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Northwest Guitars bodies and necks


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Are they any good? Do they make good project instruments? Or is it worth just saving the cash and going for something like Warmoth?

Let's see (and hear) your project part basses - and let me know what you used for bodies and necks!

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The bodies are great - I got this from another BC'er.

 P Bass Body - added option of the J Route, painted by previous BC'er, cavity shielded.

Good platforms to build on certainly.

The necks I've found are less good - hard to describe exactly but feel a bit weird and not up to the same level of the bodies I've found.  Maybe its because the neck is a more tactile area??

IMG_20210508_182502.jpeg.5e0d7d29072b39cb5637a2d33dfabef4.jpeg

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Cheers Bagsie! I know that I'm going to be proper fussy but at the same time have to expect a certain quality given the price. Would love to check out a build at some point in the absence of picking up a stock P bass in the config I want. 

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I had a fail trying to buy a bound+blocks J-bass neck recently. Both the original and the replacement had unusably bad fretwork, so I took the refund and gave up. They did say it was a bad batch from their supplier, so I may just have been unlucky.

I can't fault their service though, they were helpful and prompt at replacing then refunding.

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I've used one of their Alder P bass black gloss bodies. I found them to be first rate with all dimensions spot on. I completed my project with a Warmoth figured mapleJazz neck, DiMarzio Split P Pup , USA pick guard ( @Lozz196) and CTS loom from @KiOgon

A  really lovely instrument to play and sounds wonderful. 

Edited by JohnDaBass
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Do they have the correct forearm contour? A P bass body I bought from a similar company (wasn't Northwest Guitars but can't remember who) had a distinct angled transition rather than a smooth curve that a proper fender body has.

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Isn't the message here that it will likely be fine but in some cases not ? Basically - Quality Control. So what is the returns policy. Obviously that doesn't cover long term performance.

But in that context - I have both Westone basses (Matsomoku) and OLP basses. All good stuff but different constructions (apart from anything else) but the Westones are much more stable (basically never need adjustment) cf the OLPs that often need monitoring and truss rod tweaks.

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, rmorris said:

Isn't the message here that it will likely be fine but in some cases not ? Basically - Quality Control. So what is the returns policy. Obviously that doesn't cover long term performance.

But in that context - I have both Westone basses (Matsomoku) and OLP basses. All good stuff but different constructions (apart from anything else) but the Westones are much more stable (basically never need adjustment) cf the OLPs that often need monitoring and truss rod tweaks.

Yeah, I think that's absolutely right, and maybe people likely be more picky on a neck than a body?

Edited by bagsieblue
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26 minutes ago, bagsieblue said:

Yeah, I think that's absolutely right, and maybe people likely be more picky on a neck than a body?

Definitely. The neck is much more critical to the playability of the instrument. I've bought quite a few cheap far eastern necks for practicing fretwork and none of them were as good as a bottom of the range Squier.

Physically and finish-wise they were fine, but they all had uneven fretwork. Some had lifted fret ends, some had unseated frets with gaps between fret and board, some had fret slots not cut deep enough or cleaned out properly, most had badly trimmed fret ends with burrs (some of which couldn't be filed as it would have left the fret too short).

Realistically all the necks needed re-fretting to make them play properly and then there is still no guarantee of stability in the wood.

I have started to think that all the low-cost far east necks are QC fails that weren't good enough to be built into budget instruments, but could still be sold to the unsuspecting, especially if the distance/cost made them hard to return.

I think if I were building an instrument to play for real I'd buy a Fender/Warmoth/Allparts neck, or something from a luthier where the QC is good.

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  • 2 months later...

I bought a Jazz neck from them via ebay recently to pop on one of my two Squier P's.

 

NEVER AGAIN.

  1. Frets tarnished  - I mean BADLY tarnished
  2. Truss rod. Fender heal end cross style. Turned.. and turned... and turned... disapeared a good 2 cm into the body before doing anything, then became super tight with little effect. Backed it out expecting it to be a removable nut like a fender hoping to put a couple of washers in there... no. no its not.  the nut is part of the truss rod, almost like a cheap far eastern one way truss rod disguised as a fender one. Paid £125 for this piece of junk.

Unfortunately I had already done some work (rounding fretboard edges, drilling holes  for tuners  etc etc) so I cant send it back, but it  is trash.

For comparrison I bought a no name far eastern Jazz neck (maple with black blocks in amber tint) for £40 ish and the QC and fit and finnish dribble all over this from a great height.

 

NOPE.

 

not again.

 

Edited by Nibody
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7 minutes ago, Nibody said:

I bought a Jazz neck from them via ebay recently to pop on one of my two Squier P's.

 

NEVER AGAIN.

  1. Frets tarnished  - I mean BADLY tarnished
  2. Truss rod. Fender heal end cross style. Turned.. and turned... and turned... disapeared a good 2 cm into the body before doing anything, then became super tight with little effect. Backed it out expecting it to be a removable nut like a fender hoping to put a couple of washers in there... no. no its not.  the nut is part of the truss rod, almost like a cheap far eastern one way truss rod disguised as a fender one. Paid £125 for this piece of junk.

Unfortunately I had already done some work (rounding fretboard edges, drilling holes  for tuners  etc etc) so I cant send it back, but it  is trash.

For comparrison I bought a no name far eastern Jazz neck (maple with black blocks in amber tint) for £40 ish and the QC and fit and finnish dribble all over this from a great height.

