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Kay Bass Solid Shaft Endpin Tightening Mechanism

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by dave79, Dec 22, 2012.

  1. dave79

    dave79 Supporting Member

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    Maybe this would be better suited for setup/repair section but I thought I'd post here first since I would really like to get it working.

    I guess this is the stock endpin, sure looks like it. I can unscrew the whole things from the bass, as shown. But The end is stuck, I'm not sure if I'm supposed to unscrew it or what, or how this is supposed to hold position.

    Please don't respond if you do not know what you are talking about or are just guessing, there is too much of that on this forum.

    Thanks

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  2. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member

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    Do you see the ribs in the end pin? Those would typically prevent the pin from getting pushed all the way into the knurled ring, but in your case, they have gotten pushed in and stuck. You can free those two things from one another with a gentle tap from a hammer. I would put a block of wood between the hammer and the ring, and tap.

    The next thing is AFAIK there is supposed to be something that goes in between the ring and the endpin of the bass, that gets squeezed when you tighten the ring, sort of like a compression type plumbing fitting. Maybe that's missing, or still inside the ring.

    My Kay had this arrangement when I got it, but the threads were mangled and the peg was missing, so I just put in a piece of 1/2" aluminum rod and drilled a hole through the whole shebang to pin it with a pin that I made from a piece of clothes hanger. When this bass finally saw the inside of a luthier shop, the luthier put in a new "Gotz" style endpin.

    Hope that helps. If you are in a pinch and need this bass to be playable right away, you can put a small stainless steel hose clamp around it, with some bike innertube rubber to cushion it.
  3. dave79

    dave79 Supporting Member

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    Thanks, and yes, I just got off the phone with the owner of Fretwell Basses, he was saying that it is a compression style. I was up in the air about either hitting it with a hammer or soaking it in WD-40 and trying to unscrew it. I didn't want to hit it if it was screwed in(!) There is a tiny bit of give when I rotate it left/right. I'll go ahead and hit it, they said that they'd replace the whole thing for under $50 installed, can't beat that. At the same time it is all original and it would be cool to keep it that way.
  4. dave79

    dave79 Supporting Member

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    Success! After a good deal of WD-40 and hammering it's out. I'm definitely missing something, I think. I screwed in the outside part onto the bottom of the bass and can move the shaft but now there is nothing to keep it in place. Any suggestions?

    [​IMG]
  5. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member

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    Those two washer-y things on the end pin, are they slotted? Can you work them loose, and do they come apart? I didn't actually get a close look at those parts on my Kay, as they were missing. There must be some way for the tapered inner shoulder of the nut, to cause those two washers to compress down onto the pin.

    Getting it replaced wouldn't be a bad thing, especially if you could also get a flexible tail wire at the same time. (That's what my luthier did).
  6. dave79

    dave79 Supporting Member

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    Yes, well this is interesting, I got one to move off and there is rubber underneath the two. I was approaching it from the other side of the cylinder with the shaft, thinking that some rubber piece would clamp down as you screwed the cylinder in...
  7. dave79

    dave79 Supporting Member

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    GOT IT!!! Had to loosen the 2 circles with a wrench, then loosen a rubber-ish part under them, the shaft slides between it all and then you tighten the outer cylinder, amazingly stills works fine. Thanks so much for the help fdeck. I will upload a pic or two to show how the mechanism works(for future reference) since I've spent quite some time with Google and wasn't able to find anything. Woohoo, time to play some bass.
  8. dave79

    dave79 Supporting Member

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    I'll edit the title in case anybody ever needs this.


    [​IMG]
  9. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member

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    Way cool! I wonder if the rubber piece started its life as a plain O-Ring, and has been permanently squished into the form shown. Still, if it works now, that's great news.

    But I think the Kay bass was invented before the O-Ring.
  10. eh_train

    eh_train Supporting Member

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    Great that it's working again, and a fairly neat design.

    Fdeck, it seems you're suggesting the endpin isn't original. I've seen maybe a dozen or so Kays up close, and have yet to see that particular endpin. The stock Kay endpins often need replacing though.

    Cheers,

    Paul
  11. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member

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    I'm pretty sure this is the original endpin, but its use by Kay might have been limited to a certain number of years. It goes into a smaller hole than the typical mainstream endpin, and is non tapered.

    Also, now I remember where I read about O-Rings, and they have been around forever. The "invention" was of the correct dimensions of the O-Ring groove for use in hydraulic pistons.
  12. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC Supporting Member

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    I've enjoyed this thread. It really points out how helpful knowledgeable folks here are willing to be. I'm happy for you, Dave, that the problem seems to be solved. Just a tip-- best not to open with a swipe at the participants of these forums when asking for advice. :)

    We now return you to the regularly scheduled programming. Happy holidays and new year to all.
  13. dave79

    dave79 Supporting Member

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    Seems to have worked, I think I'm going to open any help thread this way now :)
    Actually it's not that bad over here, on the EB side you post a help thread and get tons of people who just want to guess or tell you to do something differently. It'd be the equivalent of getting ten posts on here that just said "buy a new endpin".
  14. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC Supporting Member

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    We're more civil over here. :) I sympathize with you wanting to limit the speculative responses. Really, I do. You know that old saying, "It's often not what you say but how you say it."
  15. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member

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    Just one more note: It would be worth making sure that the mechanism is really secure, i.e., that the rubber ring is still functioning. Sudden Endpin Failure is never a pleasant experience.
  16. dave79

    dave79 Supporting Member

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    No worries there, it is over-functioning to say the least. I don't just turn the cylinder and scoot it up and down, I have to remove the cylinder and use force to move the two circles and o-ring to the position I want and then screw it in with the end cylinder.
  17. james condino

    james condino Spruce dork Supporting Member

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    This is not the standard issue endpoint that you see on 95% of the Kay's in the trenches, although it may be original. it looks like it may have been one of the models that came equipped with a very primitive early Sure microphone mounted on the inside portion. This one has the hollow aluminum tube, no? If so, changing it out will often have a noticeable effect on the voice of the bass, especially if you keep it extended while playing. It won't suddenly sound like and old Italian bass, but an aware Kay nerd will be able to tell the difference. I keep a half dozen different endpin materials around for folks to experiment with.

    J.
  18. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member

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    My 1961 Kay had the same endpin mechanism, no microphone. It's certainly conceivable that a microphone was available as an upgrade. Mine's an ex school bass, so it would have been purchased for arco playing.

    I can see that it might have been a short-lived innovation.
  19. Jake deVilliers

    Jake deVilliers Supporting Member

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    That's not an Amplified peg - they have a threaded connector on the foot with a wire that goes to the volume pot housing stuck on the top. :(

    That style of endpin seems to be an unusual but OEM Kay fixture - I have seen a couple that seemed to be completely original and have one around here somewhere...

    Attached Files:

  20. Eric Hochberg

    Eric Hochberg

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    I have the same endpin on my old Bohemian shop bass. It still works well and you don't have to search for notch centers. If the "washers" were tightly fit, I believe they go on the other side of the screw to keep the pin from slipping all the way in. That is how mine works.

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