2020 Standard & 61 neck tenon confusion.

Discussion in 'Gibson SG' started by rivercider, Jan 23, 2021.

  1. rivercider

    rivercider Member

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    So, I'm still trying to decide between the current Standard and Std 61 models and I am confused by this - the Gibson website claims that the Standard has the long tenon neck joint. I can see that it has the 19th fret join, so I think I understand that part.

    But then, the Gibson site does NOT make the same claim for the 61, but looking at a YouTube video (Trogly) where he strips down a 61, he says it has a long tenon. I can see what he means, I think, but why wouldn't Gibson mention this if the long tenon is supposed to be stronger?

    I know the 61 design has the neck joint at the 22nd fret rather than the later redesign to the 19th, so is that the main thing that people feel makes the difference, rather than the length of the tenon? Is the tenon the same on both, but the place where the neck jobs the body is the only difference?

    I'm confused!

    Thanks
     
  2. Derald

    Derald Member

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    There’s two tenons they’re talking about. The under the neck pickup tenon is inside the body of the guitar. The 19/22 fret joint is also a tenon but it’s not used in the same vernacular as ‘long’ or ‘short’ tenon.
    In other words, when talking about long or short tenon, they mean the part that is under the neck pickup. Not necessarily where the neck joins the body (19th/22nd fret).

    Reality check: long/short tenon under the neck pickup doesn’t make any tone or feel difference. Maybe you can argue structural integrity. That’s it. Well the long tenon is where the unicorn dust is located.

    The 19th fret joint is structured better from an engineering standpoint. The 22nd fret joint is the historical location. That might be a feel difference depending on how you play. Zero tone difference however.

    I think personally the 22nd joint, the 61-Style, looks better. So I would choose that guitar vs an newer 19th joint style, based on looks alone.

    I have one of each style. The neck joint matters not. I do prefer the look of the 61 style but fuctionally in my studio it makes no difference at all.

    Hope that helps.
     
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  3. rivercider

    rivercider Member

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    Thanks Derald, that explains it perfectly.
    The structural integrity is the only remaining consideration for me, then. I've read some guys on here say that they play an open E and it's fine, then an A barre chord and it is out of tune, on the 61 type neck. That worries me, but I'm not ever going to play this thing out, it's home hobbyist use only for me, and I will probably baby the thing anyway, I have Fenders for banging away hard on if I want to do that. So,whilst I don't want to bend the neck for vibrato effect or anything like that, I'm also worried I may get a really 'whippy' one. I prefer the look of the 61 just a little, but may try to get an ebony Standard,thereby keeping my options open for a cherry 61 in the future...:smile:
     
  4. Derald

    Derald Member

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    Unless you purposely try to bend the neck it’s truly not an issue, 61 vs modern style. The SG neck is wobbly by design and the new or old neck joint doesn’t really fix the problem. A Maple neck fixes the problem ;)
     
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  5. rivercider

    rivercider Member

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    Ok thanks. I hear you. Guess I'm back to just picking one based on neck carve, colour etc....
    Nice problem to have!
     
  6. Derald

    Derald Member

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    Yes pick one based on what it looks like or how the neck feels or the pickups. The neck joint for all practical purposes is a non-issue.
     
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  7. PermissionToLand

    PermissionToLand Well-Known Member

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    Not quite; the joint style they use is called a "mortise and tenon", and the tenon is the male part while the mortise is the female part. So Gibson is giving incorrect terminology here; if anything, they should call the 19th fret Standard heel design a "long mortise". Chalk it up to their marketing copywriters not being knowledgeable about guitar building.

    That said, you're right about the rest. It really doesn't matter. Though there is somewhat easier high fret access with the '61 design, but less neck dive with the Standard, because the strap button is further from the center of the guitar. But tone or sustain enhancements... no.

    To the OP: The Standard has the bulkier heel with a shorter tenon and the '61 has a smaller heel with a longer tenon. Makes sense, right? There has to be compensation on one end or the other for strength.
     
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  8. Go Nigel Go

    Go Nigel Go Active Member

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    That sounds more like an intonation issue that should be addressed in the initial players set up. Intonation should get adjusted along with string height, neck and truss rod, and pickup height etc. The adjustable bridge provided on most Gibsons and Epiphones (and most other guitars as well) is designed to adjust individual string intonation as you play up the neck. If a guitar is noticably out of adjustment in the auditioning stages of the purchase process, I would make purchase contingent on being able to get it corrected with a qualified set up. If you can't get it adjusted out, something is wrong with the instrument which would disqualify it from a players perspective.
     
