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scarf joints on elitist guitars?


jzucker

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Can anyone tell me when this started? Gibson/Epiphone seems to know nothing about this...

 

Photos? Which "Elitist?" I would guess, if you've talked to Gibson/Epiphone directly, about this, and they

"know nothing about it," that what you're seeing ISN'T and "Elitist" guitar, maybe? But, in the interest of fairness,

it would be nice to see what, specifically, you are referring to.

 

CB

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OK, if you do some image searches, for "Elitist Dots" you'll quickly find out, that all of that model

(at least all the one's depicted) have "scarf joints," at the heel and headstock. Some of the "Sunburst"

or "Cherry" ones are harder to see, but they're there. I learn something everyday! LOL!

It won't make any (real) difference in playability, or structural integrity! Might even be stronger and

less prone to warping? Time will tell.

 

CB

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OK' date=' if you do some image searches, for "Elitist Dots" you'll quickly find out, that all of that model

(at least all the one's depicted) have "scarf joints," at the heel and headstock. Some of the "Sunburst"

or "Cherry" ones are harder to see, but they're there. I learn something everyday! LOL!

It won't make any (real) difference in playability, or structural integrity! Might even be stronger and

less prone to warping? Time will tell.

 

CB[/quote']

 

I have 12 Elitists, including a Dot. None of them have anything other than a one-piece neck (except the J200, Broadway, and Byrdland, by design). The catalog specs for 2004, 2006, 2007, and 2008 (the years I have a paper catalog) say "1 pc mahogany" for the Elitist Dot.

 

These necks do have heel extensions and headstock extensions (known as "wings"), but that doesn't disqualify them as being one piece, as they are cosmetic. Gibson uses the same wings to shape their headstocks. These are the extra pieces of wood to the sides of the tuners that are used to provide the manufacture's identifying shape. The sides of a Martin peghead are straight; a Gibson has a scalloped peghead. The scallop is created by laminating pieces of wood to the sides of the peghead. These (or the heel extension) create no interferance in string energy being transmitted to the body, like a scarf joint beteen the neck and headstock would, or lower in the neck above the heel. That is why an a one-piece neck (or a neck that is laminated vertically) is so valued; there is no horizontal joint (like a scarf joint) to disrupt the acoustic energy as it travels down the neck.

 

CB, are you sure what you see is not just the vertical joint between the solid headstock and the cosmetic wings on either side of it? Or, do you see a joint that runs horizontall bewteen the neck and the headstcock (or a V shaped one lower in the neck), effectively joining the headstock to the neck (like on a standard Epi)? Please clarify and link to your pics, because a lot of false info gets started this way...

 

Red 333

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Some photos, albeit inconclusive regarding "headstock" joint (not "wings"). Hard to tell...

But, the heel joint is pretty obvious.

 

ELDT-CH_heel.jpg

311925400-2.jpg

Notice the color/density difference below the "ELitist" logo, and how it seems to have a rounded

edge to it, even though it's well matched, grain wise...the headstock seems noticeably darker,

than the headstock. But...???? Another "odd" thing, in this photo...is the "highlight" on the

neck is interrupted, for a time, on the upper 1/2 of the neck...then a faint resumption, near

the headstock. So...who knows???

 

CB

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Some photos' date=' albeit inconclusive regarding "headstock" joint (not "wings"). Hard to tell...

But, the heel joint is pretty obvious.

 

[img']http://i461.photobucket.com/albums/qq333/charliebrown1949/ELDT-CH_heel.jpg[/img]

311925400-2.jpg

Notice the color/density difference below the "ELitist" logo, and how it seems to have a rounded

edge to it, even though it's well matched, grain wise. ????

 

CB

 

My 71 ET-275 has the same exact heel joint, but it's a bolt-on neck....

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after studying mine more, I don't think it has the scarf joint. I see a wood grain pattern on one side of the headstock which I thought was the scarf line but there is no rounded scarf seam anywhere on the top of the back of the headstock. I think I was just fooled by the grain line like someone suggested. Duh...

