Kit bass vs brand bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by kurotenshi, Jan 26, 2013.


  1. kurotenshi

    kurotenshi

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2009
    Location:
    Amadora, Portugal
    This might be a silly question but, lets say I buy (from warmoth for instance) a body and a neck, then get some quality hardware and electronics. How would this instrument compare in quality to a branded instrument with same woods, shape, electronics and hardware, and why?

    Example: jazz bass assembled by me vs. squire vs. fender american.
  2. bootsox

    bootsox

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2012
    Location:
    Biloxi, MS
    it really depends on your own skill and the quality of the parts you buy. Some of the nicest instruments I owned I've made from good parts, but some of the worst instruments I've played have been made from kits as well
  3. JoeWPgh

    JoeWPgh

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2012
    The advantage is that you can hand pick your various options - bridge, pickups, Preamp etc. They can route the cavities to what you have elected to do. The rattle can paints from Reranch make for a great nitro finish, if you follow their instructions. But what you'll find is that the costs start adding up pretty quickly. If you're going to go through the trouble of this, are you going to skimp on electronics and hardware? Then there's the setup. That's where the difference will be found. Are you comfortable filing your nut slots? Do you have the neccessary files? Leveling/crowning frets?
    I put together a USACG Jazz with Sadowsky electronics, Hipshot A strung through bridge, and laid a vintage nitro sunburst on it. It was gorgeous and sounded unbelievable. The setup on it was on a par with a Japanese Fender, maybe a little better, but not quite as nice as my new American Deluxe J. All told, I ended up with a little over a grand into it. It was a bit of work, but work I thoroughly enjoy doing. So, I viewed it more as a hobby than a purchase. To do it up right, you'll discover there's more to it than you might have guessed. As for that bass? If I ever find the guy who stole it.......
  4. Meddle

    Meddle

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    Location:
    Scotland
    A 'known brand' bass will, in theory, keep its value. No matter what high quality good you pump into a Partsocaster you will make a horrible loss selling the thing on. Doesn't matter the spec.

    Here in the UK we have 'Gumtree' instead of Craigslist. You see all sorts of cobbled-together junk on there. I don't care if you added a Badass II to a Squier Affinity, it is like buying soiled underpants or something!
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  6. JoeWPgh

    JoeWPgh

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2012
    Meddle is correct. No matter how perfect your bass turns out, you'll never get more than 1/2 your money back out of it, should you go to sell it. People will assume it junk. "But it's really nice" isn't a very good bargaining position. But, if you enjoy the work, if you enjoy learning how to make a killer Fender clone that's head and shoulders above a Squier or MIM, that's a whole seperate value, but something else to factor into your equation.
  7. gumbynotpokey

    gumbynotpokey

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2010
    Location:
    Western NC
    Check out the Carvin kit instruments on their website. Amazing. Really.
  8. fenderslaper

    fenderslaper

    Joined:
    May 14, 2003
    Location:
    San Diego CA.
    The bass I'm currently giging is a cobbeled together (by me) bass. 1971 Fender fretless neck, Warmouth body DeMarzio pickups and a Ghotoh bridge. One of my favorite basses (I also have a 62 Fender P, A 68 Jazz a 68 Tele and a 78Tele). I have about $550.00 invested in it and wouldn't sell it for three times that. It's that good.
  9. kurotenshi

    kurotenshi

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2009
    Location:
    Amadora, Portugal
    Well, if I build something I'm not planing on selling it. but anyway, here in Portugal the same problem remains even with brand basses.
  10. j0616bass

    j0616bass

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Location:
    Indianapolis, IN
    You're also bound to learn a few things by the experience!
  11. kurotenshi

    kurotenshi

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2009
    Location:
    Amadora, Portugal
    That was also the point, to start with a finished kit then move to a unfinished, then to an uncut and then to getting the wood boards and do everything myself. The crappy thing is that Rockinger only has 4st kits. With warmoth I have to deal with bigger shipping costs and customs taxes but I don't know any other store in europe that has this kind of service.

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