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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Haha thanks John. Dave good suggestion. Please keep them coming. After running into this a couple of times I'm starting to consider turning away Gibson resets in general. In the meantime I've got to find a solution to this bad boy.
I posted about this guitar a few months back, so this will serve as a sort of update. This is a G&L acoustic. One of the posters in my other thread said that Tacoma made about 200 of these for G&L, but only about ten or twelve were ever sold. This one took a fall, and the truss rod popped out of its housing and jammed that way, pushing the upper transverse brace loose in the process. The truss rod was hanging down, preventing the brace from fitting back into place, so I had to take the neck off in order to fix the rod and glue the brace. It was a bolt on neck, but there was glue present as well, so I had to steam it.

Here's one that surprised me.  It's a Vega Odell arch top guitar.  It had an unusual mortise and tendon type of neck joint.

2 more..


1976 Gibson J45/50

I acquired this guitar a couple of years ago from a person I have done repair work for. Don't know what he paid but the guitar is very needy with multiple issues and I quoted something like $1,200 for the repairs, more than it's worth. He thought about about it for all of 10 seconds and told me to keep it because he thought I would actually do something with it someday. I finally got around to it just this past week.

I got the neck off way more easily than anticipated using the Stewmac heating rod with my Weller soldering iron. I did not use ANY water with the heater but would have if I felt it necessary.  I was expecting a Gibson dovetail with parallel sides, not a "V", and as relieved to find out it was a regular dovetail joint. Also relieved that the glue was very minimal and only present on the dovetail faces, nothing on the heel. Drilling at the 15th fret, I found the pocket, straight down, directly below. I had only heated the joint for not quite 15 minutes and was able to rock the neck side to side and could see movement. I blocked under the neck heel and pushed the shoulders downward with some force. Again, expecting a parallel sided dovetail and hoping to get it to start budging upward. No movement upward yet, so I thought I would try whopping the neck heel with a rubber mallet to break things loose. It worked a little too well and the neck popped right out of the guitar and landed on my bench.

This guitar has a Black shaded finish over the neck heel and the sides adjacent to it but nowhere else. It looks like a cover up of some previous damage. After the neck was off, it was obvious that it had never been off before and no issues with the neck heel. I did some digging on the Internet looking for other 76 J45/50 examples and each one I found had the same neck heel shading, this was done intentionally at the factory. The images I am posting show a good deal of filler used around the neck heel perimeter. I have come to the conclusion that the filler was used routinely on this model and the shading applied to hide the obvious line it must have made around the neck heel.

Last year, I did a reset on a '74 J-50, using the Heat Stick, and it was the dreaded straight dovetail. Nevertheless, the Stick worked like a champ, and after almost 1/2 hour of heating, the neck pulled slowly, cleanly out(using a neck pulling jig. The Heat Stick is marvelous.

Gretsch Rancher , note the steam needle has to go in 15th slot and 1/2" in from fretboard edges , this will find the sides of the joint as the end gap is between 15 & 16 . Otherwise its HHG with shims , the 3 piece neck didn't have time to start coming apart . Shield the inlays while heating extension .

Now there is a reinforcing plate.

(I know, its not a neck reset.)


I thought I'd kick off my first post here with a current project.

Worked in a music shop when I was a teen in the early 80's, fixing amps and other electronics, learned how to do guitar setups, basic instrument repairs and so on to boot. Worked my way through engineering school as an electronics tech, doing guitar work here and there as well. 

I've bought this used, made in Korea Goya (from the Martin era) in 1982. It was my first refret, done out of necessity in the late 80's, without the proper tools or experience. I'd seen it done, so went for it. I'd played the frets off it. I got it worked out into playable shape back then, not great, but it worked. Recently decided I'd go back and fix it right, having done more refrets over the years. Came out good, but the guitar needed a neck reset too.  

Despite swearing I wouldn't, I decided to give it a go and pull the neck, as I hadn't done it before. 

It is a Goya G312, circa 1980-1982, made in Korea. Plywood top and sides.  

Neck joint is typical of the bread, 4 dowels with a little wood glue, but epoxy between heel and body surface. The neck heel is two pieces of wood, all mahogany. 

Method was heat with foam cutters, drilled from slot 14 and from the heel cap. 

The unfortunate consequence is the epoxy didn't loosen, but the adhesive inside the plywood did, so a good bit of the top veneer of the body remained stuck on the neck heel. 

Were I to do this again, I'd recommend sawing it, or just not doing it. If you just got to, drill and shoot directly for the dowels. Steam might be better, I dunno. But here I am, and my OCD will have me fix it. 

Plotting my next move, which will require stabilizing and leveling the damaged plywood area, and probably removing the center dowel to make it a bolt-on. 


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