Official Luthiers Forum!

Solely owned and operated by Lance Kragenbrink
It is currently Mon Oct 26, 2020 5:17 pm


All times are UTC - 5 hours





Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 16 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 4:06 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 115
Hi all, sorry if this is a topic covered many times previously. Just finished a Strat build and carefully levelled the frets with the neck adjusted to be straight, and sanded a little fall away from the 15th to the end of the neck. At most I would say this was 0.010” by the 21st fret. When I strung her up and adjusted the rod so there’s about 0.010” of relief, my straight edge now lays flat across 12-21. So basically the relief is in the first half of the neck and then the fallaway has been absorbed. I’ve heard it said by a seasoned luthier that a neck sort of hinges at the point at which thickens out for the heel and joins the body as this is the stiffest area of the neck, and therefore the rest of the neck bends up slightly, resulting in a slight ramp up in the last few frets.

To me this stands to reason even with a well adjusted truss rod, but I wanted to get the thoughts and insight of the other seasoned professionals here.

Paul Reed Smith refutes the notion that you can’t bend on a 7.25” radius neck in relation to the Silver Sky. I recently played one and it didn’t feel special to me and the action wasn’t particularly low yet you could tell if you went much lower you’d start to run into choking on bends. The finish on the fret wasn’t great either. Certainly not the mirror finish I aspire to. I wonder though whether they either ramp the board / frets down to compensate for this kick up, or stiffen the neck further.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 5:09 am 
Offline
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
Posts: 10661
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
City: Tecumseh and Ann Arbor
State: Michigan
Country: United States
Status: Professional
Your fall away specs of around .010" by the 21st fret is perfect and you did a very good job to do that. Great to hear too I've been beating my stinkin head against the wall here for around eight years trying to share our view and implementation of fall away. Praise the Lord :) someone finally got it!!! :)

So yes when you sight down the neck you will see slight relief between the 1st and the 12th and we use the rod AND our precision fret dressing to get here and then some fall away or as you say it is absorbed and is simply looking level from the 12th to the last but no kick up under string tension.

Fender style bolt on necks, all of them including aftermarket offerings are prone to ski ramp from the 12th to the last a bit and of course as you also noticed the truss rod is ineffective in this range. This means it's up to us to mill in fall-away from the 12th to the last or the ski ramp may and likely will choke out notes in this region.

Regarding the fret plane no gentle ramp in the first several frets for us. We mill the fret plane level then add minimal relief to the bass side and perhaps a hair of back bow to the treble side and of course that .010 - .015" fall away. We rely on string tension and our experience to bend the neck forward a bit turning that minimal back bow or straightness on the treble side into a gentle amount of relief from the 1st through the 12th.

For folks who build steel string acoustic guitars this fall away can be what gets your client the low action that they want for finger style. For cowboy chord players who play 13's and never depart from G, C and D you will never notice a need for fall away classical players as well won't benefit from it. For electric guitar players it's important or you will have to have high action and a rattly sounding ax.

To my knowledge and our observation has been that no one is doing anything to counter the tendency to ski ramp on some bolt on, Fender style necks. That's where we come in because we can shape the neck any way we want with our precision fret dressing.

Regarding relief what strings are you running? I'm asking because 9's lash out more, have less inertial to overcome than 10's and need a tad more relief.

Regarding relief in a perfect world we want different relief on both sides of the neck and we fret dress to achieve this in our work. We want a nearly straight neck on the treble side and minimal relief on the bass side. Now your neck may be equal on both sides or more on the treble side. Regardless set relief so that there is no back bow on either side. Or if the treble side has more relief than the bass side set it so the bass side has minimal relief but some and the treble side has too much. Make sense? Just no back bow.

