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34" Scale F Basses?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by PlayTheBass, Jan 31, 2005.


  1. PlayTheBass

    PlayTheBass aka Mac Daddy

    Dec 7, 2004
    Carmichael, CA
    Anyone out there have experience with a 34" F Bass? I fell in love with a BN5 at the NAMM Show and want to order one, but have only played 34" scale basses all my bass life. George will do a custom 34" scale, but it's pricey and he says it doesn't work as well.

    This bass may push me to go ahead and try a longer scale. I mean, I've tried them in music stores without any problem, so maybe I'm just paranoid about muscle memory, moving from a longer scale bass back to 34" (especially to a 34" fretless).

    Any ideas? Thanks.
     
  2. There's almost no difference.
     
  3. PlayTheBass

    PlayTheBass aka Mac Daddy

    Dec 7, 2004
    Carmichael, CA
    Hey Geoff! How's it going? How's the F-1X? ;)

    So when you say there's almost no difference, do you mean between playing the 34.5" and going back to the 34"? Or do you mean difference in tone between the two scale lengths?

    Thanks,
    Sean Mc
     
  4. Halftooth

    Halftooth Supporting Member

    Nov 24, 2002
    Tri-Valley, NorCal
    I haven't played one in a 34' scale, but to me, I don't think the difference in tone or feel would warrent the significant upcharge for the custom scale length.
     
  5. PlayTheBass

    PlayTheBass aka Mac Daddy

    Dec 7, 2004
    Carmichael, CA
    I assume the tone won't be any better in a 34", as George's formula is the 34.5 and he's obviously got it dialed. But I'm thinking I agree with you in that the change in feel is not worth the extra $$$. Assuming it's a very small change...
     
  6. Halftooth

    Halftooth Supporting Member

    Nov 24, 2002
    Tri-Valley, NorCal
    You could probobly figure the difference out mathmaticly and calculte the difference in string tension and what not if you wanted to be technical, but it's such a small difference that it's not even worth considerring the upcharge of a 34' scale custom Fbass. I would assume that the upcharge for scale length would be about the same as the upgrade for a 24 fret board which is outrageous, and I think you'd see more return on your investment adding the 2 frets than subtracting .5' from your scale length. George has his basses dialed, so my recommendation is to not mess with the 34.5' scale equation that has brought the Fbasses success.
     
  7. Bennet Pullen

    Bennet Pullen

    Aug 31, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    I used to have a 34" fretted and a 34" fretless. When I bought a new fretted bass it was 35" and I was quite worried that my intonation might suffer. I turned out to be totaly wrong, it made no real difference at all, I think the difference is so slight that all that will happen is for a little while while you adjust you won't play the 34.5" right on the fret, or wherever you play, but I don't think it will be a big issue. I now move back and forth between a 35" scale 6 fretted and a 34" scale 5 fretless with no problem.
     
  8. PlayTheBass

    PlayTheBass aka Mac Daddy

    Dec 7, 2004
    Carmichael, CA
    Zensunday & Halftooth, thanks for easing my intonation fears. (I'm betting other people's experiences are similar, though I wonder if anybody's ever gone to a longer scale and regretted it.)

    Well, I think I will not mess with George's success, and just give it a shot.
     
  9. Well, tonally I really don't know... I've never seen a 34" scale F Bass. As far as playability though, I'd honestly have to get out a tape measure and measure the fretboard in order to tell the difference. In all honesty I've never been able to tell if a bass was 34" or 35" by simply playing it. The difference you're talking about is only .5". If the upcharge is the one I am thinking of for custom options it is not worth it. Currently I am playing a Dingwall 6 string and switching within my set to a 35" scale fretless Rob Allen. I honestly have little trouble with this. I think you'll be fine on the 34-34.5 switch.

    The F1-X is awesome, thanks. Tone, tone, tone!
     
  10. PlayTheBass

    PlayTheBass aka Mac Daddy

    Dec 7, 2004
    Carmichael, CA
    Thanks, Geoff. I bet you're right. I've played a 36" scale bass before, and that definitely made a difference, but of course that's four times the difference we're talking about here.

    (Probably no surprise, but man, I've missed the ol' F1-X at times! :) I've been using odd configurations at preamp for the last few gigs, but I've got a Glock Bass Art Classic on the way that I'm looking forward to playing through. I've been liking my solid state studio stuff, so I kind of wanted to try it out on stage too. I hope I don't suffer from tube withdrawal!)
     
  11. sethlow3

    sethlow3 Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2003
    Nashville, Tennessee
    Alls i can say is try out some Fs if you get the chance. IMO its the best bass out there. As far as a great fretless is concerned I would highly reccommend a Rob Allen, Zon, or the F. i used to only play fretless and those 3 were amazing to me. And .5 of an inch won't make much difference in feel or intonation. If you are going unlined you will have to use your ear the most anyway.
     
  12. I have an F Bass Studio 5 that feels great for a guy like me that has played p basses most of his life. This is the 20-fret model, however I don't think George is making them anymore...I came very close to selling mine recently but came to my senses at the last minute... :smug: They are out there though...I saw one go for about $1250 on Ebay recently...that was a steal!