Does neck plate thickness have any effect on tone?

Beachbum

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Every part of a guitar makes a difference in tone but other than pick ups none of it is audible to even the very best set of ears God bestowed on any of us earthly pickers.:rolleyes:
 

theprofessor

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I haven't read all the posts, but I'll offer my opinion. I don't think it makes any difference that _I_ can hear. Maybe Eric Johnson can. I do think it _can sometimes_ matter for the reasons others mentioned. Especially if you use machine screws and threaded inserts in the neck, those thinner neck plates can bend. At that point, you have wood being crushed underneath, but also fewer points at which the plate contacts the body. A good neck-to-pocket joint is critical for good sustain, but I don't know how much the neck plate itself actually has to do with that. Certainly not the thickness. All that said, I still like to use the Callaham plates on builds that I consider fancier.
 

Sconnie

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*affect

...and no. If you're asking yourself this type of question, I suggest you learn something to advance your playing instead, that's what I (try to) do! That is something that will 100% affect your tone!
 

nvilletele

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Oh my god, will this kind of stuff ever end?

Everyone knows the optimal tone thickness is exactly 15/128" and optimal material is French brass. Cold rolled steel or 18-8 stainless can also do in a pinch, but that will not be optimal.

Anything other than that will suck tone, and then your tone will suck.

Don't just take my word for it . . . you can look all this up on the internet.
 

boris bubbanov

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The MIM plates and USA plates are essentially the same thing. So, no difference between those two. However, do look out for "Embossed" FMIC plates that are not chromed steei but chromed potting metal - these are liable to be damaged (the "ears" slough off) if you tighten too energetically.

The advantage with the thicker Taipantone plates I had made were, you could use a slightly longer screw and not be so concerned about the tip of the screw coming too close to the surface of the fretboard. They also give an overly lightweight or thinline body more substance, so it sort of matches the heavier, fatter necks I like to use.


Asking if the fatter plate improves tone, is IMO like asking if heart medicine will help someone who hasn't got a heart condition. Think of these things as curative of Specific things that may be wrong with one guitar build - which are not a problem with most of your other projects. You don't prescribe Botox to a woman with no wrinkles - this is a sort of medicine, if you will, and doesn't fix what isn't broken.
 

JRapp

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I took the neck plate off my old 50s Strat and replaced it with washers. Fattened up the tone, a little less attack. I also yanked all the vibrato hardware out of the back and blocked the trem. I don't use it, so out it goes. Just an experiment but it did fatten it up. Completely reversible, no harm done.
 

boris bubbanov

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I took the neck plate off my old 50s Strat and replaced it with washers. Fattened up the tone, a little less attack. I also yanked all the vibrato hardware out of the back and blocked the trem. I don't use it, so out it goes. Just an experiment but it did fatten it up. Completely reversible, no harm done.

One of the best reasons for keeping neck plates around, is the way they attenuate impact when the guitar falls. There's provision for displacement of the neck within the pocket, and this is your best chance not to tear up the body or to break off a section of the headstock. The stress gets shared more evenly between the four fasteners and a single screw (bolt) is less likely to generate a crack at the hole.
 

wulfenganck

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I doubt that the neckplate makes any difference at all.
When I changed Schaller tuners for the cheap stock tuners on my first guitar, it did make a tonal difference. Maybe because there is a direct connection between tuners and strings and how the latter respond. Even more apparent with changing the bridge on one of my semi-acoustic (floating type bridge).
But I don't see how the small amount of more mass of a thicker neckplate could influence the sound.
 

Flyboy

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Came across a webpage where a guy was talking about changing out the "thin" neck plate on his MIM Tele for a thicker US neck plate. Got me to wondering... could this really make any difference?

And then there's ones with the rubber grommet underneath.......

Naah, doubt the affect tone.
 

Telecastoff1

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Depending on the thickness, material type of the plate and condition of the screw holes bored into the neck (worn from too many removal times) will all make a difference. After all, this is the link that literally ties the sound and integrity of the guitar all together.
 

SixStringSlinger

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latest
 

MTPoteet

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Since sound is nothing more than vibrating air, high pollution days with fine to large particulate matter effect tone as much as tone woods, neck plates, thin lacquer or any other measure of adding or subtracting mass to your guitar.

Before you reply, please note the sarcasm in my post.
 

Obsessed

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Ahem, you guys don’t know? On the tele, it is the switch plate thickness that makes all of the difference.
 

Beachbum

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If a tree false in the forest and there is no one there to hear it did it actually make a sound?:rolleyes:
 

boris bubbanov

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I get the feeling that, if there was a breakthrough in this area, the curmudgeons on this board would be the last people to even know.

Maybe the best way to look at this is, if you have spare time and energy, practice more and try once again, to write that song that occurs to you during your dreams. This isn't about whether any difference is potentially possible, but instead about all the other, better uses of one's time when life is kinda sucky for many.
 




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