What is the (or is there) a purpose to 5 piece necks?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by tekhna, Dec 17, 2004.

  1. tekhna


    Nov 7, 2004
    They sure look cool, but is there a structural or percieved tonal reason for them?
  2. PasdaBeer


    Nov 2, 2002
    Santa Rosa California
    SandStorm Designs
    usually there used for stability, a softer wood coupled with a very dence stable heavy wood like purpleheart, ebony, bubinga.

    also there is a tone diffrence.
  3. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    There are a lot of different theories on the number of laminates used in neck building. One camp says the less laminations and less glue joints, the less tonal "interruption" from the glue.

    The other camp says that properly placed laminations (alternating grain) has both sonic and structural benefits. Sonically, you get a different tone by combining multiple pieces of wood than you do from a single piece of wood. For example, wenge sounds very different than maple, which sounds very different than purple heart. If you have a wenge neck, it'll have a certain tone, whereas if you have a wenge/maple neck, you'll be able to combine these tones.

    From a structural point of view, some luthiers believe that wood continues to move, or "grow", long after it's cut into the shape of a bass guitar neck, fretted, and strung up. It'll continue to grow more in one direction than others, causing it to warp over time. By laminating several pieces of wood with their grain running in different directions, each piece counteracts the next one, lending more stability to the neck, making it less susceptible to warpage.

    Note these are theories, and I know some luthiers, like Mike Tobias, have used both methods.
  4. i have an interesting document about this topic, but it's 250 kbs and i can't upload it.
  5. JTGale


    Oct 26, 2004
    Hummelstown, PA
    Well put. Multi-lam necks are structurally smart while blending tones effectively. IMHO, they are well worth the trouble.
  6. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    IME, multi-lam necks are less prone to dead spots than single piece necks. Assuming the multi-lam is done right, of course.