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Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Quadzilla, Jan 27, 2010.
Room for one or five pick ups?
While I've extensively modded the two V1 style tailpieces I still use, I didn't really have to because they already did what they were supposed to do. Although not easy to set the intonation, the smallish screwdriver I have did just fine before I modded them. The break angle isn't any shallower than a lot of bridges out there, that angle is part of the tone. I've also only broken one A string on a Rick saddle, which was probably caused by the onyx pick I was using at the time.
I have (a little) sympathy for Ric on the bridge, sometimes obsolete design gets “baked in” by customer expectations. Look at Gibsons for instance, they know those headstock commonly break, but when they added a volute, nobody wanted it. The Ric bridge was probably considered kind of “high tech” in its day, but got to be part of the iconic look, warts and all. The V2 is a clear improvement functionally, but they kept the nearly useless mute to keep it visually recognizable, and that was probably the smart compromise marketing wise. The marginal improvement isn’t worth $190 to me, and purists don’t like drilling new holes through that fragile finish, so I can’t see it being a big seller aftermarket. Babicz is supposedly working on a drop in fully adjustable saddle piece, curious to see if that pans out.
I played a "holy grail" 1960s 4001 bass for 30 years as my number one .... I grew to passionately hate the bridge and the horseshoe pickup and the mechanical mute ... and that bass also had a weak neck that would not flatten out. ... But it did have amazing tone and an iconic look.
these days my Rickenbacker basses have 5 strings and Schaller bridges
I think it depends what you are swapping. Most bass bridges are pretty good and there is no benefit to replacing them.
I have a Badass II that’s been on at least 4 different basses and I can’t hear a difference between it and a Squier bent plate Fender style bridge. It’s a nice piece of chrome, so it adds bling along with weight. But increased sustain and better tone? Not that I can hear.
On my NR copy this was the bridge I replaced with the mono bridges on a plate. My goal was to get individual intonation and height adjustments. I couldn’t find a cheap bent plate bridge with narrow enough spacing.
I was surprised that I could hear a difference.
Just got it assembled and worked the bugs out of the electronics. The selector switch needed some tweaking, but it all works now. Well I haven’t tried the stereo out. I’ll have to build a splitter box to run through 2 amps.
I put some washers under the saddle part of the bridge and added the extra screws to get the tailpiece down flat.
I’m going to get a piece of 1/8 aluminum and make pickup surround. I might just put on a beat up El Degas TRC I have on hand.
It’s neck-through day at my house
Rickenfaker soon to be inbound to the UK (hope it's not coming in via the Suez):
From this pic it looks as if the rear curve isn't symmetrical and the bridge overhangs the edge of the body.
What do you want for $225? I can move the bridge if it's off. Easy job. Not sure I see what you mean by the rear curve not being symmetrical.
From what I've been able to check, body shape seems quite right (within standards for chinabackers), the photo shows some overhang, we'll have to wait if that's the case. Major difference visible is what I noticed straight away, the pickguard at the neck pup is taller. The blue burst that I have from the same seller has a nearly 1-1 copy of the original rick pickguard (I have a spare which I can overlay near perfectly). This one is clearly different as the neck pup seems to be in the center of that part of the pickguard while the original rick pup is located nearer to the neck.
However, I've been checking this with some photoshopping (after 3D view correction) and the pup does seem to be in the right position, so it looks like it would very well be possible to put a real ric pg on it.
Indeed the bridge can be moved easily as it has a flat back so no routing needed.
Real Ric pickguards arent that great, IMO, the edges are uncomfortably sharp,.and dont always fit the neck pup perfectly. If you send a photocopy or tracing of a guard that fits to Pickguardian they will cut a perfect fit in any material they carry, and you can have them bevel the edge a bit while they are at it.
Pickguardian might be OK for folks in the US but for Europeans like myself , @StudioGC and @MirandM they are expensive and slow.
I put an American TB'er in touch with a guy in Glasgow. His clear PG was $50 and delivered 8 days after placing the order. Pickguardian were $60 + shipping and had an 8 week lead time.
For us that $60 + shipping would be nearly $100 with tax and collection fees.
Assuming the bridge is in the correct place, moving it will make accurate intonation impossible. The rear curve of the bass is lopsided. For $225 I can get a Squier PJ that feels, sounds and looks pretty good. Unlike the Japanese copies from the 70's, these Chinese copies always require more $$$ to make them sound acceptable.
The only Chickenbacker i've ever played was on the junk end of the spectrum, but ive come to realize that even though they are all using the same CNC files (makes you wonder if the Chinese government actually provided them), the build quality varies wildly from factory to factory. Based on @StereoPlayer previous experience, like it or not on moral grounds, some of these are at least "some undetermined degree of less than horrible", and that some are less horrible than others. The ones that are less horrible also usually seem to run more money, up into the $400 range, where value for something you can really never re-sell gets more questionable. Im not one to talk, of course, including tools and hardware, I spent at least as much on my home build fakers as a real Ric, but price was never the point for me, and the cost was spread out over interest-free time.
I had one in my cart...but chickened out...pun intended.
I’m a scaredy-cat.
For that kind of money you could buy a Katsu palm router off Amazon and a bearing guided cutter, then copy the pickguard using pretty much any acrylic material you wanted to, and you get a handy tool into the bargain. I had thought David at Retrovibe offered a custom pickguard service, but it's not on his website now. Might be worth emailing him anyway.
Also, assuming that's a 34" scale, the bridge is in just about the right spot (i.e, as far back as it can go), but the saddles will need reversing to get it to intonate.
Exactly, for us it doesn't pay off.
It's not all about $$$, some of us do this just for the fun of having a nice faker that sound just about right.
I've got basses for less than 200 that sound just awesome.
You forgot about my experiences, two fakers of very good quality, can't complain about receiving .
Strange a cat that doesn't like chickens... (no pun here)
I have no problem in hand making a pickguard, it's not that difficult.
Nope these basses are 33.25" scale.
Not even a little bit difficult. I replaced the stacked pickguards on my Tokai 330 and 350 copies with white plexiglass using a guided cutter and the original parts as templates. It's a very useful piece of equipment to own.
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