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Two bolts are better than one, right?
Author
Post
enalnitram (Martin Lane)

Total Topics: 47
Total Posts: 338
I've been cruising along on a third guitar build. I glued the Martin-ish one-bolt neck block to the rim. And then I got to wondering if I wouldn't rather have two bolts in the block.



The hole in my block is 1/4". And so are these bolts in this pair from LMI. So I ordered them. They'll probably be here on Friday.

http://www.lmii.com/CartTwo/thirdproducts.asp?CategoryName=Truss+Rods%2FNeck+Parts&NameProdHeader=Bolt%2DOn+Neck+Inserts

So I was just about to just now lower the bit, but then I thought I'd run it by y'all. What do you think? Am I crazy?






Mar 17, 10 | 4:16 pm
Bill Cory

Total Topics: 158
Total Posts: 3584
Martin -- Two are better, based on my experience. Here's why I say that:

I adjusted the truss rod in a Martin OM kit (the one in the book) and to help it take on its extra relief, I flexed the neck a little bit.

oops

The bolt unthreaded from the neck heel and the base of the heel pulled away from the body. (I had not glued it to the sides; only the extension.) I wasn't putting that much stress on it, so the neck extension didn't snap, thank goodness. I put another bolt in through the soundhole below the original bolt, tightened it, and the guitar is good as new.

Learned two lessons:
1) Don't be in a hurry and stress the neck; let it relax naturally. (I had seen a tech in the shop where I used to work do it to hurry things along.)
2) Put a second bolt in the neck to start with.

Now effectively I have only one bolt, since the first one is stripped. But the new one is below it, so it should be okay. I'll let you know in ten years or so.

Bill

Mar 17, 10 | 4:29 pm
Ken Cierp

Total Topics: 58
Total Posts: 2262
Two bolts makes it a true bolt-on, Martin actually glues the MT necks -- make sure you use the correct size drill for the brass fitting, the fine thread fitting don't work, capture the sides of the tenon by clamping blocks on both sides before installing the fitting and CA the fittings after they are seated.

Ken

Kenneth michael guitars est. 1978

Mar 17, 10 | 4:41 pm
enalnitram (Martin Lane)

Total Topics: 47
Total Posts: 332
Thanks a whole bunch for those insights. I want to go thru with it. I think I'll wait until my hardware arrives, though. I just want to be sure the washer fits in the larger hole, or whether or not I should plug that. I'll be able to make a hole just like the existing one with a 1/4" bit and a 1/2" bit (halfway through).

Mar 17, 10 | 6:35 pm
naccoachbob

Total Topics: 26
Total Posts: 257
Martin, where'd you get the neck block from? I'm hoping to avoid something like that on any builds from now on. I'm a 2-bolt, belt and suspenders kinda guy.

Mar 18, 10 | 5:18 am
longbow

Total Topics: 4
Total Posts: 74
Martin, I have the real martin MT. plywood blocks. Like ken said they only had one hole also. I wondered what to do, but put in second hole. I went down to ace hardware and got threaded inserts for the same bolt size. They were .49 cents ea. I think I used a spade drill for the washer hole. Next time, since I make tools, I might make a counterbore. I'm glad ken mentioned martin co. using glue, I wondered why they only used one hole. Do you guys think I should still use glue in the MT. spot if I have two bolts? The U tube links say you don't need to, what do you think? I did'nt mean to break into your thead sorry Martin. Dave L

Mar 18, 10 | 6:58 am
enalnitram (Martin Lane)

Total Topics: 47
Total Posts: 332
no problem Dave, this is our topic, not mine. all good to know. I might try that next time. I don't think you'll need to use glue if you're using 2 bolts. but that's just what I've heard. I don't have experience yet with this kind of a neck joint.

I got the block from a reputable source that sells all kinds of stuff, not just one thing. doesn't matter who it is. next time I'll just ask for 2 holes, if I'm not making em for myself by then.

