Set-neck - Through-neck - Bolt-on neck
There are valid questions any guitarist can ask about the build of your musical instrument.
We start with the neck. As you know there are 'bolt-on' 'set-neck' and 'through-neck'
Which is best is a question likely to procure several different answers. From tone to practical use.
The bolt-on idea was by Fender years ago. The claim was the 'twang' was better.
And that well may be true.
But the argument for 'Through-neck' was the quality of tone and the very structure of the guitar.
It is claimed by those in the know, to be a sweeter mellow yet rich tone in every string.
That also may be true.
Finally the 'Set-neck' This is the one that was in the middle. Offered the best tone,
and also that quality build.
Gibson Les Paul's (the real ones) used a mortise-and-tenon joint, some claim the best sound and tone.
Well, EddieA guitars chose 'Set-neck' for a several reasons most of which are again,
tone and quality of build.
To be clear, we have found no issues with a bolt on neck and will occasionally use one in the line up.
But if you are going to purchase a 'high-end' guitar, you should know the closest thing to the truth.
Well EddieA was asking anyone who knew the luthier business and hand construction of
high quality guitars.
The answer was consistent that world top Luthiers either built a 'through-neck' or a 'set-neck'
to set the standard for the best quality in gutiars
Now you only have to ask 2 questions to understand the most important reason for 'bolt-on" necks
Here are those 2 questions:
Q 1] What would be cheaper and easier to build, ship and ultimately sell?
A The bolt on neck, for build and shipping by a factory producing thousands of guitars
Q 2] Which method is used for budget and ANY entry level or child's guitar
A The bolt on neck is on nearly every entry level or child's guitar because, once again
it is cheaper and easier to make, ship, and sell and likely the cost of
high quality is not a priority yet.
That, in essence, does answer the question - Why 'serious' builders don't 'bolt-on' a neck.
As soon as he was able to afford a high quality guitar, EddieA bought an
Aria Pro ll Thor Sound. (late 70's) To this day he
may express that it is still his favorite, because that set-neck was just amazing
in sound and reliable action.
One argument regarding the difference in set/through or bolt-on is that if you break the neck, it is easier to replace.
Who could argue that? But we offer a solution. Don't break the neck of your guitar, better yet, if you're the type of guitarist
that is likely to break the neck, chances are you very well should play a 'bolt-on' neck.
But honestly, if you ask, most luthiers will build and prefer a 'set-neck' simply because it is a measure of 'high quality'