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Old 11-12-2019, 10:29 AM
paymerick paymerick is offline
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Default Yamaha FG-75 Red Label (made in Japan) Neck Reset + Set-up

Just trying to gauge some costs here, and figured I could source some different information from the experts here, if you guys wouldn't mind.

I have my grandfather's old Yamaha FG-75. I've had it since he passed away in '97. It was the guitar he'd play at church, but really hasn't been played much since '97. I maybe played it once or twice, and around 2005-ish I removed the strings and it has just been sitting in the case since.

I've decided to get it into playing condition again, as I like the guitar, it's old look, and I don't think he'd want it just sitting around. He'd probably also prefer I didn't pay an arm and a leg to get the guitar into playing condition.

I strung it up with some old strings a couple of weeks back and it's definitely way high on the action. The saddle has been brought down all the way to the bridge, and it appears he had shimmed under the nut to bring it back up a bit, but not enough for when the shim is removed to bring the acting back down significantly. So I'm guessing he had already shaved the nut down, then added the shim because he had taken too much off for what the action was at that time.

I've read they may or may not be a nightmare when re-setting the neck.

So basically, it'd need a neck re-set, new nut and saddle, re-fret and full set-up.

About how much would that normally cost? I've gotten a few quotes from guys down here in Texas (Austin and Houston area guys who I've seen recommended), and would like to compare, and know if I need to keep looking around or just bite the bullet.

I wouldn't do this with any other guitar of that worth, but it's a sentimental thing, obviously.

thank you!
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Old 11-12-2019, 12:19 PM
Edgar Poe Edgar Poe is offline
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I've personally reset 2 Yamaha's. One the FG-140 Nippon Gakki Red Label, MIJ, and the second n FG-180, also Nippon Gakki Red Label MIJ. Make sure you have the MIJ mnodel, NOT the MIK, Korean model. I do not know how those necks are mounted. I assume the same, however I do not have any experience with them. They are the poor mans Red Label Nippon Gakki MIJ. I'm currently half way through my second FG-180. It is a typical straight through Dovetail joint.
They probably would not be cost effective to have reset. Maybe find a luthier apprentice that would like the experience.Or do A LOT of research yourself.

Ed
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Old 11-12-2019, 12:31 PM
paymerick paymerick is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edgar Poe View Post
They probably would not be cost effective to have reset. Maybe find a luthier apprentice that would like the experience.Or do A LOT of research yourself.

Ed
Thanks for the reply.

For sure, talking the actual physical guitar it's probably not worth it speaking $$$$, but for the sentimental value it's possible.

I'm pretty good with my hands, work with wood, but looking at guitars this seems a bit more advanced than anything else I do, and I'd rather not test it out on this guitar.
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Old 11-12-2019, 01:01 PM
Edgar Poe Edgar Poe is offline
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I found myself an old beater guitar, and took it apart to see how it was made and then put it back together. In my opinion the best way to learn seeking internet videos for advice. I did my first neck reset from those videos. But I do have a hobbyist background in woodwork. However, it is not rocket science. However keep in mind not all neck joints are the same. Some have dovetail, like Yamaha, others have a dowel system, like Alvarez.
I would love to post photos of the reset I did, but Photobucket hijacked my photos, and the forum has no photo upload unless by link.



Ed
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Old 11-12-2019, 01:59 PM
paymerick paymerick is offline
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It's definitely something I've researched into doing myself. It just seems that after I purchase all of the tools necessary to do the whole re-fretting and neck reset, then the new nut and saddle etc..., I'd be spending quite enough to where It'd be worth the little extra just to get in professionally done.

Does look intriguing, though.
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Old 11-13-2019, 01:44 AM
mirwa mirwa is online now
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I cannot help you as I am in Australia, I do plenty of them however.

For an idea in price, neck reset/refret/new nut/new saddle/new strings you are looking at around the 850 mark.

I also find yamaha cut the end of the fretboards too short, the nut sits too close to the first fret and affects intonation, if yours is the same, I would recommend machining the whole fretboard away and making a new fretboard as well.

