RGI aluminum neck build thread

Discussion in 'Luthiery, Modifications & Customizations' started by broj15, Apr 27, 2019.

  1. broj15

    broj15 SS.org Regular

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    So recently I've been thinking the herd here and there in an effort to buy my "dream guitar" and last night I took step one and decided to pull the trigger on on an RGI 700 series neck. Here's the specs for those that don't know.

    NECK SPECS:
    • Material: 6061 Solid Billet Aluminum

    • Scale: 25.5”

    • Nut Width: 1 11/16”

    • Frets: 22 Stainless Steel Medium/Medium

    • Fretboard Radius: 12”

    • Tuners: 3+3 Sperzel Locking

    • Nut: 6061 Aluminum (cut for heavy gauge strings)(0.013", 0.020", 0.024", 0.035", 0.046", and 0.056") or cut to your specific gauges if specified

    • Heel Pocket: Fender Strat Style (5/8” deep, 2.18” heel width, 3” total length, 5” radius heel curve)

    • Thickness: .700” at Nut, .725” at 7th fret, .740” at 12th fret .760” at 15th fret

    • Neck Shape: Very flat U shape, maximum thinness without structural loss, no tapered heel

    I decided to keep it simple and go with black dot inlays and a flat finish as opposed to the mirror finish. As of right now wait times are about 3 months~ so for now updates to this thread will come slowly.

    In the mean time, I need to decide what kind of wood I'll be using for the body, and what pickups I plan on using. For the body I'm thinking either ash or mahogany. I want something that will be very dense (to help compensate for the heavier aluminum neck and prevent neck dive) and will accept a stain easily. My plan is to stain it pure black and then finish with some kind of oil for a matte look. Also need to think about hardware & control layout as well, but I have a while to figure that out.

    Anyways, I'll keep this thread updated as this little project progresses.
     
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  2. budda

    budda Guiterrorizer Contributor

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    Yes!

    I hope more members buy RGI necks. Alex is a sweetheart and I'm super excited he ventured into doing this.
     
  3. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear Vendor

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    Dude, nice! Very excited to see this. RGI have come along at a great time and are absolutely killing it.
    I plan on doing a jazzmaster baritone and a rickenbacker 4003 bass with his necks.

    I think mahogany would be a good choice, ash could be a bit bright with the alu neck.
     
  4. The906

    The906 Contributor

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    wow, thanks for posting. Didn't know about these. The idea of a custom RGI O.G. Wizard neck is making me a little nutty.
     
  5. budda

    budda Guiterrorizer Contributor

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    Is he doing different neck profiles?
     
  6. broj15

    broj15 SS.org Regular

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    Afaik he's only doing the 700 series bass and guitar necks for now. His site says he'll do custom work, but he adds that it takes alot more time & is pretty expensive. It's not quite wizard thin, but these necks are called the 700 series because the measurement at the first fret is .700", or 17.78mm. looks like the OG wizard is 17mm at the first fret, so these RGI necks aren't too far off. That being said, the neck profile is surely different. Looks like these necks are about as flat as can be (he calls them a very thin flat "U" shape, with no heel taper, and only rounded shoulders.
     
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  7. budda

    budda Guiterrorizer Contributor

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    Ya they are pretty flat. I only briefly tried the prototype.
     
  8. The906

    The906 Contributor

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    Thanks, yeah that is pretty thin. 12" is the radii according to the site for the 700. Says he will do runs and one-offs with economy of scale duely noted.
     
  9. Lemonbaby

    Lemonbaby SS.org Regular

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    How heavy are those? I'd assume you'll end up with a very neck-diving guitar after replacement.
     
  10. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Depends on a number of factors, while aluminum is going to be about two or three times as heavy as most wood, if it's thin enough and with the skeletonized headstock, it'll probably come in close to some of the heavier wooden necks in practice.

    I've worked on a number of Bean and Kramer instruments with aluminum necks and most didn't seem to have a problem with dive, even those on bodies with similar dimensions to SGs.

    I'd definitely go for a heavier body to compensate, so this thing might wind up at the 11lbs+ mark.

    I've never heard of RGI til now, but the operation looks really cool.
     
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  11. broj15

    broj15 SS.org Regular

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    Nothing to report as of yet, other than we decided to go with luminlay side dots (no extra charge) and he just posted on Instagram that he's experimenting with microtonal necks and and a tunable tail piece for jazzmasters style bridges. I'm assuming it's intended use would be to mount a pickup between the bridge and tail piece and then be able to adjust the tailpiece for tunable drones.
     
  12. Bearitone

    Bearitone SS.org Regular

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    Sounds pretty over the top. I love it.
     
  13. budda

    budda Guiterrorizer Contributor

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    The "third bridge" is cool. I dont know how it would be used for drone but I believe it can be done :lol: (not my bag).

    The black block neck makes me think about blacking out a strat and making an order. Then I remember I have no money.
     
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  14. LiveOVErdrive

    LiveOVErdrive CNC hack

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    Wouldn't a tunable tailpiece just be for fine tuning like this?

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear Vendor

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    Here;

    I'm absolutely desperate to try this and will be pursuing it asap, with or without one of his necks too
     
  16. LiveOVErdrive

    LiveOVErdrive CNC hack

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    Oh dude that is wild
     
  17. budda

    budda Guiterrorizer Contributor

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    Gonna have to watch that video.
     
  18. broj15

    broj15 SS.org Regular

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    Well, no pictures, but I did meet up with a local builder for the body yesterday, Erik at ESB guitars. Very chill dude. Super nice. Builds small quantities and one offs in his basement. He's been building guitars for himself and his brother since he was in his late teens/early 20's, however he didn't start doing it professionally until 2011 after he came back from a 5 week workshop with.... NEAL MOSER. Here's a link to his site

    https://esbguitars.com/

    Overall meeting with him yesterday was great. Invited me into his home, let me meet his cats, and let me play a few completed builds he had on hand. Almost everything he had in His house we're guitars he'd specifically built for himself, so they weren't To my specs, but the quality of the builds we're evident. Fretwork & fit & finish were all on point. In addition to that he took me on a tour of his shop and basically walked me through the whole process how he builds a guitar. Really made me feel very comfortable and super welcome and showed 100% transparency, which is a breath of fresh air after all the small custom shops that have burned people these past few years.

    Also, his day job is building cabs, first for St Louis music back in the day, and now for a small boutique builder located just outside of the city, so he definitely knows his way around a wood shop, which is very reassuring.

    Unfortunately he won't start cutting wood until the neck arrives (wouldn't make sense to do otherwise), but we did decide on some specs and aesthetic choices.

    SG body shape, mostly made of mahogany but with a thick ash cap. Gonna do a transparent black stain so the grain from the ash can show through and give the whole guitar a nice worn out look (should pair nicely with the flat finish on the alu neck). I showed him a pic of Alex Wade's old custom ESP 7 string tele for reference.

    For a pickguard he does a 2 layer black/aluminum sheet metal as part of his signature look and we both felt that would be a nice way to tie the neck and body together aestheticly.

    Also gonna try and work in his custom EYE inlay (can be viewed on the guitars on his site) somewhere on the body, but we haven't chosen a location yet.

    All in all I spent almost 3 hours with Erik talking about the build, gear, and just getting to know each other. If anything I'm just more impatient about getting this guitar in my hands finally.
     

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