The mystery of the 94 CE24...

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by dwrockdoctor, Jan 14, 2019.

  1. dwrockdoctor

    dwrockdoctor New Member

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    Hi guys, so in another thread I started about getting a neck and body of an 1994 emerald green CE24 off of ebay I started noticing a few quirks with it's construction. It has misaligned trem fulcrum screw holes that aren't in a straight line and also not 100% perpendicular to the pickups and general line of the strings which means the strings tend to favour towards the treble side of the neck if I don't shift the neck in the pocket towards the bass side when I attach it and the neck has also had to be shimmed at some point to get decent angle and setup.

    I've just noticed the neck sits deeper into the body than any other CE24 I've seen. Here is a photo of my 98 CE24 and every other CE24 I've seen joins the neck at the same fret, right on the 22nd fret at the top horn:

    [​IMG]

    Here is where the 94 neck joins the body, somewhere in between the 21st and 22nd frets:

    [​IMG]

    Pretty odd hey! The work on the top of the neck heel also seems a little sloppy and odd:

    [​IMG]

    To add to the list of oddments, the belly carve on the back is also visibly not smoothly done and has a few weird dips where it looks like a sander has slipped or something. Hard to capture right on camera but I could always attach a photo if need be.

    The guitar has taken a decent hit on the back of the lower bout and has been repaired there also. It's either been dropped or whacked against something at some point. Besides some visible cracks in the lacquer around the neck pocket on the back I can't see any evidence in the neck pocket that it is anything more than superficial.

    The only thing I can think of is some kind of weird repair to the guitar that could explain the neck sitting deeper into the neck pocket. It seems like way too many weird quirks to be all attributed to the PRS factory. The date on the neck heel indicates it being one of the last guitars of 94 and maybe of the old factory. All setup and it plays fine, quirks and all, and has a wonderful played in feel but I'm baffled by all the inconsistencies in the guitar compared to the two other CE24's I have (both made after 95 in the new factory).

    I would love to hear opinions from anyone that wants to speculate what might be the cause of all these inconsistencies?

    Here she is all setup and strung:

    [​IMG]
     
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  2. gush

    gush She said "huge bag of dibs".

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    I LOVE the emerald PRS uses. I have a 97 emerald ce24.

    I've modded the hell out of it.
     
  3. dwrockdoctor

    dwrockdoctor New Member

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    A bit of an update. I took the neck off and slotted it into one of my other CE24's body and it sits in the right spot in regards to which fret the body joins the neck which means the neck pocket of the body of the 94 is cut too deep. Can't use the neck on the other guitars though as the holes on the neck are off because of the deeper neck pocket on the OG body. Also noticed the bottom violin carve shape is a little lumpy in places in a similar way to the back belly carve that I previously mentioned like it wasn't sanded really well. This is especially apparent compared to my 1998 and 2002 CE which is flawless with all the carving.

    So this guitar has misaligned trem screw holes, neck pocket that is too deep so the neck joins the body a bit further back, some imperfections in the shaping of the contours and the neck also needs a shim to get the action correct. Talk about a lemon, hahaha...

    But when strung up and set right she plays really nice and has a nice tone and resonance and the neck on this one is unreal, best feeling wide thin I've ever played. Trem stays in tune really well despite the misalignment of the fulcrum screws.

    I think this one would make a great project to fix all it's ills because all the core pieces are there. Either that or keep as is as a take to jam beater that still has awesome feel and tone.

    So surprised on all the quality control issues that somehow landed on this one guitar and how it made it out of the factory as is. Some things are best left a mystery I guess.

    P.S. In no way am I trying to knock PRS for their quality. Every other PRS I've owned or handled has been perfect in every way. This one obviously slipped through somehow. And despite itself it's still a great guitar.
     
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  4. Collywobbles

    Collywobbles New Member

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    This 1993 looks to have the same neck join as your 1994? The factory moved sometime in 1995 and they went from duplicarvers to CNC around the same time. So I wonder if this is just an example of how they changed the design to make things easier for CNC. A simple test might be to measure the scale length (so nut to trem mid point) - if they're the same it suggests the neck to body joins are correct even if different and that the trems are placed differently to match the join.
    https://reverb.com/item/18281089-1993-prs-ce-in-bonni-pink
     
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  5. gush

    gush She said "huge bag of dibs".

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    Wow. The neck is pushing against the pickup ring. That's crazy.

    the transition to new factory could have something to do with it I suppose.

