CAD/CAM bass update

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Hambone, Nov 17, 2000.

  1. The CAD/CAM bass project took another leap forward towards completion last night when the body was routed from the assembled blank.

    To bring latecomers up to speed - I developed a burning desire to build my own bass when I saw some of the work that fellow FDP/TB players were doing with theirs. My ace-in-the-hole for a project like this was that I design for and use a computer controlled router in my daily work and I thought that it would be a neat thing to use this high tech tool to do the major portion of the work in creating a body. For the last couple of months I have been refining my design in CorelDraw - measuring components, confirming spacings, and making design decisions based on the parts I had acquired. The last 2 weeks have been sort of hectic because I finally was able to acquire the lumber for the body and make a usable blank. The bass is based on a Jazz design (I figure why mess with perfection?) with my own little twists and personal touches to make it special. The specs are:

    Neck - Warmoth Precision birdseye maple w/fretless ebony fingerboard and threaded steel inserts.
    Body - 2 piece 3A tiger striped maple, back routed
    Pickups - Seymour Duncan Basslines Vintage Jazz Bass
    Bridge - Schaller roller modified for thru-the-body stringing
    Electronics - Fender Precision Deluxe preamp - bass +/-, treble +/-, and volume with an added pickup selector and passive/active switch. Thanx to Rudy and Bill Bolton for wiring guidance.
    Tuners - No name cast frame Fender style with adjustable gear tension

    With the router I was also able to make some of the other parts needed like an aluminum neckplate and coverplate for the electronics.

    Did the routing go totally as planned? Well, no, I made a small mistake in the initial setup of the blank in the machine resulting in a couple of holes in the wrong place. No harm done as they are under the bridge. There was also a small misalignment when the blank was flipped over for routing the back side inlets and that resulted in a very small lip around the perimeter of the body. That is easily fixed with some sanding. The best part of the evening was finding out that the neck pocket adjustments that were made from the initial test blank were absolutely right on the money. The pocket looks as if it were poured around the neck.

    All in all I'm stoked with the results. I've now got a ton of finishing work ahead of me. I hope to have the project finished before Christmas and I'm reasonably sure that I can. Though no Sadowsky, it is shaping up to be a very fine instrument, certainly better than I would be able to afford outright, and I am having a ball doing the work.