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I figure if it can last on a 38 year old guitar, I'm sure it will be okay on the newer guitars.....

 

My JL Rev appears to be a one piece neck, but if you look at the head stock there is some suspicion that there is some scarf jointing there.... who knows.:-k

 

262389.jpg

 

262391.jpg

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I figure if it can last on a 38 year old guitar' date=' I'm sure it will be okay on the newer guitars.....

 

My JL Rev appears to be a one piece neck, but if you look at the head stock there is some suspicion that there is some scarf jointing there.... who knows.:-k

 

[img']http://www.mustangmods.com/ims/u/1759/13288/262389.jpg[/img]

 

262391.jpg

 

Yeah, I noticed something similar, in photos of another JL Casino,

but it was hardly "Conclusive!" ;>b Certainly not worth worrying about..IMHO.

 

CB

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I can see the scarf in that pic easy enough.

The piece scarfed on is almost definitely from the same piece as the neck. They cut the head stock off the neck with a shallow angle, flip it over, and glue it back on. That creates the angled head stock. Many believe this makes a stronger neck because of the lack of 'short' grain right at the angle, where Gibsons almost always break.

 

 

This is a dupe of my post in the other thread.:-k

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Well, it's interesting...I'm now curious, as to how many "Elitist" models have this, and when did it start showing up?

I.E., is it more evident in certain (later?) years of construction?

Was there a company wide policy decision made, to alter (slightly) the spec's, and construction, for strength, economics,

whatever? Was it started after the move to Qingdao, so the even the Japanese "Elitist" would have similar construction? Not saying that's what happened, or that it makes sense, even...just curious, since we've seen some evidence of them being made both ways.

 

CB

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OK...that's cool. But, there have been instances, where there ARE those kinds of joints. So....I'm still curious, what models,

and WHEN they started, IF it wasn't that way, all along, for those particular models. "Dot," or otherwise. Certainly wouldn't

be a "deal breaker," for me! But, it is interesting...

 

CB

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OK...that's cool. But' date=' there have been instances, where there ARE those kinds of joints. So....I'm still curious, what models,

and WHEN they started, IF it wasn't that way, all along, for those particular models. "Dot," or otherwise. Certainly wouldn't

be a "deal breaker," for me! But, it is interesting...

 

CB[/quote']

 

There are NO instances on an Elitist neck. An Elitist has a one-piece neck.

 

A scarf joint runs horizontally (the same direction as the nut does), not vertically, which are the joints for the cosmetic headstock wings. For those who are unsure, a scarf (and sometimes other kind of joint) joins the headstock to the neck. Some guitars may even have a second joint because two lengths of wood may have been used to make the neck itself. Usually, you will see this joint in a kind of V shape.

 

A scarf joint makes a big difference because it changes how sound vibration is transmitted throught the neck to the body. Better guitars have one-piece necks. Elitist have them. Gibsons have them. Masterbilts have them. Your Lennon Casino as a one-pice neck. Take it out of its case and LOOK to see if there is a joint that runs between the widest point of the lower headstock (or right above or below it), in the same direction as the nut (horizontal). You WILL NOT find it, because it is not there.

 

The heel extension (which you can see in the pictures) makes little or no difference in sound because the string energy has already entered into the guitar body at the neck block.

 

The Sweetwater pictures you questioned show a difference in color because the headstock is tilted, not because the neck and headstock are made from two pices of wood. As I said earlier, since the neck is carved from a single block of wood, the grain (and color) changes as more wood is carved away.

 

Red 333

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A scarf joint makes a big difference because it changes how sound vibration is transmitted throught the neck to the body. Better guitars have one-piece necks. Elitist have them. Gibsons have them. Masterbilts have them. Your Lennon Casino as a one-pice neck. Take it out of its case and LOOK to see if there is a joint that runs between the widest point of the lower headstock (or right above or below it)' date=' in the same direction as the nut (horizontal). You WILL NOT find it, because it is not there.

