Why would I want a compound (7.25"-9.5") radius neck vs. a straight 7.25"?

Discussion in 'Other T-Types and Partscasters' started by El Tele Lobo, Sep 18, 2019.

  1. El Tele Lobo

    El Tele Lobo Friend of Leo's

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    Since I gave up metal years ago and started playing Fenders, I've always played single-radius necks (usually 9.5" or 10", but I recently found I rather like 7.25"). I understand the theory behind it (better chording down low, better bending up high), but what's the word from the street?

    Annnnndd...GO!
     
  2. kplamann

    kplamann Tele-Holic

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    Taking into account that the neck becomes wider towards the body, from a geometric point of view the strings should be aligned on a cone and not on a cylinder. Hence the compoung radius. Feels good to me.
     
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  3. eallen

    eallen Tele-Afflicted

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    I make almost all compound necks & have yet to have a recipient love it, even those who have never had compound. It's personal preference many who get mine just like the feel.

    Eric
     
  4. teletimetx

    teletimetx Doctor of Teleocity

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    All kinds of glorious music has been played on every fretboard radius there is. No one here can tell you what should be best for you. Enjoy & play what you got.

    For example, you seem to feel that the 7.25 is good for bending up high. I won't argue with that myself, but I have heard others proclaim, in no uncertain terms, that 7.25 sucks for bending and in particular, up high.

    Neither position is right or wrong. It just what works for you and it doesn't really matter what I say about it or anyone else.

    I like the idea of a compound radius because it does seem like full barre chords down lower would be easier and flatness might make the higher bends smoother for me. Maybe. Somewhere along the road, I learned to adjust my bending techniques to accommodate different fretboards; almost as if I played a bunch of acoustic guitars as well. Ok, I did.

    just my 2 cents.
     
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  5. deytookerjaabs

    deytookerjaabs Friend of Leo's

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    Hate it.

    I like blind bends, I like knowing exactly where my 1/2, whole, 1 1/2 step bends are (even 1/4 step) without attacking the note before bending on the whole fretboard. I can to this pretty well with the traditional radius of different gauges.

    When I try a compound neck it's cool that the action is low and all but it's like re-learning how to bend and more so having a differing curve all up the neck so you straight up have to adjust your internal sense of intonation per the whole fretboard.

    Maybe others can't hear it the way I hear it but it does not work for my ear.

    I won't name names, or players, but I see some guys who love them play and their bending technique is usually "bend up to note and wiggle" then if they try other things the only thing masking the "miss" is distortion/compression.

    Hard pass for me.
     
  6. jrblue

    jrblue Tele-Afflicted

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    The compound radius suits how most people play, and most people don't find the 7.25 radius good for bending. If you have a different feel, then of course go with that. I'm not fussy and can play any radius readily, but if given a choice, I certainly wouldn't go with a 7.25 neck, but if I had one, the compound radius would be good. Hardly anyone is making or choosing 7.25 necks, not because they're terrible, but because people like others better.
     
  7. PCollen

    PCollen Friend of Leo's

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    You just answered your own question :" I understand the theory behind it (better chording down low, better bending up high), "; or so they say. I get by fine with 9.5 radius.
     
  8. RottenTheCat

    RottenTheCat Tele-Meister

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    Not that bends are hard, but fret out as they go "over tg5e hump" of a smaller radius fretboard. The flatter radius has less hump and the strange don't fret out. Also depends on string elevation and how many steps you bend.
     
  9. Bob Arbogast

    Bob Arbogast Tele-Afflicted

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    Old dog, olds tricks. On a Fender or Fender-type guitar, a straight 7-1/4" radius is home to me. Has been since 1975.
     
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  10. El Tele Lobo

    El Tele Lobo Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks for all the replies. I'm debating right now between a 7.25" and 9.5" (or 10") radius neck for my refin project. I've played all three and like them.
     
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  11. lammie200

    lammie200 Tele-Afflicted

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    I personally prefer a straight radius, and I have tried necks with compound radii for many years. I think that my muscle memory just expects a straight radius.
     
  12. otterhound

    otterhound Poster Extraordinaire

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    Although I have not tried a compound radius fretboard , it sounds like a great crutch for those that need it . I say use what you like .
     
  13. Skydog1010

    Skydog1010 Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

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    Have three 7.25 inch necks I'm selling, two Strats and one tele, they come with vintage tuners that were factory installed. One of the strat necks is Road Worn with beautiful fret wire and a really nice "used look" patina, the Tele is a road worn as new, will post in the classifieds shortly. $250.00 each plus USPS Shipping Priority that the buyer pays, actual amount. PM me if interested.
     
  14. memorex

    memorex Friend of Leo's

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    I love compound radius necks. Both of my Teles have 'em. One is 9.5" - 12", the other 10" - 14". If I could get anyone to make an even more extreme one like 7.25" - 14", I'd get it. Musikraft told me they could do it with regular frets, but not stainless, and I'm only using stainless these days.
     
  15. neilybob100

    neilybob100 Tele-Meister

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    Cool.

    Which Guitar has made you realise you like 7.25?

    I have a mix of guitars with different neck sizes. Keeps me keen going from to the other.

    Sent from my CLT-L29 using Tapatalk
     
  16. El Tele Lobo

    El Tele Lobo Friend of Leo's

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    I have an Allparts TRO-V on a jazz tele I built. I have a thread on here somewhere about it. It's called the Jazzbo Hepcaster. I bought the neck because it was available and affordable, figuring if I didn't like it I could flip it. I like it. I have 12 gauge flats on it, so not much bending. Works for me for the most part...though doing jazz chords farther up the neck would be a little easier with 9.5" or 10" radius.
     
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  17. oceanblue

    oceanblue Tele-Meister

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    Personally I prefer compound, 10-16
     
  18. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    I prefer compound. Also note that many single radius necks on paper are actually compound in practice-- because the frets are dressed
    to follow the spec radius lower down on the neck, and dressed to be a bit flatter radius higher up on the neck.

    So a player might wonder why their guitar
    plays with better action and no longer frets out when bending after they took it to their excellent, "magic"
    luthier-- and that's how they did it.
     
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  19. tele_savales

    tele_savales Tele-Meister

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    I really prefer the straight 12" radii I had warmoth make me way more than their 10-16".
     
  20. Rayf_Brogan

    Rayf_Brogan Tele-Meister

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    I like both 9.5 and 7.25 unless it's an offset guitar like a Jazzmaster. Then it has to be 7.25 for some reason.

    My rule of thumb is if I'm playing heavy rhythm, I'll grab a 7.25 radius. Lots of leads, 9.5. Of course rules are made to be broken.
     
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