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Craigjc (Craigjc)
Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2003 - 7:36 am:   

I'm wondering if anyone would be interested in compiling a list of neck dimensions of various Ibanez guitars here.

We all will agree that how the neck feels is one of the most important factors in being happy with a guitar. Without having access to an Ibanez museum, there's no way of telling how that guitar on e-bay is going to feel in your hands.

I recommend measuring the following to give a general idea of how a neck will feel:
1. Width of fingerboard at Nut.
2. Thickness (fingerboard to back of neck) at nut.
3. Width of fingerboard at 12th fret.
4. Thickness of neck as 12th fret.
5. Fingerboard radius.
6. General neck shape. Common descriptions include "V", "C", "D", "U", and (for those monster necks) "Baseball Bat".

If there is interest in this project, I'll work on drawing neck profiles of these shapes and post them here as examples.
Fredb (Fredb)
Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2003 - 11:10 am:   

Sounds like a great idea, I always wished there was some way to transmit this info without having to hold a guitar, maybe something that would slip over a neck and take X number of sample measurements, which can then be downloaded to some device which would then reconstruct the neck's feel (using some kind of pliable, reshapeable stuff, for lack of better terminology).
Mr_Roadstar (Mr_Roadstar)
Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2003 - 11:58 am:   

Here's a start:

Gonna hafta do some diggin' for specs on the older models...

Craigjc (Craigjc)
Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2003 - 12:43 pm:   

Steve, you've got a few nice Ibanezes. It would be great if you could take some measurements. Don't know if specs will really give us a good idea of how the meck measures up (or maybe they will). I've got a whopping collection of 3, but each one has a somewhat different neck and I can easily put them in order of my personal preference. If a seller described a neck on an Ibanez as "Just like an '83 Roadstar II or just like a Rocket Roll '58 copy", I'd have no reservations buying it without playing it. This whole topic stems from fears of buying an unseen guitar and finding it to have a big, bulky neck (not my personal preference). Then I'd be tempted to shave the neck (ruining a classic).

I'd love to see ICW participants with large collections get involved in this project. It would indeed benefit anyone who is shopping and hasn't had the opportunity to play a certain model in person.
Mr_Roadstar (Mr_Roadstar)
Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2003 - 2:27 pm:   

*grins* Well... Dunno about "nice" Ibanezes. I've got a bunch of Roadstars! :)

Seriously, I should dig out the calipers and do just that. Of the 8 I have, I know they have at least 3 different necks.

Craigjc (Craigjc)
Posted on Friday, February 14, 2003 - 7:14 am:   

Here are my measurements to start off the info sharing...all measurements are in inches.

1983 Roadstar II RS505
Width at nut: 1-5/8
Thickness as nut: 2-1/32
Width at 12th fret: 13/16
Thickness at 12th fret: 7/8
Fingerboard Radius: originally 7-1/2
Shape: "C"

1976 2387CT ('58 Flying V)
Width at nut: 1-23/32
Thickness as nut: 2
Width at 12th fret: 13/16
Thickness at 12th fret: 7/8
Fingerboard Radius: 12 (I think)
Shape: "C"

1977 2350 (LP Custom)
Width at nut: 1-11/16
Thickness as nut: 2-1/16
Width at 12th fret: 27/32
Thickness at 12th fret: 7/8
Fingerboard Radius: 12 (I think)
Shape: "C", but a bit more "D" shaped than the 2387.
Craigjc (Craigjc)
Posted on Saturday, February 15, 2003 - 5:58 pm:   

I'm posting pictures of various neck shapes. These are typical of 4 main groups, although there are variations of these out in guitar land.
"C" Neck Shape:
"C" Neck Shape
"D" Neck Shape:
"D" Neck Shape
"U" Neck Shape:
"U" Neck Shape
"V" Neck Shape:
"V" Neck Shape
Fredb (Fredb)
Posted on Sunday, February 23, 2003 - 11:30 am:   

Thought I'd post a few measurements, so I whipped out my two most dissimilar Artists in terms of neck feel ('79 AR500 v. '76 2619) and confirmed that width @ nut and width @ 12th fret are both the same, which I was sort of expecting -- 1 27/32" and 2 1/32" respectively.

The AR500 has more of a U shape, and the 2619 more of a C shape.

What kind of tool (calipers I think) is best for the width measurements? The width is measured at the neck midpoint, right? Think that the combination of width, width taper, action, fret height, and fretboard radius all go into the subjective "feel". My own experience is that even raising/lowering the action and adjusting the neck relief makes a neck feel different.

All the items above are measureable, with the exception of the U/V/D/C type neck shapes, which seem to vary a bit up and down the neck. Wonder what the best way to measure these types would be.
Craigjc (Craigjc)
Posted on Sunday, February 23, 2003 - 3:04 pm:   

Yes, calipers are the most common way of doing your width and thickness measurements.

For the shape of the back of the neck, I've used something which I do not know the name of. It is basically a bunch if thin rods side by side which are held in a "sandwhich" of metal. They are allowed to move so that when the row of rods is pressed up against something, it conforms to the object's contour.

In general, though, I think the neck shape "U/V/D/C" is always more prominent near the nut. Even a hard "V" will soften a bit as you go up the neck. But you're right, Fred, there are many variations of these shapes. The difference, for example, between a "C" neck and a "Soft V" might just be a displacement of a tiny bit of wood. That's why I only posted 4 pictures as general can go crazy analyzing variations in necks.

Thanks for the measurements. You're right in that there are many factors which contribute to the feel of the instrument. Some can be changed easily, some require more work. The neck size or shape, however, is a permanent modification I'd rather not do (unless the neck was a natural finish).

Your measurments confirm that, at least for me, I would really like to have measurements or actually play the instrument prior to buying. The good thing is that Ibanez has historically made great necks. I've played some Gibscum L.P.s that were just SO uncomfortable...probably why I don't own one.
Fredb (Fredb)
Posted on Sunday, February 23, 2003 - 7:30 pm:   

Craig, OK thanks for the info, need to add a set of calipers to the toolbox...
Mr_Roadstar (Mr_Roadstar)
Posted on Monday, February 24, 2003 - 12:32 pm:   

To make things a bit more consistant, dimensions are usually measured as follows:

Width @ nut
Thickness @ 1st fret
Thickness @ 12th fret
Width @ last fret

Another factor in the feel of a neck is the fretboard radius. This is not easily measured. I made gauges from thick paper. For reference, most Artist necks used a 305mm (12 inch) radius.

Remember: 1 inch = 25.4 mm

Username: Petruz

Registered: 05-2004
Posted on Monday, December 12, 2005 - 9:02 am:   

here's my first three contributions:

AF200 H700073 (1987)
width @nut = 43mm
width @22 fret = 57mm
depth @1fret = 20mm
depth @12fret = 22mm

AM400 H802681 (1988)
width @nut = 43mm
width @22 fret = 57mm
depth @1fret = 21mm
depth @12fret = 22mm

SC500N F9940146 (1999)
width @nut = 43mm
width @22 fret = 56mm
depth @1fret = 20mm
depth @12fret = 22mm

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