Mar 18, 10 | 9:15 am
longbow

Total Topics: 4
Total Posts: 74
I assume that too, but you know what they say about that. Thats why this forum is so nice, you hear from people who know there stuff. Still you or someone reading this, might see martin co. neck blocks MT. style on ebay. I got mine from G Man, HE sells all kinds of stuff, a while back tons of martin co. reject parts cheap. I was getting necks for 10 bucks and neck blocks for 2.00 . Anyway it seemed strange martin co. only used one bolt and then glue, since I got into this everone I saw used two, until your story with the one hole thing. I just looked at the bolts and stuff you got from Lmi. , next time try ace or woodcraft the inserts there 50 cents and 1/4...20 thead bolts are cheap. but so what its peace of mind to know you have the right stuff, If I wasn't so cheap, I would of bought a kit and been done a long time ago. I must like to suffer.

Mar 19, 10 | 5:28 am
Tony_in_NYC

Total Topics: 29
Total Posts: 448
Dave,

I dont think gluing the MT joint would be needed. Let me explain why. I didnt think it was necessary because once the fingerboard is fretted it curves down into the sound board slightly and squeezes tightly to it. The two bolts holding the neck on can be tightened and keep the neck securely on the body, and I began to think that glue was not needed in those areas. Additionally, if those two joints are not glued, when you eventually require a neck reset, it will be infinitely easier to preform. Since I bought my kits from Ken Cierp, I asked him his opinion about gluing the extension and the MT joint. He told me I did not have to glue them and I am not going to glue them when I get to final assembly after I lacquer it.
Why do you enjoy suffering? Smatterchu? (Whats the matter with you?)

Mar 19, 10 | 6:05 am
longbow

Total Topics: 4
Total Posts: 74
Suffering and genius go hand in hand. I'm so smart I'm building my first from scrap parts. Some of us have to learn the hard way. Me and my OM cut away.

Mar 20, 10 | 5:40 am
blues creek guitars Authorized Martin Repair Ctr

Total Topics: 52
Total Posts: 1011
Martin does glue as Ken Ceip explains. With 1 bold glue is a good idea. The neck block was from me at Blues Creek Guitars and was from CF Martin. If you want a double hole I can make you one , that isn't a problem. Tony , your idea is not a good one , yes you are right that the fretboard may push down but that isn't good enough. You should still bolt that extension to the top . There are a few different suppliers of such hardware.
You want the neck to be solid against the guitar. If not you can expect movement when you don't want it. I did try something similar early in my building career and that thing was a buzzing problem until we glued the fretboard extension down.

John Hall
Blues Creek Guitars Inc.
Authorized CF Martin Repair Center

Mar 20, 10 | 1:14 pm
Ken Cierp

Total Topics: 58
Total Posts: 2262
I must point out that there is only on person on this forum that is totally qualified to give specific assembly instructions and advice relative to the "KMG Guitar kits" -- and that would be the designer. While very similar to Martins in sound reproduction, there are subtle engineered structural differences. In addition KMG guitars are nothing like the lower level Martins with "bolt on necks" which have the non-traditional "A" frame bracing.

Ken

Kenneth Michael Guitars est. 1978

Mar 20, 10 | 2:43 pm
Adaboy

Total Topics: 64
Total Posts: 509
So only the original designer, Mr. Martin, is totally qualified to give advice on Martin kits? <smile>

I of course, know nothing and haven't finished even my first guitar.......but I'm very willing to throw advice out there anyhow! Ha! This is not my idea.......I read it in a post made by Mario Proulx and it makes sense to me. If you decide to glue the fretboard extension to the soundboard, you might try using a thinned glue that doesn't hold to well.....like Elmers School Glue or similar. It will come loose easily for neck resets (if needed). A thin soundboard made of softwood is no match for a thick fingerboard made of a dense hardwood. If the expansion ratio of the fingerboard and top doesn't match and the guitar is stored in low humidity, the shrinking of the fretboard may cause the top to split. The idea is to use thinned glue (or similar) with water so the glue gives before the top splits. Easier to work more glue under the fingerboard and re-glue than it is to repair the cracked soundboard.

And remember, advice is cheap......good advice, now that's harder to come by. <smile>

(* Don't take the jokes too seriously.......I'm on a sugar high and can't help myself <grin>.......fresh zuchinni bread! *)

Mar 20, 10 | 6:00 pm
enalnitram (Martin Lane)

Total Topics: 47
Total Posts: 332
Thanks for the offer, John. I already assembled the rim. But then, I started wondering if it would be better with two bolts. It's not a big deal. If it's crazy to drill another hole, now, I won't do it, and will proceed as is. But if it's not a crazy idea, then I think I will drill as pictured above, and go forward with two bolts.

