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What should I do about my Classic Vibe's neck?

Discussion in 'Squier Tele Forum' started by Cooper, Jan 2, 2021.

  1. Cooper

    Cooper Tele-Holic

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    Hey y'all: Longtime member but haven't posted much in quite awhile! Now I need advice!

    I've owned my Classic Vibe 50's tele for ten years and the frets are really showing signs of wear. I understand the fret wire used on these guitars is notoriously soft. I love the guitar and find the neck more than adequate, but I've never been in love with how it feels. It's . . . fine. Whereas my old 2002 American Series tele's neck was absolutely perfect. However, this neck is definitely part of the guitar and I would a little bittersweet about replacing it.

    So now that I have to do something about these frets, it looks like I have a few options. Should I . . .

    1. Invest in some tools and try to learn to work on the frets myself? I'm sort of handy . . .
    2. Pay my local tech $120 for a fret job (level, crown, dress) and hope to get more life out of this neck.
    3. Buy a new neck with my preferred specs ($$$).
    3b. Sell the old neck (disclosing the fret wear, of course) to offset the cost? Or keep it? Or . . . ?

    What says the forum? Any of y'all made a similar decision with a Classic Vibe?

    Thanks!
     
    teletimetx and Terrygh1949 like this.
  2. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Poster Extraordinaire

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    The neck is, monetarily speaking, not worth re-fretting, IMO. Use it to screw around with...or have the frets dressed very low, which is a very cool feel IMO, and put the neck on a guitar loaded up with flat wound strings, to minimize their wear. Then buy a neck you like for the Squier.

    Additionally, someone charging $120 for a fret level is exorbitant. I have been going to one of the best in L.A. since the '90s, and he charges only $80.
     
  3. IMadeYouReadThis

    IMadeYouReadThis Tele-Meister

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    Depending on how bad the frets are, it might be cheaper just to get a new neck than pay for the work. You can even get the carve you prefer. Look into Allparts necks, about $150 if I remember correctly.
     
  4. fenderchamp

    fenderchamp Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Are the frets showing wear when you look at them, or is the guitar playing poorly? If you really love the guitar, but not the neck, just replace the neck.

    sell the old one or not.. whatever.
     
  5. Mur

    Mur Tele-Afflicted

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    I won't replace frets, and am fine with 'em wearing down to nothing. As for neck replacement, I'd only do that if it didn't lend to the tone. I've found that necks influence the tone immensely, not to mention dynamics. That said, enjoy whatever you decide to do.
     
    Maguchi and Mad Kiwi like this.
  6. Cooper

    Cooper Tele-Holic

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    Thanks for your replies! @fenderchamp, there's definitely visible wear in the usual places. The guitar buzzes like a rattlesnake even with the action set higher than I'd like.
     
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  7. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    You really don't have much to lose by trying to do the job yourself. I wouldn't refret, just level, crown, polish. If all goes terribly wrong, buy a new neck. But it isn't really difficult - just prepare well and proceed slowly. Plenty of how-to online. It isn't going to play worse than it does now.

    Are you sure you don't also have some back-bow in the neck? Make sure there is a little relief.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2021
    mfguitar likes this.
  8. Oldsmobum

    Oldsmobum Tele-Holic

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    If it were mine, I would get some tools and fret wire, and then not start until I also had money for a new neck. I wouldn’t start the refret job without being 100% comfortable with the possible outcome of not having a usable neck. Somehow it increases the odds of being successful.

    $120 to level soft frets is too close to what it costs for a new neck- even if it’s a cool warmoth or other custom built neck... Let alone the fine lower cost alternatives mentioned by others here. $120 will definitely get a new neck.
     
  9. fenderchamp

    fenderchamp Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Having new frets put in has been the greatest thing that has ever happened to a couple of guitars I have owned. One thing about just scrapping out a neck is it's a nod to the more and more common practice of treating things as disposable. I personally think that classic vibe necks are too little, so I wouldn't hesitate to personally swap one of those out. But having a great old guitar, that you have played the heck out of refretted by somebody who really knows what they're and doing and takes their time to do a good job and level the frets and set up the guitar and dress the ends nicely will give you a much better outcome than simply slapping a new neck with typical fretwork on. If you really want a great outcome with a replacement neck the guitar is going to need a new nut and complete setup and probably a level and crown anyway, so you really can expect to pay a bit more than just the price of the neck.

    In any case, knowing somebody that can evaluate guitar setups and gives a damn and who can and will fix them appropriately is invaluable.
     
  10. Uncle Daddy

    Uncle Daddy Tele-Afflicted

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    I bought an Allparts neck for strat project, and the frets needed a lot of work to make it useable. If you don't already have. levelling and crowning tools and a decent set of nut files, it'll get expensive quickly.
     
  11. MojoTrwall

    MojoTrwall Tele-Holic

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    Paying 120$ in fretjob, for a neck that cost less seem is a bit absurd imho.
     
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  12. mmannaxx

    mmannaxx Tele-Meister

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    New neck or newer condition guitar. Never would I put that much money into a squier.
     
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  13. brokenbones

    brokenbones Tele-Holic

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    I bought a slightly less than new CV neck on eBay for I want to say $120ish. Sold the old worn down neck on FB marketplace for $40. It went surprisingly quick. This is my "beater" practice guitar so I couldn't justify dropping too much cash in to a refret.
     
  14. kohoutec

    kohoutec Tele-Meister

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    Definitely try the self level and crown. I've gotten into doing mine recently and it's really not difficult... And that's coming from someone who is generally useless at anything involving tools, I'm not the most practical type.

    I spent probably £80 on tools, plus another £20 on a really cheap used Strat copy to practice on. Then moved onto my sons Squier (that he never plays).
    Both of those came out ok so then did both of my partscasters, and last week plucked up the courage to do my Baja.
    They've all benefited from it, and I couldn't be happier with the results, especially knowing I did them all myself.
     
  15. capgun

    capgun Tele-Meister

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    You can buy a Fender neck for around $200 or so from Stratosphere. That’s what I would do. Just bolt it on and set it up and you’re good to go. I wouldn’t put $120 or even $80 into a Squier neck.

    Capgun
     
  16. viking

    viking Friend of Leo's

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    And then you have a Fender !
     
  17. viking

    viking Friend of Leo's

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    I like the CV necks , and would probably just get it refretted.
    If you change the neck , can I have the old one ?
     
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  18. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire

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    In order....

    Check relief. Do a level & crown/replace frets yourself on this neck if needed.
    Buy AllParts of your desired spec.
    Now you have 2. Which do you prefer?
     
  19. strat a various

    strat a various Friend of Leo's

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    THIS
     
  20. northernguitar

    northernguitar Friend of Leo's

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    Neck replacement on a Squier.
     
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