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V neck profiles

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by caustic69, Oct 12, 2015.

  1. caustic69

    caustic69 Strat-Talk Member

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    I recently was inquiring about V neck strats at a local shop because I had the opportunity to hold a 1950's Road Worn strat and i liked the neck, although I didn't really get a chance to play it.

    After some research I found that currently there are a few sub $1K strats available like the Road Worns, the 50's Classic series, the 50's Classic Player and artist series like Jimmy Vaughn and Buddy Guy.

    The guy at the shop told me that on guitars with the "Soft V" profile, the V profile only is present for the first several frets, like maybe through fret 4 or 5.

    So for you guys that know, is that correct? Does the V profile go away after about the 5th fret and merge into a more typical C profile?

    Thanks,
     
  2. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier Freak Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Yes, every V neck I've ever seen tapered and was more rounded up the fretboard...
     
  3. alainvey

    alainvey Senior Stratmaster

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    They also vary. Soft V seems to have quite a wide field of application for Fender, describing the Baja, Jimmie Vaughan, and Classic Player 50s necks - these are all fairly different, especially the Baja. They also use it to describe the Japan 54 necks, as well as the AVRI 56 necks.

    My Baja is very soft indeed, but is definitely not c shaped for quite a while, my Classic Player is literally the first two or three frets if at all, and is otherwise like a modern C. Another CP I tried was the same, while another was more pronounced. I will let you know what a Jimmie Vaughan is like in a couple of days.
     
  4. Vindibona1

    Vindibona1 Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I haven't noticed the taper of the soft V but I could have just missed it. Personally I like V tapered necks. My Martin D-35 has one and is very comfortable in my hands. I just don't think one can make any judgments until you hold a particular guitar in your hands and play it.
     
  5. caustic69

    caustic69 Strat-Talk Member

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    Cool, Thanks I appreciate it. I have to say the Road Worn seemed more pronounced than the Classic Player I held.
     
  6. caustic69

    caustic69 Strat-Talk Member

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    I agree, in fact I had never held a V neck and when I did, I noticed it felt different but I didn't realize it was a V at the time. I just knew it felt different. Then when I did a little research that is what i found,
     
  7. alainvey

    alainvey Senior Stratmaster

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    I would also say that non-Fender necks could be a completely different story.

    I know that Mighty Mite's v necks are not particularly tapered at all.
     
  8. KCStratman

    KCStratman Senior Stratmaster

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    Fender tends to use the term "soft V" loosely to indicate most any slightly to very V shaped as opposed to round C shaped necks. They call the EJ profile a soft V whereas it is really a modified deep C (based on a worn '54 deep C). They call the EC profile a soft V whereas it is medium depth sharper V( based on a worn '57). The JV, CP 50's, Baja, etc all have different degrees of V or rounded C shape. My personal favorite is the 10/'56 Deep Soft V that Fender has revived recently on AVRI and custom shop 50's vintage reissues. It is like the shape of the pointed end of an egg at the volute, transitioning to a medium deep C further up. All of Fender's V necks start with the V profile at the volute (the transition from headstock to neck behind the nut) and round out to more of a C profile partway up the back of the neck. I really like the Warmoth "boatneck" profile as the starting base to sand into a custom V to C with a deep soft V transitioning to a medium deep C. Here is Joel A's excellent chart to compare some of the more popular Fender neck profiles:
    [​IMG]
     
    Stratkins 51 likes this.
  9. fenderkev

    fenderkev Most Honored Senior Member

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    I have a 2014 FSR V neck Am Std. You can feel the V in the lower fret positions, but fret 5 and above it turns into the usual modern C.
     
  10. caustic69

    caustic69 Strat-Talk Member

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    Thanks for the replies, some great info here. I love that neck chart visual aid.
     
  11. alainvey

    alainvey Senior Stratmaster

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    Update: Jimmie Vaughan has a noticeable V to at least the 5th fret, and is sort of like a medium c after that. It's fairly substantial, but nothing like a Baja.
     
  12. glester

    glester Strat-Talker

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    Just curious, is it the metallic burst with gold guard?
     
  13. Jimmy R

    Jimmy R Strat-O-Master

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    The EJ has a very subtle V shape that is a copy of the neck on his '57 Strat. It has wider shoulders than the '57 soft V and is closer to the 10/56. It's important to note that all vintage necks from the same year vary.
     
  14. slowesthand

    slowesthand Senior Stratmaster

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    I can't agree with a Jimmie Vaughan being "fairly substantial", I have 2, the older one has a small neck, feels noticibly smaller than my American Standard, measures 1/32" smaller than the Standard. The other one's circumference measures about 1/64" less than the American Standard.

    The V on the older one feels much sharper than the newer one.
     
  15. KCStratman

    KCStratman Senior Stratmaster

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    Are you saying the EJ Eric Johnson, or EC Eric Clapton? I understood that the Eric Johnson strat neck was based on his '54 that was originally a deep C, and all the EJ signature strat necks I have played, including my own '05, are barely soft V at all, but a smoothed out medium deep C with very smooth headstock transition. I have always seen/heard Eric Clapton's blackie described as a worn '57 medium shallow V with a fairly pronounced V at the first fret. The "10/56" is deeper and much more pointed-end-of-an-egg shaped soft V than an EC. Of course they all vary slightly from one to another. The earliest Clapton signature strats in the late 80's and very early 90's seemed to have a slightly more shallow, sharp V, whereas the newest ones I have seen seem to have a slightly softer, medium deep V. I suspect that Fender has let or encouraged their profiles to drift toward what customers demand and will buy the most of in their estimation.
     
  16. alainvey

    alainvey Senior Stratmaster

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    It's difficult to compare JLVs with Am Stds, because the Am Stds are wider. "Circumference" is a somewhat meaningless measurement, since the same circumference value could describe a neck with a narrow board and deep keel, or one with a wide board and a shallow keel.

    My 2006 JLV is not a big neck, but it is considerably thicker than my old mim std and my classic player. Out of interest, the edges are rolled, while the CP's edges are quite sharp.

    I also think Fender are somewhat inconsistent with their profiles. My Classic Player feels like they took too much wood off, and is one of the thinnest fender necks I've played. In fact, based on this and the other 60th anniversary I've played, I think that this model was a bit of a rush job (scratchy frets, high e nut slot in the wrong place, etc).

    I think all this just goes to show that you should try a guitar in person wherever possible.
     
  17. Jimmy R

    Jimmy R Strat-O-Master

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    I was talking about the Eric Johnson model. I believe he had sold "Virginia" prior to the point when he began designing his signature with Fender and I know I've read or watched interviews where he talks about it being based on his '57. I think the '54 carve is typically deeper with thicker shoulders.
     
  18. MUCOL

    MUCOL Strat-Talker

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    I have not seen a picture of the different neck shapes and measurements before very nice KC Stratman thanks for posting really helpful.
     
    Synapse2k likes this.
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