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broken NT, possible headless conversion?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by sonic assassin, Oct 6, 2010.

  1. a while back i got a call the night before my comeback gig with my old band after getting back from college. apparently the guitarists dog knocked my bass from its stand and the head snapped off. while im skeptical that a bass fall 3 feel and shattered, whats done is done, and i cant argue the how.

    i had a luthier look at it, and it seems that at the angle it is broken, there isnt enough surface area to glue the headstock back on without sealing the truss rods (and with my constant neck warping issues, i cant have that).

    it started life as a surprisingly good looking peavey grind 6.


    now it looks like this:



    so i throw myself to the mercy of the forum.. is there ANY way to make my 6 string playable again? i really miss it. im not super concerned with how it looks, i just want to play it.
  2. Devo-lution


    Jun 24, 2009
    Headless conversion might be possible, depending on the luthier and the damage. Not sure about the amount of glue that might be needed to get it going again.

    I do know that you'd be investing some money in a new bridge and a lot of luthier's work if it would be possible. You need to be cappable of tuning your bass at the bridge side when the headless conversion is possible. Might take some adjusting of the body to fit the headless bridge.

    I'd contact a luthier who can do these conversions and ask if a lot of guing would be necessary and if it's possible to convert to a headless without losing the versatility of your trussrod...
  3. Hi.

    Your both suggestions are doable, the headless would be more feasible IMO.

    OTOH, the crack looks clean enough that a volute would cure the contact area problem. Doesn't look too good and thickens the end of the neck a hair.

  4. Droot


    Dec 29, 2006
    Jaco's bass was a lot worse, and they put it back together. Modern glues are stronger then the wood you are bonding so glue it back together. Another possibility is a new headstock, although it would involve working around the trussrod.
  5. scojack


    Apr 1, 2009
    Try and glue it first what do you have to lose?
    With careful glueing/cleaning i dont see how its not possible.
    I had the exact same thing happen with a bass of mine (A dancer knocked it off the stand while she was rehearsing! ) I fixed with epoxy no problem and it has held for about 20 yrs now. ....That said ...we only had 4 strings in those days ;-)
  6. grisezd


    Oct 14, 2009
    There does seem to be a lot of surface to join. I'd surely try gluing the headstock back on before thinking too hard about the headless idea. I would think you'd want to rejoin the area behind the first few frets in either case, might as well glue it intact and then re-evaluate.
  7. Rickett Customs

    Rickett Customs

    Jul 30, 2007
    Southern Maryland
    Luthier: Rickett Customs...........www.rickettcustomguitars.com
    It appears to have a nice clean break, so I could see it going either way.

    .......but if you really want a headless, then I'm sure it could be done, just hold on to your seat, when you check prices on a 6 string set.
  8. mikeyswood

    mikeyswood Inactive

    Jul 22, 2007
    Cincinnati OH
    Luthier of Michael Wayne Instruments
    Take it to Justin's shop. This can be repaired.
  9. SDB Guitars

    SDB Guitars Commercial User

    Jul 2, 2007
    Coeur d'Alene, ID
    Shawn Ball - Owner, SDB Guitars
    I agree with Jason and Mike - from the pictures, this looks totally repairable. If I were doing it, I might want to drill for a couple of small indexing dowels (1/16") to help align it and keep it from slipping while gluing, but even that is probably not necessary... just me being paranoid about re-gluing a broken headstock.
  10. i dont know justin. i had rusty look at it, and in a very ceremonious fashion, he scooped the hardware into a coffee can and handed it to me like an urn, shook his head and handed me the pieces.

    his evaluation was that the little bit of surface area to glue to wouldnt be enough to take the pressure of a 6 string, and it would likely snap back in half.
  11. that hadn't crossed my mind. i just want to play a 6 string again, no matter what it takes.

    you're probably right though.. i dont think i can get my taste in strings in 6 string headless.
  12. That actually looks like an easy fix. To prevent the glue from getting at the truss, some carefully placed masking tape should do the trick. Then I would drill a dowel or two to keep it aligned and glue the snot out of it with tightbond. A few hours of work, a day to dry and you are back playing.


    After looking at this a little more, there is a bunch of gluing area, almost as much as a scarf joint. There is no way that it shouldn't be able to be fixed. Heck, I actually kind of want to do it myself.
  13. David1234


    Jun 1, 2004
    Sydney, Australia
    Endorsing Artist: SWR Amplifiers
    hipshot's new headless system looks cool, albeit pricey.

    I've always wanted a headless NT 6. So if it was my bass, that's the direction I'd take. Still, both seem fine choices and the straight-up repair will be a lot less work: going headless means spending lots of time at both ends of the bass.
  14. http://www.jkennedyguitars.com/ TB user ModulusAcacia does awesome work at very reasonable rates. Contact him, it's worth a shot.
  15. ahhh, i think ive spoken to him before. didnt know his first name. thanks.
  16. Any luck?
  17. DanRJBrasil


    Jun 10, 2007
    so take it to a good luthier or do it your self lol, and make that one that broke you bass pay
  18. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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