Had an epiphany about neck thickness and action

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by omlove, Aug 7, 2019.

  1. omlove

    omlove Tele-Meister

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    Please correct me if I am wrong:

    There are thick tele necks that's 1" at 12th fret
    There are thin ones that's 0.87" at 12th fret

    Assuming the tenon part of neck can only be thicker than this dimension, but let's say it's the same neck thickness from 12th fret all the way up, then:

    a thick neck will have fingerboard 0.13" taller than a thin neck when sitting in the neck pocket. That's 8.32/64" taller!

    If that's at 12th fret and we need to raise the saddle to compensate for added neck thickness, then the saddle needs to be raised 16.64/64" to maintain the same action. That can easily max out saddles if they were high to begin with.

    I must be wrong somewhere, please correct me...
     
  2. mistermikev

    mistermikev Tele-Holic

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    um... the neck will be .75 base + .25 fretboard at the pocket regardless of the neck thickness at the 12th fret. if it's .87 at the 12th then the neck tapors from 1" to .87 at the 12th.
     
  3. EsquireBoy

    EsquireBoy Tele-Meister

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    I’ve never thought about that, but I think it is the other way around: on thinner neck profiles, the tenon is actually thicker than the rest of the neck.
     
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  4. darren7

    darren7 Tele-Holic

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    Most modern Fender-style necks start out with a 0.75" neck blank with a 0.25" fretboard. The neck heel is left full thickness. Everything else is just material removed from the neck. You could swap out a thick neck for a thin neck with the same fretboard radius and frets, and they would not affect the height of the bridge saddles.
     
  5. lammie200

    lammie200 Tele-Afflicted

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    The thicknesses that vary are on the backs of necks. The fretboard heights compared to the neck pocket depths are the same regardless of the thickness of the neck back. In other words, the tenon portion necks is the same depth regardless of the neck back profile.
     
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  6. omlove

    omlove Tele-Meister

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    Thank you all!!! Now that I know better, I felt so dumb about asking the question in the first place.

    The reason that I was thinking about this is I replaced a native classic series 50s strat neck with a replacement classic player 50s strat neck. Both stock Fender, no custom no mods. I thought the specs are so similar but the action got so low after the swap that I almost maxed out the saddle...

    The variables are:
    1. classic series: 1st 0.85" 12th 0.87" fret height 0.038" radius 7.25" almost no relief
    2. classic player: 1st 0.88" 12th 0.90" fret height 0.043" radius 9.5" almost no relief

    Yes neck is thicker (but that shouldn't matter now that I understood), radius is flater (that should raise the action not lower, right?) and fret size is marginally different.

    The only thing I can think of is neck angle, but I have no tool to measure.

    What would be the main difference?

    Thank you for your thoughts. Really appreciate it.
     
  7. philosofriend

    philosofriend Tele-Holic

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    Since it its so easy to put shims in the neck pocket to get the saddle height screws into the middle of their range, I've never had to think about it that scientifically.

    You know, there is no assurance that every neck will end up with the bottom of the heel perfectly parallel to the fretboard. A tiny difference here would make a big difference in action. In any case, neck shims are how you fit a new neck and body to each other.
     
  8. mistermikev

    mistermikev Tele-Holic

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    from neck to neck there could be some variance in thickness (they are generally .75" + .25" but who knows how much one was sanded vs the other)... and from pocket to pocket(depth, angle)... add to that the difference in fret size, neck adjustment could be different... there's a lot of possibilities.
     
  9. drf64

    drf64 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I have an Epiphone with perfect neck thickness and action. Mere coincidence?
     
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  10. omlove

    omlove Tele-Meister

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    Are there many guitars new from factory that already got shimmed? Or is shim mostly used for aftermarket neck body alignment?
     
  11. Recce

    Recce Friend of Leo's

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    This, it makes no difference because the neck is thicker on the back. It won’t effect anything on the top of the neck.
     
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