Neck Shaping questions

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by lamia, May 20, 2007.

  1. lamia


    Jan 30, 2007
    Houston, Texas
    I have a few questions about determining the dimensions and shape of a neck and wondering how many different ways this is done.

    Are the neck thickness measurements you find on manufactures sites done with or without the fretboard attached?

    When shaping a neck do you approach it in terms of radius (if at all) like you would a fretboard or do you determine the thickness you want at the first and last fret (or first and twelfth), cut the angle then shape it to feel?

    Is there a correlation between how round the back of a neck is and the stability of the neck? Is there such thing as an optimum shape?

    And finally is there a good tutorial with pictures on this somewhere I just can't seem to find?

    Thanks in advance
  2. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    thickness first, then shape
    yes, on both. symmetry is crusial, and the more you take away, the more the neck will yield. Optimum shape is yet to be defined, but it will be close to a complete semicircle.
    Not that I know of - in TB. But there are plenty of littereature recommendations - read up!:)
  3. DanielM


    Jan 6, 2007
    read the literature and you can check for the tutorials, they give you some help, but you might want to get some scrap wood and practise carving a neck. make sure you do it in long strokes from heel to headstock to minimise lumpyness. (trust me on that, work in as long areas as possible!)
  4. lamia


    Jan 30, 2007
    Houston, Texas
    Thanks for the replys. I've read and re-read several books, Melvyn Hiscock's and Martin Koch's being the most informative so far. I'll be cutting and glueing my neck lams this week. I've been carving wood most of my life, but this will be the first time I have applied it to building a bass. I'm a little nervous but it can't be any harder than carving a rifle stock. Thanks again

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