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Micro-tilt on Fender Reissues

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by alexit, Feb 27, 2008.


  1. alexit

    alexit

    Feb 21, 2006
    OK, so first of all, in every discussion about micro-tilt/3-bolt necks, someone always chimes in with the idea that doing this was cheap, "cbs reduced the number of screws as a cost-cutting method". That has got to be a myth! A single screw that costs 3 cents (fractions of a penny in the 70s) would have been nothing compared to the cost of designing and manufacturing the tilt mechanism itself.

    The way you do save money is to hurry things up, loosen up QC, and use cheaper materials. From the G&L faq:

    "One of the reasons Marketing was likely won over by the new design was that the three-bolt design had (quite incorrectly) developed a widespread reputation as being "unstable". This ill-founded rumor had mainly been perpetuated by those who had had experience with three-bolt Fenders of the '70s. What these folks were missing was that the instability seen in those '70s Fenders was due not to an inherent weakness in the three-bolt design itself, but rather to the sloppy, careless construction techniques used to build those instruments. Despite the fact that G&L's three-bolt neck was extremely well-executed and offered plenty of stability, the move to a four-bolt neck has proven quite beneficial in terms of eliminating initial "customer skepticism" from shoppers new to G&L." http://www.guitarsbyleo.com/faq.php3#Q10


    Question is, how good are the re-issue micro-tilt necks? I would assume everything is up to MIA QC standards at the very least. Can anyone who has one comment on this? MIJ's too.
     
  2. mongo2

    mongo2

    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    I've had 3 AVS '75 RI Js and still have one of them. I've used the microtilt for it's intended purpose and it never had an issue with it and the neckpocket fit is very good.
     
  3. Dan Erlewine does not recommend the microtilt neck adjustment, but not for the three screws factor (the screws that make all the job are actually the external ones, not the internals that only act as pivot, in case); he offers instead that with time the end part of the neck tends to "ply" upward, since there's no resting wood beneath. His opinion. He recommends the standard method of the shimmings...
     
  4. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    Wow - interesting! The only neck where I experienced a "rising tongue" (the effect discussed above) had a neck tilt adjustment! Interesting.
     
  5. I've had a MIJ '75 RI Jazz and I currently have a CIJ '75 RI Jazz. I have have never had any issues with the micro-tilt but I have never had to use it either. Both of mine were able to have low action without having to tilt the neck.

    Craig
     
  6. so you have the answer by yourself! If all the "tongue" (bottom part of the neck attachment, the "heel") is in firm contact with the body wood, there's no possibility to have a stress and a following bending upward of the neck last frets!!!
     
  7. mongo2

    mongo2

    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    Well, the neck on mine has been just fine microtilted for the last 7 years.

    I'll let y'all know if it ever goes bad.

    I also have a Sears/Dano (Dano started using their version microtilt at least 15 years before Fender) that's been elevated for at least 40 years with no problem.

    I'll let y'all know if that one ever goes bad too.
     
  8. I've got a '77 Jazz with the 3 screw microtilt neck. I've never had a problem with the neck, it is rock solid and one of the best playing basses that I have ever owned.
     
  9. Ok, ok: it is not MANDATORY for a microtilt neck to bend!!! Obviously you may have a chance more, versus a standard neck. I had a 75 reissue too, and never had problems. I also have currently a Peavey Axcelerator 5 with the ilt neck but in all those cases if I need to change the neck angle for any reason I prefer the good old methd of put shimming under...
     
  10. I don't care for the micro tilt system at all. IMHO, it's just a way of making a bass easier and cheaper to manufacture. Instead of producing an accurate and precise neck joint, they build in flexibility so every neck and body will just go together :( What you end up with is the neck only contacting the top of the pocket and the point of one set screw....... Not my idea of how a bass should be built. I put solid shims in my Peaveys that have them. My Aria didn't even need the stupid thing, it was perfect when removed with a minor trussrod and bridge adjustment. That made me wonder how it could have been used at all :confused: If you think about it, after the initial build, if done properly, how often would anyone need to adjust the micro tilt ?? :mad:
     
  11. lowbass68

    lowbass68

    Feb 3, 2008
    I don't like neck tilt systems for several reasons.

    1. The neck to body joint will have less of a mating surface and IMO that leads to the possibility of less sustain, tone, ect.

    2. The Neck slot has to be a hair larger to accomidate the movement allowed by the system (ie. not as tight of a joint)

    3. I think this is less of a problem on the Fender 3 bolt system than say the four bolt system Fender used on the Elites back in the early 80's. I have seen two necks that split above the tilt system because it was probably tightened to much.

    Shims work much better and I really don't like them much either. In my opinion if the neck needs to be tilted in order to get the proper alignment for the neck, strings, bridge and pickups, the bass is poorly designed or sloppily assembled. Since every major maker (Fender, Sadowski, Warmoth, etc)CNCs the necks and bodies, tilting the the neck with shims or tilt mechanisms should not be needed.
    Just think of any quality neck-thru bass. They make those with the proper alignment, same can be done with bolt-ons with out the use of shimming, tilt mechanisms, etc.
    Just my opinion.
     
  12. that was basically THE way all the basses were built until major industry development, that would be around mid seventies!!! I had a 72 jazz bass (four screws plate, no tilt) that had a shim on one side only of the joint, a little thin reddish rectangular piece of cardboard and that was it: like it or not. You'd find those strips pretty much on, say, 70% of Fender basses at that stage. Btw the bass played extremely good and the only reason I sold is that (as everybody knows!!!) we are 90% of times frankly too stupid to fully appreciate what we have on our hands... :)
     
  13. The Lurker

    The Lurker

    Aug 16, 2002
    Ankh-Morpork
    I didn't like it because it's one more thing for me to accidentally destroy!:rollno:
     

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