Epi and Gibson necks

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mcbrandt
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Epi and Gibson necks

Post by mcbrandt » Mon May 06, 2019 4:06 pm

Just curious about something. For the most part Squier and Fender necks are the same/similar. Does this also work for Epis/Gibsons? I love the neck on my Epi ES 335, but would that slim taper D shape be found on Gibsons if I were to try and find an ES 135/137 or something else?

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Re: Epi and Gibson necks

Post by Despot » Tue May 07, 2019 3:14 am

They can be the same/similar, but they can also be quite different.

There are multiple different shapes/thicknesses of Gibson necks (and Epiphones too, but perhaps not as many).

For example - the 'modern slim taper' neck that Gibson use has been pretty consistent for a long time. It's a slender D shape - pronounced shoulders, quite flat feeling along the back. It's supposed to be the same as a 1960s neck profile ... but we won't even go there (years vary to a huge degree in the '60s - so what does "similar to a '60s" neck actually mean). I think this neck (the slim taper Gibson neck) is quite close to the neck of my old Epiphone Sheraton (a made in Korea model from the 2000s).

On the other hand Gibson's historic reissues tend to have different neck shapes depending on the year - the biggest usually being 1958 replica necks (like on '58 Les Paul RIs or '58 ES335 reissues), with some of the '60s reissues being quite slender (like the '62 block neck reissues ES335). Epiphone mirror this - with some of their guitars having thicker necks. However, I think if you're judging an Epiphone Dot against something modern Gibson then the slim taper neck might be closest (if not the same really).

What you should be aware of is that the latest 2019 Gibsons have changed again - there are 1960s reissues of both the Les Paul and SG - and the initial YouTube reviews I've seen suggest that the neck profile/shape isn't the same slim taper (flat feeling across the back, quite pronounced shoulders on the sides, but slender) that we've seen before - but actually closer to a vintage Gibson '60s neck (which ... for most years tended to be slimmer C shapes rather than the super flat D shape that the slim taper tries to copy - the '61 neck was that thin ... it's really blade thin and has that really flat feel to it).

So - the TL;DR - look for Gibson models with the modern slim taper neck and you should be okay - if you don't want a bigger neck avoid anything that says "50s profile" neck.

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Re: Epi and Gibson necks

Post by sookwinder » Tue May 07, 2019 4:33 am

The only things I can add to Kevin's comments are that my early 2000s LP Std circa 1960 style has a easy not toooo large neck to play.
Where as my 2007 ES137 thinline has a neck that is unlike any 60s thinline I own or have ever played. In fact I don't really enjoy the ES137 from a playing perspective, although the sound is damn good. The nut width and depth at the nut dimensions are just too big.

Also confirming that necks from Gibson and Epiphone in the 60s varied so much you cannot even IMO classify them. Books say, narrow nuts (and associated thinner necks) these years, wide nuts (and associated fatter necks) these other years, yet I have found thin and wide nuts in all years.

Also some of the necks with the thinner nuts have better overall playability due to a awesome shaped necked that suited the nut width perfectly, while I have a nice 1 11/16 wide nut on one guitar but the neck depth is so shallow it is not as enjoyable to play as the guitars with the 1 19/32" nuts.
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Re: Epi and Gibson necks

Post by øøøøøøø » Tue May 07, 2019 4:41 am

In the late 50s throughout the 1960s they were pretty much identical.

After that, it really depends on the era/factory/model.

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Re: Epi and Gibson necks

Post by wooderson » Tue May 07, 2019 11:21 am

Gibson gives a broad name to their neck tapers - '60s slim taper, '50s, Rounded C (which is between the two, '59 style).

The '60s slim taper can vary - some are very D-shaped, but my SG is more rounded, it feels a lot like a Fender modern C.

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Re: Epi and Gibson necks

Post by mcbrandt » Tue May 07, 2019 2:46 pm

Sounds like I should expect a big more uniformity with current models? Interestingly enough I found myself in the local GC today and grabbed an Epiphone ES-339 to see how the neck felt compared to my Epi 335 pro. Surprisingly and somewhat sadly, they didn't really feel that similar at all. Shame, because what I really want is my 335 pro's neck on a smaller body, basically.

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Re: Epi and Gibson necks

Post by andy » Wed May 15, 2019 10:50 pm

I can’t speak for Gibsons but I’ve wanted an Epiphone Casino for ages but the necks on the ones made in the last ten years are like holding two Hershey chocolate bars in your left hand. Big shoulders and flat back. It feels like holding a slim wood board. A rather unpleasant (for me) “D” shape.
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