Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Added Some Mods To My Elricks (New Ramps And Pickups)

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Bryan R. Tyler, May 11, 2005.


  1. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    I recently had the Aero single coils in my Elrick fretless switched out for Bartolini P25 C soapbars, and couldn't be happier with the sound. The Aeros sounded good-just not my kind of good for a fretless. This is now my third bass I've had with Bart soapbars, and fourth bass I've had with Bart pickups, and I've found they suit me better than any other pickups I've tried.

    I also installed a couple of ramps Rob Elrick built for me. They're radiused to match the fretboard, and are each made of the same wood as the fretboards. I apparently mismeasured the width of them by about an 1/8 of an inch (I'm legally blind-these things happen :)), so there's a little space below and above where I attached the ramps. I'm planning on getting some wood veneer and attaching them to the side of the pickups to fill the small space-I haven't decided if I will keep them a maple color (like the neck blank), paint them black like the pickups, or paint them the color of the ramps...any opinions? Either way, they're fine for now and the small space doesn't affect anything at all.

    The ramps are fantastic- they really do help when plucking with your thumb and fingers in classical guitar/Matt Garrison styles of plucking. I'm looking forward to really investigating how I can use them to aid my plucking.

    Here's what the basses looked like before:
    [​IMG]

    And here's what they look like now:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  2. artistanbul

    artistanbul Nihavend Longa Vita Brevis

    Apr 15, 2003
    Turkey-Istanbul
    nice ramps. I think you should fill the gaps with the same color as the ramps.

    what I wonder is, how the ramp helps while plucking with the thumb. thanks.
     
  3. Wilbyman

    Wilbyman

    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    Looks super, Brian. Don't worry about gomering the ramp measurement. Get some thin black veneer and put it on both sides, it will look totally fine. You'll probably be able to pressure fit it easier that way anyway. They look great. I'd challenge anybody to post a cooler matched pair or instruments.

    W
     
  4. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    Well, I've been trying to incorporate my thumb into my standard plucking technique, but I have the tendancy to dig in a little bit more with my thumb, or angle it in a way that it goes too far past the strings, so it takes a little longer for my other plucking fingers to follow in order. The ramps are stopping my thumb very quickly and give a guideline to measure where to put my thumb, so I can recover much quicker. I use low action, and the ramps are just below the strings, so they have the feel of playing at the end of the fretboard.
     
  5. jja412

    jja412 Fine gear enthusiast

    Feb 2, 2004
    St. Louis
    How are the ramps attached??
     
  6. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    The fretted is attached with velcro tape, which is basically like using double-stick tape but adds a thickness in the middele of about 1/8th or 1/4 of an inch.

    The fretless is attached with four layers of thin double sided tape stacked on top of one another. The action is a little lower since there's no frets, and the radius is flatter, so I couldn't use velcro tape or the foam-style double stick tape.
     
  7. fraublugher

    fraublugher

    Nov 19, 2004
    ottawa, ontario, canada
    music school retailer
    sweet!

    and so necessary and usable , i'm getting them on my new fretless too.
     
  8. C-5KO

    C-5KO

    Mar 9, 2005
    Toronto, Canada
    Very nice. Love that Burl...
     
  9. artistanbul

    artistanbul Nihavend Longa Vita Brevis

    Apr 15, 2003
    Turkey-Istanbul
    I hope I'm not bugging you. I have more to ask.

    As I understand, the reason of a ramp is
    a) freely playing on any special node you want with a place to rest your thumb
    b) prevent digging in too much.
    these are nice things.

    Why didn't you add another ramp from neck pickup to finger board (you could always skip that part and play on fingerboard too of course)

    and how much does it bother (if any) when you slap.

    aaand don't you ever want to play aggresive :)

    thanks. I am very interested in this ramp thing.
     
  10. ppanousos

    ppanousos

    Apr 10, 2005
    Greece
    I bought a Ibanez Gary Willis signature and i dont have to worry about how to measure my ramp or how to mach the radius of the fingerboard.Believe me that the ramp thing is more complex than it seems. :bassist:
     
  11. JOME77

    JOME77

    Aug 18, 2002
    Georgia
    Smart move using double stick tape Bryan. Drilling holes in a bass that nice would definitely hurt the resale since not everyone would desire the ramp.
     
  12. Those basses look fabulous :cool:

    If you don't mind my asking - how much did the ramps cost? I've been thinking about getting one made for my Ken Lawrence but haven't really started asking around yet. :bassist:
     
  13. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    No problem on the questions-I had a lot myself before I decided to get them (started a whole thread on it actually). I didn't add another ramp between the neck and neck pickup because that's where I slap, and the strings rest so closely to the ramp that I simply wouldn't be able to slap with one there. Because that's the area where I slap, the ramp between the two pickups doesn't affect my slapping at all.

    I've found that the very rare occasions when I want to play aggressively, I pluck close to the bridge, not in the center. I usually have better luck not plucking hard anyways- in my experience, I can get a much better aggressive sound when I don't pluck hard, as that often ends up just sounding sloppy.

    Rob Elrick actually threw in a third ramp for me that I could use if I chose. It's another pink ivorywood one, with a different radius than the one I'm using, in case I preferred that one. So I could add it below the bridge pickup, although it would have a slightly rounder radius (12" compared to 16"), but I don't think I'd make much use of it down there.
     
  14. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    From my research, it generally costs around $100 for a ramp. I was able to get mine for $50 each because Rob happened to have the wood for them in the scrap pile, and he was able to combine the time making them with another project. I got lucky :) Make sure you get one that's radiused to match your fretboard (which is how your strings should be radiused) to get the most use out of it.
     
  15. artistanbul

    artistanbul Nihavend Longa Vita Brevis

    Apr 15, 2003
    Turkey-Istanbul
    thanks bryan. that helps a lot.
     
  16. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    Done-that looks better now, doesn't it :D
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  17. Cliff Bordwell

    Cliff Bordwell Commercial User

    Jan 6, 2004
    USA , Orlando , Florida
    Owner of CB BASSES
    Sweey basses!
     
  18. Wilbyman

    Wilbyman

    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    Perfect, I was right as always :D They really look nice. The fretless is so fetching.
     
  19. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    I've been considering doing that on some of my basses too. I like playing directly over the pickups and keep them very close to the strings.

    Looks good, Bryan.
     
  20. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Boston, MA
    that singlecut 5 knocks me out everytime I see it.