Does this need a neck reset?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by MerleJam, Jan 14, 2019.

  1. MerleJam

    MerleJam Tele-Meister

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    It looks almost like the neck has glue showing where it meets the top of guitar. It’s a 70’s Alvarez I’m looking at. Not in person. I just thought something looked off and thought someone might be able to tell. Thanks.
     

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  2. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

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    I can't tell that much from the pictures, but on anything from the 70s, budget yourself about $300 to get it put to a condition that you like.

    Not much lasts 40 years without developing some seams, raised action, etc.

    My bourgeois needed a neck reset in 12 years (but what a rewarding guitar it was in terms of volume and clarity). Any guitar that holds up really well for that long is probably built as heavy as a tank and will sound like it, too.
     
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  3. MerleJam

    MerleJam Tele-Meister

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    Thank you, it is not worth much money but I like those old Alvarez guitars. I played a used Bourgeois at a guitar center one day and blown away. It was about a grand out of my range and I ended up with a mid level Taylor that I ended up hating lol.
     
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  4. Danocoustic

    Danocoustic Tele-Meister

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    Glue showing means nothing.

    Run a straightedge down the neck across the top of the frets extending to the saddle. What do you see?
     
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  5. MerleJam

    MerleJam Tele-Meister

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    Looks pretty good for a 77 model. It’s a model number 5066. I have a 5023. This one looks a step or two up from that. The headstock has a nice looking veneer.
     

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  6. noah330

    noah330 Friend of Leo's

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    How much saddle do you have left? Is it really low?
     
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  7. MerleJam

    MerleJam Tele-Meister

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    I don’t have it in person, but I used the grid on my iPhone photo edit
     

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  8. jhundt

    jhundt Doctor of Teleocity

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    that is an interesting comment. I do not disagree, but I hadn't thought about it this way before. Here's where my mind wandered as I read this:

    way back when, Stradivarius (and others) were making violins and such. I am guessing that they were already considered to be very good instruments, though the original owners could never, ever imagine the mojo those things would accrue over the centuries. In fact, I just had another imaginary image of a guy sitting in Stadivarius's shop trying out a viola, and saying "well I just saw a nice one down the street for 50 bucks less - what can you do for me?"

    I wonder how long the original owners expected a fairly high-quality instrument to last, and what kind of repairs and modifications they would have considered necessary and/or beneficial; and when would they have expected the instrument to need some serious attention.

    Thanks for inspiring my imagination!
     
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  9. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

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    that's difficult work to judge without having the guitar in hand. For me, the two determinants with little information would be:
    * are there structural issues (cracks, etc) other than needing a neck reset
    * if the neck is straight, how much saddle is left (as mentioned above)

    If the guitar is solid, but the neck is a saddle shave away from really needing a reset, then you can decide whether or not you like it.

    (well, #1a and #1b is will the price allow you to fix anything other than really big issues and still be happy with it). I've never been able to tell much from pictures other than string height.
     
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  10. philosofriend

    philosofriend Tele-Holic

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    If the guitar has the kind of action you like, the neck doesn't need to be reset. If the bridge is cut really low and the action is still too high, you need a neck reset.

    Fine point: a bridge/saddle that is cut way down will hurt the tone and make the guitar quieter. A neck reset in this case will let the tone reach its potential.

    As MerleJam said, glue lines showing doesn't matter.
     
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  11. MerleJam

    MerleJam Tele-Meister

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    Thank y’all very much. I’ve been finding some nice looking guitars on goodwills auction site and the people are sometimes stingy with sending pictures so I will probably have to take a chance and see how it goes. There’s a 62 Martin 00-21 on there right now with a split from bottom of bridge to the bottom of guitar. I couldn’t believe someone just dropped an old Martin off at goodwill
     
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  12. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I've owned a number of acoustic guitars over the years, from very cheap ones, up to a Martin D-28 Marquis. It looks to me like the Alvarez needs a neck reset, the pics seem to show a very high action that I personally wouldn't like, and I don't think it's something a saddle shave would cure. Its age alone would almost dictate that it needs one.

    If you want a decent Dred size acoustic, try looking at the Guitar Center sold MMV Martin used. They are easily the best buy in Martins I've ever played. A used one in good shape can be had for about $900. I have one with a Fishman pickup in it that I installed myself and it sounds good and plays very well after a minimum of setup.

    The final thought I have is that you probably should if at all possible look at feel of, and play any acoustic guitar you intend buying. I personally would not buy ANY acoustic guitar without actually holding it in my hands.
     
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  13. Danocoustic

    Danocoustic Tele-Meister

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    Sorry, can't tell anything from that.

    What I'm after is where the straightedge meets the saddle (above/below the plane) and how much saddle remains above the bridge. As philosofriend said in post #10, a short saddle will hurt tone and especially volume, and a short ENOUGH saddle will indicate a neck reset.

    Such an operation will run you $250+. Is the guitar worth it?
     
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  14. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

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    Apparently, doing things in the world of violins now (from speaking with a symphony member here) that might make a violin sound open but at the expense of durability is a no-no.

    The symphony violinist here said that a maker in NY was making nice sounding violins, but was accused of aging the tops by baking them (torriefaction or something similar) and then shaving them thinner than others thought acceptable.

    The company was not taylor!

    I'd imagine that the violin makers in the stradivarius era - at least the good ones, probably sold only to people of means. Not sure how much regular work is done on violins like that, but would assume that in an age of no climate control, etc, that some would be necessary as a matter of adjustment from time to time.
     
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  15. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    What usually defines if you need a reset is if the action is too high and the saddle has been lowered to where there's no room left. Neck resets are expensive...
    Need a pic of your bridge...
     
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  16. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Just thinking about violins, I think that if a thousand or so untrained violinist could be recorded and played back at rock stadium levels, it would make a formidable weapon against attacking aliens.
     
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  17. D_W_PGH

    D_W_PGH Friend of Leo's

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    Mix in some oboes, and if there are some scottish tourist - bagpipes. That should cover it. Banjos at the gate might keep people out, and mix in a few mandolin players who have been told (intentionally on a regular basis) they look funny with a small instrument and a serious face - nobody will survive.

    Apologies for the stupid humor - it's migraine day!
     
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  18. jhundt

    jhundt Doctor of Teleocity

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    do you think that a thousand or so highly-trained and accomplished concert violinists playing through the Greatful Dead's famous PA system could lure unsuspecting aliens in? Perhaps we have to talk to someone at SETI about this...
     
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  19. jhundt

    jhundt Doctor of Teleocity

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    I wonder if the OP has regretted posting this in the Bad Dog?
     
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  20. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Well, now that right there might fall under:

    Unforeseen consequences.
     
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