fretless fret markers

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by harpguy74, Feb 20, 2014.


  1. harpguy74

    harpguy74

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2011
    I plan on putting a fretless neck on my jazz bass real soon and was wonder what and if anyone here started out on the fretless by marking the neck with something, I used thin blue tape from 3m used in bodyshops to mark the positions on the violin when I first started then took them of one at a time over a period of a few week and it worked well.
     
  2. elgecko

    elgecko

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2007
    Location:
    Anasleim, CA
    The neck doesn't already have side markers?
     
  3. harpguy74

    harpguy74

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2011
    i don't have it yet but I know it does not have lines
     
  4. elgecko

    elgecko

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2007
    Location:
    Anasleim, CA
    It will most likely have dots on the side.
     
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  6. MD

    MD

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2000
    Location:
    Marin Co. CA.
    Make sure the side dots are in the correct position.
     
  7. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    Location:
    Athens, Greece
    If it has side dots (probably does), some dots on fretless necks are in the position of where the press to get the correct note. Other dots are in the position where an actual fret would have been. Just figure out which of the two you have.

    BTW, all of that is info I learned here on TB. :)
     
  8. MD

    MD

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2000
    Location:
    Marin Co. CA.
    I could be reading this wrong, but it sounds like you're describing the same thing. However, I would strongly suggest the OP be absolutely sure whet he's getting before hand, not after.
     
  9. MilesOnline

    MilesOnline

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2014
    Location:
    Baltimore
    I have two fretless basses, both with the fret lines on them.
    I love them!
    There is no shame in having a lined fretless.
     
  10. MalcolmAmos

    MalcolmAmos Supporting Member

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    Deep East Texas Piney Woods
  11. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom Supporting Member

    Joined:
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    Ah yes, sorry, I see what I did there. Oops. :bag:

    Reworded, in one case the dots are where the finger should press down to get the proper note.

    In the other case, the dot is located between where the frets would be, like on a fretted instrument.

    :)
     
  12. Jeff Mueller

    Jeff Mueller

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    Location:
    Columbia, Missouri
    In case GKon's response still isn't clear:

    On a fretted bass, the dots are in between frets. So, when a maker simply uses this fingerboard but doesn't put frets on it, the dots are behind the proper fretless fingering position.

    If the board was made intentionally for fretless playing, the dots would ideally be at the fingering position. You'll likely still have to adjust intonation at the bridge to get it to be "true".

    I had an Ovation Magnum II bass that was the former. Original fretless neck, but they simply used the same fingerboard as a fretted neck - so the dots never lined up. Luckily I play the bass "upside down and backwards" - with the G on top - so I never had their misaligned dots bugging me.

    But - I've always had to make my own dots if I've wanted them, and thus far my favorite method is: use a tuner, find the position, use a dab of "Liquid Paper" to mark it. Its non-permanent, but lasts awhile. Easy to scratch off if you mess up making a mark and have to try again.
     
  13. harpguy74

    harpguy74

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2011
    I am ordering a mighty might neck to throw on my jazz bass and if after a few months if I like it I will get a project on the go to make the rest.
     
  14. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom Supporting Member

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    Feb 17, 2013
    Location:
    Athens, Greece
    Thanks for the help!!! ;)

    And nice idea re: "Liquid Paper"
     
  15. MD

    MD

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2000
    Location:
    Marin Co. CA.
    Just make sure you're getting the FB configuration you want. It doesn't matter if you want lines of not, but IMO, if you're ordering this new, the side dots HAVE to be in the correct location. Period.

    .... Or, no side dots at all. Then you can take a sharpie, or white out, or... and make a small dot on your own.
     
  16. Lownote38

    Lownote38

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2013
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Any aftermarket Jazz bass neck that is fretless with no lines will have the side dot markers where the frets would be (which means that's where your fingers go). I've never seen a fretless J neck (unlined) that wasn't this way. Any luthier that would build an unlined fretless neck with the dots where they would be on a fretted neck is flat out insane.
     
  17. Matthew_84

    Matthew_84

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2010
    Location:
    Toronto, ON, Canada
    Yeah, my fretless Warwick Rockbass has them where they would be on a fretted... I haven't played it much because I really want to replace the pickups and fix this issue. Planning on getting some small white circular stickers and putting them where they should have went, and then covering the original ones, and colouring them to match the neck.
     
  18. MD

    MD

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    Nov 7, 2000
    Location:
    Marin Co. CA.
    Yeah, I would certainly question the sanity of this luthier. However, I would want to be absolutely certain of my order through an after market supplier.
     
  19. eukatheude

    eukatheude

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2012
    Location:
    Italy, Brescia
    Just got one too and it has the same issue. The pickups sound really crappy. Which one do you have? Mine's a Streamer with two mudbuckers.
     
  20. Matthew_84

    Matthew_84

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2010
    Location:
    Toronto, ON, Canada
    Mine's the passive Corvette. I love the feel and look of Warwicks, but in my opinion the single coil MEC jazz pickups are the noisiest pickups I have ever encountered... Even with both pickups on full they are still noisy... and I can't stand noisy pickups. I will be replacing them shortly with some good quality humcancelling J's. Maybe Dimarzio Area J's... Or Lindy Fralin's if I can afford them.
     
  21. Lownote38

    Lownote38

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2013
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Warmoth does it the right way. That's who I've always used since Fender doesn't produce an unlined Fretless neck at this point. Fender Japan did it the right way as well when they were making unlined fretless J-Basses.
     

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