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Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #93100  by CoolBreeze
 Wed Feb 02, 2011 6:23 am
Slash does the headstock trem with a Les Paul! I think he's had LP necks "explode" on him from doing that! :shock:

While I love the neck-thrus, I'm totally uncomfortable with the 24 fret, longer scale set-up. But I'm sure a big part of that is my own limitations. If I could find a PRS SE II neck thru- THEN we'd be talking! I'm just more comfortable with the shorter scale of a strat or PRS.

Be sure you get a chance to to play with a 24 fret neck before you make the leap either way- it could be just what you are looking for!

-Bruce
 #93158  by tcsned
 Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:59 am
CoolBreeze wrote:Slash does the headstock trem with a Les Paul! I think he's had LP necks "explode" on him from doing that! :shock:

While I love the neck-thrus, I'm totally uncomfortable with the 24 fret, longer scale set-up. But I'm sure a big part of that is my own limitations. If I could find a PRS SE II neck thru- THEN we'd be talking! I'm just more comfortable with the shorter scale of a strat or PRS.

Be sure you get a chance to to play with a 24 fret neck before you make the leap either way- it could be just what you are looking for!

-Bruce
Your hands can get used to feeling the heel at a certain point and if it's not there it makes it difficult to find your spot as you move up the fretboard. PRS changed their heels back in the mid 90s I think. The older ones were almost non-existent compared to the rather large ones they use now. I have a 1989 CE-24 (it's a bolt-neck 24 fret) and had a set neck 24 fret - both felt about the same. The newer ones I have played felt more like a Les Paul heel. Don't know why they changed - not good or bad just different. I love the feel of the CE but it's way different from the Warmoth WGD and if I play both in the same night it takes some adjustment . . . and usually a couple of unplanned notes.
 #93200  by Jon S.
 Fri Feb 04, 2011 3:35 am
CoolBreeze wrote: I'm totally uncomfortable with the 24 fret, longer scale set-up. But I'm sure a big part of that is my own limitations. If I could find a PRS SE II neck thru- THEN we'd be talking! I'm just more comfortable with the shorter scale of a strat or PRS.

Be sure you get a chance to to play with a 24 fret neck before you make the leap either way-
I agree. And it would be a mistake to buy any style guitar simply because Jerry played one if it's not, tonewise and ergodynamically, the best fit for you.

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 #100351  by GeneralGoldilocks
 Sun Jul 03, 2011 1:44 pm
I own a fender strat and an ibanez musician (bolt on vs thru) and i used to own a set neck guild bluesbird. there may be a minimal amount of sustain gained from the thru neck, but it mostly has to do with the big metal sustain block on the ibanez musician that makes it sustain more. a more important point in general for sustain and tone in general on strats (which sustain great, mostly because of the big metal trem block), is to make sure that the screws on the bolt on neck are tight and that there is a clean debris and sticker free surface between the neck and body. i took the neck off my highway one strat, and the neck had a sticker from the factory on it. i used a razor blade and a dap of isopropyl alcohol and removed the sticker, and then sanded the body cavity joint and cleaned them both up and reattached the neck, and this helped my tone and sustain a little bit. a guitar is the sum of all it's parts, and every little bit helps, although most of it is mostly mental, i think. But it is important to make sure all screws on tuners, necks, and all other parts are firmly in place so as to not create any rattling, buzzing, or looseness in the guitar. also, on older guitars (not vintage collectible ones for obvious reasons), going through and cleaning up the electronics can really help your tone (maybe not sustain), but resoldering dry joints, replacing old worn out wire, etc.... will help. pickup upgrades can be the ticket to making a brand new guitar out of an old not so great sounding one for under 200 dollars, especially if you like the neck on your guitar, but not the electrified sound of it.
 #102757  by barefootdave
 Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:31 am
Jon S makes an excellent point about buying the guitar that's right for YOU. Most guitars can be modified to sound like Jerry if that's what you're after. There are excellent clips on YouTube from members of this board showing strats, PRS, and very expensive Jerry replicas; all have outstanding Jerry tone once the essential mods are done.

