Hi all,  Does anybody have experience with putting some kind of weight into the box to balance a CBG? My second build turned out perfect, nice low action, perfect intonation, great sound and so much fun I haven't touched my "real" guitar in a while. But there is one problem: The neck is way heavier than the body and so I constantly have to push down the body with my ellbow while playing... I'm sure other people have experienced th same thing - how did you fix that problem? Any advice greatly apreciated! Thanks! 

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Looks like a neck-to, so try this, presuming you can open the box: get access to a couple of pieces, maybe 6" long, of straight steel rebar, as used in concrete construction. Duct tape first one, then the other, to each side of the neck within the box, checking for balance each time. These will also help with sustain.

Thanks! Yes, it's a neck-through. Won't the rebar pieces start to rattle after a while if I just duct tape them? Or do you just duct tape them to check out the balance and glue them in once you're satisfied? And is there a special reason to use rebar or would any heavy piece of metal do?

Any heavy piece of metal will do. I just picked rebar because...I like rebar. And it's heavy for relatively short lengths. Just duct tape to check balance; once you find the right piece of metal, you could even drill a hole down the center of the neck that's inside the box, insert the metal (another reason I chose cylindrical rebar), and viola! Instant Sustainer (they actually sell these made of titanium or mercury-filled steel for commercial guitars)!

That's a great idea, I'll try that. Thanks a lot!

If you can find cylindrical lead weights, or even tightly packed lead shot, you can dial it in even faster...

I have a friend who regularly weights his CBG with any metal he can find. You can tape the rebar to the outside of the guitar until you figure out the correct weight, then hot glue or epoxy it inside the box. If you attach it to the bottom and sides with adhesive, it will stay in place.

I don't know about others, but to me this is a serious issue, i've built a few guits with "rustic" , chunky necks and heads, and whilst they look ok, and suit the build, they really are not a lot of fun to handle or play on, a lot of the fun with these things is ease of handling, i try to use the strongest wood i can find for necks, then reduce the size as much as i can to get a good balance. By choice and the fact i get it free, i nearly always go for Jarrah for necks, as it withstands tension well, even tapering to 1/2" at the nut, and it helps get a good balanced feel, but you can use most timbers if you just use enough to do the job, Swamp Witches are made with Poplar necks, and anyone who has one will say they feel just right in the hands i'm sure. A good way to balance a head heavy box guitar is to just add more wood to the tail end, inside or out if you can make it look right, it will help with string anchorage and sustain also, plus put all your control hardware/ jack/ strap knobs as far back as you can, it all helps

I've heard before that adding weight to the box improves sustain. I don't doubt that this is true, but does anyone know why this works?

I don't think it's the weight that adds sustain but the fact that (in my case at least) the nuts I added to balance the guitar also connect the lid with the bottom of the box and transmit the vibration. As far as I understand that's also the reason there are soundposts in violins, violoncellos, etc. And it could have something to do with the fact that the weights are made of metal. But for understanding that my physics knowledge is definitely not good enough...

I don't think the weight in itself would have a large effect Tom, but making the string anchorage more rigid would help i'd reckon

Thanks for the input, Tom and Darryl!

Following Ron's advice (thanks, again!) I - sort of - fixed the problem now. Instead of rebar I found these two big iron nuts that work just perfectly. I have no idea what they were originally meant for but they look like they're made to be my CBG weights/sustainer blocks: Not only do they add the weight I needed to balance the guitar but with just a tiny bit of filing they fit exactly between the lid and the bottom of the box. And they do considerably improve the sustain when I play acoustically! But, of course, I have a new problem now: They seem to be interfering with the pickup somehow. There is this nasty hum now as soon as I turn up the volume just a little bit. I didn't have any humming problems before (after I drilled a hidden hole and grounded the volume pot to the strings at the tailpiece, that is). Any idea how to fix this? Do I need to ground the two nuts to the volume pot as well? (For now the nuts are just fixed to the neck with zipties and duct tape. I didn't want to glue them in before I figured out the humming problem...) 

There is a chance they,d need grounding,they really shouldn't if they are not part of the circuit, but it would be pretty easy to add a wire from the jack to the nuts temporary and see if it helps


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