Why aren't roasted necks standard?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by Stephen James, Nov 22, 2020.

  1. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Strat-O-Master Gold Supporting Member

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    It’s all about money and production time.

    Also, “roasted neck” is a buzzword for marketing purposes. Torrefied wood is the goal. Roasting the wood is a process of baking it in an oven under pressure at a certain temp for a certain amount of time. This forces the wood to become “torrefied”, by baking out all the moisture. This is not the same process as kiln or air drying the wood. All wood in all guitars becomes torrefied over time which is why vintage guitars are much more stable to humidity change than new guitars. Forcing the wood to become torrefied vs allowing it to occur naturally is now a marketing thing which has led to you wondering about “roasted necks”. Honestly, with a modern fender neck, if the maple is cut correctly so that the end grain is flat sawn, then wood stability is not generally an issue making the “roasted neck” just a marketing ploy.

    I can make a non roasted neck look exactly like a roasted neck with a stain wash on the wood before finishing.

    Torrefication is a technique used by cabinet and door makers for centuries. When building a big double wide door it’s extremely important that the wood doesn’t change with humidity so that it will continue to open and close with no issues as the seasons change.

    Also, if they did this on all their guitars how would they be able to charge more for it? .....or create another new set of seeming endless new models to add to the already insane number of variations currently available?
     
  2. blackstratmaple

    blackstratmaple Strat-O-Master

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    I agree with the poster that mainly noted demand as a major factor. However, I do see their use increasing across the board on a few brands.

    I have a warmoth neck with roasted maple. Love the smooth feel and honestly enjoy the look.

    The bad news is I did split a part of the headstock (very small) when installing tuners. Totally my fault, not the roasted maple’s. But, I do see where the brittle reputation comes from. Warmoth notes this when you purchase one and adds a note (which I missed) to help avoid splitting.

    To be fair, I also split rosewood and my buddy split a cocobolo fretboard. So part of it is just our inferior woodworking skills.
     
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  3. Nate D

    Nate D Most Honored Senior Member

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    All marketing baby. Some of them look cool, but that’s about it. Like Poly or Nitro... I like Nitro because I like the way it looks. It doesn’t mean anything other than it’s a option if you want it on you’re guitar.

    If they were so stable why do you need a truss rod? I’m oversimplifying that I know, but it should stand to note that these things will still be needing to be adjusted meaning these necks and bodies will still expand and contract.
     
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  4. dspellman

    dspellman Strat-Talker

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    Roasted necks are more expensive due to the extra process they go through. That process also results in a certain amount of wood rejected due to wood checking and other issues resulting from torrification."Roasting" is the same process that produces charcoal.

    It's worth noting that roasting embrittles the wood (it's the tradeoff). While the necks may be more stable in terms of changes due to humidity or temperature, they also lose strength in the roasting process. IOW, they can actually break more easily. The more they've been roasted, the more brittle they become. Taken to an end, they *become* charcoal, but the wood becomes unusable well before that.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2020
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  5. dspellman

    dspellman Strat-Talker

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    Roasted maple is *somewhat* more stable than unroasted maple, but isn't as stable as aluminum (Travis Bean, etc.) or Carbon Fiber or other composite necks.
     
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  6. Nate D

    Nate D Most Honored Senior Member

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    Bingo

    1DA01462-FAA6-4BA9-8FF1-AEABA5DF10ED.gif
     
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  7. SKYDOG4570

    SKYDOG4570 "I didn't do it!" I'm serious, I really didn't! Gold Supporting Member Silver Member

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    'Cause they look too good?
     
  8. Dreamdancer

    Dreamdancer Senior Stratmaster

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    Cause you need a truss rod to adjust the amount of relief to your liking.Thats is why even guitar made out of composite materials(way more reliable and stable than any wood on the face of this earth) have truss rods.
     
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  9. Nate D

    Nate D Most Honored Senior Member

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    Yep that’s why I said I knew I was oversimplifying it.
     
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  10. diogoguitar

    diogoguitar Senior Stratmaster

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    I dig music man's design. I wish they had a version of their cutlass/strat with 12" radius.
    Lefty, maybe

     
  11. Slartybartfast

    Slartybartfast Strat-Talk Member

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    Higher overhead and some people also don't like the look.
     
  12. MIJ1988

    MIJ1988 Strat-Talk Member

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    I just bought a Tele Pro 2 $2600 AUD.... no locking tuners and it never stays in tune with factory stringing. I hope it stays in tune when I restring it.
     
  13. CyFan4036

    CyFan4036 Senior Stratmaster

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    I must say that I love many things about roasted maple necks but I don't prefer the look since I like maple fretboards. I much prefer a vintage tinted neck and board.
     
  14. CAR63

    CAR63 Strat-Talker

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    Mmmmm , will that work for turkey too ?
     
  15. stratmatt777

    stratmatt777 Strat-O-Master

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    For the same reason that the V8 engine is an option, not standard.
    Costs and marketing.
     
  16. qblue

    qblue Senior Stratmaster

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    If time is money, then the time it takes to torrefy a maple neck is the reason. This feature is instant 'stability' or 'settling' of the neck to a state it could take 25-40yrs to reach. This time is translated as an increase in price. Therefore, the rarity is explained as if you had plastic surgery; you don't need it to age.

    So if that statement had a certain logicality, then you know what I mean. Do you need a roasted neck? My thinking is no.
     
  17. Symphonictank

    Symphonictank Strat-Talker

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    Schecter Diamond series Nick Johnston strat. I couldn’t be happier. Roasted maple neck is awesome.
     

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    Last edited: Nov 26, 2020
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  18. slowesthand

    slowesthand Senior Stratmaster

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    High mass steel blocks were on every Fender Strat sold in the 50s and 60s when Leo Fender owned the company.
    A low mass bridge was tested during initial development of the Strat and Leo and company thought it made the guitar sound like a banjo.

    CBS continued using the high mass steel block until the early 70s, it was replaced with a zinc alloy bridge. The size of the block is similar to current "high mass zinc block" in post 2006 MIM Strats.

    FMIC was first to introduce the small, light zinc block in early MIM Standards.
     
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  19. slowesthand

    slowesthand Senior Stratmaster

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    Well that's a narrow minded view, it could have clucked or oinked or swam.:rolleyes:
     
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  20. Isca

    Isca Strat-Talker

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    Or... potated...
     
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