Steve
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Old 11-15-2019, 06:30 PM
murrmac123 murrmac123 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mirwa View Post
I also find yamaha cut the end of the fretboards too short, the nut sits too close to the first fret and affects intonation, if yours is the same, I would recommend machining the whole fretboard away and making a new fretboard as well.

Steve
From a purely mechanical, as opposed to aesthetic, point of view, could the same result not be achieved more easily by simply machining a ledge into the front edge of the nut ?
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Old 11-16-2019, 11:40 AM
John Arnold John Arnold is offline
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I haven't seen a need to check this on older Yamahas, but shortening the end of the fingerboard by about 1/32" is a common technique used to improve intonation near the nut.

Quote:
could the same result not be achieved more easily by simply machining a ledge into the front edge of the nut?
Yes, or by gluing a thin rosewood shim on the end of the fingerboard. That could be virtually invisible, and really easy to execute.
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Old 11-16-2019, 03:49 PM
surveyor surveyor is offline
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I have an old Red Label FG 75 that someone brought in after finding on the garbage pile so I decided to take the neck off to try and reset it.. I ended up breaking the heel (not a big deal) when trying to wiggle it free after injecting steam for over 45 min. Also the fretboard extension didn't want to turn loose after using a hot clothes iron on top and hot scraper underneath. I use hot hide glue a lot in building guitars and I'm pretty sure that wasn't what was used in installing this neck. If doing over, I think I would take the hacksaw (the truss rod extends into the dovetail) , saw the neck off, put in a couple of brass inserts, and make it a bolt-on. Just my 2 cents worth. Oh, and if you do decide to get it off with steam, be sure and angle your bit toward the peghead direction to hit the gap at the end of the dovetail. I use a football needle, a piece of automotive rubber gas line and a pressure cooker. Not a lot of expense there.
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Old 11-16-2019, 05:37 PM
TNO TNO is offline
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Personally, I wouldn't pay to have someone restore a ladder-braced FG-75. If it is the x-braced FG-75-1 then maybe. There are many other good vintage Yamaha models that would be worth the expense of a reset.
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Old 11-16-2019, 07:40 PM
mirwa mirwa is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Arnold View Post
by gluing a thin rosewood shim on the end of the fingerboard. That could be virtually invisible, and really easy to execute.
, I have seen what some people call virtually invisible , one day I need to make a webpage showing some of these examples

Steve
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Old 11-17-2019, 03:12 AM
John Arnold John Arnold is offline
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Reminds me of a recent statement on another forum. "I have never seen this done where it was invisible." My answer is, "How could you possibly know?"

I simply refuse to saw off a neck that has a perfectly good dovetail. Even the most stubborn dovetail joint can be separated by removing part or all of the fingerboard, exposing the joint. Then I drill it several times with a long thin bit. After that, steam and/or heat will allow it to be removed with an intact dovetail. The material removed from drilling and resurfacing is replaced by using thicker shims during reassembly. Shimming the dovetail is normally required when doing a reset.
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Old 11-17-2019, 09:21 AM
redir redir is offline
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If the fretboard is indeed to short then I would just shim the length of it too. Heck on a guitar like that even a piece of maple just to make it play in tune would be 'good enough.' I know people love those guitars but they really aren't worth that much. Rosewood to match as close as possible would be good enough imho. If done right the average eye would never know.

You could even use the opportunity of having a short fretboard to make an intonated nut.
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Old 11-17-2019, 03:03 PM
paymerick paymerick is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TNO View Post
Personally, I wouldn't pay to have someone restore a ladder-braced FG-75. If it is the x-braced FG-75-1 then maybe. There are many other good vintage Yamaha models that would be worth the expense of a reset.


There are no other vintage Yamaha models or individual guitars worth what this one is to me personally, is the point. I wouldn't consider any of this with any random ole Yamaha FG75.

Thanks
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  #15  
Old 11-17-2019, 06:16 PM
mirwa mirwa is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Arnold View Post
Even the most stubborn dovetail joint can be separated by removing part or all of the fingerboard, exposing the joint.
Some guitars to do a neck reset on, need the truss rod to be extracted before the neck can be lifted out of its socket.

Steve
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