Thanks for endeavoring to incorporate and understand fall away you just took a leap in quality fret work that many folks never begin to understand let alone get to. Very cool to see someone do this on their own. [:Y:]

_________________
Ann Arbor Guitars
World-Class Repair and Restoration
http://www.annarborguitars.com



These users thanked the author Hesh for the post: Bosco Birdswood (Sun Feb 02, 2020 6:44 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 6:58 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 115
Thanks, Hesh! I’m only on my 4th Strat build but with each one am learning more than I ever predict, and this is of course largely through failure! This one has taken me 18 months to get the paint right. It’s a long and boring story but the short version is all 5 bottles of blue paint I got over the timespan had pigment separation only curable by thinning it excessively and running it through a coffee filter. Guess who suggested that as the fix? Yep. The paint manufacturer. Alas there is only one supplier in the whole of Australia.

Sonic blue also keeps no prisoners when it comes to debris in your clear coat.

So anyway, this guitar has taught me a lot. How to mix colours, how to keep a clean spray booth, that I’m not always the cause of the problem, and most recently the purpose of and requirement for fall away on a bolt on neck!

Back on topic. Strings are gauge 10.

Next question then (being as I’m prone to questioning all traditions!); what is the purpose of neck relief? I’ve heard some say it’s to give the strings a bit more room to jangle but surely if you’re playing around the 7th you won’t benefit from this?

Here’s the guitar anyway. ImageImage


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 7:10 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:36 am
Posts: 6004
Location: Southeast US
City: Lenoir City
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37772
Country: US
Focus: Repair
Hey Bosco, that's nice!

_________________
Steve Smith
"Music is what feelings sound like"



These users thanked the author SteveSmith for the post: Bosco Birdswood (Sun Feb 02, 2020 2:41 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 8:29 am 
Offline
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
Posts: 10661
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
City: Tecumseh and Ann Arbor
State: Michigan
Country: United States
Status: Professional
Bosco Birdswood wrote:
Thanks, Hesh! I’m only on my 4th Strat build but with each one am learning more than I ever predict, and this is of course largely through failure! This one has taken me 18 months to get the paint right. It’s a long and boring story but the short version is all 5 bottles of blue paint I got over the timespan had pigment separation only curable by thinning it excessively and running it through a coffee filter. Guess who suggested that as the fix? Yep. The paint manufacturer. Alas there is only one supplier in the whole of Australia.

Sonic blue also keeps no prisoners when it comes to debris in your clear coat.

So anyway, this guitar has taught me a lot. How to mix colours, how to keep a clean spray booth, that I’m not always the cause of the problem, and most recently the purpose of and requirement for fall away on a bolt on neck!

Back on topic. Strings are gauge 10.

Next question then (being as I’m prone to questioning all traditions!); what is the purpose of neck relief? I’ve heard some say it’s to give the strings a bit more room to jangle but surely if you’re playing around the 7th you won’t benefit from this?

Here’s the guitar anyway. ImageImage


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Very Nice, looks like a custom shop Strat that we keep singing for a famous bluesman who is one of our clients.

OK with tens if your treble side has less relief than the bass side, which is what we want in a perfect world but only 50% of guitars will do this out of the box go minimal relief on the treble side. Around .003". Of course there will be more on the bass side again if this neck has more relief on the treble side.

As busy Luthiers in the commercial world we don't "measure" out relief. We view it and note it. Simply fretting the 1st and the 12th and observing in the 7 - 9 range and you can see your relief. Strings are natural straight edges and great for a quick check of relief.

As you can see we set the treble side dang near flat but with a tad of relief.

Relief is clearance from the frets for string lash. Strings are vibrating in waves with lows and highs and the highs hitting the frets is what we call here rattle or fret buzz. One way to think about relief and why we want it is to think in the inverse about what if the neck was in slight back bow. If the vibrating wave of the string has the greatest amplitude in the region of the higher frets because of back bow it hits them. Add relief until it clears and you are good to go.

With all of this said you can see some other things about relief:

1). Heavy hitters need either more relief or higher action or both.

2). Lighter gauge strings may lash out further than heavy gauge strings in so much as they have less inertial to overcome so they get more uppty. It's not cut and dried what pitch and the amount of string tension comes into play here too.

3). f*ctories don't care about fretting in such a manner that there is less relief on the treble side and more on the bass side. It's one area where a Luthier made instrument has the opportunity to be superior and we can provide more value and command higher prices as a result. But as Luthiers we can fret dress in the level of relief where we want it at will.

