Adding a fret to a fretless?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by odie, Mar 28, 2002.

  1. odie

    odie Supporting Member

    Well some of you might have heard that Im diving into the world of fretless. And Ive heard that you can add a fret to a fretless to give it a slap and pop sound when um er slapping :)
    Has anyone done this?? Points comments

    Also on a unrelated note. I know reggae has alot of low thumpy almost dull sounding bass. Has freetless been used before?
  2. BassistJ


    Mar 20, 2001
    Hemet, CA USA
    Hmm...sounds interesting. I don't know if that one fret will give you the true fretted slap bass tone (I'm assuming you want to add it to the end of teh fretboard, right?) I think you might have an issue with setup, though, since in all honesty fretted and fretless bass are two completely different instruments setup wise. I'd also like to hear some feedback about this. Sounds pretty interesting. :D

    And can't help you on the fretless-in-reggea question, although I have just fine before.
  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    One fret probably wouldn't be enough, and it'd kill the mwha in the upper register.
  4. Ciaran


    Apr 4, 2001
    I was thinking of defretting and this questons really interests me.
    It also reminded me of something I saw at TB before:

    slap plate
  5. Before altering your bass I'd suggest taking a small piece of wood and having it shaped and fitted with a fret. This shouldn't cost much to have done if you aren't capable of doing the work yourself.

    Use some double-stick tape to attach it to the top of your bass just behind the end of the fingerboard.

    Now try slapping, fingerstyle and whatever else you do on your bass. If it works voila! If not, remove it and your bass is intact.

    If it does in fact work for you you might consider a more solid method of attaching it to your bass. Maybe a screw or two either into the top of your bass or attached to the pickguard from underneath if your bass has one.

    As well you could experiment a little by moving the "phantom fret block" around a little to tweak the slap sound. You could also use a couple of frets or something else entirely like a strip of brass.

    Just and idea, I have not tried this myself although it is on my list of little hacks to try at some point.
  6. odie

    odie Supporting Member

    Well Im going to bump this hoping someone else has done this.!!
  7. When I defretted an old P bass neck, I left the 20th fret on. After I mounted it and strung it, tweaked the truss rod and set the action, I got some mad buzz off that one lousy little fret. If you want the fretted slap sound on a fretless, a little metal plate at the neck heel would be the best way to go. If your truss rod nut is at the heel, like mine is, you're SOL.
  8. f bass has an option on their fretlesses for what they call a slap plate. it's basically a solid piece brass attached at the end of the neck and works to give slapping the ping of a fretted. carl thompson also used to do it.
  9. odie

    odie Supporting Member

    Is there a picture of these??