Erlewine Neck Jig

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Erlewine Neck Jig

Item # 5399
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Erlewine Neck Jig

About This Item

Redesigned and improved! The revolutionary string tension simulator, for fretwork without guesswork. Now more versatile than ever!

A revolution in fretwork
Dan Erlewine developed the Neck Jig using the breakthrough idea of simulating string tension with the strings off. This results in the most accurate fret and fingerboard work ever: no guesswork, and no unpleasant surprises when the instrument is restrung. Just a very satisfied player!

Proven in pro repair shops
Evolving through years of fretwork for demanding players, the Erlewine Neck Jig has become a valuable asset in busy shops around the world.

NEW! Rigid aluminum design
Sturdy aluminum beam construction adds extra rigidity without cumbersome weight, and is unaffected by humidity. Enhanced stability and reduced flex make neck deflection measurements more precise than ever before.

NEW! Adjusts for any fretted instrument
All components now feature adjustable positioning. You can jig guitars, basses, banjos, mandolins and more, including asymmetrical or custom-shaped bodies, easier and faster. The cross beams have convenient etched measurements for instrument body alignment.

The big difference: using the playing position
Turn the Jig so the guitar is in the same position as when it's played. This is the way to measure and adjust fretboard action, instead of laying the guitar on its back with gravity pulling the neck and strings downward.

Clamp the Jig to your bench in this playing position to read the neck. (Rotating between the playing and working positions is easy with our Neck Jig Workstation.)

With the strings on, the neck's curvature is zeroed-in with dial calipers. When the strings come off, the Jig holds the neck in the same position as when it was strung up in the playing position. Now you can do your fretwork with total accuracy, because when you string the guitar back up the neck doesn't change.

    The Erlewine Neck Jig includes:
  • Precision dial indicators for measuring neck deflection
  • Height-adjustable jig rods
  • Peghead tensioner and jack
  • Swivel-top levelers that conform to the instrument body
  • Wooden body support slats
  • Body straps
  • Sturdy eyebolt for convenient storage on your shop wall
  • 4 setup wrenches
  • Instructions



Product Instructions

Erlewine Neck Jig Instructions

How to assemble and jig up a guitar.

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  • 4.50 average rating from 8 reviews
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Finally pulled the trigger.


Verified Buyer

Got the neck jig finally. After years of doing levels by feel, I finally wanted to SEE what my neck is doing while I am working on it. The affect gravity has on the neck is mind blowing when you see it for yourself on the gauges. I've seen as much as a .020 difference from playing position to working position. That's plenty of fret buzz causing movement for sure!

Setting it up was fairly easy. I am regretting not getting the stand and vise with it though. Moving the entire jig with a guitar mounted can be scary.. The only issue I had with it, is that the machining is a little rough around the edges. Enough to slice into a finger without mercy. So break out your files and round those edges before setting it up! Your finger will thank you... Mine is still a bit angry with me.

Do you need this? No, with experience you can do accurate fretwork without. But this takes 20 years of experience out of the equation and gets you turning over accurate fret jobs ASAP! So do you want this? YES! Worthwhile investment in the long run.




Verified Buyer

I can't believe I waited so long to get the latest version of the Erlewine neck jig! I started 30 years ago with the plans and built the 1st version ( tilting top w/slat table) eventually moving up to the 2nd version wood model (with a shop stand & tilting vise). Now, with this new Neck Jig, the ease of setting it up and the adjustability are unsurpassed! Odd shaped and small instruments no longer pose a challenge. The rigid construction means you have absolutely no movement when leveling frets! Dan and the folks at Stew Mac R&D really knocked this one out of the park! Thank you.


Fun setting this up


Verified Buyer

Had to take a few attempts getting all the parts correctly in place. Got it working today, set up one guitar and so far it seems to be correct. Bigger and better made the I had expected.