Mar 21, 10 | 5:39 am
longbow

Total Topics: 4
Total Posts: 74
Thanks, Adaboy. I was'nt thinking about expansion. Also school glue ie pretty weak stuff, I was going to try hide glue that sould come off easy too. Maybe I should go wt. reg. Elmers a few dots here and there on the ebony fretboard extension?

Mar 21, 10 | 6:48 am
Ken Cierp

Total Topics: 58
Total Posts: 2262
If "buzz" is the concern as a result of poor fitting FB extension, I would suggest (as is done with truss rods) using a dab of silicone under the extension. Place a piece of clear packaging tape on the sound board and the silicone will spread nicely forming an insulating gasket. If the FB extension is not properly contoured to form a compression joint in the first place, there is a good chance that a thin brittle glue line will break loose anyway -- then the builder is back to square one.

Ken

Kenneth Michael Guitars est. 1978

Mar 21, 10 | 7:36 am
blues creek guitars Authorized Martin Repair Ctr

Total Topics: 52
Total Posts: 1011
If you are on a martin kit glue the extension or get the bolt on attachment for the fretboard. I wouldn't use the silicone for the extension on a martin kit. As some point that may have to come off.

White glue and tite bond will work as will hot hide glue.

John Hall
Blues Creek Guitars Inc.
Authorized CF Martin Repair Center

Mar 21, 10 | 3:11 pm
Tony_in_NYC

Total Topics: 29
Total Posts: 448
I think we all would agree that there are many ways to skin a cat. I prefer a fillet knife personally.
John, if my FB extension ever starts to buzz because it is not glued down, it will be a very simple job to unbolt it and glue it in the future since its not glued! So no worries there.
However, I have been playing the guitar for about two months and there has not been any buzzing. Now, I realize that two months is not very long when you consider the life a guitar can be 100 years, but its not buzzing now. And, like I said, if it ever does, its an easy fix.
Ken Cierp has not steered me wrong with his information. When I initially went to bolt on the neck with the FB glued on it, I could not get it on because of the FB extension pushing into the sound board. Ken told me how to get it on, and trust me, its a tight fit. I think the only thing that could ever cause the FB extension to buzz is if somehow it begins to curve upwards, which in my opinion is impossible. As we all know, once you fret a finger board, it takes on a bow.
John, I am not here to throw gas on the fire, but I think you may have misread Ken Cierp's advice on the silicone.
He said to put packing tape on the SB before pushing the FB extension with the silicone down. The packing tape will keep the silicone from adhering to the SB, thus making a silicone gasket that is only attached to the FB extension. Thus, removal in the future will not be impeded by the silicone at all. One might argue that the silicone under the FB will dampen the sound produced by the guitar, but I think that the area of the soundboard under the extension does not play any part in the production of sound since it cant vibrate anyway.
While there are definitely aspects of designing and building guitars that require specific knowledge, there are other things that to me are common sense. I definitely think some aspects can be over thought, and thus complicated unnecessarily.
Now I will go stir up some s**t elsewhere on the forum.

Mar 22, 10 | 8:07 am
enalnitram (Martin Lane)

Total Topics: 47
Total Posts: 332
Tony, is that a yes or a no on me drilling a hole in my neck block? 8^)

Mar 22, 10 | 9:05 am
Tony_in_NYC

Total Topics: 29
Total Posts: 448
How the heck should I know? I was only trying to piss people off. :o)
Honestly, I would go with what john says. i dont know anything about neck blocks with one hole. Although it does seem that it would need the added strength of the glue, so I suppose I would vote for drilling the extra hole in the neck block OR gluing. Or maybe just drill a hole in my neck and you can stop me from making these posts! However, I do believe that drilling a hole in my neck will likely result in my death and murder is definitely illegal in pretty much every country, so you could end up in jail if you drill a hole in my neck. Which could result in people drilling things into you in places you would probably not want any drilling activity to occur. So....hold on...what was the question?

