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a wal or a stingray

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by zazz, May 7, 2005.

  1. zazz


    Feb 27, 2004
    ok...this is my dilemour i sold my wal fretless a few years ago and bought a fretted stingray.

    now i love my stingray but i am wanting to get back into fretless..and i love the 80s japan sound of the wal.

    anyway i looked at the prices and it seems an 80s wal is quite an expensive collectors item and would probably be worn out..i know my old custom had some major valleys in that fretboard.

    so im thinking maybe i should seek out a new stingray fretless ..or would it be no match for the wal????? i wish ernie ball had an ebony finger board option ..i might also buy a stingray and convert to ebony fretless.

    any ideas guys??
  2. frigo

    frigo burn in hell!

    Dec 8, 2003
    i would wait and go for a wal... i personally never liked stingrays, but i think it wouldn't sound better than a wal, specially fretless

    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Supporting Member

    If you can get the WAL go for it! :bassist:
  4. zazz


    Feb 27, 2004
    thanks guys...you all make a lot of sense but the truth is that not being in the uk will make getting a wal at a resonable price quite hard..whereas stingrays are all over the place...but i will wait and see if the wal comes off...if it doesnt then plan b will have to be brought in. I do have a suspicion that a stingray with an ebony fingerboard would be a hell of an improvement over rosewood.

    the moral of the story is ...dont sell you wal in the first place!!
  5. zazz


    Feb 27, 2004
    acctually i did a little net research and was quite suprised at the results.

    it seems that putting an ebony fretboard on a stingray is not a bad idea... pino paladino did such a thing during the 80s and acctually took over from mik karn on one project and did some tracks that i acctually thought was a wal... but in fact was was a stingray.

    also my guitar tech acctually did his neck ..so technically im in good company.

    my only concern is that the stingray of the 80s is a different beast from the stingray of the 90s wood/tone wise??

    if i get a black stingray with rosewood neck then the conversion should be fairly easy and look pretty mean.
  6. sargebaker

    sargebaker Commercial User

    May 2, 2004
    Montreal QC CA
    owner/builder, ISLAND Instrument Mfg.
    I can't personally coment on the tone of 80's fretless rays but i really love the bright fretless zing of 90's-00's Rays. There's a pre- EB fretless Ray up for sale on the boards that has been there forever that may also be worth looking into.

    Also another option as opposed to changing the board to ebony would be to have it epoxied or some other such treatment.

    Good Luck and hope this helps a bit.

    Oh and Wals sound AMAZING (but you can get about 4 stingrays for one.... so I guess it depends on your needs/funds)
  7. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Maybe a bit late ;)

    Don't know how 80s and 90s MM compare, but if you try, you may find a used one.
    Also, a lot of it may depend on the electronics
  8. bovinehost

    bovinehost Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: Ernie Ball Music Man/Sterling By Music Man
    There are very minor, mostly cosmetic differences. Other than that, same bass.
  9. 0557


    Apr 12, 2004
    You might want to consider the Bongo fretless. It has a massive amount of tone variation,with a pau ferro board,
    the piezo version sounds amazing. they around the same price as a stingray.
    I have owned two Wals, one was fretless, aside from the beauty and the craftsmenship, I don't miss them at all.
    Current basses are an SR5 and a bongo HH fretless 5 string.
    that will arrive around the first week in June.
  10. vene-nemesis

    vene-nemesis Banned

    Jul 17, 2003
    Bilbao EspaƱa

    80s japan sound of the wal????

    aside form that, i have heard both basses and those dont sound the same, so having both would be great. I prefer that dense sound wals have against the 'gray tone. However if you get the chance try a vigier you would like it ;) .

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