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Thread: reinforcing a ukulele neck?

  1. #1

    Default reinforcing a ukulele neck?

    The Stewmac ukulele kit I am putting together the neck is a little warped which got me thinking about truss rods. I know you do not use truss rods in ukuleles or at least I don't think you do. Do you ever reinforce the neck in any way? I saw a video where the guy installed a hardwood strip like a truss rod down the middle of his neck. Is this necessary or generally ukuleles typically don't have neck issues.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    So. Oregon
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    The need for reinforcement is controversial, as is most everything in lutherie. Many builders, including me, take the position that installing reinforcement is cheap insurance. 1/4" or 6mm square rod is commonly used. There are several suppliers. Here is one that has a close size right now:

    https://dragonplate.com/dragonplate-...200-x-250-x-24

    This subject is complicated by the effect of reinforcement upon neck relief. For starters, you might be happy aiming for a flat fret board. Or maybe not!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Always use the truss rod in your uke necks, graphite rods are cheap and the added insurance of a stable neck is a must if you ever plan to sell.


    Quote Originally Posted by Steve-atl View Post
    The Stewmac ukulele kit I am putting together the neck is a little warped which got me thinking about truss rods. I know you do not use truss rods in ukuleles or at least I don't think you do. Do you ever reinforce the neck in any way? I saw a video where the guy installed a hardwood strip like a truss rod down the middle of his neck. Is this necessary or generally ukuleles typically don't have neck issues.

    Thanks

  4. #4

    Default

    I use a carbon fiber rod from dragon plate as well.....

    It is also worth noting that this rod (the way I do it anyhow) goes past the nut into the head-stock a little just to give some support there as well....My theory is cheap insurance but also a piece of mind. Easy to do and not too expensive...

    Now does it "need" it ...No, but there is far less of a chance things are going to get wonky later in the life of the uke....

    In short I highly encourage anyone taking the time to build a uke (kit or from scratch) to put one in just for the piece of mind. You spend all that time making it....A few bucks and literally 15-20 mins. of extra time is well worth it.....but am I not going to judge someone either way as there are many other factors that effect the quality of a ukulele.....

  5. #5

    Default

    Thanks guys. It's too late for the kit but I am getting things together for a scratch build next. Very helpful. Thank you

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    New Zealand
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    The other thing you can do, is what I prefer is to rip the neck blank in half lengthwise, flip one piece over and glue it back together with a contrasting spline.
    Kind Regards
    Dennis

    dpophotography@yahoo.co.nz
    Southern Cross Banjo Ukes & Ukuleles
    Proudly Hand Crafted in
    New Zealand.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Philly
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    Quote Originally Posted by saltytri View Post
    The need for reinforcement is controversial, as is most everything in lutherie. Many builders, including me, take the position that installing reinforcement is cheap insurance. 1/4" or 6mm square rod is commonly used. There are several suppliers. Here is one that has a close size right now:

    https://dragonplate.com/dragonplate-...200-x-250-x-24
    Thanks for including the link. That's about half the price I pay at McMaster.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    So. Oregon
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    You're very welcome!

    The selection of sizes comes and goes, so you might also want to keep cstsales.com in mind. They've been reliable also.

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