Fender Player Tele Neck Angle Issue

johnnybregar

TDPRI Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2021
Posts
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Age
55
Location
Bainbridge Island, WA
After a LOT of sleuthing and research, I believe that the issue with my player telecaster, is that the neck angle is incorrect. I am experiencing string buzz all the way up the neck from the first fret. It’s mostly on the 4th,5th and 6th strings. It’s not just a pleasant jangle - it is quite annoying, and comes through amps or going direct.

I tried leveling the frets, adjusting the relief, adjusting the action, raising the action ridiculously high, reseating the neck, adjusting the intonation, and checking to make sure it wasn’t the nut or some other vibration. I ended up shimming the neck, and the problem went away.

Then I went back to measure the action above the 12th fret as purchased and saw that it got lower as it got close to the body instead of higher as it should. So then I knew I had a neck angle issue. At least as far as I understand it.

Now that I’ve fully bastardized it (as well as installing Loller Pickups), I feel like I can’t really sell it as is, so I want to try a new neck on it.

I ordered a player Tele neck from Stratosphere and I’m going to see if perhaps the problem gets resolved.

My questions:
1. How often does one need to sand the heel of the neck to get a good neck angle when doing a replacement? I am planning to at least try that on my old neck, but I need to find a sanding wheel so I don’t mess it up.

2. Would you sand the heel of the neck, or would you try to alter the slot on the body?

3. Can I put a player neck on an American Perfomer body if I find one? If I end up getting my original neck to work well, I might sell that guitar and make a partscaster. Why? Cause I’m sorta pissed at this guitar and I just wanna start over.

I just wanna play my dang guitar. I should have brought it to a dealer right away but I usually do my own setups, and I’m actually pretty darned good with fret work if I don’t say so - so I figured that hitting the high frets would solve the problem.

I’d love some input.

Thx.

Johnny
 

howardlo

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Feb 16, 2011
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1,695
Location
Hobart, IN
It sounds almost like you shimmed the neck incorrectly. Did you shim it with the shim nearest to the body? If so that should have lowered the body end of the neck and lowered the strings at the upper frets.

If you replace the neck a shim (if needed) would be better than sanding the heel of the neck.
 

johnnybregar

TDPRI Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2021
Posts
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Age
55
Location
Bainbridge Island, WA
It sounds almost like you shimmed the neck incorrectly. Did you shim it with the shim nearest to the body? If so that should have lowered the body end of the neck and lowered the strings at the upper frets.

If you replace the neck a shim (if needed) would be better than sanding the heel of the neck.
When I made the measurement, there was no shim. Then I put in a folded over paper, and placed it farthest from the body. That raised the strings. So I just need to get some StewMac shims and go that route.

Thanks.
 

Fluddman

Tele-Holic
Joined
Apr 30, 2010
Posts
806
Location
Sydney, Australia
I've never been game enough to sand a neck pocket. I did manage to take a high spot off of once using a router plane.

It will be interesting to see what happens when you try another neck - hopefully that'll do it.

Good luck.
 

eallen

Friend of Leo's
Gold Supporter
Joined
Jul 30, 2013
Posts
2,909
Location
Bargersville/Indianapolis, Indiana
Make sure the neck is not being held from fully seating in the pocket as it should. Some things to check:

-Check the screw holes in the neck and make sure they don't have an pucker or spare fibers sticking out.

-Check the pocket and make sure there is no finish buildup in the pocket.

-If the screw hole alignment from body to neck are pulling the neck to tightly on the back of the pocket it can bind and keep the neck from fully seating. If you put the neck in place without the neck plate and turn the screws in partially and the screw is tightly against the back of the body screw hole it may be binding. In those instances, enlarging the body holes up a size usually relieves enough pressure to allow it to set. It can also help to round the back bottom edge of the neck off a hair to make sure it isn't holding it up.

