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Would you buy a "fretted" fretless?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by AudioDwebe, Feb 20, 2013.


  1. AudioDwebe

    AudioDwebe Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2011
    Pacific Northwest
    Would you consider purchasing a modified fretless (fretless to fretted) if the work was done by a luthier other than the manufacturer?

    The bass in question is a Renaissance 5-string.

    I'm thinking it might be difficult to sell if I decide I don't like the Ren for whatever reason.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Don't just TalkBASS - PlayBASS! Supporting Member

    Which Renaissance? There were/are at least to makers who use(d) that name.
     
  3. AudioDwebe

    AudioDwebe Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2011
    Pacific Northwest
  4. ecj_bass

    ecj_bass Supporting Member

    Oct 28, 2011
    Boston, Massachusetts
    As long as a bass sounds, plays and looks good, I don't think anyone cares what it was before it gets into their hands.
     
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  6. atomicdog

    atomicdog

    Jun 18, 2011
    If Rick Turner did the work, you can take that deal to the bank.
     
  7. Nagrom

    Nagrom

    Mar 21, 2004
    Western Canada
    First question I'd ask is why someone who went to all that trouble is selling now...
     
  8. coyote1

    coyote1

    Mar 23, 2012
    Would not. In fact, would not consider a lined fretless of any sort.

    If you have lines,you might as well have frets.
     
  9. That's not even the question Coyote1...
    He's asking of converting a fretless TO fretted, not the other way around.

    Personally, I would not care as long as it has been professionally handled and
    all of the frets are properly proportioned to get fine intonation. I wouldn't be
    weary of buying a fretted bass that was re-fretted as long as it's still a great bass!

    Also.. lines or no lines, fretless is fretless, it's all about tonal difference anyways.
    I've seen uprights with lines and the player was still killer. Hell, the mate has his own
    big band ensemble and has massive respect. I'll take a groovy player over someone with no "markers" any day.
     
  10. Double E

    Double E I ain't got no time to play... Supporting Member

    Dec 24, 2005
    Northeast Ohio
    That's a very inaccurate and snobbish statement.
     
  11. OnederTone

    OnederTone Sucker for Sunburst Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 15, 2002
    Westminster, CO
    [​IMG]
     
  12. elgecko

    elgecko

    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    Sure, all fretted necks were fretless before the frets were installed.
     
  13. willsellout

    willsellout Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2002
    Astoria, Oregon
    MY go to bass is a G&L L1505 that started out as a fretless that was then fretted with mandolin fret wire. It's amazing. Frets don't detract value and as long as it was done professionally, I don't see the issue.

    Also agree that Coyote's statement was dumb.
     
  14. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Don't just TalkBASS - PlayBASS! Supporting Member

    So long as the work was done cleanly with a new nut to compensate for the height of the frets, the bass should be great. I have never played a fretted Renaissance but I used to have a RB5FL and currently own a RB4FL, very unique, anti-gravity basses. :cool:
     
  15. AudioDwebe

    AudioDwebe Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2011
    Pacific Northwest
    I've seen the pictures and the work looks great; done by an experienced luthier.

    I guess I asked the question as a result of my extensive background as an audiophile where if a repair of component A isn't done by the maker, it tends to be looked down on and may affect your ability to sell it down the road.
     
  16. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    :D :D :D

     
  17. IronLung1986

    IronLung1986

    May 19, 2010
    Seattle, WA
    keep in mind that playability and resale value are two very different factors. i think the consensus here is that if the work is done by someone competent and reputable then it's probably going to play just fine. however, modifications do tend to affect the resale value, and not normally for the better. i don't mean to say anything definite or dissuade you from buying what is probably an exceptional bass (as all rick turner instruments are), just remember that some people might view it as less valuable down the road.
     
  18. Belka

    Belka

    Dec 10, 2003
    Kiev, Ukraine
    What a load of crap. Don't forget to mention this complete piece of turd of advice to Jaco, Gary Willis, Pino, and others.

    People like Percy Jones, Steve Bailey are brilliantly entertaining players, but their intonation isn't as good as Jaco or Gary's.

    The one guy I know who truly can play an unlined fretless with amazingly good intonation is Michael Manring. Most people, if they're not as talented and not as willing to put in the work as Manring, sound better on lined fretless. Sorry if I've offended some people, but that's how I hear it.
     
  19. Got2SadowskyNYC

    Got2SadowskyNYC

    Dec 5, 2012
    Nashville, TN
    Disclosures:
    Artist: Sadowsky, Bag End, Visual Sound, Pedaltrain, George L
    Might as well have frets? That's laughable. This assumes that frets ONLY act as a point of reference. THey do NOT. They effect the sound.


    I moved overto electric bass from Cello. I don't even know how to play guitar. I had Greg Curbow make my IEP 6 fretless with lines. I don't need them under normal circumstances, but there has been a couple of times when I really couldn't hear myself that I was glad I had them.

    I would say that if I recorded my bass and the exact same bass without lines the above know-it-all wouldn't be able to tell the difference.

    Oh. And Jaco had lines. But what did he know?
     
  20. I did. A '76 P w/ an "A" neck that I think started life as fretless and was fretted (I think the neck year may be a year or 2 older due to the script of the fender logo).
    The side marker dots appear where the frets are, and the fretboard dot inlays aren't perfectly aligned in the middle, leading me to believe this.

    The neck is pretty worn-in & is in fact a very smooth player...and my go to.
     
  21. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 5, 2004
    Mount Vernon, Illinois
    Disclosures:
    Backstage Guitar Lab owner
    That's the one point I was going to mention.

    On a fretless, side marker dots are usually placed right AT the point where a fret would be. On fretted basses, the side marker dots appear BETWEEN the frets.

    There are exceptions, but this is mostly the case.