View Full Version : Bolt-on neck question.

02-20-2016, 04:42 AM
Hi everyone, I'm not far off completing my first build which has a bolt on neck.
Do any of you that use bolt-on necks, glue down the end of the fretboard to the upper bout, or just leave it sitting on top? I'm sure this has been asked before so advance apologies. Thanks Mike.

Gary Gill
02-20-2016, 04:55 AM
I use a bolt on neck and use some glue under the finger board. I clamp it lightly. Works fine for me.

Beau Hannam Ukuleles
02-20-2016, 05:42 AM
glue the FB down. some manufactures (Taylor guitars) also bolt the fingerboard extension down but ummm....dont do that

02-20-2016, 05:54 AM
I don't glue down. I don't find it necessary since I fit it as close as I can.

02-20-2016, 09:06 AM
If you think about the forces at play and how you're building then the options are:

1. The fret board extends to the sound hole and glueing down the fret board provides a stabilising effect to neck and neck block rotation by providing a large glueing surface to the sound board which in most bracing patterns also has a relatively heavy and stiff transverse brace north of the sound hole.

2. You have a very short fret board extension that more or less is only sitting above the neck block and doesn't extend to the sound hole. Glueing to the soundboard probably doesn't do anything advantageous in this case.

02-20-2016, 09:26 AM
I hadn't really thought about gluing this until now, as i always thought the idea of a bolt-on neck was to make it easy to remove if necessary. Gluing the fretboard extension does make sense from a structural point of view, but makes removal more difficult. I'm guessing that if removal was necessary, then heating that area to soften the glue would be the answer. I'm thinking Titebond for this reason. Thanks for the replies.Mike

Pete Howlett
02-20-2016, 10:18 AM
Gluing, no matter how long the fingerboard extension is preferable... I can see all sorts of problems if this is just left to 'rest' on the upper bout, the least being 'cupping' over time of the unsupported end of the fingerboard. Believe me, there is no such thing as 'dry' ebony or rosewood. The amazing thing about these two common fingerboard woods is they are like sponges, sucking up and giving off moisture, especially if they are left without a protecting finish. Coupled with teh forces you put on them wacking the frets in tight... Get that Titebond out!

02-20-2016, 10:22 AM
Gluing it is then, thanks Pete.

02-20-2016, 05:06 PM
I'm a gluer too... Another possible problem with an unglued or floating fingerboard is potential for "buzzing" as that upper bout separates ever so slightly due to shrinkage and beats against the fretboard. This might create a pleasant sound but it also might sound horrible. I know there are luthiers that don't glue down because their joinery is so good it doesn't have to be. I am not one of those people. The advantage to not gluing is no squeeze out issues and a really clean looking joint. Another argument against gluing is that all that glue is just really going to kill resonance in the upper bout. There might be something to this. I don't know.

02-22-2016, 07:19 AM
I've done both glued and unglued. I don't see any difference either way in the finished product, even after a few years age on them. Do what your gut tells you is best