24 fret electric

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Christ Kacoyannakis
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Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2012 8:58 pm

24 fret electric

Post by Christ Kacoyannakis »

I have read some articles lately about the 24 fret guitar, and that it places the neck pickup in a better position, related to the nodes of the strings, to produce a better sound. I don't really have any experience with 24 frets, and would like to know some more about how they are built. On the Les Paul, for instance, the neck meets the body at the 16th fret. Where does the neck meet the body on a 24 fret guitar? Do they still connect at the 16th and just move everything else down, or do they leave the bridge in place and just connect the neck at a different location? Also, do they build 24 frets in all the usual scale lengths, or have they selected a scale that works better for this guitar? Thanks folks!

Brian Evans
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Re: 24 fret electric

Post by Brian Evans »

Maybe the easiest way to see the difference is to look at the PRS 22 and 24 fret models. https://www.prsguitars.com/index.php/el ... om_24_2019 and https://www.prsguitars.com/index.php/el ... om_22_2019 It's hard to tell, but you'll see that the 22 fret neck joint is at the 20'th fret, and the 24 fret neck is at the 22'nd fret. The neck pickup is in the same place on the body, while the 24 fret bridge is closer to the neck joint than the 22 fret bridge. Basically the neck end of the body is the same, and the bridge end is pushed up or down to accomodate the scale length (which is the same on both guitars). As far as nodes on strings and the position of the pickup - the node locations are different with every fret, so unless you only play open notes, I call bunk. What I don't call bunk is that the two neck pickup locations might sound different, one not better than the other, just different. People have experimented with pickup location since the pickup was invented. Most people either put them where they look good, where they are handy, or where they have "secret sauce mojo", or they actually build a guitar and move them around to find where they like the sound best. Les Paul did that...

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Barry Daniels
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Re: 24 fret electric

Post by Barry Daniels »

The number of frets does not control the neck/body joint location. You can put them wherever you want to. I also think the node thing is a myth. Think about this: as soon as you start pressing the strings down on the frets, the location of the node changes.
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Peter Wilcox
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Re: 24 fret electric

Post by Peter Wilcox »

I adhere to the KISS principle. I've made a number of instruments from 21 to 24 frets, guitars and basses, all bolt on. My two criteria are that the neck pocket be at least 3" guitar, 3.5" bass, and that there be adequate cutaway access to the treble strings. The bridge is placed according to the scale length. For guitars, if there are two pickups, one is placed as close to the bridge as possible, and the other as close to the neck. For one pickup basses, I generally use an equivalent P-bass measurement, and for two pickup, J-bass locations (though these can be variable.)

I'm not saying this is right or good, only what I do to keep it simple.
Maybe I can't fix it, but I can fix it so no one can fix it

Christ Kacoyannakis
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Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2012 8:58 pm

Re: 24 fret electric

Post by Christ Kacoyannakis »

Thanks folks. You are right. I totally forgot about the fact that all those nodes will change, once you start fretting strings.

So, if the scales are the same, is the only advantage the added two fret range? It seems to me that on every fretted instrument I have ever played, that those last couple of frets don't really sound very good. All of these were acoustics. Is it because the string length is too short to vibrate much. Do those higher frets sound better on electrics?

Brian Evans
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Re: 24 fret electric

Post by Brian Evans »

The upper frets, particularly on the unwound strings (top 3 on most electrics that have 24 frets) do sound good. I think it's a combination of the strings are usually quite light gauge (.009" or .010" high E string), and low tension hence low stiffness. That makes their harmonics more in tune with the note even when the string is very short. The other reason is that as electric guitars they have no need to vibrate anything other than the string, and tone is produced magnetically/electrically rather than trying to get a top to vibrate. A .054" low E string played on the 24th fret will make a sound, but it won't be all that great.

Edit; this is my theory, anyway! :lol:

Gordon Bellerose
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Re: 24 fret electric

Post by Gordon Bellerose »

I have built two 24 fret guitars, but both are neck through.
I don't think I would build a 24 fret with a short scale, like 24.5, or 24.75.
The frets get awful close together even with a 25.5 scale.

It also shortens the distance between the pickups.
I need your help. I can't possibly make all the mistakes myself!

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