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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-21-2004, 06:33 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2002
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neck pockets

for those that have built their own guitar, how did you do your neck pockets. I tried to make it too small and the slowly work my way to the right size, but it didn't work. So now my plan is to make it very slightly too big, then put wood filler in the sides and press the neck into it to get the right shape. Has anyone else done something like this?

since the best threads are the ones with pics, here are some pics of the work so far (the only thing that hasn't been photographed yet is our neck pocket thats been giving us trouble.)
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-21-2004, 11:39 PM
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What do you mean it didn't work? As kindly as I can put it, filling an oversized pocket is a bad idea. Neck pockets should match the neck tightly, but you shouldn't have to smash it in either, because if the woods expand you'll get a crack at the body.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-22-2004, 12:52 AM Thread Starter
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When I say "it didn't work" I mean I slipped and screwed up

in anycase, I dont mean to use the filler to make as tight as possible a fit, but it seems to be a good way to get as close as I can to the "perfect" neck pocket.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-22-2004, 02:14 AM
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If you slipped, and there was like a small bite taken out of the pocket, you could fill that. But if you overshot it and the whole thing is loose, I'd rather see you make it flat, glue in a filler strip, and try again. Coating the whole side wall with filler is just kind of amateur. The fill can crack loose, too, since its in a high mobility area. There's more guitars with cracks around that area than anywhere else, even the trem stud area I'd wager. If you don't want to put wood in there, go ahead and fill it, but make darn sure it's a good filler, like an epoxy base. And don't try to mold the fill wet. Just get a lot on there and file/sand/route it after it's cured. Don't put the neck in there to squeeze the filler into the right shape either. It won't work. You'd have to put plastic wrap or wax paper on the neck to avoid adhesion. That would add its own dimension. Plus fill will usually shrink when curing.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-23-2004, 11:57 AM
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I agree with Frank about the shims. I'm working on a project where I'm fitting a neck into a pocket that is slightly oversized (maybe 1.5mm too wide). I picked up some super-thin basswood strips at a lumber store and glued them to the sides of the neck pocket to take up the slop. I'm not sure if all lumber stores have these strips. I think they're mainly for hobbyists (model airplane builders), and they come in 1/32" increments (that is, 1/32, 1/16, 3/32, and so on up to 1/4"), and they're sold in strips of 2-feet long by 4-5" wide. These are perfect for making shims for neck pockets or just about anything else. They can be cut easily with any sharp-bladed razor knife. So I cut two of the 1/32" pieces to fit, sanded 'em down slightly, used a little wood filler to smooth out the edges (toward the rear of the neck pocket), and the neck is now an absolutely perfect fit.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-28-2004, 01:23 PM
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My RG7620 has a slightly-too-wide neck pocket. I eliminated the play in the joint by creating a makeshift shim out of a few folds of paper and inserting it on the side of the neck pocket. It's been rock solid ever since.

If your pocket is just a hair too wide, that's a good option. Otherwise, the wood-shim technique described above would be your best bet.
rory is offline  

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