Electromatics

What is the neck shape of the 5420t?

1

I played a 5420t (two actually) at Sam Ash tonight. What do we call that neck shape?

A "D" or "C" or?

And am I the only guy who doesn't like that neck shape at all?

2

Do you mean a 5420T? Or have I missed something else that the font of all knowledge (it starts with a 'G' and ends in 'oogle') doesn't know?

3

Color me an idjut! haha. I justed edited the post, I hope it sticks!. Yes the neck shape of the 5420T! Sorry for the confusion.

4

My 2014 5420 has a D shape neck at a guess.

Edit: I don’t mind the neck shape.

5

This really does exemplify how subjective the neck shape is. My Karolyn won one of these in Nashville last year. I LOVE the neck on hers. It's one of the most playable guitars, in my reach.

6

Yep, my 5422T from the first run of them, has a pretty "chunky" neck compared to my other ProLines.

I guess one could call it a "D" or a fat "C", but like Dave posted, it's one of my favorites. Not sure about the current ones, or the ones that you played.

Was it a fat or full feeling neck?

7

The feel of the neck on the 5420 and 5422 is one of my favorite features of these guitars.

8

The neck feels super beefy is the deal. Not the width of the fretboard but what's behind it. You know how so many guitar players have really long fingers and all and they were born to play guitar? I am SO not one of those guys ha ha. It's not that I'm a little guy I just don't have great guitar hands and have to work a little harder.

If I was impulse buying I'd pass on the 5420t only because of the neck. The 5420t neck is just beefy in my estimation. What's driving this is I have a guitar that has been collecting dust for the last 20 years and I have fallen in love with the look of the Duane Eddy Limited Edition black variant. I'll never be able to afford one but I thought I could get the black 5420t, the one that comes with all gold hardware and then replace some of the gold bits with chrome/aluminum and end up with a guitar that is equally elegant in looks.

The 5420ts I played were not the black or red models than come with the gold bits but I assume the neck is the same on the gold hardware models.

But I am not ready to can my idea. I was recently gifted a Stratocaster that has a wide neck (wide fretboard, not beefy neck) that I thought was too wide but I trained myself to get comfortable playing it and after a week or two of playing daily it no longer felt too wide and I enjoy playing it. I haven't ruled out doing the same on this Gretsch. My plan is to visit the guitar shop once a week or so for a while and keep playing the 5420t and see if I can get better acclimated to the neck. I love projects and there is nothing left to do on my 6119, and as I mentioned I have a guitar I could sell to help fund the 5420t, so I really want this to work.

My 6119 is my hot rod so to speak and if I get a 5420 my I plan is to put heavier gauge strings on it and use it mainly for strumming and simple noodles, so being able to play chords without pulling a muscle is going to be important.

Anyhow...

9

I had a 2007 5120 for a while and it had a slim neck. I recently played a later model 5120 before they switched to the 5420 and it had a thicker neck. Maybe you could find a mid 2000s used 5120.

10

A friends '15 5420 seemed to have more of a D shape as opposed the C/soft V of the 6120 Filtertron variants.

11

Mine is a D. Chunkier than my SSLVO and a bit the same as my WF and Silver Jet. Definitely beefiest of the lot.

I don’t mind, I enjoy it like the rest, but I prefer the soft V of the SSLVO.

12

This really does exemplify how subjective the neck shape is.

I totally agree with what Suprdave said above. It is up to the player.

I’ve done some more checking and the neck shape on my ‘14 5420t is very similar in shape and thickness to the neck on my ‘16 6118t Players Edition.

13

Guitar Center calls the 5420 neck a "U" shape. "Beefy" would be my description. Well as I mentioned I'm not giving up on the possibility that the more I play one (a good excuse for more shop visits) I might become more comfortable with it. It's not like a preference as much as a physical constraint.

And considering a 5120 is a good option too. I just set up a CL alert for both models.

If the 5420 neck was anything like my 1999 6119 I would get one in a heart beat! I love everything else about the 5420

14

Yep, when the smoke clears from various models and their features, the most important thing to me is how the neck feels.

I've bought and traded some outstanding guitars in my life, all because of the neck not being comfortable for me to play for extended periods.

Best of luck

15

Do people still reshape necks? I mean, I know it's a little more invasive and may cost a bit but I know they can be reshaped,especially beefy necks, right?

16

Do people still reshape necks? I mean, I know it's a little more invasive and may cost a bit but I know they can be reshaped,especially beefy necks, right?

– Suprdave

My '72 Super Chet, being an early model with the wider fingerboard, had a true, very deep D-shaped neck (dead flat across the bottom) which I couldn't comfortably wrap my hand around to chord while simultaneously using my thumb on the low E. I had my luthier take it down to match the thin, shallow C-shape on my Gibson Country Gent. They both have the wider neck and in a blind test you can't tell one from the other. Worked perfectly for me.

17

Do people still reshape necks? I mean, I know it's a little more invasive and may cost a bit but I know they can be reshaped,especially beefy necks, right?

– Suprdave

It wouldn't seem like a bad thing to do on a 5420 as long as you give a full disclosure if you ever sold the guitar.

18

My '72 Super Chet, being an early model with the wider fingerboard, had a true, very deep D-shaped neck (dead flat across the bottom) which I couldn't comfortably wrap my hand around to chord while simultaneously using my thumb on the low E. I had my luthier take it down to match the thin, shallow C-shape on my Gibson Country Gent. They both have the wider neck and in a blind test you can't tell one from the other. Worked perfectly for me.

– Windsordave

What does something like that cost?

*edit - Nevermind, i did a search and found several people who do it and their prices are online. Looks like this starts at about $90 and and up

19

I fell in love with the neck on my 5420T. Then, when I got the Pro Jet for Christmas, I was surprised at how slim its neck felt, comparatively. And how "chunky" the 5420 neck feels, now. Love 'em both, though.

20

The 5420T is thicker than the old 5120 and the 6120, I have a fairlane Blue one and it is a bit slimmer and easier to play than a 5420 SIlver Sparkle from 2014. The old 5120 and the Japan 6120's are really slick!

21

Y'all in the mood for a happy ending?

Well I went by a small independent guitar shop that's close to me for the first time. Turns out they are a Gretsch dealer and I played a few 5420s. Yeah the neck is chunkier than I like but they were really more playable than my first impression. I also noted the set up on the ones at this little shop was superior to the ones at the big box stores, which obviously made it easier to play. The guitar tech guy told me they try to set them up nicely before they go on the rack.

I want the second Gretsch to be mainly a strummer with big string noodling and not a lot of little string bending. I think the 5420t neck will be fine. They gave me an amazing trade value for my Strat which arguably I would have not done better selling it myself so late tomorrow afternoon I will be picking up my new Aspen Green Gretsch 5420t. I have been wanting the limited run 5420tg (black with gold bits) but they could not order one for me, those are all gone, so I went with Aspen Green.

I'm having them put of a set of 11s and file the nut a little and a few other tidbits. I am so psyched! You guys already know what a Aspen Green 5420t looks like, but still...Pictures coming soon!

22

11s matches well with guitar. I used to have 10s on it, sounds thin. String tensions between 10s n 11s are very minimal on the 5420T.

OH, btw CONGRATS!

23

Yes I love a happy ending. Aspen Green 5420s look fantastic. Congratulations!


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