Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #132925  by strumminsix
 Fri Oct 04, 2013 1:14 pm
Not sure but have to say this - get what you like playing the most!!! IMO this is one part of the "homage guitar" that should be specific to the individual.
 #132959  by tatittle
 Sat Oct 05, 2013 11:10 pm
Alot of folks claim thicker/thinner necks affect tone fairly dramatically. I tend to agree though I havent done extensive testing...certainly brass/bone nuts and different p'up/guitar combos vary pretty widely. So I would not write it off as irrelevant. That said ergonomics is the key to being comfortable enough to play inspiring music to a large extent, and profile/radius is at the top of that list. I dont think Ive ever played a 16" but I love flat boards for everything but vibrato on bends. You can see Jerry started to have trouble with those (which were a staple of his Strat days) with the flatter boards. His bending in general became less fluid IMO after leaving Strats (or before them), to the point I was suprised to hear him doing it so well when I first sarted listening to 70-72 tapes regularly....considering the clean tones he was a had some suave bluesman dexterity in that era.
 #132989  by TI4-1009
 Mon Oct 07, 2013 6:50 am
Agree. When I ordered my Tiger I asked for a 16" radius "because that's what Jerry had." Phil G. said he could do that if I wanted, but that it would be as flat as a classical guitar. I went with a 12" and was happy with that. Same as my SG.
 #132992  by strumminsix
 Mon Oct 07, 2013 9:16 am
Radius = 100% personal choice
Shape = 100% personal choice
Depth = 99% personal, may impact tone and sustain
Nut = 50-90% personal choice depending on how much open playing you do on an electric

I like my open strings to sound like my fretted ones so work with luthiers appropriately.
 #132998  by tcsned
 Mon Oct 07, 2013 12:15 pm
I tend to agree with strummin - if you're looking for an exact replica then neck shape, thickness, and fingerboard radius might be important to get exact. If your looking for a guitar to play, I'd go with your own personal preferences. It doesn't seem to make much sense to spend that kind of money to have a guitar that isn't exactly what suits you and your playing.
 #132999  by mgbills
 Mon Oct 07, 2013 12:25 pm
"In my opinion..." when you think about the variability of wood, having a neck that you personally like is you're best choice. My take is that the set-neck design of Tiger is the biggest tonal factor when compared to a bolt-on type guitar. I think you would also find it difference tonally over a neck-thru design.

Wood density is measured with the Janka scale. It involves a hydrolic press, a steel marble of known size (0.444 in) , and a guage to measure force. If you look up Cocobolo, for example, you'll see a Janka rating on some sites of 1400, and on others 2600. If I were guessing I would presume that the sites are copying data, and that somebody had a typo. The cocobolo I've had rates in the 2400-2600. Do I know? Not absolutely. Heart wood, core wood, outer's all different ...on every tree. I've begun doing some tests on a homemade tester of regional PNW species, and 25% - 40% variability is not uncommon.

My point is this...without buying slabs of cocobolo & vermillion etc from Doug Irwin...and getting him to convince you that the wood is from the same tree/block as Tiger, you really are dealing with statistical uncertainty and variation to a very great degree. The overall resonance signature between a baseball bat-like neck, and a more modern "C" shape is very likely below detectivity.

This is not to imply that one should not try to emulate these things. All factors play into the overall experience. One day, when I'm old and wise, I'll find a way to measure all of this.