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Minimum neck thickness behind truss rod

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Geoff St. Germaine, Apr 19, 2005.


  1. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    Does anyone know what the minimum safe thickness of wood sitting behind a truss rod might be? I'm using maple and wenge on two necks and I'd like to shape them as thin as reasonably safe to prevent the truss rod from punching through the wood.
     
  2. John Ruiz

    John Ruiz

    Oct 9, 2000
    Plano, Tx
    It seems like I read at Project Guitar that there needs to be about an 1/8th inch behind the rod, but wait for someone to confirm/deny that one, as I haven't finished building my first neck yet! :p
     
  3. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    Good luck I have gone through the back of 3 necks trying to get them too thin. Lots of wasted time and $.. :mad: .t
     
  4. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    Mine is going to be 3/16" behind the truss rod. I think that this should be fine.
     
  5. Suburban

    Suburban

    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    mine are 3-4 mm. no probs.
     
  6. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    US-NY-NYC
    Did you break through to the channel when you were shaping, or was it OK until you tweaked the rod, and then it broke through?
     
  7. Scott French

    Scott French Dude Supporting Member

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    Some dial calipers could have saved you a lot of time and money... not to mention guessing. If you have the thickness of the fingerboard at the center, and the depth of the slot then there's no reason to carve through the back of the neck (assuming that's what happened).

    When it comes to neck carving, it's best to work in .###" format. .125" is what I go with behind the trussros slot, but I have pushed it a little past and been fine. With a .250" fingerboard and .375" truss rod slot (lmi double action) you can carve .750" neck thickness at the thinnest point.
     
  8. Geoff St. Germaine

    Geoff St. Germaine Commercial User

    I'm going for roughly .75" (19mm). I put everything in inches here, but I'm running in mm. The fretboard is 6mm, truss rod is the lmii one, so 9.5mm which leaves 4.5mm for me to get 19mm. I think that this should be good. Dial calipers are key for this.
     
  9. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    Carving not adjusting the rod......t