Good bass with a cracked neck?

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by Greywoulf, Feb 24, 2004.

  1. Found a music store with a hybrid carved-front 3/4 Miesel that has a cracked neck but they fixed it; it was cracked right where the neck joins the body, he says... And he also says that they have good luthiers in their shop who did the repair work...

    He's asking $650 for the 'fixed' bass. Says he won't let me take it to a luthier first but I could buy it and then take it to an independant luthier and if my guy says it's not good then they'll take the bass back and refund my $$...
    Question: What's with these kinds of neck/body cracks? Are they a severe problem or a minor kind of thing easily repaired? And do such repairs on them usually hold up, or would I be looking at a complete neck replacement somewhere down the line...?

    I realize it's difficult to diagnose such problems over the web, but I'm just looking for some general ideas and experiences concerning such things...
    Greywoulf :cool: :bassist:
  2. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    There are a BUNCH of basses out there with repaired necks. I'd be interested to know how many players just here at TB are playing them. So, there is nothing inherently wrong with a bass with a fixed neck.

    I go to a lot of open festivals, and I see lots of basses with neck repairs that appear to be as old as I am. It's hard to imagine that a repair could simply decide to fail after a decent period of time. It seems logical to me that if the neck is repaired, the glue allowed to cure and then strung up to tension, if it stays in the right place for a a few minutes, it will probably stay that way indefinitely.

    Is there any sort of pin or dowel in the repair?

    The only question I would offer to our esteemed ones is if a repaired neck is more or less likely to break again in the event of a trauma? I don't know how much that matters anyway since none of us plans trauma. If I dropped my bass and the neck snapped, I might almost be glad that it had already been broken once.
  3. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    I'm picking up an old east german ply in 3 weeks with a cleanly seperated neck (to the best of my assumptions it just needs to have the joint cleaned and reglued). I've inquired about the repair with a few people here and the concensus is "they won't touch it" :meh:

    I've got leads on local repair guys that will give it a look... but I don't know I trust the ones I've spoke to.

    I'll keep you posted and I'm gonna watch this thread for insight myself.
  4. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Both my basses have repaired heel cracks and one had repairs made to the peg box as well. My daughter's Kay also has had a heel repair. We have seen zero problems with any of them.
  5. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    I had one of my basses damaged in a car crash a few years ago. Clean neck separation, the fingerboard overhang was sheared off
    :crying: and the top and back separated from the ribs. My local repair guy put on a new board and reglued everything, no problems whatsoever other than it sounds different with the new fingerboard :rolleyes:

    BTW, the repair to the heel crack held even though the neck separated from the body :cool:
  6. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    Glad it worked out... I take it the new board isn't as good of a tone?

    Here is a pict of the bass I'm getting. It'll be my first real bass! I can't wait!!!
  7. Personally, I don't think any of this passes the smell test.
  8. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Same here. Stinketh.
  9. Why? They're a big, well respected music store in the community... If they say they'll refund me if I don't like the bass and/or it's repair job after getting it checked out, what's wrong with that? Do know of any music store that never saw you before that would let you take out an instrument to be checked without a deposit? Hell, I even saw a rental place where they wanted you to put down the entire cost of the bass as security before they'd even rent it to you!

    Also I'd get the refund guarentee in writing from them (if I like the bass enough) and then have a bass teacher I know recommend a good luthier for me to check out the repair thing... (Or maybe you guys could do it too; I'm in NJ..?)

    An aside: You know, I'm starting to suspect there's maybe a few depressed guys on this list... You know, the ones who always say "What'a you wanna do THAT for?" -AFAIC I'd rather make a mistake doing something then not trying it at all, and this seems to me like the only thing lost if the bass doesn't check out is some time and effort and the luthier's inspection bill.. Not a bad gamble for a possibly good hybrid Meisel for $650, IMO!

    Greywoulf :cool: :bassist:
  10. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    Where you at? I'm in Ocean County and looking for a local teacher... and recommended shop (forgive me I'm an electric guy)
  11. URB teacher recommended to me is in Freehold Music store; guy by the name of Bob Mariner... Met him and he seems like a nice enough guy, although I haven't taken any lessons from him yet... (Haven't gotten my bass yet!)
  12. jmpiwonka


    Jun 11, 2002
    well, if you can get a refund, and you can find a good luthier, then i don't see why you should not try it out.
    did you play the bass?
    is this bass at reputable string shop?

    on an aside:
    you seemed to get a little offended when some people gave you their own opinions and it is not what you wanted to hear.
    you know you did ask for their opinions ;)

  13. undefinedundefinedundefined
    No, I'm not offended. Actually, I'm rather grateful for people's honest opinions... ;) If I appear to be confrontational at times, it's because I've found that sometimes one needs to be assertive and questioning to get at less-subjective truths... Nothing personal in it at all... But thanks for your opinion, and I AM having fun! (And learning some great stuff here too...) :D
  14. Nick Ara

    Nick Ara

    Jul 22, 2002
    Long Island, NY
    A few years back, I bought my first bass from a local guy who sells/repairs used instruments to schools, etc. He wasn't a typical luthier or a retailer in any sense at all. In fact, he had the most disorganized shop I'd ever seen with all sorts of instruments all over the place. One day while I was speaking with him, we heard a loud crash coming from the back of his shop. It seems that he had maybe 10 or 15 basses and cellos proped up against the wall like hockey sticks, when all of a sudden one bass tipped into the next. Well, picture the classic "domino effect", with all these instruments landing on his concrete floor. I went over to help him out and found the bass I eventually bought from this crazy guy. It was a realtively new ply, with a repaired neck and I picked it up at a good price. It seems that only the ebony fingerboard kept the neck from snapping off.

    Bottom line, it had some dings, a repaired broken neck and needed a set up. But it sounded GREAT from the get-go and today, I get compliments from practically everyone who plays it (most of whom have high-end carved instruments). It's super loud, with great tone, amplified or not. It bows well, and the E is to die for! I say: get the bass evaluated. The repaired part may actually be the strongest part of the bass, IMO.

    I think another question might be: would repairing a neck now put additional stress on other parts of the neck or neck joint?
  15. olivier


    Dec 17, 1999
    Paris, France
    FWIW: this can be compared to an Eberle hybrid. If the neck repair job is good.
  16. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    No it's fine, it just sounds DIFFERENT than the old board did.