Hi All,

 I've had a few neck re-sets through the workshop recently (lucky me). I always take a photo of the join once it's apart in case I do one the same again. It's handy to know what angle/depth to drill the streaming holes.

Does anyone else do this?

Is it possible to have a gallery page on this forum to show them all? - might be a useful resource for us.

Just a thought


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I just pulled the neck off a 1940's Vega Odell Archtop.   I wasn't able to get any info on this guitar other than being told the body was probably made by Harmony.  When I tried to do the usual steam hole, it didn't feel quite right and when I applied steam, nothing much happened.  The neck was loose enough that I ultimately was able to steam through the sides of the heel and found this. 

Hi , Chris, I just saw the Vega. Interesting neck joint! I wonder what you did with it? Was this a reset
or just to fix a loose neck. Did you glue the thing back together as is?
Thank you for showing this.

It's still a work in progress at this point.  I'm looking into having the pickup re-wired and all of that has to be done and re-installed before the neck get re-assembled due to the fact that the wiring runs through the neck pocket.  Very strange!  It's hard to see in these shots, but the pickup wire ran through a hollow metal tube that was soldered to the pickup base that went through the fingerboard extension to mount the pickup and carry the wire.  At the base of the slot in the neck, there is a hole that the wire passed through going into the neck block.  The hole is covered with glue debris in the shot above, but it ran through the neck block and into the body cavity coming up through a hole under the tailpiece to the control which mounted onto the tailpiece.

As to the neck set, I'm going to have to check the final measurements pretty carefully, but I believe that it will need to be re-set at least a bit to get the action right.  I'll keep folks posted.

Pleased to present for your consideration. . . . . . . . .

I have a early 70's, Yamaha FG-260 12 string in my collection that is over due for a neck reset.

I had to cut off the fingerboard extension because I couldn't find the neck pocket when drilling steam holes.  Once the FB extension was off it was clear that the 15th fret was too deep behind the neck pocket for a vertical hole and I was aiming away from the pocket more with 2 angled holes.

This was assembled with a hide glue, but it was a very tight fit.  Still took about 15 minutes to steam it out.

The back edge of the dovetail was 12mm back from the front edge of the body, and about 1mm of open space to the back edge of the pocket.  Down near the middle of the neck heel there is a cut away area for the truss rod that looks to be a good area to aim for when drilling 2 steam holes.

Left and right the pocket is about 11-12 mm in from the edge of the fingerboard.

Now to slowly work the angle back in place and re-mount the neck and FB extension.

Hope this helps someone else down the line to not have to cut the extension off when working on a reset.

Here's a picture of the label.

I tried a reset on a red label made in Taiwan, and got nowhere. My suggestion is that you try to loosen the fretboard extension with heat. If NOTHING happens after a few hours, then it is time to stop and do something else. My something else was donation to a local thrift store. 

Good advice, and I'll take it. It's a shame, as some of these can be great sounding guitars, plywood and all. Also a great neck shape for me personally.

Interesting. Given that this is an early one, I wonder how close these dimensions are to the slightly later red label Japanese FGs. I've got a few and would like to have a go at resetting one to start with, but I've read nothing but horror stories re the epoxy type glue they might have used in the neck pocket, rendering steam somewhat pointless by most accounts. I need to do some further research into the matter, but don't recall there being too much info out there last I checked. 

I received this response at my initial post,  Yamaha FG-260 and FG-12-300 neck joint question.

Reply by TKW yesterday

I know this is a few months late, but I thought I'd add this for anyone who may do this in the future.  I reset the neck on my Yamaha FG260 and had this exact problem.  I found that removing the 15th fret dot maker and drilling under it to go right into the neck pocket.

Hope this helps someone...

He included a picture that would be helpful, go check it out.

TKW, thanks for adding that valuable information.

Hi fellas I've got a '53 J-45 with a neck that won't come off. I've run into this with Gibson's before but never one of this vintage. There's a good solid pocket and it took steam just fine but the joint only wiggles on a pivot on the middle. It could be one of those square dovetails that are on some Gibson acoustics. I really don't want to have to slip the heel so anyone who has some insight into what's going on in there hit me up.

Is it possible the top was installed over the dovetail(preventing the dovetail from releasing), as was done sometimes in the 30's, and 70's?  I have not heard of this in the 50's, but?

I believe I have seen posts where people speculated if Gibson, or a repairman, re-topped a guitar in that manner.

But it could be just a fainting thought from a failing mind. 


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