    This is good to know. There was somebody on here a couple years ago talking about having to shim a CE. I remember commenting that you shouldn't have to shim a CE neck. Guess I was wrong.
     
  6. Rusty Chos

    Rusty Chos Don’t mean a thang if it don’t twang

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    Maybe it’s a 22 and somebody had to have a 24, so a hack chimpanzee went at it.

    Sounds like a forced solution of some sort. Maybe broken neck replacement.
     
    #6 Rusty Chos, Jan 22, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2019
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  7. shinksma

    shinksma What? I get a title?

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    Nah, too much changes to go from 22 to 24 frets. The bridge would move by about an inch, for example.

    My guess is pretty well what @Collywobbles said: pre-CNC means lots of hand work, which sometimes results in things looking a little uglier "under the hood" while still producing a quality product.

    My 1990 CE has a top horn body-neck join midway between the two guitars you posted. So maybe there was just more variation in the obscure details back then.
     
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  8. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    My '95 looks just like your '94. Bass side neck meets body at the middle of the 22nd fret. My '89 is the same way, as well.
     
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  9. gush

    gush She said "huge bag of dibs".

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    I'll have to check all three of my 97s now.
     
  10. dwrockdoctor

    dwrockdoctor New Member

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    Ahhh, the plot thickens, hahaha. Good to know that this exists on other pre-95 PRS CE's. Indeed more handwork could mean more imperfections and my one must've copped them all. I wonder if the guitar body somehow got knocked off centre in the duplicarver. The bookmatch maple top isn't centred, the screw holes are misaligned and the rear pickup route seems a touch wonky. Could explain why the guitar copped so many little imperfections. I'll be the first to admit that I'm purely speculating on this and don't have the foggiest how a duplicarver is setup and if it's even possible for the guitar to slip whiclst being worked on.

    All in all, it's a really nice guitar, the neck is a dream from being played so much, really rolled over edges and seems a little narrower than my post 95 CE's, super comfortable plus lacquer is all worn in. Could still be prime for some modding and a refinish down the track but as is she still plays and sounds really nice.

    Thanks for the feedback guys!
     
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  11. CarlosHM

    CarlosHM New Member

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    Hello guys,

    First of all sorry if this is not the proper thread to write on, but at least is the closest.

    Got a 91' CE III (CE24) and was wondering about replacementsm specially the bridge, just in case. Supposedly, the GenI II bridged was not in use till 95', but the Customer service said I should use this one as a replacement. On the other hand, I found that this company, Mann made bridge and parts, which says they have direct replacement for both "pre" and factory PRS.

    What do you think? and, anybody has experience with those replacement parts?

    Thanks!
     
    #11 CarlosHM, Dec 28, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2019
  12. dogrocketp

    dogrocketp I drank the PRS kool aid, and it was tasty!

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    I have both iterations of the Mann bridge on different guitars. They are very fine quality.
     
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  13. CarlosHM

    CarlosHM New Member

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  14. Herr Squid

    Herr Squid I was severely impressed

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    I had an '89 CE with similar imperfections. The treble end of the neck mashed into the neck pickup ring, distorting it a bit. The nut was slighly wonky IIRC. I nearly passed it up but couldn't resist the price I was getting it for. It played great, and the rest is history.
     
  15. vchizzle

    vchizzle Birdman.

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    Mann is the original maker of 1 piece PRS trem in 1985. Anything from him should be top notch.
     
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  16. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    Gotta agree with these two. John made the original, and recreates it as the NOS2000. I’ve installed three of them, and love them. Big fan of the one piece design.
     
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  17. AP515

    AP515 Mostly Normal

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    That stressed pickup ring on the neck is normal. I have in on my 1st year CE24.
     
  18. dwrockdoctor

    dwrockdoctor New Member

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    The pre-95 guitars are great instruments. Definitely not as precisely built as the CNC ones IME but tonnes of character. The wide thin neck on my 94 is like heaven and I'm not a mega fan of wide thin (though I live with them just fine). Next to my post 95 CE wide thins it blows them out of the water for feel. The lack of lacquer on the neck from being so well played doesn't hurt the cause either. Just a slinkier more svelte feel on my 94 compared to the others. I've forgotten about any of the imperfections by this stage. I just wish it was an alder body purely because I already have hog back CE's in my quiver.

    Now to only find a safe way to fade the still new looking emerald green to one of those worn in washed out emerald greens...
     
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