Welcome to Rickenbacker.com              10/22/2014   
As one might expect, the creation of every Rickenbacker guitar begins in the wood shop. After a shipment of lumber is received, experienced woodworkers carefully inspect each piece of wood to ensure a proper match of grain and quality of material. Eastern hardrock Maple is our wood of choice for necks and bodies, while other woods such as walnut, vermilion and shedua are used for decorative details. Though some of our newer instruments sport maple fingerboards, our more traditional models have African rosewood fingerboards.
  Once numerous appearance matched timbers have been selected, they are cut on table saws to specific lengths for neck and body “blanks.” These body blanks are then sanded and prepared for cutting on automated CNC machines with their grain structure opposed for the greatest possible strength.
While many competitive necks are made of only two or three wood sections, Rickenbacker necks typically are made with a minimum of four, with some models having as many as eleven separate wood laminations. This provides the greatest strength and resistance to warping or twisting.  
  Once the neck and body blanks have been prepared, they are placed on sophisticated 5-axis CNC routers, which carve out both the instrument’s shapes, and some of the body cavities as well.
   
Once off the CNC Machine, it is time to attach the fingerboard to the neck and insert the frets. The most exacting techniques are employed in the insertion of frets into the Rosewood fingerboards by only the most experienced craftsmen. Each fingerboard presents a different challenge and only a skilled operator can decide the appropriate insertion force required for a particular unit. Seating frets accurately the first time makes the difference between an acceptable and a great instrument over the life of the product.  
  Binding, for the most part, is a lost art and is rarely attempted by most companies. Rickenbacker has perfected and continues the tradition of binding all deluxe models, which although very costly, produces a distinctive and memorable appearance.
Once the frets have been installed, it is time for the neck and body pieces to be given their final curves and contours. While this step is still done by hand on some models, many now undergo this transformation on the CNC machine.  
  Rickenbacker guitars, including the legendary 4000 Bass Series, have featured neck-through-body construction for many decades, at a time when other makers are just "discovering" this technique. While the primary benefit is great strength, the elimination of the neck to body joint or fastening device allows the string tension to be carried on one timber structure, leading to the highest level of natural sustain and clarity. Our hollow body instruments feature set-in necks, which in comparison to a bolt on neck, allows for a greater transfer of string energy through the instrument, as well as greater tone and sustain than you would have with a bolt on neck.