Usernames sucks
Tab Contributor
Join date: Jun 2010
12,735 IQ
#1
Hi, im planning on buying a cheap used ibanez rga32, and making it freless. What material shuld i use for the neck? My first tought was aliminium since the weight, but will it deform over time? Its a light guitar, so i do not want an off balance guitar in weight. I have tought about glass, but wouldnt it break easily? Does the trusseod need ajusting over time? Also what strings do i want to use in it, when i play 9s in standard, and want to have some sustain?
MrFlibble
Puts a bangin' donk on it
Join date: Apr 2008
4,127 IQ
#2
Typically you don't use anything special; maple with a gloss finish and ebony are popular because of their smooth feel. I've heard of people using random epoxy or plastics, but most fretless electric guitars just use the regular rosewood/maple/ebony that any fretted electric would use.

Whatever you use, yes, the truss rod iwll need adjusting, even if you use a very dense material and a double truss rod. Everything shifts slightly over time and as its environment changes. Even guitars with metal necks need truss rods and will need to be tweaked every once in a while.

Use whatever strings you find most comfortable. That is the only rule for strings. Doesn't matter what you play, the right choice is always whatever is most comfortable for you.
Yes, I know everything. No, I can't play worth a damn.
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dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
3,265 IQ
#4
The Vigier Surfreter, favored by Shawn Lane and Bumblefoot, uses a brass alloy called Delta Metal.

There are glass fretboard guitars out the- seen 'em on YouTube- but AFAIK, none are made commercially. I know a bit about glass from other artistic endeavors: it is versatile, and can be heavy or light, depending on type and thickness. Brittleness also is variable. It is also a material with plenty of upside artistically speaking, since you can include all kinds of tints or materials- look up dichroic glass, for instance. However, glass is one you'd DEFINITELY want to talk to a pro about, since there are so many options.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2c7p4Acd-4&sns=em

There are some guys out there talking about carbon fiber and other exotic manmade materials for fretless guitars, like Jon Kammerer (at least, when he and I discuss it). However, AFAIK, nobody has actually done it yet.

Manmade materials like porcelain, corian or polycarbonate/lexan- a.k.a. Bulletproof glass- might work too.

You might be able to get a thin slab of a stone like granite to do the job.

Wood is always an option- it works on fretless basses, after all.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

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alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
Roc8995
Moderator
Join date: Nov 2005
2,050 IQ
#5
I have a fretless strat with aluminum laid over the original rosewood board. It was done well and it makes me think aluminum is a decent choice. The neck is a little heavier than a standard neck but it doesn't throw the weight off too badly. I don't know exactly how old it is but it's certainly more than 10 years old, probably closer to 20-25, and there's been no deformation or significant wear on the aluminum. Certainly adds some sustain, too.
dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
3,265 IQ
#7
I mentioned it upthread- Delta Metal, a brass alloy that is harder than most other brasses.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.