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ES-339 Neck - choices and dimensions


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I will soon be purchasing my first Gibson, likely the ES-339. I will be trying out the ES-335 as well to know for sure ( love the 335 as well but it may be too big for me)


On the ES-399, I am of course aware of the two neck choices and will try them both, but I know my limitations and, as a relative beginner, I know the subtleties may be lost on me. I have seen the two necks described as :


- 59 NECK = FAT= ROUND= HEFTIER = chunkier neck


- 30/60 = 60s neck = THIN = SLENDER = SLIM = WIDE feel of the 60's Gibsons = .030" deeper?



I find those descriptions confusiing !! And I suspect these look the same to the untrained eye.




1) Which one is WIDER across the fretboard? . Is it the 30/60 re 'wide feel' ?


2) Which is thicker/deeper ( top of fretboard thru to back of fretboard) ? . I had assumed it was the 59 neck ('heftier/chunkier), whereas the 30/60 is 'thin'.....but then the 30/60 is also .03 inches 'deeper'.


3) A picture is worth a thousand words ... Are there any pics or sketches, or schematics, where one can visually see the comparitive differences between the two necks, re width, depth, shape, etc??

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I don't think you'll get a clear answer off Gibson on this as I think necks are hand finished and no two are the same. My fat neck 339 is a D shape in section and to describe it as a fat neck is I think a bit misleading. It's a fuller neck in your hand but no way a baseball bat. It's feet up and a beer time here now but tomorrow I'll take some measurements for you. If you can, it would be best to go to a dealer and find out what suits you best. I don't have a Gibson dealer here so I had to buy mail order.

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As I understand it, no difference in width, just in the carve of the neck.

And basically, a flatter neck will feel wider because it lays flatter, an feels wider in your palm, more like a paddle.

And a thicker more rounded carve feels narrower like a baseball bat, or a big round stick, but will fill up the depth of your grip.

It would seem that wider would sit next to the base of your fingers, allowing them deeper access to the fretboard, but a more rounded carve would let the palm rotate around the neck, bending at the wrist, giving smoother movement across to the fretboard.

It guess it just depends on what feels comfortable to the player.


The 30/60 neck profile adds a little depth to the`60's flatter carve, kind of half way between the two shapes.


"Neck Profile

The Custom Shop ES-339 is offered with your choice of two neck profiles: a rounded ’59 profile replicates the slightly chunky yet fast carve of late ’50s Les Pauls and ES-335s, while a new 30/60 profile comes closer to the thin necks of the early ’60s, but with an added .030-inches of depth for increased comfort in the hand."[/color]



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My 339 with the '59 neck measures 1 3/4 inches across the neck at the 1st fret and 29/32 inches front to back. At the 12th fret this has increased to 2 1/16 inches across the neck and exacly one inch front to back. It seems more or less semicircular in shape.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I'd prefer the CS-336 but am leaning toward the ES-339 because of that 59 profile neck. Feels just like my R9 to me. The slim taper that comes on the CS-336 though isn't the 30 over model. It feels almost exactly like my Lifeson neck which I personally don't like as well.


Bottom line: You really need to play them both for as long as they'll let you. Of course, if you're like me, no one local will be stocking both period much less at the same time . . .

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