Dean Cabbie Stylist
I have just managed to bag myself the Cabbie 6 years after I last sighted one. Yay for me etc.
Having now read a few forum posts and given the bass a once-over, I do see a few glaring cost-cutting measures which I'd like to rectify. I hope someone out there could kindly steer me in the right direction as I've never pimped my axes before, beyond adding a thumbrest or changing a scratchplate.
The trapeze piece looks like I made it. That is not a compliment. I see identical ones on eBay from China at £7. Also, I found that a beefy Ernie Ball 110 Power Slinky E string is too fat to fit it. How interchangeable are these? Must there be a relationship with the string spacing at the nut?
Some people have complained that the nut is super cheap. It is, but doen't appear to be causing any problems. Yet.
I suspect, like another Stylist owner noticed, that the bridge has been fitted upside down. The groove for the G string seems like it was meant for the E and vice versa. Will a novice tinkerer like me be able to rectify any intonation problems if I swap them back over?
The supplied pick ups are no-name 6 pole guitar humbuckers. Can anyone suggest an appropriate replacement, preferably with a chrome finish?
I know this is a lot to ask but I reckon a few bassists out there may have stored a fantasy set-up for this beauty in the back of their minds in case they ever did find one.
Thanks in advance.
How cool is THAT!!!
Lots of this type of tailpiece around. I'm pretty sure Allparts has at least Hofner clones. Search "bass trapeze tailpiece" and see what comes up. I found this cool harp style one. (bottom of the page)
edit. Yes just swap the saddles back to where they should be. It won't effect the intonation.
Measure the pickups and start looking. Dunno about silver but black should be very doable. Custom ones might be something to consider too.
Thanks for your really valuable input, and given so quickly as well!
That harp tailpiece looks like the way to go. I've only found Chinese junk identical to what I already have, or expensive vintage ones so far. Cheers for the tip. Let's hope they ship to the UK.
Happy New Year to you too. Perhaps one day my scant bass knowledge might come to your rescue.
My pleasure man! I love big hollow body basses like this.
One thing to look out for when replacing the tailpiece is you want to try to get one that's close in length to the original or you may have issues getting strings to fit. Going with strings like DR's that don't have silk windings at the tuner ends will buy you a little wiggle room but be careful and compare measurements before you commit.
I also have "lust in my heart" for a cabbie, but I have a Gretsch 5123 and a Univox hollow body in 3-tone 'burst, so I have suppressed it. I think that harp tailpiece would look fantastic!
I agree on the bridge saddles - just put them where they belong.
And don't discount those pickups until you have played them for a while. You may likie them, especially with a good set of strings.
Cheers for the warning RE: matching up the tailpiece in length.
Thanks for your advice too, Pilgrim. I've yet to get much play through my amp what with the holidays. I also never knew I wanted a semi acoustic until I saw this, but now that I've searched your Gretsch, I think I've found a new money pit.
The strings that are already on it are ludicrously light in gauge and have silk windings. Need I be wary of putting heavy gauged strings on?
Also, the shop I bought it from offered a free set-up. I wanted the action lowered and got a bewildered look from the guy. He did it, but not without making me feel like I'd asked a daft question. Am I asking for too much smoothness from a bass that was only £300-£400 new?
I'll post a pic once I've successfully pimped her out.
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