Great looking guitar and great work!!!

_________________
Ann Arbor Guitars
World-Class Repair and Restoration
http://www.annarborguitars.com



These users thanked the author Hesh for the post: Bosco Birdswood (Sun Feb 02, 2020 2:50 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 2:47 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 115
SteveSmith wrote:
Hey Bosco, that's nice!

Thanks, Steve! The problem with Sonic Blue is that they’re all totally different because what we associate with the colour is actually the variable result of 60 years of fading and yellowing. Not enough yellowing and it looks like hideous baby blue, too much and you have surf green, too much blue and you have Daphne blue! For my tastes, Fender wash theirs out too much so it’s almost off-white.

To say I have been obsessing over this would be an enormous understatement...


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 3:22 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:36 am
Posts: 6004
Location: Southeast US
City: Lenoir City
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37772
Country: US
Focus: Repair
Nothing wrong with a bit of obsessing when you get results like that!

Speaking of fall away, here's a pic I took for a client a few weeks ago that shows the ski jump at the bridge end of the neck.

Image

_________________
Steve Smith
"Music is what feelings sound like"



These users thanked the author SteveSmith for the post: Hesh (Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:00 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 6:07 pm 
Offline
Koa
Koa

Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:09 pm
Posts: 690
Location: Cowichan Valley, BC, Canada
First name: Conor
Last Name: Searl
City: Duncan
State: British Columbia
Zip/Postal Code: V9L 2E5
Country: Canada
Status: Semi-pro
Bosco Birdswood wrote:
SteveSmith wrote:
Hey Bosco, that's nice!

Thanks, Steve! The problem with Sonic Blue is that they’re all totally different because what we associate with the colour is actually the variable result of 60 years of fading and yellowing. Not enough yellowing and it looks like hideous baby blue, too much and you have surf green, too much blue and you have Daphne blue! For my tastes, Fender wash theirs out too much so it’s almost off-white.

To say I have been obsessing over this would be an enormous understatement...


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Haha, in my limited solid color finishing experience I've rejoiced in the variety 60 years will give a person. The reality is it just needs to be close and no one can say its wrong... ;)



These users thanked the author Conor_Searl for the post: Bosco Birdswood (Sun Feb 02, 2020 6:39 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 6:37 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 115
SteveSmith wrote:
Nothing wrong with a bit of obsessing when you get results like that!

Speaking of fall away, here's a pic I took for a client a few weeks ago that shows the ski jump at the bridge end of the neck.

Image

Wow! Evil Knievel would have been intimidated by that one! Interesting that it stays in place even after the strings are removed. I guess it’s an older guitar though so has probably been held like that due to string tension for a few decades.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 6:40 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 115
Conor_Searl wrote:
Bosco Birdswood wrote:
SteveSmith wrote:
Hey Bosco, that's nice!

Thanks, Steve! The problem with Sonic Blue is that they’re all totally different because what we associate with the colour is actually the variable result of 60 years of fading and yellowing. Not enough yellowing and it looks like hideous baby blue, too much and you have surf green, too much blue and you have Daphne blue! For my tastes, Fender wash theirs out too much so it’s almost off-white.

To say I have been obsessing over this would be an enormous understatement...


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Haha, in my limited solid color finishing experience I've rejoiced in the variety 60 years will give a person. The reality is it just needs to be close and no one can say its wrong... ;)

No, quite! My friend owns a museum piece 60s Jaguar in original sonic blue and I don’t really love the colour because it hasn’t faded or yellowed due to being kept in the case for most of its life judging by its condition.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 7:37 pm 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:36 am
Posts: 6004
Location: Southeast US
City: Lenoir City
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37772
Country: US
Focus: Repair
Bosco Birdswood wrote:
SteveSmith wrote:
Nothing wrong with a bit of obsessing when you get results like that!

Speaking of fall away, here's a pic I took for a client a few weeks ago that shows the ski jump at the bridge end of the neck.