 

Red 333[/quote']

 

Ok, it's time to speak up here. I'm afraid this whole discussion is one that steps on one of the sacred cows of the guitar fan community. A scarf joint does not "make a big difference" in tone, structural integrity or anything else. This is one of those areas where change is happening, people don't like it, and assume if it's different it can't be as good. The truth of the matter is that glue joints are often stronger than the natural wood would be, and do not affect in the least the "transfer of vibration". This is marketing bullshit. If it is stronger, it often results in superior transfer of vibration.

 

Robert Taylor had a lengthy paper on the scarcity, and imminent extinction of suitable mahagony for guitars. One of the things he stated was that this whole notion of "one piece" guitar necks was a huge waste of natural resources and, in fact, unsustainable.

 

Every guitar that Godin makes has the dreaded scarf joint. Nobody accuses them of poor tone or weak necks. It makes absolutely no sense whatsoever to make a neck, with its compound angles, of a single piece of wood. There is absolutely no tonal or structural difference whatsoever. Try to picture how much mahogany is cut and thrown away in the creation of a Gibson neck using a single piece of wood. I'm afraid you have fallen prey to the marketing geniuses. However, within few years, all guitars will have scarf (or some equivalent) joints because it adds no real value and is unsustainable. You can be sure than the manufacturers will always offer "premium" guitars with one piece necks not because they are superior but because they just cost so damn much to make.

 

Hey, spend your money any way you want, but don't try to convince others that because it cost more it's obviously superior.

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Sorry but i'm going to disagree. How can any solid piece of wood in a guitar - particularly the neck - being replaced with multiple pieces and a glue joint which dissipates vibration not effect tone?!? Come on...THINK ABOUT IT?!?

 

First of all, we're not talking about multiple pieces of wood. We're talking about one joint between the headstock and where the neck connects to the body. The piece at the heel is just filler to round out the profile. Secondly, I would say, think about it: we're talking about vibration here, not electrical current, light or anything else. Like I said, marketing spin.

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Every guitar that Godin makes has the dreaded scarf joint. Nobody accuses them of poor tone or weak necks.

 

Arggh' date=' you made me go check:

 

[img']http://i401.photobucket.com/albums/pp99/G-400_4_sale/IMG_0808.jpg?t=1240019837[/img]

 

IMG_0815.jpg?t=1240019972

 

Yep, you're right (although I didn't expect anything to the contrary...)

 

Apologies for the diversion. We now return you to your regular programming. Elitist Dots, wasn't it?

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First of all' date=' we're not talking about multiple pieces of wood. We're talking about one joint between the headstock and where the neck connects to the body. The piece at the heel is just filler to round out the profile. Secondly, I would say, think about it: we're talking about vibration here, not electrical current, light or anything else. Like I said, marketing spin.[/quote']

 

Sorry, that's 2 pieces of wood between the headstock and the rest of the neck (3 if you include the neck heel) That constitutes multiple in my book. I agree the heel does little on an electric guitar but the headstock makes a huge difference. Your explanation makes no sense from a physics point of view. If you just think it through you will realize that all glue joints make a difference. The ones in the neck are HUGE. Not saying you can't have a great sounding guitar with a scarf joint but to say it makes no diff is naive.

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Sorry' date=' that's 2 pieces of wood between the headstock and the rest of the neck (3 if you include the neck heel) That constitutes multiple in my book. I agree the heel does little on an electric guitar but the headstock makes a huge difference. Your explanation makes no sense from a physics point of view. If you just think it through you will realize that all glue joints make a difference. The ones in the neck are HUGE. Not saying you can't have a great sounding guitar with a scarf joint but to say it makes no diff is naive.[/quote']

 

Nope, it makes no discernable difference. There are more variables between pieces of wood, with the knots, channels for sap, density, etc than there are from two pieces of wood joint together with some glue designed specifically for that purpose. I'll say it again: it's marketing hype that is unprovable. I'm guessing you haven't done any testing nor can you refer to any that's been done. There's a reason for that, you know.

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