Mar 22, 10 | 9:31 am
enalnitram (Martin Lane)

Total Topics: 47
Total Posts: 332
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cV0tCphFMr8

Mar 22, 10 | 10:17 am
blues creek guitars Authorized Martin Repair Ctr

Total Topics: 52
Total Posts: 1011
Drill the 2nd hole . If you need the insert I have them and the bolt to make them match
John Hall
Blues Creek Guitars Inc.
Authorized CF Martin Repair Center

Mar 22, 10 | 2:14 pm
Tony_in_NYC

Total Topics: 29
Total Posts: 448
Monty Python and the Holy Grail? My favorite movie!!!

Mar 22, 10 | 3:56 pm
longbow

Total Topics: 4
Total Posts: 74
Sir Tony Smatterchu..if you stir up questions, you might get throw into the holy neck block hole and you WILL suffer. Do you enjoy suffering? You started out tring to help me.... and I thank you. Martin in the end its up to you, good post..... lots of good info throw over the bridge. What is your quest? Well I would like to build the perfect guitar...Boom....

Mar 23, 10 | 2:05 am
Tony_in_NYC

Total Topics: 29
Total Posts: 448
Sir Longbow the Sarcastic...Brave sir knight,I do not enjoy suffering at all! That is why I bought my kit from an engineer with the noble CNC milling machines who can machine my parts accurately to within hundredths of an inch! (This accuracy may be wasted on me since I am inaccurate to withing half an inch)
If only I had Brave Sir Robin's minstrels to play inspirational music for me while I built, I might be better at it! Or not.

Mar 23, 10 | 4:52 am
longbow

Total Topics: 4
Total Posts: 74
Ya, I need to stop posting at 4.00 in the morning. I wonder if I should cross the bridge wt. my bride or cross my bride wt. my ebony bridge? what? I need more coffee.

Mar 24, 10 | 4:46 am
Ken Hundley

Total Topics: 40
Total Posts: 2169
You guys need more sleep. Me too. This 2 hours a night has gotta stop.

Mar 24, 10 | 6:40 am
DonB

Total Topics: 20
Total Posts: 240
An article I read suggested using silicon beads on the studs prior to installing drywall to isolate the wall from the building to deaden the sounds being transferred. If silicon, among other methods, are used to isolate and deaden the sound in a building I would think this method might deaden the sound (if only a little) on the acoustic instrument as well?

I am under the impression that all parts of the guitar make up it's voice.

We use to take decorations off of restaurant walls prior to painting by using a guitar string that sliced through the silicon very nicely.
All the best,

Don

Mar 27, 10 | 12:57 pm
Ken Cierp

Total Topics: 58
Total Posts: 2262
Not sure how this thread got to applying Ľ” beads of silicone to a guitar with a caulking gun (I agree that’s a bad idea)--- but that’s not the point. The issue is concern for a POTENTIAL buzz caused by a POOR FITTING fingerboard extension. The suggestion is to apply a .005 thick spot of silicon to act as a gasket, its not gluing down anything. There’s not a human ear, dog or perhaps even an electronic device on the planet that would be able to detect any sound quality change this mod would make other than preventing the buzz. As mentioned earlier truss rods are silenced and contact mikes attached using this type of material, have been for as long as I can remember.

I would point out that (as far as I know) there have been several 100 guitars built by members of this forum, using all manner of skills, material, processes, tools, fixtures ending up at all levels of quality and craftsmanship --- I don’t believe I have ever read even once that the final product sounded like C**P. My point here is that building a guitar has much more to do with “preferences” than “scientific evidence” --- so using or not using old time or modern products or modern ideas is simply preference. And as pointed out many times, unless you have a very large sample set for blind evaluation comparisons there is simply no way to tell which guys/gals set of “preference” sounds better than the next. But you do know which preferences are easier and more accurate for you and result in an instrument that is more maintenance friendly --- Bob Taylor based his whole business plan on this concept.

Ken

Kenneth Michael Guitars est. 1978

Mar 28, 10 | 4:39 am
DonB

Total Topics: 20
Total Posts: 240
Ken, if you are referring to the statement I made about isolating sound how does that refer to applying a quarter inch bead with a caulking gun on a guitar? My point was only in isolating sound from a surface.

Mar 28, 10 | 9:12 am



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