical differences in the various plates you can buy or do they all follow a pretty standard measurement? Besides finish
  17. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    On all the "Fender style" plate blanks I've purchased over the years, the only dimensional differences between them I've ever found was a slight difference in the thickness of the plate, if any.
  18. scottbass

    scottbass Bass lines like a big, funky giant

    Jul 13, 2004
    Southern MN
    This would also be my educated guess. /\
  19. groooooove

    groooooove Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2008
    Long Island, NY
    my basses dont have them.. my fender does.

    i'd imagine any bass with a painted finish it'll help prevent cracking. thats really all i can think of.
  20. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    The best sounding neck plates I have heard are a few I found made of bell-bronze. Really hard to find and EXPENSIVE. But worth their weight in gold from a resonance standpoint.

    Sure. ;)

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