Christos: It’s been a while since I published the last post by Richard, so I was very happy to receive this article, which provides insight in the importance of radiant instrument necks for the produced sound. I think Richard finally got tired explaining to me over and over again how all this works and decided to write it down so I can finally understand.  I am just joking. Or maybe not (?). Thanks anyway Richard!

Radiant Instrument Necks and Neck Joins

 When a string on an instrument is either plucked or bowed it is important to remember that the string is articulating at 2 points. . . The bridge and the hand.  The vibration that goes down the neck becomes part of the sound that the instrument makes. It is therefore important to allow the neck vibration transfer to be as efficient as possible.
It is clear when good transfer occurs because a gentle tap on the head-stock or peg head will be heard much more clearly in the body of the instrument. The following list of engineering issues represent the theories and beliefs behind Radiant Instrument Neck and Neck Join design.
Radiant Instrument necks connection
 A very stiff neck will enhance an instruments sustain. The Radiant Neck is very stiff. It  is constructed with 3 Australian timbers that not only have excellent resonance but are also outstanding in their known resistance to bending or creep. Included with this on the underside core of the neck is an anchored line of pretension-ed carbon fiber. Combining this with a fret board of ebony that resists compression results in a neck that is very stiff.
A very light neck will enhance an instruments volume. This is a very simple and obvious theory as a reduced mass will have a bigger amplitude. The Radiant neck needs no truss rod and is therefore much lighter. Also the head stock apart from its ergonomic design in the ease of tuning, restringing and maintenance is also very light.
Radiant Instrument Necks
A good neck connection with the body of an instrument will efficiently transfer vibration. The Radiant Neck Join and subsequent infrastructure has been designed in a way to direct or aim the shock or vibration mainly towards the soundboard. This has been done by allowing the vibration to “run out” onto the rim of the sound board with a direct line of vibration to the tail piece which is also incorporated into the rim.
– Richard

About the Luthiers Journey article series

Richard Morgan is a maker (luthier) from Australia and a member of theMandolinTuner community. From the moment that Richard joined theMandolinTuner we started exchanging e-mails and I was very happy to read about his work, especially as Richard mandolins (and mandolas, mandocellos, etc.) are truly innovative, featuring a unique sound-board design and lots of other innovations as well.

Soon, I start thinking of Richard as a friend of mine and I shared with him my vision of creating a section for luthiers within theMandolinTuner, something I believe would be very interesting for theMandolinTuner community. I am happy to say that Richard liked my idea and what you read now is a series of articles we have planned as the first step towards realizing this vision. I named  this article series “A Luthiers Journey”.

So, enjoy Richard describing his journey as an instrument maker.

– Chris Rizos 

 

All Luthiers Journey Articles by Richard Morgan

  • Richard Morgan Floating Soundboard

Thank god for luggage handlers

Watching the plane next to ours being loaded It became clear how and why musical instruments often turn up damaged. The acoustic bass guitar which I created in 2009 did not survive the flight [...]

  • Radiant Instrument Necks

Radiant Instrument Necks and Neck Joins

Christos: It's been a while since I published the last post by Richard, so I was very happy to receive this article, which provides insight in the importance of radiant instrument necks for the produced [...]

  • Luthier's Journey #10

Too Much Coffee

If I had to choose listening to an average instrument played by a master or vice versa I would choose the former. Of course a masterful musician may simply choose not to play a [...]

  • Mandolin Making Skills by Richard Morgan

A good haircut

I can remember as a child the pleasure of my monthly haircut. My mum would drop me off at the hairdresser and go shopping. I would often fall asleep as it was a very [...]

Hair Loss

The open C string on a cello would have to be my favorite sound. Its grinding organic growl makes what is left of my hair stand on end. If I were the owner of [...]

  • Old Violin

A Rough Diamond

Anyone who visits my home country, Australia, will be astonished by the huge distances between the towns and cities. Australia does have a relatively low population. For example, the island state where I live [...]

  • Richard Morgan

Synchronicity

Probably the most enjoyable part of my journey as a luthier has been of recent years. It all started with attempts at building timber resonator cones. I was looking for warmer tone. The "National" [...]

  • Mandolins from Richard Morgan

Windy Strings

As a maker I have found discussions with other makers extremely useful. The exchange of ideas, philosophies and techniques is a big part of keeping the learning curve steep. Also feedback from players is [...]

Spruce

In team sports like soccer there are individuals who "make" the play and others who "read" the play. A good balance of each is needed. In my opinion the same sort of balance is [...]

  • Richard Morgan Mandola honey

Pure Honey

This is second article of the Luthiers Journey series, titled Pure Honey. In this article, Richard Morgan begins with the hazards and suggested basic precautions in the art of  luthiery, and then describes with a [...]

  • Richard Morgan mandola copy

The Patient Dies

Richard Morgan is a maker (luthier) from Australia and a member of theMandolinTuner community. From the moment that Richard joined theMandolinTuner we started exchanging e-mails and I was very happy to read about his [...]

Richard Morgan

My name is Richard and I am an Australian designer and maker of mandolins. I live with my partner in a small coastal town in Tasmania and work at home. The mandolin family of instruments produce beautiful [...]

 

Instruments by Richard Morgan

Instruments by Richard Morgan are featured at www.extraordinaryinstruments.com

Mandolinist Christos Rizos Extraordinary Instruments