My first electro-acoustic hybrid!

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Triad, Nov 11, 2012.


  1. Triad

    Triad Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Location:
    Europe
    Disclosures:
    Bass Builder
    Heeeello there! For a few months I've been considering to build a prototype for a new series of basses... something that could slightly resemble the sound of a low-tuned acoustic guitar more than a doublebass. Maybe I'm listening too much to Erik Mongrain and Michael Hedges? Maybe. Anyway, I didn't want to go for a full acoustic bass 'cause as you know they're not extremely versatile... they have feedback problems if used in loud situations and they're not loud enough to be played unplugged. My goal was to get the acoustic sound thru an amp but without feedback issues and without the non-adjustable bridge.
    In a few days I've put together this beast... the specs are:

    34" scale
    24 frets (will be fretted)
    Bronze strings!
    Cocobolo fingerboard
    Zebrawood neck
    Chestnut toneblock
    Okoumé sides
    American Cherry back
    Santos Rosewood facings

    The two wings are completely hollow and they share the volume thru a few holes made thru the toneblock. The beast is about 2" thick. I plan to use regular hardware on it and to amplify its voice I've already ordered two AKG 411s. As some of you'll know, they are contact microphone. I wasn't very happy with the idea of a piezo... never found one that sounded good enough and I think think they tend to amplify the sound of the strings more than the voice of the whole instrument (I'm talking about bridge applications). There are a few piezo that can be put on the top but still don't know, maybe I'll also order a K&K Big Twin or Double Big Twin to experiment with them but they all need an external preamp... again, not too happy with the idea.
    I also have to choose the size, shape and placement of the F-hole. I plan to make one on the upper wing but since it's really an experiment, I think I'll put everything together with hide glue to hear how loud the bass is and how the AKG works and then I'll decide (hide glue can easily be removed).
    I've shaped the headstock and made the holes for the tuners... must only sand and fret the fingerboard and shape the back of the neck. I've been extremely fast on this one, probably because I'm really curious to play it :p
    I could still put a magnetic pickup on it to make it even more versatile but... it would change the philosophy behind the project, so I don't think I'll do it. Any thoughts/advices about the piezo stuff etc.? ;)
    Still on the fence about the presence of a routing to put my hands into the body, in case I need to. But if I make the soundhole big enough I think I'll can live without it.

    Attached Files:

  2. PaPaVB20

    PaPaVB20

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2008
    Very interesting idea! Subbed to ths thread.... I want to see and hear this prototype!

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