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multi piece body vs solid body. multi piece neck vs solid.


evol04gt

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dead horse kicking... but consider this...

 

epiphones get dogged on for the mulit piece body that that its a horrible tone and resonance and blah blah.-- them why are high end basses and custom neck through guitars ALWAYS multi piece gorgeous bodies? is it because they PLANNED the multipiece pattern??? and because 2/3rds of a body is one piece and 1/3rd is a different piece- does that make it crap? it will just look like crap if its natural..lol... or is it because we associate that with the CHEAPO wallmart guitars that are made from who knows what to be as cheap as possible?

 

necks..

 

a multi piece necks(butt to headstock) of good wood are going to be stronger. its a fact. one solid piece will be one grain and have its own tendencies to break on that specific grain pattern.. the sheriton neck i think is FAR more gorgeous than a solid pice gibson neck... im pretty sure that itll be a bit stronger too since the grain types will reinforce eachothers short comings. hell, head stock repairs put two strips of mahogany inlayed straight through the neck and headstock.. that area will be twice as stable as it was from the factory and thats been proven...... look at your gibson- the sides of the head (where the tuners go in) are glued on.. if that wasnt tough, they wouldnt do it on the freakin tuners.

 

 

 

is the multi piece debate really all a matter of aestetics to if its planned or if its a random pattern?

 

discuss yall!!!

 

i didnt bring solid tops vs laminate for obvious reasons.... on anything hollow, they are far better... but on solid- does it really make a bigg difference? prob not... if it did, that thick clear we all love would make more of a difference than the laminate does....

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There are a number of potentially complex [but fun] discussions which could arise from the questions posed there.

 

various theories can be championed... but all will fall foul of the variations found naturally in lumps of wood.

 

A theory held by some eminent builders is that a stiff [ie hard and/or substantial] neck, firmly attached to a relatively light and resonant body is the recipe for a lively and toneful guitar. The theory is that energy is transferred efficienctly within the mechnical "closed loop" and will drive the body into toneful exitement.

This theory is one that, broadly speaking, I do subscribe to. Partly because I agree with the mechanics... and partly because the theory is largely borne out in my experience of many guitars over many years.

 

If you buy this theory [in the same broad terms], you're also acknowledging that any discontinuity in the materials used to make the neck and/or body will have an effect on the energy paths within the structure... and may result in the loss of desirable resonance.

The impact of using laminated necks or multi piece spreads of timber in the body will depend on how differently they behave to single pieces of the same stuff. This will vary as much as the wood itself.

I'd suggest that a three piece spread of the right wood will usually produce a more pleasing result than a single piece of the wrong timber!

 

So it's one of those issues where the theory is sound...but the application and results are subject to many variables.

 

 

 

 

[-o<

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i guess its like the maple vs rosewood fretboard argument... i LOVE maple on my fenders... it just feels freeking perfect..... but my gibson styles, i would never loose the rosewood,..... each guitar just has a soul..

 

 

the real question is how many people actually set up their guitars properly?????????????????

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...a multi piece necks(butt to headstock) of good wood are going to be stronger. its a fact. one solid piece will be one grain and have its own tendencies to break on that specific grain pattern.. the sheriton neck i think is FAR more gorgeous than a solid pice gibson neck... im pretty sure that itll be a bit stronger too since the grain types will reinforce eachothers short comings.

 

Another rational for multi piece necks is to prevent warping. Different woods will react differently to the elements. Even one piece of timber will not warp uniformly all along it's length. So the idea was to take the neck timber' date=' slice it down the middle, and reverse one side. This way, the grain pattern was not the same on both halves. A weak spot wouldn't go all the way across the neck. And since different woods do not warp in the same way, they would put of a different type of wood in between the two halves to act as a stabilizer. Look at old Guild and Gretsch necks, in fact Gretsch still makes them that way. Here's an early '50s Guild Aristocrat Neck to illustrate the point:

 

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headback.jpg

 

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This technology allowed guitar manufactures to slim down the neck a bit prior to modern truss rod technology.

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Laminated necks are potentially more stable. There's no doubt about that.

That said, [and before folks start worrying ;^)] any neck that's going to warp, twist or otherwise misbehave, will usually start to do so when the guitar is quite new. If it behaves for a year...it will normally stay well behaved.

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A lot of this comes down to "on paper" arguments and "in reality" arguments.

 

On paper: One piece will be better than mulitple pieces because the wood grains all align and resonate better. It also tends to reflect selection of better wood on the part of the builder instead of using scraps. Solid wood can be a sign of attention to detail on the part of the builder instead of just someone slapping something together to make it look o.k.

 

In reality: Many high quality builders use multi piece bodies and it isn't a big deal. I challenge anyone to a blindfold test with a solid body guitar and one (otherwise identically constructed) that has 2-3 pieces glued together. Have them tell definitively which is which by listening to them being played and even having the blindfolded person playing them him/herself. I dare say the differences would be more due to the fact that every guitar is different than the body construction. I don't believe it is possible on a practical level to tell the difference.

 

Necks are more interesting. They are placed under much more stress than body wood. I would rather have a bi-laminate or multi piece neck that is stable than a solid neck that isn't. But handled the right way, the kinds of woods that are used for necks is all strong enough to do the job as a solid piece. I think sometimes muliti pieces are used to compensate for lesser quality wood and certainly to avoid the expense of having to use larger pieces of wood. When I see a multi piece neck it automatically makes me more suspicious than a multi piece body does. But they certainly aren't inherently bad.

 

I feel like I'm talking out of both sides of my mouth. In many regards, it doesn't matter at all and I'll stand by that statement. Pick the guitar that plays and sounds best to you. But if I were to spend $5k on a guitar... I'd pretty much insist that it had a solid body and neck. Seems like by that point, the attention to detail is something that you're actually paying for and have a right to acquire. And I don't currently own any guitars that don't have a one piece neck but all of them have multi (at least two) piece bodies. And don't forget, standard Gibson LP's all have at least two piece bodies: mahogany with a maple cap. gasp!

 

Hope this makes sense.

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