Image

Wow! Evil Knievel would have been intimidated by that one! Interesting that it stays in place even after the strings are removed. I guess it’s an older guitar though so has probably been held like that due to string tension for a few decades.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Yeah that's a Peavy from the 90's I believe. It's about as bad a ski jump as I've seen.

_________________
Steve Smith
"Music is what feelings sound like"


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Mon Feb 03, 2020 5:02 am 
Offline
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
Posts: 10661
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
City: Tecumseh and Ann Arbor
State: Michigan
Country: United States
Status: Professional
This ski ramp thing is very common especially with Fenders but other makes do it too with bolt on necks. That ramp can and may choke out notes and has to go.

Great pic Steve that's the kind of pic I send someone along with a quote for a fret dress. :)

_________________
Ann Arbor Guitars
World-Class Repair and Restoration
http://www.annarborguitars.com



These users thanked the author Hesh for the post (total 2): SteveSmith (Mon Feb 03, 2020 9:53 am) • Bosco Birdswood (Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:29 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Mon Feb 03, 2020 8:08 am 
Offline
Contributing Member
Contributing Member
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:36 am
Posts: 6004
Location: Southeast US
City: Lenoir City
State: TN
Zip/Postal Code: 37772
Country: US
Focus: Repair
Hesh wrote:
This ski ramp thing is very common especially with Fenders but other makes do it too with bolt on necks. That ramp can and may choke out notes and has to go.

Great pic Steve that's the kind of pic I send someone along with a quote for a fret dress. :)
Hey Hesh, that's exactly what I used it for[THUMBS UP SIGN]

_________________
Steve Smith
"Music is what feelings sound like"


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 6:40 am 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:39 am
Posts: 115
@Hesh my customer came back with a couple of tweak requests so I decided to follow your guidance and file in some back bow on the treble side. Seems to work great so far though I still find it hard to predict exactly what will happen under string tension. I guess that’s why Dan Erlewine invented his $1000 jig...



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk



These users thanked the author Bosco Birdswood for the post: Hesh (Thu Feb 13, 2020 8:39 am)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 8:47 am 
Offline
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
User avatar

Joined: Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:49 am
Posts: 10661
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
First name: Hesh
Last Name: Breakstone
City: Tecumseh and Ann Arbor
State: Michigan
Country: United States
Status: Professional
Cool and good going. We estimate what will result based on lots of experience and of course you can always string it up and take a look at it under string tension too. When I compression refret I keep the strings on and ready to be tensioned so I can check things usually several times or so as I'm pressing my frets in.

Dan worked on that jig for over ten years and it's an impressive accomplishment. We had one that Dave built that did all the same things and a few more such as it became the biggest clutter magnet in our shop. We went a decade without ever using it even once and we didn't need it either.

It's a decent learning tool and for rubber necked instruments such as some basses it can be helpful but again we can do all things that the jig can do and discover issues without one. Of all the jigs that we have and built the neck jig was the one that we never needed, didn't use and eventually parted it out to use the micrometers elsewhere where they could make us money.

All our set-ups, final set-ups are done in the playing position and that's a good habit to get in. Gravity is a player in our trade... at times.

Good job Bosco.

_________________
Ann Arbor Guitars
World-Class Repair and Restoration
http://www.annarborguitars.com



These users thanked the author Hesh for the post: Bosco Birdswood (Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:23 pm)
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Fall Away
PostPosted: Mon Mar 02, 2020 10:56 pm 
Offline
Cocobolo
Cocobolo

Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2008 2:03 am
Posts: 197
Location: USA
First name: Brett
Last Name: Faust
City: Puyallup
State: WA
Zip/Postal Code: 98373
Country: USA
Focus: Build
Status: Professional
The type of truss rod you install can change the way you think about relief.
I personally like the single vintage type
You can change the shape and depth of the fulcrum depending on neck profile/thickness.
Think about it, you can tailor your truss rod response to the stiffness of that profile.
That is my take on it.
Good luck.

_________________
How long is that in luthyears?


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 16 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group
phpBB customization services by 2by2host.com