Eric
 

Freeman Keller

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Joined
Aug 22, 2018
Posts
9,645
Age
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Location
Washington
Johnny, lets go back to your original question. My goal when thinking about the geometry of any guitar is to build it so the fret plane will just touch the tops of the saddles at their very lowest adjustment. There are four things that contribute to this - the flatness or arch of the top, the height of the bridge, the angle of the neck relative to the body and the amount that the neck stands proud of the body (which is called "overstand" in the violin world). You can't do anything about the first two, you can do something about the others. The usual 5/8 inch deep neck pocket and zero degree angle (zero is an angle) work for most guitars. If they don't adjust one or the other or both until you get what you need. Many fender guitars seem to need a very slight bit of positive angle and many end up with something in the pocket to make that happen. I personally don't like removing material from a neck, particularly a Fender licensed one. I will do a tiny bit of routing on bodies, particularly aftermarket ones, but the easiest thing to do is just add enough shim to make the fret plane hit the bridge where you want it. StewMac sell very nice little laser cut shims that make this easy but you can also make your own.

IMG_3794_zps2d6pjodw.JPG


If you want to understand geometry better

 

Senor Blues

TDPRI Member
Joined
Jun 24, 2007
Posts
30
Location
Los Angeles
I had good luck with these in building my parts caster bullet Mustang:



shorturl.at/jyBW3

B8A85BBE-D425-41D7-9AC0-0E16FA38AFF8.jpeg

D1DA8E1E-F00B-4161-BD4F-17842F17674D.jpeg

The whole guitar is parts, only original pieces are body and neck screws and plate which came from eBay.

Those Amazon ABS shims are just as effective as the far more expensive and more fragile Stew Mac ones.

Yes that is Warmoth roasted maple neck with eEvo Gold frets with a broken fine adjuster 😳 ….truss rod still works.
 

Swingcat

TDPRI Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2016
Posts
29
Location
San Rafael, CA
After a LOT of sleuthing and research, I believe that the issue with my player telecaster, is that the neck angle is incorrect. I am experiencing string buzz all the way up the neck from the first fret. It’s mostly on the 4th,5th and 6th strings. It’s not just a pleasant jangle - it is quite annoying, and comes through amps or going direct.

I tried leveling the frets, adjusting the relief, adjusting the action, raising the action ridiculously high, reseating the neck, adjusting the intonation, and checking to make sure it wasn’t the nut or some other vibration. I ended up shimming the neck, and the problem went away.

Then I went back to measure the action above the 12th fret as purchased and saw that it got lower as it got close to the body instead of higher as it should. So then I knew I had a neck angle issue. At least as far as I understand it.

Now that I’ve fully bastardized it (as well as installing Loller Pickups), I feel like I can’t really sell it as is, so I want to try a new neck on it.

I ordered a player Tele neck from Stratosphere and I’m going to see if perhaps the problem gets resolved.

My questions:
1. How often does one need to sand the heel of the neck to get a good neck angle when doing a replacement? I am planning to at least try that on my old neck, but I need to find a sanding wheel so I don’t mess it up.

2. Would you sand the heel of the neck, or would you try to alter the slot on the body?

3. Can I put a player neck on an American Perfomer body if I find one? If I end up getting my original neck to work well, I might sell that guitar and make a partscaster. Why? Cause I’m sorta pissed at this guitar and I just wanna start over.

I just wanna play my dang guitar. I should have brought it to a dealer right away but I usually do my own setups, and I’m actually pretty darned good with fret work if I don’t say so - so I figured that hitting the high frets would solve the problem.

I’d love some input.

Thx.

Johnny
Hi Johnny,
Doesn't sound like a neck angle problem. From your description, you still have high frets, and too much neck relief.
Hold a string (fret it) down at the first fret, and above a high fret (20-21st). Your neck relief should be around 1/32" inch or so at around the 10th fret (about enough to see it move a tiny bit when depressed there with both ends of the string held down).
A way to find high frets is to sue a short (or series of short) straight edges that span 3 frets. place it over the 3 frets and see if it rocks over the middle one. Do this WITH STRING TENSION ON the guitar.
Very few necks are bad enough that they can't be fixed, either by simple truss rod & saddle adjustments, or with a fret mill/recrown. https://www.facebook.com/search/top?q=turbocaster electric guitars
 

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