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  9. rivercider

    rivercider Member

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    If the SG neck design is inherently wobbly, regardless of the neck join being at either fret 19 or 22, do you think the thickness of the neck itself makes much difference? The Standard, being 'rounded', will presumably have more mass than the slim taper of the 61...

    Do you think this is negligible?

    I guess the Standard neck is possibly more prone to neck dive, just from its extra mass, although no doubt the Grovers on the Standard are also a factor as they're heavier than the 61 Klusons.

    Cheers
     
  10. rivercider

    rivercider Member

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    I missed a couple of posts whilst typing my last one, but have caught up now.....thanks to PermissiontoLand for the explanation.

    I normally play seated, without a strap, so the neck dive thing is something people tell me should be a non -issue, but I'm still interested in getting an SG that has at least some semblance of balance....what you say about the strap button position is interesting because I guess it goes against what I had always thought, that the Standard with its thicker neck would always have worse neck dive than the slim taper, due to mass alone.
    Maybe for me, playing seated, that will still be the case, but I understand now that for guys playing standing,or with a strap, things may not be so simple.
     
  11. cerebral gasket

    cerebral gasket Well-Known Member

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    What do you think will flex more, a ruler or a baseball bat?

    That's pretty much the difference between any guitar with a Slim Taper neck that is flat on the backside vs one that is chunky and rounded.

    I don't get the "fast neck" thing.
    No such thing as fast neck, only fast player.

    Personally, having a thin flat neck does not improve my playing speed, it only causes my hand to cramp. I learned a while back after having a 2009 SG '61 Reissue, that I do not like thin and flat necks. Chunky rounded necks are very comfortable for me to play and do not hinder my ability to play fast when necessary.

    None of the SG that I have ever owned "neck dive".
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2021
  12. rivercider

    rivercider Member

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    I sold my les paul studio because it had a slim taper that cramped my hand a little, however I now own a Les paul standard with an asymmetrical slim taper that is better......but could still be thicker at the nut, for my liking. I got it for a good price and have adapted to it, but I bought a 335 studio last year with a rounded neck profile and much prefer it.

    So, the natural choice for me, when picking an SG, is to look for that rounded profile again, but I'm wary of ordering a Standard because the SG body is so thin that I think the neck will dive, or bother me, despite my playing seated. This is why I'm considering the 61.

    I've tried to buy SGs before and not found quite the right one, and current circumstances mean it's not possible to try in stores, so I'm trying to weigh up the options as best I can. Thanks for all your input, people.
     
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  13. cerebral gasket

    cerebral gasket Well-Known Member

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    You just have to try a few different SG until you find the one(s) you want. I went through 18 different SG until I found the two that I enjoy playing.

    You might like the 2016 SG Standard T.
    Those are spec with:
    1st fret thickness: 0.818"
    12th fret thickness: 0.963"

    It's not only the thickness, but also the amount of shoulder which is why they all feel slightly different from each other.
     
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  14. rivercider

    rivercider Member

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    I'm looking to buy new, really, so as to have the option of a return policy in case it doesn't work out. So, ideally, I'm choosing between the current Standard or 61.
    I briefly had a 2017 Standard which weighed under 6lbs and was a bit too light for me, especially with the locking Grovers which worsened the imbalance, so I returned it.

    I also had a 2016 P90 model with the neck you mention, and preferred it, but that one had other issues and I didn't keep it.

    I think maybe this year's Standard may be my best option. Wish it had the 57s but never mind, that can be addressed in the future far easier than a neck profile!
     
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  15. rivercider

    rivercider Member

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    Is there anything different (regarding neck joint structure or effect on balance etc) with the current Junior?
    It looks like the same neck joint as the 61, to me, but I am wondering if is different at all, due to the missing neck pickup. Not sure how they route them or what's under the pick guard. I'll do some searching through the threads here, but I don't have anything P90 right now and the Junior is cheaper than the Standard, plus it has a hard case. Tempting.
     
  16. PermissionToLand

    PermissionToLand Well-Known Member

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    Oh, you're not wrong that the thicker neck and Grovers would increase neck dive. I wasn't even thinking about those factors. I guess you'd need to try one in person to find out what the total impact of all those factors adds up to. And yes, thicker necks will be more stable.

    You could also easily replace the Grovers with some light Kluson style tuners. That sounds like the best solution from your comments. I've never liked how Grovers look anyway.

    The Junior would probably balance similar to a '61. I suppose the body would be a bit lighter because it has one less pickup and two less knobs. They use a slim taper neck just like the '61. So if anything, I'd guess that has more dive than the '61.
     
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