Screw AND glue bolt-on neck?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by LPBR, Oct 17, 2014.

  1. LPBR

    LPBR Active Member

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    Hi,

    I am working on a SG project -- not the guitar of the twisted neck thread (that is a different project put in stand by for now). Anyway for this SG I made the body out of spanish cedar and the neck is a bolt-on chinese bought on eBay.

    I had a few issues when working the body making the neck pocket to end a bit loose and also had a couple problems in the shaping. I am willing to correct those deffects by filling here and there (with small wood scraps and clay), priming and sanding and finally painting it with a solid color.

    My idea is to screw the neck AND glue it to the place to keep it in its position for good. I am going to do that to avoid that the wood moves and cracks the finishing of the body around the neck pocket.

    Any problem on use glue on a bolt-on neck?
     
  2. donepearce

    donepearce Well-Known Member

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    Once the glue has set, the screws will do nothing. If at any point the screws do start doing something it can only be because the glue line has broken. You need to get the neck pocket perfect for the neck - pieces of wood glued in are fine. But don't screw and glue. Just clamp while it dries.
     
  3. eS.G.

    eS.G. Well-Known Member

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    I think I would have to agree with that. Either one or the other but both I would not think are needed.
    :) We need pics of course.
     
  4. milesdeem

    milesdeem Well-Known Member

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    I've read of people on the internet doing that, but it seem's like extra work that's not necessary. I've only had one bolt-neck (out of many) slip noticeably, but it was a parts-caster to begin with. Had worn out holes in the heel and old screws because it was random part's put together. New hole's and screw's shouldn't move around very much at all, even if the neck to body fit is loose.
     
  5. LPBR

    LPBR Active Member

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    I don't want to sound like an ass, but I think that ONLY glue a bolt-on neck won't be enough, otherwise there would be only one type of neck and the luthier would glue or screw it depending on his preferences. Of course, I may be completely wrong about this!

    What I mean is that the surface area of a bolt-on neck is too weak to work as a tenon and be fixed only with glue. My idea is to FIX with the bolts and use the glue just to keep it from move.

    :)
     
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  6. Norton

    Norton Well-Known Member

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    There's a trick out there for bolt on necks involving a very small amount of super glue in the pocket.

    I've never used that method, but it might be a place to start?
     
  7. LPBR

    LPBR Active Member

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    It may be a good idea! :)
     
  8. eS.G.

    eS.G. Well-Known Member

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    I maybe missing something......however, I have owned many of both...currently a few of each....
    I think you are wanting to "fill the gap" between the neck and pocket for aesthetic purposes and want to secure the neck to make this the most secure and non "removable" as it will ruin the gap repair.........do I have it right?
    In my experience....now I am not "hard" on my instruments to the contrary I take excellent care with them....I have not ever had an issue, once the neck was set (with screws, properly tightened etc) with movement of any type that was noticeable. I would also ask to see this gap.....(pics please) now that all said.....if you want to be certain it will not move, do BOTH and finish it out. I doubt that neck will move, any, ever ;)
     
  9. flyswatter

    flyswatter Member

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    If it's a bolt on style neck pocket, do not glue the neck only. I tried this with a bolt on LP copy (glued the neck and left the screws out). It held for awhile but at a gig when I whacked it accidently against the amp it turned into an unintentional Pete Townshend moment when the neck flew off the guitar. The problem is that carpenters or epoxy glue, even though very hard, can crack at the stress point between the neck and the pocket. There's a good reason set necks really are set into the body, not just glued on.
     
  10. LPBR

    LPBR Active Member

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    Yepper, you got it perfectly!

    My idea is that the screws do the job of attach the neck to the body (as it supposed to do) while the glue just prevent the neck to make any minimum of the minimum movement. Why? Because when I fill in the gaps I am willing to join the finishing as if it was a set neck (as it was an unique thing) and not as on a bolt-on guitar where you clearly see the separation of the neck and body.

    :)
     
  11. LPBR

    LPBR Active Member

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    That's exactly what I imagined.

    ;)
     
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  12. cybermgk

    cybermgk Well-Known Member

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    Yep. Either finish the neck and body seperately and then bolt-on, ergo no chance for finish cracks. OR, use dowels and glue to add extra immovability if your worried.
     
  13. LPBR

    LPBR Active Member

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    I liked the dowels idea!

    :)
     
  14. LPBR

    LPBR Active Member

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    As promised here it goes the pictures...

    Here, as I liked the dowels idea I added a couple ones to 'lock' the neck in place. In this picture the neck is already glued to the place:

    [​IMG]

    Speaking about dowels... I made a crap when was trying to remove the bridge stud. Normally I put an upside down nail inside the stud and tighten the bridge post with the screwdriver. Well, this time I was distracted and put the nail upright so instead to force the stud up the nail simply stuck into the wood. Yikes! Then I had to drill the guitar the other side to remove the nail and inserted a dowel to close the hole. Since the guitar will be painted it won't be a problem:

    [​IMG]

    Here the strung beast for a first test drive before to get into the finishing stage, and yeah, it tuned and played well:

    [​IMG]

    Now, a curious thing... notice in the picture below that I had to tape the saddles screws. Why I did that? Well this is the price you pay when you buy cheap stuff. When I was testing the tuning and such I noticed that the guitar was buzzing and I thought that it was fret buzz. But wait... fret buzz with open strings???? Damn, it wasn't fret buzz but the saddles screws vibrating and producing an annoying noise. Anyway, I have to find a way to get rid of this screw buzz!

    [​IMG]
    Here a view of the two sides of the neck pocket where there is a fine gap. Here I am wiling to seal with clay:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And finally the frontal gap right under the fretboard because the shim I put into the pocket to tilt the neck back by 2 degree. Here I will glue a piece of wood and seal with some clay:

    [​IMG]

    Now I will unstring the guitar, remove all the hardware and start working on the body preparation for painting!

    :thumb:

    PS: Currently the neck is not screwed yet.
     
  15. LPBR

    LPBR Active Member

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    Now since this neck is going to STAY there I am thinking on doing two things:

    1) Cut or grind the tip of the screws by 5-6mm and drill small reliefs in the back of the body at the top of the screw holes. Then I can flush the screws with the wood and make them disappear forever. Of course I won't use the neck plate.

    2) Carve a cosmetic wedge and glue it over the neck heel in order to make a smooth sloped transition to the body.

    Other than that I have to start applying some clay and doing some sand work to correct the body.

    :)
     

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