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Breaking the rules!

Discussion in 'Electric Upright Basses (EUB's) [DB]' started by jayscheuerle, Oct 23, 2012.

  1. Just finished this upright bass project. The concept was that I wanted something portable that I could take out of town and get some practice in without needing to amplify. The small acoustic chamber gives just enough sound for that. Also, I wanted to duplicate the shape of the neck and fingerboard of my Upton Bass, so that practice would be apples to apples. Took me three sets of strings (breaking many) before I could finally get all four strings in tune. Seems promising and I may yet add amplification.

    Attached Files:

  2. Tuners are at the bottom. Black chrome. Had some friction problems rounding the end, but black, plastic zip ties did the trick...

    Attached Files:

  3. Strings are clamped in up top. Had a .5" piece of round steel stock. Put 4 holes for the strings and four more holes at 90° that I tapped.

    Attached Files:

  4. Mimicked a tailpiece at the bottom and put in an adjustable end pin with a rocking foot at the bottom like Eminence has to keep it from rotating.

    Attached Files:

  5. It folds up to 46" long (string length is 42") and mounts through the sound port on a standard .75" wide bolt head, holding it flush against the wall.

    Attached Files:

  6. Johnny DeVille

    Johnny DeVille

    Feb 18, 2012
    nice work ! look cool ! play it on the plane !
  7. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    Wow, that's really cool.

  8. Duplicated the shape of my Upton neck and fingerboard shape as well as I could.

    Attached Files:

  9. Eric Rene Roy

    Eric Rene Roy Supporting Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    Mystic, CT
    President: Upton Bass String Instrument Co.
    Nice job Jay! Better sign it so in 100 years they don't attribute it to us! ;)
  10. Interesting. Looks like something Bill Merchant, David King and Lane Poor would come up with over lunch. How does it play?
  11. Anonymatt


    Jan 3, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    If they were still making some Star Trek, they'd totally use that thing as a prop for some Vulcan Jazz or something.

    Do you have sound samples? How much did it cost you to make?? Like, in stuff. Not your time and expertise.
  12. crgaston


    Dec 23, 2005
    Chattanooga, TN
    That is colossally bad-ass. Well done!
  13. powerbass


    Nov 2, 2006
    western MA
    I really like your bass! You came up w/some really creative design solutions! Great job
  14. Total would have been around $100-$150 if I didn't run through 3 sets of strings trying to work friction/clamping issues out. Fortunately, I was using $22/set "Patrick" strings from ebay. Also, I had some knobs and things lying around.

    I appreciate the "expertise" comment, but I had no idea what I was doing in terms of doing things the "right way". That's how I like it, even if it did take me months and almost giving up twice. I still don't know that it won't come apart at any minute...

    The unamplified sound is similar to an acoustic bass guitar (a little "twangy"). That said, because the strings are the cheapest of the cheap, I don't know how it might sound with "real" strings on it. I'm not exactly in the financial mood to figure that out.

    Since I just finished this (meaning all the strings came into tune!) last night, I can't really give an in-depth review of its playability or sound, but it's louder than an Ergo 4-string I picked up on the 'bay, and because the neck and fingerboard are modeled after my own bass, it FEELS more like an upright than the Ergo as well.

    There are still some things to tweak, but no deal-breakers at this point (knock, knock)...
  15. Hmmm... Moved to the EUB section even though it's not an EUB. Looks like one. Could be one, but since there's no Electronics, all that's left is the UB part. Wonder what that stands for....
  16. powerbass


    Nov 2, 2006
    western MA
    Your UB got demoted to EUB. I made my own EUB a few years ago, what I learned was EUB's typically are too bright and fretless bass like in tone. I started adding cork padding under the bridge and neck/body joint, I would have added one under the nut too but I never got around to it. The cork softened up the sound by adding some dampening, it helped the overall tone.

  17. skwee


    Apr 2, 2010
    cool, unique axe!
  18. Anonymatt


    Jan 3, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    Thanks for the input. Dude, it looks well made, so you must be a detail oriented person that knows how to take their time on something.

    Well it's a shame this thread got demoted to EUB, now nobody'll see it!

    I check into the Basses sub-forum only from time to time, so I'm lucky I saw your post. Basses is usually only about basses I can't afford, so I stay in Bows, Jazz Technique, and Misc where I belong, I guess!
  19. MostroDB

    MostroDB Guest

    Apr 18, 2012
    I think its a slick design - congrats!

    Tuning over such sharp angle may remain a problem, maybe using larger diameter nylon rollers can help.

    As it's acoustic only, shouldn't have been in the Eub section, I would say.

    How do you go about playing it? Is it not too close to your body?
  20. nukes_da_bass

    nukes_da_bass Banned

    Feb 19, 2006
    west suburban boston
    You could always pull a "wishbass" and put a Kent Armstrong Jazz right above the tuners wired directly to a jack and get all your EQ from a head and a outboard Fishman style buffer preamp... Saddle looks too short to clamp a piezo to... I'd love to hear it amplified its a really nice looking neck on an ironing board! Build me a 5 string version???