Neck jig


Verified Buyer



Not impressed


Verified Buyer

I just got into doing my own repairs a few years back, but saw the need for a way to simulate string tension while doing fret work. I racked my brain trying to figure out a cheap way to do this. I was frustrated with this tool because the usage directions didn't stress certain points enough. It was during this time that I realized how I could simulate neck tension for under fifty bucks. Regardless it is a great tool but way over priced. I have to give two stars because of the pricing. There is a much simpler way for only a few bucks.

Response from StewMac

We are sorry to hear you were not impressed with this tool. The Erlewine Neck Jig, along with all of our tools and parts, are covered under our 100% Satisfaction Guarantee. If you are not happy, please contact our Customer Service Department to return it for a refund. - Spencer, Customer Support


Best Gig I've Used


Verified Buyer

It's easy to design your own jig, I have done so in the past, but it is another thing to take the time to buy all the parts, cut all the wood, drill all the holes, etc. etc. to build it, only to have something that doesn't look very nice although can perform the task. The time it takes to assemble is considerable.

This jig assembles in 15 minutes, and you can begin flattening your fret boards professionally the night it arrives.

I've done 2 guitars, both relatively inexpensive to "practice" on (shhh - don't tell the owners) and both came out with superbly low action. The micrometers served as more of a confirmation that everything was still in place since I did not have to apply much pressure to the head stock IF ANY - the threaded support rods under the neck prevented the neck from back bowing once the stings were removed so the neck didn't do much of anything - it had nowhere to go and the micrometers proved it by staying near zero during the entire process. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that a neck must be held in the same position that strings under tension place it and held in place firmly before any fret or fret board leveling is done. It's also my firm belief that a truss rod does not do this and that the profile of the relative height of the frets changes depending on how you bend the neck. Neck jig - good. Truss Rod - bad. If a neck jig is properly used, there is usually no need to adjust the truss rod after re-stringing. The strings should pull the neck into almost the perfect position. Use truss rod adjustments VERY sparingly after leveling. They should not be necessary.

It would be nice to have a platform (I built one from MDF board) to mount the guitar on. I cut a piece of 3/4" MDF about 2" wider than my guitars, mounted that on the guitar supports, put thin rubber grommets on the surface of the platform so the guitar wouldn't slide or get scratched, pulled the strap tight after aligning everything and presto, 15 minutes later I had almost perfect action and a lot of frets to crown!

One last thing. You need a vise to hold this and a strong table to mount the vise on.

Highly recommended.


Great New Design


Verified Buyer

I bought this after using the old model for the last decade. I had the one with the 5th string banjo tuner installed in the side. The construction is great. Its much faster to set up. Tons more options. Very reasonable price for what you get.


Erlewine Neck Jig II is a great improvement over the original!


Verified Buyer

I just received the new jig, and have it all put together, and its ready to rock. The new neck jig is just so much more adjustable than the older one. Looks fantastic!

1. Aluminum Construction instead of wood makes for a more professional looking machine.

2. Crossbars adjust to any guitar body shape. Makes jigging my Ibanez RG much better than I could on the older jig.

3. Support Rods and Dial Gauges are movable for exact placement on a guitar neck

4. Dial Gauges adjust for height much more easily without the need for visegrips, which was a pain in the butt!

5. Peghead Jack secures better and is more adjustable to fit under offset pegheads like on my Ibanez.

The only thing that I didn't like was the fact that there were no attachments to secure the main beam to the angle vise. Tilting the neck jig with a guitar in it, and just relying on the vise jaws alone is spooky. The older neck jig came with screws for securing it to the vise as an added safety feature. The new one has a nice rail running along the length of the main beam, which would be perfect for having a sliding attachment to secure it to the vise. I made up my own way of securing it using some steel and nuts, bolts, and washers. But it would be nice to see some custom hardware included to secure it.

StewMac PDF Catalog, page 14 See Erlewine Neck Jig
on page 14 of our StewMac Digital Catalog