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> Scalloped Fretboard?, You have one!
sidewas lightnin...
post Sep 24 2008, 10:01 PM
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I have noticed through watching your wonderful videos that you have a scalloped fretboard on your guitar. I know you play lots of neo classical stuff, and yngwie malmsteen has guitars just like yours. While I understand the concept of a scalloped fretboard, I haven't ever played on one, so I don't know the advantages (or disadvantages) scalloping a fretboard has. Also, do you know how easy of a process scalloping a fretboard is? I imagine it would be fairly tedious, but I just wanted to know. I am building a guitar as of now, and I don't have the budget to buy a scalloped neck (it's not the scalloping that's expensive, it's the brands that offer scalloping mellow.gif .)

Also- I was curious about this. why does your guitar have two black pickups and one white pickup?

Thanks

SidewaYs lightning


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Marcus Lavendell
post Sep 25 2008, 08:48 AM
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Hi Sideways smile.gif

When you play on a scalloped fretboard you won't touch the wood in between the frets. So this basically means that there's no resistance when you bend strings or play with vibrato. You'll also get a better "grip" of the strings.
These are the advantages smile.gif

I personally can't find any disadvantages, but that's probably because I've used scalloped necks for a long time and I've learned how to play with it. However, most guitarists that try a scalloped neck for the first time don't like it at all. They often say that it sounds like the guitar is out of tune, and it's all very awkward.

It takes some practicing to learn how to play on a scalloped fretboard. Because if you press down the strings too hard, they notes will go sharp. So you'll have to learn to play with a lighter touch, and this just takes some time to learn.

About the actual process of scalloping a fretboard.
Well, I've done it several times and I can say that it's not hard in any way - but it takes a lot of time. I often spend a whole weekend for this. The easiest way is to use a Dremel tool, and then different sand papers. And always always be very careful so you don't damage the frets. I recommend you to first practice on a cheap neck, and once you got the hang of it you can do it on your favorite one.

PS. I must add that you can just as well put on tall frets, instead of scalloping the fretboard. The idea, as I said before, is to not touch the wood. And you can achive that simply by getting a neck with tall frets.


PS 2.
About my pickup covers... well, I put that guitar together myself and at the time I had two black and one white. And I didn't care much about it laugh.gif I don't know, does it look funny?! smile.gif


//Marcus

This post has been edited by Marcus Lavendell: Sep 25 2008, 08:48 AM


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sidewas lightnin...
post Sep 25 2008, 09:05 PM
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Thanks for the advice- that's a world of help for me. I might try to do it on my squier, but not until my other guitar is finished. I don't think I could handle not having a guitar for a few weeks. ohmy.gif tongue.gif


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Homemade strat (You still need to look at its topic!)
Squier strat (probably going to get rid of it and get another guitar instead) :)
Line 6 spider amp (not actually used for anything, just acts as a speaker)
Digitech Gnx2 (kind of old, but cheap, and sounds amazing!)
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Marcus Lavendell
post Sep 25 2008, 09:23 PM
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Great! I hope you'll like it smile.gif

You don't have to do the scallop so deep this first time. Try a little bit first to see how you like it. You can always scallop it deeper later if you want... but of course not the other way around wink.gif


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kjutte
post Sep 27 2008, 11:58 AM
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QUOTE (Marcus Lavendell @ Sep 25 2008, 10:23 PM) *
Great! I hope you'll like it smile.gif

You don't have to do the scallop so deep this first time. Try a little bit first to see how you like it. You can always scallop it deeper later if you want... but of course not the other way around wink.gif


Aren't you causes weak points when scallopping? Do you need an extra thick neck?
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Marcus Lavendell
post Sep 27 2008, 01:43 PM
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QUOTE (kjutte @ Sep 27 2008, 12:58 PM) *
Aren't you causes weak points when scallopping? Do you need an extra thick neck?

Well yes, I guess the neck gets weaker because we are in fact taking away some wood.
I heard a guy once who talked about this risk, but I've never ever heard of a neck that cracked because of the scallop. Never!

I've scalloped really thin Ibanez necks with no problems at all smile.gif


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kjutte
post Sep 27 2008, 03:27 PM
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QUOTE (Marcus Lavendell @ Sep 27 2008, 02:43 PM) *
Well yes, I guess the neck gets weaker because we are in fact taking away some wood.
I heard a guy once who talked about this risk, but I've never ever heard of a neck that cracked because of the scallop. Never!

I've scalloped really thin Ibanez necks with no problems at all smile.gif


I see. definitely have to adjust the trussrod though.
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Marcus Lavendell
post Sep 28 2008, 01:05 PM
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QUOTE (kjutte @ Sep 27 2008, 04:27 PM) *
I see. definitely have to adjust the trussrod though.

Yes, that's a good idea!


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OzRob
post Sep 29 2008, 03:17 AM
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QUOTE (Marcus Lavendell @ Sep 25 2008, 05:48 PM) *
It takes some practicing to learn how to play on a scalloped fretboard. Because if you press down the strings too hard, they notes will go sharp. So you'll have to learn to play with a lighter touch, and this just takes some time to learn.

<snip>

PS. I must add that you can just as well put on tall frets, instead of scalloping the fretboard. The idea, as I said before, is to not touch the wood. And you can achive that simply by getting a neck with tall frets.


+1

Neither of my guitars has scallops but...my Hamer has very low frets and is a speed machine with very thin neck and low action but I find it difficult to do left-hand vibrato so I use the FR bar for that. Then I got my new ESP and it has extra jumbo frets. I kept thinking the guitar was going out of tune and was horrified that such an expensive instrument was so lousy. Took me awhile to realise that the problem was me - I was trying to play it the same as the Hamer by pushing the string down onto the fretboard with the result of sharping the notes. I've had to develop a lighter touch.

I would love a scalloped neck but in the meantime, XJ frets kind of do the trick.


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Marcus Lavendell
post Sep 29 2008, 07:43 AM
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Thanks for sharing Rob smile.gif
This is a very common thing. Most beginners press down the strings harder than they should (and they might not even know it). But when we learn to play with a lighter touch it's more effortless, and also easier to play faster.



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