Differences between a Les paul neck and an Explorer neck(headstock apart)

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by mangus, Feb 11, 2019.

  1. mangus

    mangus Tele-Meister

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    Hi, I'm negociating a custom neck from a seller on Ebay and I was asked if an explorer neck was the same as the one on a Les Paul apart from the headstock, not having ever played one I can't answer.. Can anyone help me here?
     
  2. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Tele-Afflicted

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    I've never paid much attention to an explorer but I believe the neck joins the body at the 18 or 19th fret and is cut away on both sides. That will change the heel and tenon dramatically.

    Also, as you probably know, there have been changes in the shape of LP necks over the years so you need to be a little more specific when you say "same as..."
     
  3. mangus

    mangus Tele-Meister

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    my biggest worry lies with where it joins the body.. that would be difficult to fix...
     
  4. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Single cut LP join the body at fret 16. Double cut LP specials are higher up and changed after a couple of years to allow a longer tenon. Explorer necks tend to be higher up, as are Flying Vee , SG, and ES335. A Les Paul did come with an explorer peghead once too. An Exp Lp maybe? Then there was an Aldo Nova model. So there are no guarantees. Neck shape varied too starting more chunky and getting thinner during the Norlin Era, back to chunky again when reissues started to be concerned with accuracy.

    https://reverb.com/item/1378196-gibson-les-paul-dc-exp-1985-with-original-case

    https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1648848

    http://markweinguitarlessons.com/forums/threads/gibson-les-paul-aldo-nova-signature.88026/
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2019
  5. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Tele-Afflicted

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    Impossible. It would be easier to cut a LP heel back to the 18th fret than make an 18 fret neck fit a 16 fret body. Get plans for each and compare.
     
  6. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Friend of Leo's

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    Are you talking about the profile - thickness and shape and feel to the hand - or the construction? Seems a bit odd to be ordering a custom neck since they're not really replacement parts. Are you ordering an entire guitar?
     
  7. StrangerNY

    StrangerNY Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Every Explorer I've ever owned (3 or 4 of them, both Gibson and Epiphone) has had the chunkier 50s profile. If you like the slimmer 60s profile neck of the LP, the Exploder might be a little uncomfortable at first.

    But if you like the guitar, you'll get used to it.

    - D
     
  8. warrent

    warrent Friend of Leo's

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    What are you trying to do? Build a Les Paul with a custom neck? One is a single cutaway join and the other a double cutaway. The neck profiles for both models change over the years.
     
  9. mangus

    mangus Tele-Meister

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    I'm trying to build an explorer. But finding a neck has been proving difficult..
     
  10. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Tele-Afflicted

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    I'm sorry, for some reason from your first post I was assuming that you were being offered an explorer neck to use on a Lester. This make a lot more sense now.

    If you have explorer plans it would be pretty easy to get the plan and profile of a LP (I could scan my plans) and compare them. However, I'm sure its going to take as much work to modify (assuming it can be done) as making a neck from scratch - then you could get the pointy head.

    You might also want to ping Dzsmith, I'm pretty sure he has built an LP as well as thing

    http://luthiersforum.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10123&t=51277
     
  11. warrent

    warrent Friend of Leo's

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  12. mangus

    mangus Tele-Meister

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    Thanks, that's precisely the plan I'm following. I'm considering building it myself to be honest but the thought of making a neck scares me.
     
  13. DrASATele

    DrASATele Poster Extraordinaire

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    Necks are easier than you think, make your first from Home Depot Maple to get a feel for it. Actually make it out of pine so you can get the thickness of a Gibby neck build.
     
  14. mangus

    mangus Tele-Meister

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    how thick of a blank should I start with?
     
  15. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Tele-Afflicted

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    Are you going to do a scarfed neck joint and stacked heel? If so 7/8 - 1" x 3' x 35 works very nicely. If you are going to saw it then you'll have to measure your plans - from mine it looks like a LP/335 neck could be sawn from 2-1/2 or 3" x 3" by 26 which would give you enough for your tenon. I'm guessing that the explorer head will require 3 or so more inches.

    Most people who saw their necks try to nest two or three to more efficiently use their stock.
     
  16. mangus

    mangus Tele-Meister

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    I think I'll give it a go
     
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  17. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    FWIW here’s a (beat up "refin" AKA nofin cheap) Gibson Explorer

    IMG_0733.jpg IMG_0734.jpg


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2019
  18. mangus

    mangus Tele-Meister

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    could you please, please tell me how big my blank has to be?
     
  19. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    OK so @mangus , the mortise doesn’t go all the way through the pickup pocket, and the headstock is grafted on both sides.
    I get a 26 inch total length, not including the grafted on end of the hockey stick headstock.
    The extra length grafted on is about 1.125 inch but the width is about 2.25 inch.
    (Tried to load pics but Tapatalk and TDPRI not taking it today!)

    The width is pretty much 2.25 inches at both ends but the headstock grafts on both sides is hard to measure, so a little extra width is in order so you can get clean joints.


    The thickness is greater at the headstock where I get a full 2 inches to account for the one piece angled headstock.
     
  20. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I took pics to make the measurements clearer but couldn't get them to load.
    Maybe later...
     
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