 

NOPE.

 

not again.

 

Thats a bummer to put it mildly, frankly I'd still be on to them demanding recompense, it's clearly not of " merchantable quality" or "fit for purpose" 

The fact you've prepared it for use I don't think waives them of responsibility.. I'd not just leave it at that personally, either way what's to lose ? I'd be phoning them and try to speak to the manager in the first instance.

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16 hours ago, Waddo Soqable said:

Thats a bummer to put it mildly, frankly I'd still be on to them demanding recompense, it's clearly not of " merchantable quality" or "fit for purpose" 

The fact you've prepared it for use I don't think waives them of responsibility.. I'd not just leave it at that personally, either way what's to lose ? I'd be phoning them and try to speak to the manager in the first instance.

It was bought through eBay so I have contacted them there and will be returning it. It is supposed to be a dual action rod but I’ve never seen a dual action rod do what’s shown in the pictures..

7DB5A090-F657-4BE9-966B-F38FA1F40011.jpeg

66EEFB37-6794-4859-9663-244521AD6738.jpeg

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16 hours ago, Waddo Soqable said:

Thats a bummer to put it mildly, frankly I'd still be on to them demanding recompense, it's clearly not of " merchantable quality" or "fit for purpose" 

The fact you've prepared it for use I don't think waives them of responsibility.. I'd not just leave it at that personally, either way what's to lose ? I'd be phoning them and try to speak to the manager in the first instance.

It does, you’re supposed to bring it to their attention first. They may replace / refund for goodwill 

 

if it went to small claims you’d have a hard time finding a judge who could discern the problems it came with from the ones the seller might suggest you introduced - more so now most claims are online 

 

had this with a car part - the judge didn’t even understand what part of the car it was from and gave benefit of doubt to defendant against us 

Edited by Geek99
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5 hours ago, Nibody said:

It was bought through eBay so I have contacted them there and will be returning it. It is supposed to be a dual action rod but I’ve never seen a dual action rod do what’s shown in the pictures..

7DB5A090-F657-4BE9-966B-F38FA1F40011.jpeg

66EEFB37-6794-4859-9663-244521AD6738.jpeg

Through ebay it's coming from the "not as described" angle then...ebay are very much biased towards the buyer these days, which is handy in this case !... keep us informed as to how it goes 👍

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I have figured if I can add (and find) enough washers (the rod screws right out) it is inducing a backbow when tightened. But there is no way this is a dual action truss rod.

 

NorthWest have offered to either have it sent back to them (at my expense) or a 50% refund. I've opted for the latter as  I can make it workable, and its money (and hassle) to send it back. Will see if they are as good as their word. Ive bought stuff (mainly lacquer) from them in the past and had no issues, but this has really put me off getting a neck from them again.

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5 hours ago, Waddo Soqable said:

Through ebay it's coming from the "not as described" angle then...ebay are very much biased towards the buyer these days, which is handy in this case !... keep us informed as to how it goes 👍

Less so than they were, in my humble experience. I’ve had a lot of success with help from eBay with difficult or downright fraudulent buyers. 

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3 hours ago, Nibody said:

I have figured if I can add (and find) enough washers (the rod screws right out) it is inducing a backbow when tightened. But there is no way this is a dual action truss rod.

 

NorthWest have offered to either have it sent back to them (at my expense) or a 50% refund. 

I don’t think that particularly generous tbh

Edited by Geek99
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I have a p bass body and a j maple board neck. They seem fine. A luthier friend of mine told me about nortwest a good few years ago and how good they are. I feel these dodgy necks must just be a bad batch and hopefully Northwest will sort out the problems

Must put my bitsa together, it's just sat in my shoffice, on my desk

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30 minutes ago, police squad said:

I have a p bass body and a j maple board neck. They seem fine. A luthier friend of mine told me about nortwest a good few years ago and how good they are. I feel these dodgy necks must just be a bad batch and hopefully Northwest will sort out the problems

Must put my bitsa together, it's just sat in my shoffice, on my desk

You not bolted that lot together yet ? :)

...that jazz neck I thought looked absolutely spot on, and as mentioned I had it on a body strung up for a bit and it stayed straight & bang in tune just leaning in the corner, never even needed to touch the truss rod !

 

Clearly the one Nibody got was from a dodgy consignment in some way.. NE were out of stock of many bass necks when I got mine, which was from their existing stock.... perhaps they sourced the next batch from a different factory to get some necks in asap, who knows ?

 

 

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4 hours ago, Waddo Soqable said:

You not bolted that lot together yet ? :)

...that jazz neck I thought looked absolutely spot on, and as mentioned I had it on a body strung up for a bit and it stayed straight & bang in tune just leaning in the corner, never even needed to touch the truss rod !

 

Clearly the one Nibody got was from a dodgy consignment in some way.. NE were out of stock of many bass necks when I got mine, which was from their existing stock.... perhaps they sourced the next batch from a different factory to get some necks in asap, who knows ?

 

 

 

not yet, I was going to take it to Andy Crockett to put it together. I have some other stuff he needs to look at but haven't got round to it yet

 

must try harder!!

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Well they were as good as their word with the partial refund - and agreed with me that their suplier may have tried to pull a fast one. I've managed (with the addition of a lot of spacers) to get it workable. It's a shame as overall the neck is well carved and finished. Guess mine was a 5pm on Friday neck.

 

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