#1
I'm scared to buy set neck guitars. I like bolt on cause they are easier to replace if anything were to happen to it. But how strong is a set neck? I guess i'm not familiar with them but like how often have you had to replace your set neck guitar? And what's the differnece between set neck and set through...
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#2
Neck through means that the neck extends through the entire body, and that the cutaways and such are glued on sides.

Set neck means that the body is in fact seperate from the body itself, and glued on as a piece.

Unless you really do bad shit to your neck, swinging it around and all, you aren't gonna damage a set neck guitar. In fact, I'd say they are as strong, if not more strong, than bolted necks.
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#4
Don't drop your guitar or crank the Jesus out of the truss rod, you'll be fine. If you take care of any of your guitars, you'll never have to replace them (Ever heard of a '59 Les Paul? You could buy a house for what one of those costs). Eventually, every guitar will need a set-up, as well as a refret down the road, but no guitar should ever need to be completely replaced unless something happens to it. Set neck means that the neck is glued into the body, while neck through means that the "neck" piece of wood actually extends all the way down to the bridge end of the guitar, with wooden wings glued onto the sides of the middle piece of wood. Set neck and neck through guitars are said to have better sustain than bolt-ons, as the amount of surface contact between wood is so much greater. Hope that answers all of your questions.
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#6
Of all the guitars I've managed to drop/kick over by accident/throw etc, I haven't broken or damaged any of thier necks.

So unless you're planning to thrash around with your guitar in front of a hydraulic wood chipper it should be fine :]
#7
I have both types.

But set necks are inherently less forgiving than bolt on necks, especially set necks on guitars like the Gibson SG. If you take care of 'em, then they should last 100 years. But if you accidentally drop 'em, then there's a greater chance of breaking the neck (especially a tilt-back neck) compared to, say, a Fender bolt on neck with a fairly flat headstock.

That's why most people who have expensive set neck guitars also invest in straplocks, a tight-fitting hard-shell case, and a good quality guitar stand with a wide base. And folks who own such guitars usually are not doing life-like Sex Pistols punk covers or stage dives with their guitars, either.
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#9
Quote by fitzyfantastic
Don't drop your guitar or crank the Jesus out of the truss rod, you'll be fine. If you take care of any of your guitars, you'll never have to replace them (Ever heard of a '59 Les Paul? You could buy a house for what one of those costs). Eventually, every guitar will need a set-up, as well as a refret down the road, but no guitar should ever need to be completely replaced unless something happens to it. Set neck means that the neck is glued into the body, while neck through means that the "neck" piece of wood actually extends all the way down to the bridge end of the guitar, with wooden wings glued onto the sides of the middle piece of wood. Set neck and neck through guitars are said to have better sustain than bolt-ons, as the amount of surface contact between wood is so much greater. Hope that answers all of your questions.

you can crank jesus out of the truss rod?!?!? churches aren't that informative this days.
#10
My Epi SG(set neck) fell over while I wasn't home due to a shitty stand, and all's good. Although there's a dent
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#11
someone posted on here recently saying that bolt on necks with a good/strong joint actually have better sustain than set and through necks. So dont try and put up that argument
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#12
There is no appreciable difference in sustain between ANY type of neck joint. The only difference is upper fret access. bolt ons have a big heel that gets in the way. Set necks have almost no heel, neck through has none at all.

Eurotrashed is right. The neck joint IS stronger than the wood itself. The only way you're going to have to replace the neck is if it's so warped as to be unfixable (a result of abuse) or actually snapped- think about how much force that takes. The only way I can think that that would happen is if you were to hold the guitar like a baseball bat and swing it very hard so that the neck hits a post or something. Or maybe if you supported the guitar at the body and headstock and then sat on it in the middle. (probably not even then though.)

Also, I believe luthiers DO have ways of ways of softening the neck joint and removing the neck, if that were ever necessary.
#14
Quote by Blaster Bob
There is no appreciable difference in sustain between ANY type of neck joint. The only difference is upper fret access. bolt ons have a big heel that gets in the way. Set necks have almost no heel, neck through has none at all.

Eurotrashed is right. The neck joint IS stronger than the wood itself. The only way you're going to have to replace the neck is if it's so warped as to be unfixable (a result of abuse) or actually snapped- think about how much force that takes. The only way I can think that that would happen is if you were to hold the guitar like a baseball bat and swing it very hard so that the neck hits a post or something. Or maybe if you supported the guitar at the body and headstock and then sat on it in the middle. (probably not even then though.)

Also, I believe luthiers DO have ways of ways of softening the neck joint and removing the neck, if that were ever necessary.


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#15
There is tone difference. If you're to deaf to hear it then that's on you, but please don't spread false information.

TS, from what I've seen, and what has happened with my instruments, you have nothing to worry about. If there were any tension on the guitar, theres a better chance of your headstock snapping off. It's happened. Depending on where it breaks, it's fixable. Also, if theres pressure towards the bottom of the neck, there have been times where the neck would slightly pull out of the neck pocket. I've seen that happen as well, but it's nothing that can't be fixed.

