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Got a micrometer?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by motleystew, Dec 3, 2006.


  1. motleystew

    motleystew

    Apr 29, 2006
    Lewisville, TX
    Has anyone here ever actually put a micrometer /caliper to the various bass necks out there that everyone always argues about? I can measure my Warwick 'vette and post the specs. Is there anyone who can mic their Fender Jazz and P's? How about a MM Stingrays and Bongos? Yamaha? Etc..We can come up with a standard such as: measure the radius to the fretboard at say, the nut, 5th, 7th, 12th frets, etc...width at the nut, 12th, etc, The more specs we can gather and the larger number of basses represented the better! What do you think?:bassist:
     
  2. no, but i got a set of mitutoyo dial vernier calipers though
     
  3. It might make things easier to come up with a template/drawing that people could fill in the dimemsions. That would standardize the location of each measurement. Also, a dial caliper is much easier for measuring bass necks, etc. than a mic or a set of mics. Measuring the neck and fretboard radii is not going to be easy for the average person.
     
  4. Nighttrain1127

    Nighttrain1127 Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2004
    Near Worcester MA
    Vernier is easier for more people to come by also so you would get more replies. And +1 In the standardized drawing so everyone is on the same page.
     
  5. I've got a set of Starrett 6" dial calipers, can I play?
     
  6. When I describe a neck to someone, I use calculations from these points:

    # of frets
    Width at nut
    Width at heel
    Thickness at frets 1, 5, 12

    You don't include the fret height in the measurements for thickness. Taking 3 dimensions for thickness gives a good idea of the amount of taper the back of the neck has.
     
  7. BTW, I haven't come up with a decent method to describe the shape of the back of the neck. The old "C" "D" "Z" designations never really clicked with me. :rolleyes:
     
  8. Slowrider

    Slowrider

    Nov 8, 2006
    If you want, I can post the dimensions of my Ric 4003.:bassist:
     
  9. Here are some dimensions from my collection:

    1980 Fender Precision Bass Special 4 String
    Nut: 1.635"
    12th Fret: 2.270"
    Thickness at 5th Fret: 0875"

    1991 Fender Jazz Bass Plus 4 String
    Nut: 1.552"
    12 Fret: 2.239"
    Thickness at 5th Fret: .809"

    2004 Rickenbacker 4003 4 String
    Nut: 1.728"
    12th Fret: 2.145"
    Thickness at 5th Fret: .850"

    1999 Gibson SG-Z 4 String
    Nut: 1.660"
    12th Fret: 2.209"
    Thickness at 5th Fret: .778"

    Tacoma Thunderchief CB-10C Acoustic 4 String
    Nut: 1.639"
    12th Fret: 2.203"
    Thickness at 5th Fret: .841"

    1990 CF Martin B-65 Acoustic 4 String
    Nut: 1.595"
    12th Fret: 2.182"
    Thickness at 5th Fret: .864"

    1994 Gibson LPB-3 Les Paul 5 String Premium Plus
    Nut: 1.743"
    12th Fret: 2.331"
    Thickness at 5th Fret: .826"

    1992 Alembic Elan 5
    Nut: 2.075"
    12th Fret: 2.610"
    Thickness at 5th Fret: .868"

    2004 Pedulla Pentabuzz 5 String
    Nut: 1.895"
    12th Fret: 2.660"
    Thickness at 5th Fret: .754"
     
  10. Do any of you mind if I just play mine? :smug:
     
  11. They're our nuts and we can measure them if we like :eek: :p I need a special dial caliper to measure my slanty AB1 nut :eyebrow: :help: :bag: It will require some advanced trig that I've forgotten:confused:
     
  12. motleystew

    motleystew

    Apr 29, 2006
    Lewisville, TX
    Warwick Corvette Standard 4

    nut: 1.636
    12th fret: 2.250
    thickness at 5th fret: 0.922
     
  13. motleystew

    motleystew

    Apr 29, 2006
    Lewisville, TX
    Washburn XS-250 Axxess Bass- 5 string

    nut: 1.945
    12th fret: 2.343
    thickness at 5th fret: 0.903

    ---------------------------------------------

    Yamaha RBX-250 F fretless 4

    nut: 1.692
    12th fret: 2.217
    thickness at 5th fret: 0.910
     
  14. bah @ inferior imperial measurements, get with the 20th century guys, metric is where its at:D
     
  15. RAM

    RAM

    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    Aside from Hambone's comments about "C" or "D" or "Z" shape necks, I haven't seen any mention about the neck shape (or breadth at the shoulders), nor have I seen any comments about whether the fretboard is beveled or not.

    Out of curiosity, why would you want to come up with this "standard"? It seems people can't even agree on a good string width, as some prefer wide, some prefer narrow, and others prefer somewhere inbetween. And, that's a measurement people are already comfortable talking about...:meh:

    I'll also go so far as to say whenever a neck is hand-shaped or at least finished, there's absolutely no way to get it 100% exact to a "standard".
     
  16. Slowrider

    Slowrider

    Nov 8, 2006
    [[to say whenever a neck is hand-shaped or at least finished, th

    ere's absolutely no way to get it 100% exact to a "standard"]] You're right, standards are like rules; made to be Broken. Anybody and everybody can create "Standards". All goes back to what you feel is right.:eyebrow:
     
  17. I got the impression that these measurements are used as a comparison between necks to actually see their differences without handling them. So, if your neck is .95" thick and you are looking at a bass you desire that has a .90" thick neck, you can safely conclude that the neck will play thinner than your current one. That's solid information that isn't subject to interpretation by other players. The same reason exact weights are now standard in bass specs.
     
  18. motleystew

    motleystew

    Apr 29, 2006
    Lewisville, TX
    I agree with Hambone. There are many variables, but a few simple measurements can give some idea of the slight differences between the various necks out there. Beveled or not, c, v, or whatever, thickness can still be measured from the "peak" to the fretboard or even the "peak of a slightly radiused board. Nut and fretboard width would be a pretty exact measurement. These of course are measurements that can not vary or be adjusted such as string width, etc...I know that Warwicks have a pretty thick neck. I just wanted to see exactly how much so as compared to other basses.(BTW, I actually prefer a thicker neck). But the fact is that it really comes down what feels good to the individual. Let's just get some measurements and have fun with this discussion. :bassist:
     
  19. motleystew

    motleystew

    Apr 29, 2006
    Lewisville, TX
    This is exactly what I wanted! the 91 jazz bass Cristov measured the thickness at the 5th fret was .809....the Warwick 'vette measured .903 at the 5th fret. the difference between the two sounds big, but it is roughly the space between two typed lower case L's !! (l l)give or take a thousandth or so. This can really give us an idea of how small the differences "actually" are. We still have to figure in neck width/thickness ratio because that is what IMO constitutes "feel". Among other things that are not measureable such as neck material (natural vs. satin stained for example). That's a whole new can of worms!
     
  20. Bass

    Bass

    Nov 10, 2003
    Canada
    Hey, this is an interesting thread! I've measured all of my 4-string basses at the nut just for interest & comparison. I use a digital vernier caliper.

    I usually think in terms of 1 1/2" or 1 9/16" or 1 5/8" for reference.

    1 1/2" = 1.500"
    1 9/16" = 1.5625
    1 5/8" = 1.625
    1 11/16" = 1.6875
     

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