Thanks to Jon S for the cool images re: neck construction and also the movement of the bridge on the PRS to show additional frets.

One thing to note if the OP is considering 22 v. 24 frets:

If I recall correctly, ALL of the PRS models were 24 fret until 1995 when the Custom 22 was introduced. At that point, what had been known simply as the "Custom" was renamed the "Custom 24". The stated reason for bringing out a 22 fret model was to return the neck pickup to the traditional position, which wasn't possible with the extended 24 fret board. There is a definite difference in tone with that placement, which I personally prefer, as I use the neck pickup quite a bit on all my guitars.
 #102758  by strumminsix
 Tue Aug 30, 2011 6:07 am
Let's also keep in mind that 24 fret guitars push the neck pickup closer to the middle position. This is significant.
 #102797  by Cmnaround
 Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:48 am
As original poster for this topic I realy appreciate all of the insight over the past few months, it has been very helpful. Anyway, decision made and problem solved. I went with the through neck 24 fret for a few key reasons: the extra 2 frets to get a full second octave, and accessibility to the extra 2 frets.

The longer scale makes a huge difference for me. My 14th fret is where my 12th fret is on my strat, so I have an extra inch and expanded real estate in the second octave now - frets 13-24 are spaced out, easy to play, and very easy to reach on all 6 strings because the neck through is super thin even where it meets the body of the guitar, pic included below, a Carvin DC-400A.

The other really interesting thing I came across, and yeah it was on the Ed Roman site - hold all the flames on that - is that apparently with the shorter scale, the neck pick up is positioned at a silent node for the 3rd harmonic and completely misses that, while ona 24 fret the pick up is placed where it can pick up teh vibrations from the 3rd harmonic. Explained in this link:

http://www.edroman.com/techarticles/scalelength.htm

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 #102798  by strumminsix
 Wed Aug 31, 2011 10:15 am
Cmnaround wrote:The other really interesting thing I came across, and yeah it was on the Ed Roman site - hold all the flames on that - is that apparently with the shorter scale, the neck pick up is positioned at a silent node for the 3rd harmonic and completely misses that, while ona 24 fret the pick up is placed where it can pick up teh vibrations from the 3rd harmonic. Explained in this link:
I think that pickup positioning, irrespective of the # of frets, is a very key thing for ME and my sound and a sound I appreciate!

I first learned of this thru my Jackson Soloist, which is a 24 fretter, and asked for this on my Rice which is my #1 and just 22 frets:
Image

I also find that it offers a sweeter compliment between neck and bridge pickups and great parallel!
 #102799  by drewfx
 Wed Aug 31, 2011 10:57 am
Cmnaround wrote: The other really interesting thing I came across, and yeah it was on the Ed Roman site - hold all the flames on that - is that apparently with the shorter scale, the neck pick up is positioned at a silent node for the 3rd harmonic and completely misses that, while ona 24 fret the pick up is placed where it can pick up teh vibrations from the 3rd harmonic. Explained in this link:

http://www.edroman.com/techarticles/scalelength.htm

Image
Unfortunately this is only true at a single fret or open position on a neck. If the PU is located at a node or anti-node for a given harmonic for a given fretted (or open) position, it won't be at other positions. The anti-node will always be at the point you rest your finger to play a (natural or artificial) harmonic, which obviously is not at the same place for open string as it is for other frets.

It also assumes that the PU is only sensing a narrow point right above the pole piece, which is also wrong - the magnetic field is much wider than the node/anti-node of the 3rd harmonic, even on narrow field single coil PU's.
 #102831  by strumminsix
 Thu Sep 01, 2011 7:54 am
Cmnaround wrote:Good point -
Even if the science is or isn't there the spacing could be something your ears appreciate