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Guitar builders,I need help please

Charlie R57

New member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
369
I, building a guitar and need help with the Truss rod
installation. The body is finished,but needs a little final work
on the top carve. I've got the wood for the neck and wanted
to start but I need to know how deep to rout the truss rod
slot and if it is straight, or does it dip deeper in the center
for proper operation ?
The truss rod is the standard Gibson type.
Thanks in advance for your help.
 

Ed Rafalko

Les Paul Forum Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
6,287
Charlie-
I route my truss rod grooves so that the nut end is deep enough to allow the washer and nut to fit under the truss rod cover without pushing up on it. IT usually works out to around 3/8ths of an inch but it varies a lot from guitar to guitar. The bottom of the middle of the truss rod groove is about an 8th inch away from the back of the neck.The anchor side is about an 8th inch shallower than the middle. I can't give you exact dimensions because I never measuered them, and they vary depending on the thickness of the neck anyway.

There's a major debate on whether the truss rod groove really needs to be curved. Some people think that as long as you have more wood on TOP of the truss rod than under it and as long as the nut side is shallower than the anchor side, the truss rod will work properly. I haven't tried this method but I intend to. It's a bitch routing the groove with a cruve!
 

Charlie R57

New member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
369
Thanks ED, that helps alot. It sounds like it's not
perfectly straight and thats what I thought, but
I wanted to check with someone that has done
this before.
Thanks again, Charlie
 

Tonefiend

Fiendish One
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
7,656
'52-'57 truss rod slots are dead straight. Maybe that explains why they dont work well! :lolspin The curved slots are the way to go. Don't bother experimenting because they are a superior neck. Gibson stopped the flat bottom rod in the '50s and hasn't gone back.

The bottom of the truss rod slot needs to be minimum 1/2" deep at the nut for the truss rod nut to clear the cover. I forget what the measurement at the center is but there is about .200 seperating the bottom of the slot and the back of the neck. But 1/2 works for the end as well.
 

Ed Rafalko

Les Paul Forum Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2001
Messages
6,287
Like I said, I'm going to try the straight groove method just to see if it works.
 

NHMorgan

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Nov 13, 2003
Messages
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OK guys I really need help on this one, Im done with the body section of my first LP build and am to the point of routing the truss channel on the neck. Ive been using the new stew-mac LP plans, and they show the truss route to be perfectly straight and 5/16ths deep down the whole neck. Is this not correct for a 59? If not, how should I go about the truss route, and how do you tackle the curved route?
 

erikbojerik

New member
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Messages
138
The StewMac plans might assume that you're using the StewMac rod...their double-action hot rod uses a straight (flat) channel.

If you have a Gibson-style single-action rod, then the rout needs to be deeper in the center than at the ends, about 2 or 3/16" deeper....but again, as stated above, because different folks shoot for different total neck thickness, make sure that you have enough beef on the back of the neck.

You'll also need a curved fillet between the rod and the fretboard. The rod mounts into the neck already curved, so that when you tighten the nut the effect is to try to straighten an already-curved rod...thus pushing up the middle portion of the neck.

To rout it, make a template out of plywood or MDF with the proper dip sanded into the surface. Rout the channel flat first, then use the template to rout the dip with a small-footprint router (Dremel or laminate trimmer). Rout a practice channel into scrap first and measure to make sure you've got it...tweek the template if need be until you're satisfied.
 

NHMorgan

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Nov 13, 2003
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That's what I was thinking about the MDF, alot of work, but I guess that;s the way to go. The stew mac plans actually dont call for the stewmac rod, but rather just the traditional gibson rod.
 

Gibsononly

Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2004
Messages
809
If you have the plans I am thinking of it is a mid 50's LP. They just came out with the plans for a '59. If the plan shows the guitar with P-90's then it would have the correct truss rod channel for early LP's, but it is not what you want to do.
 

NHMorgan

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Nov 13, 2003
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Nope, these are the brand spanking new ones. I guess they already need another revision.
 
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