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Looking for advice on an old Martin neck reset


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A friend of mine has an old Martin - not sure of the model number - that does not have a truss rod. Several years ago he had the neck angle reset and is starting to have issues with it again. We live in a temperate rain forest so humidity is an issue.

He was asking me the other day if I thought he could put a D28 neck with a truss rod on his guitar. Since the neck would need to be removed to reset the angle again it would be the perfect opportunity to replace it.

I'm a player, not a luthier, so I don't know what would be involved so I'm hoping some people in the know might be able to explain some of the pros and cons of this idea.

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Your friend's Martin does have a truss rod, it's just not adjustable. That means the guitar dates from the early 1980s or before. No wonder it needs a neck reset again, it's probably 40 years old or more. There are forumites who are more knowledgeable than I am and I don't even know if what you want to do is possible but frankly I wouldn't recommend what you're suggesting. Your friend can have another reset done and enjoy the guitar for what it is.

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18 hours ago, DeepEnd said:

Your friend's Martin does have a truss rod, it's just not adjustable...

Yes, you are right - the truss rod is there, it's the ability to adjust it that is missing. 

... and thanks to all who replied. I now believe I can give my friend some good advice.

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9 hours ago, FretFiend. said:

Just get the neck reset... this time by a competent luthier.  Don't butcher a nice guitar.

There's no indication that the first reset wasn't done competently. We're talking about a 40 year old guitar. It could easily need another reset by now depending on when the first was done. Or it may simply be displaying symptoms of excessive humidity, which the OP mentioned. https://www.taylorguitars.com/support/maintenance/symptoms-wet-guitar (Emphasis added.)

Quote
Symptoms to look for:

1. High action. Strings that are unusually high off the fretboard, making it difficult to play.
2. The guitar sounds dull and lifeless.
3. Unusual warp on the back at the end block.

 

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Get the neck reset by a good luthier.

You could also have a truss rod put in the guitar, but it will not be the reason the guitar needs a neck reset. They are two different issues.

My Martin MC28 had to have a neck reset after 15 years.

This was Martins first attempt at a cut away and most of them needed a neck reset. Martin covered this 100%, and the work was done by a custom luthier in town here that is also and authorized Martin service center.

They also sprung for a new bridge and saddle.

I turned around an bought 2 more Martins and will be looking for another one sometime this year.

The MC 28 looks like this, and sound amazing.

The net says, they are somewhat rare model that was made between 1981 and 1996. Martin made only about 1,100 of the MC 28 model. IDK.

h93zqtuwlb4nbswpc2ce.jpg

 

 

 

 

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