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Neck Thru vs. Bolt On

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bass element, Dec 25, 2004.

  1. opinions? comments? prefrences? :confused:
  2. I had both. I prefer sound of bolt. I am not sure of the physics but it seems that a bolt on design of two different woods yields a more complex sound than a neck-through design. Though they say the lowest fundamentals are transmitted better with a neck-through.

    I also like the lower costs and repair/replace options you get with a bolted design.
  3. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
  4. CJK84


    Jan 22, 2004
    Maria Stein, OH
    I have also read that the neck-through gives a greater fundamental.

    However, it's intriguing to note that, apparently, the human ear/brain system "hears" the fundamental of a bolt-on more predominantly than the physics would suggest. The ear/brain "extrapolates" all of the harmonics to create a fairly strong fundamental (hope that makes sense).

    So you're still going to hear/sense the fundamental with a bolt-on.

    Further, many players supposedly like the tighter sound of the bolt-on since it produces a less fundamental-heavy tone that can get a bit muddy I guess.

    I only own one bass and it's a neck-through.
  5. I have owned both. I prefer the liveliness of a bolt-on design. I would add that I have not noticed any particular sustain disadvantage on any of my bolt-ons. My Yamaha TRB6 in particular has fantastic sustain.
  6. 5stringDNA


    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    This topic has been beat to death, resurrected, and beat down again numerous times, but what the hey...

    I have two basses wich are both neck-through/set neck, but I think my next bass would be a bolt-on. The thumpiness of n-t's is great, but I like the "zing" of a b-o as well.
  7. Fealach

    Fealach Guest

    Apr 23, 2003
    Gone to a better place
    I don't think I've commented on this thread in its myriad incarnations, so here goes.

    Never a fan of bolt ons. Always seemed crude to me, could never figure an expensive bass with that crude Fender type bolt on joint. I can't argue the physics behind it and have never come across the exact same bass in both varieties to make a true comparison.

    I never liked that on bolt ons, you had to deal with restricted upper register access, never liked the feel of the big clunky square heel joint.

    Then I got a Tobias Killer B, and things began to turn around. A bolt on done right! Smoothly sculpted joint, less of a heel than some neckthroughs, all nice and rounded.

    My current 5, a Ristola, is a bolt on while my 4 strings are neckthroughs. I can't say how much the neck joint contributes, but the 5 is deep and clear, but still bright. Not too middy, but a presence to contend with in the mix. So now, while there are still many bolt-on joints I'm not fond of, I realize some can be awful nice. But I'll always be a sucker for the look of a neckthrough with a multi piece laminated neck of light and dark woods.
  8. mark beem

    mark beem I'm alive and well. Where am I? Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
  9. sloppysubs


    Nov 24, 2002
    Swansboro, NC
    set necks maybe?
  10. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL

    You might check out conklin. They have a really really smooth bolt on design. I really want a Conklin 4.
  11. Fealach

    Fealach Guest

    Apr 23, 2003
    Gone to a better place
    If I saw a Conklin 4 I'd certainly check it out. Just seen them in pics, but they look nice. Usually when I see a Conklin it has 12,896 strings. More than 5 makes me nervous.
  12. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Neck-thru? Bolt-on? Too fancy-schmancy. Mine's nailed on!

    Merry Christmas

  13. mark beem

    mark beem I'm alive and well. Where am I? Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
  14. LajoieT

    LajoieT I won't let your shadow be my shade...

    Oct 7, 2003
    Western Massachusetts
    Pfft!! nails are too clean and neat, I just keep mine in place with a c-clamp. :D
  15. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    hah! back when i was a kid we would have given our eye teeth for a c-clamp! we just used chewing gum. And don't think we afford it! We just searched under school desks till we found some and chewed it back up before slapping it on the neck joint! and we were glad to have that!
  16. bill_banwell

    bill_banwell Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2002
    Hmm, bolt-on, neck-thru? Ive never played a neck through, ive only owned bolt-on basses, but ive always thought that Neck-thru were the better of the two.. apparently, feel and tone-wise..
  17. sorry about the redundant thread topic :meh:
  18. vene-nemesis

    vene-nemesis Banned

    Jul 17, 2003
    Bilbao España
    At least youre the first who admits it and says sorry :D
  19. For some reason, I have always preferred the tonal quality and "feel" of a bolt-on even though I've never owned a Fender ... the only bass I ever owned that was neck through was a pre-Gibson Tobias.

    All my current basses are bolt-on; Elrick, Lakland, and Roscoe ... and they all sound great to me.