If that's the only thing making you not purchase a guitar with a set neck, then I wouldn't be to worried.
#16
Quote by caraluzzo
There is tone difference. If you're to deaf to hear it then that's on you, but please don't spread false information.

TS, from what I've seen, and what has happened with my instruments, you have nothing to worry about. If there were any tension on the guitar, theres a better chance of your headstock snapping off. It's happened. Depending on where it breaks, it's fixable. Also, if theres pressure towards the bottom of the neck, there have been times where the neck would slightly pull out of the neck pocket. I've seen that happen as well, but it's nothing that can't be fixed.

If that's the only thing making you not purchase a guitar with a set neck, then I wouldn't be to worried.


It has been scientifically proven under laboratory conditions that bolt ons sustain longer than set necks and neck throughs, but the difference we're talking here is milliseconds, nothing you would ever notice. If I didn't have to go take an exam at school I would find it for you now, but instead you'll have to wait till tonight. (unless someone wants to help me out). If you're referring to a pure "tone" difference, no sustain involved, that's unlikely to have anything to do with the type of neck. Much more likely that any neck through or set neck you played was simply a more expensive, higher quality guitar, as they usually are.
#17
Quote by Blaster Bob
It has been scientifically proven under laboratory conditions that bolt ons sustain longer than set necks and neck throughs, but the difference we're talking here is milliseconds, nothing you would ever notice. If I didn't have to go take an exam at school I would find it for you now, but instead you'll have to wait till tonight. (unless someone wants to help me out). If you're referring to a pure "tone" difference, no sustain involved, that's unlikely to have anything to do with the type of neck. Much more likely that any neck through or set neck you played was simply a more expensive, higher quality guitar, as they usually are.


As I said before, there is a tone difference. Wether or not you'd be one to notice dosnt matter, it's there.

And if I played a higher end set-neck or neck-through, and a higher end bolt-on, you're saying there would be no tone difference? Made from the same woods, you wouldn't notice more tone/sustain from one to the other?
#18
Quote by caraluzzo
As I said before, there is a tone difference. Wether or not you'd be one to notice dosnt matter, it's there.

And if I played a higher end set-neck or neck-through, and a higher end bolt-on, you're saying there would be no tone difference? Made from the same woods, you wouldn't notice more tone/sustain from one to the other?

I can't think of an example where 2 exactly the same guitars come with both a bolt on and a set neck or neck through, it;s just usually the case that some guitars are higher quality.
#19
I play set-neck just because of the invisible heel, not the non-existant tone difference.
#20
Quote by kckyle
you can crank jesus out of the truss rod?!?!? churches aren't that informative this days.

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#21
Quote by GaijinFoot
I can't think of an example where 2 exactly the same guitars come with both a bolt on and a set neck or neck through, it;s just usually the case that some guitars are higher quality.


Look around, you'll come across them. Also, I'm talking guitars that are both good quality instruments. Everything about the guitar makes a difference in the tone.
#22
IMO, a hollow or semi-hollow will have lots more sustain.

Scientificly speaking, the NECK THROUGH should have more sustain being that the sound doesnt have to switch from one wood to another. but not to enough make a big deal about.

if sustain is an issue, just buy a pedal.

i like bolt ons, so i can change the neck when ever i want or have nothing better to do.

nothing better sounding in a band than a nice mix of Fender & Gibson guitars.
Last edited by BR0THERALEX at Oct 14, 2008,
#23
Well, here's a summary of the article that was published in American Lutherie in 2007.

http://liutaiomottola.com/myth/neckJointSustain.htm

Don't get me wrong, I prefer neck through, but I have seen people blindly reciting the neck thru = sustain mantra before in such ways that remind me of the kiddies going "I wantz teh EMGz 4 teh br00talz d1st0rtionz" when they're still playing through their 15 watt practice amp.
Last edited by Blaster Bob at Oct 14, 2008,
#24
Quote by Blaster Bob
Well, here's a summary of the article that was published in American Lutherie in 2007.

http://liutaiomottola.com/myth/neckJointSustain.htm

Don't get me wrong, I prefer neck through, but I have seen people blindly reciting the neck thru = sustain mantra before in such ways that remind me of the kiddies going "I wantz teh EMGz 4 teh br00talz d1st0rtionz" when they're still playing through their 15 watt practice amp.


LOL - 15 watt practice amp
#25
Every electric I've owned has been a set neck. Best thing to do is not be an asshat with your guitar.
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#26
The only real difference between properly made guitars with any given type of neck joint other than form factor is tone. Because set-neck guitars have glue in the joints, more of the high-end is attenuated, which is another part of the reason that Les Pauls cannot achieve the same high-end quack and twang that, say, a Telecaster can.

My advice to you is to buy on the basis of how the guitar sounds and performs, not the neck joint it has.
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