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compensating tailpiece

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by potato4931, Feb 28, 2006.


  1. is anyone familiar with compensating tailpieces? what are they? what effect do they have on the sound? thanks.
     
  2. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    Some believe the after lengths are important. I see this when I adjust a tail piece or reverse the Tuner positions in the pegbox. I think the longer length for the lower strings helps to even the tension and tone for the lower strings. I have one on my 5-string Bass and have ordered another for a large 7/8 (small 4/4) I have in restoration. I love the look as well and DR. Mike does a great job making them.

    My 5er; http://www.kensmithbasses.com/DoubleBasses/Mystery2/Hungarian.htm

    My Bass getting the next TP from Mike; http://www.kensmithbasses.com/DoubleBasses/MysteryBass/name_that_bass.htm
     
  3. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC

    Apr 17, 2004
    Ken, could you explain? If you do nothing but reverse the tuner positions in the pegbox, how does the effective length of the string change? Is it not the length between the nut and the bridge? For that matter, is not the same true for a compensating TP? I always thought the afterlength arguments had to do with resonance. Maybe I was and am wrong.
     
  4. thanks ken for your input.
     
  5. FidgetStone

    FidgetStone

    Jun 30, 2002
    Allen, TX
    How does one get a hold of Mike Pecanic these days? It seems his web site has been DOA for a while now. :confused:

    Thanks . . .
     
  6. mpm

    mpm

    May 10, 2001
    Los Angeles
    951-233-8616....(don't ask...)
     
  7. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    I was trying to say that After lengths at 'either' end can affect the feel of the Bass with slight tension differences. Also, when you adjust the length, you change the break angle as well. One time on my Martini, I let up the Tailwire just a bit and reversed the tuners as well. The Bass felt looser and a bit deeper to my Ear. I had also just fit and glued on the Ebony plates on the Pegbox. When you have a moment, hold the Pegbox of your Bass and play a few notes Pizz or Arco. You will feel it vibrate. Any thing you do to a bass will make some small difference. How much?.. well that depends and not everyone has the same opinion of what the feel or hear.

    At some point, your own Bass feels better the way it is tweaked. Then the weather changes and.. oops.. back to the drawing board.. It all matters depending on how sensitive you are as well as how finicky your Bass is.

    With the Tailpiece, I feel the lower string a bit tighter where it is not usually as tight as the G and D. On my 5er, the B and E actually feel tighter than my G and D. The tuners on my 5er are also reversed with a 2/3 left/right configuration.

    Speaking of Dr. Mike....... How's my Cocobolo TP coming along Doctor? I'll take the news here, on the phone, PM or Email. Biase was just doing the bottom Ribs when I last spoke to him a little over a week ago. The Top, Back, middle and upper Ribs are all glued up now as far as the cracks go. Pretty soon, he will re-assemble the Bass from all the parts and be on the last stretch.
     
  8. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    Really? I would be more inclined to believe that there will always be a straight line from the break of the bridge to the point where the tailpiece wire crosses the saddle.
     
  9. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    With the Tail Piece, it is mostly length that changes the tension as the Strings vibrate differently than the TP or the Tail Wire. With the Tuners moved/reversed it IS a different angle to the post. I don't know the science of it, just the feel. It's kind of an individual thing. I can feel and hear differences with my Basses. You dont' have to. I am not trying to sell anything here, just share my experiences.
     
  10. jmpiwonka

    jmpiwonka

    Jun 11, 2002
    i think if you look at the break angle of the A and E strings at the pegbox they are different. switch the strings on the tuners and your break angle changes.......break angle at the brdge/tailpiece would seem to be unaffected by afterlength as the angle will be determined by the saddle and bridge height only.
     
  11. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    It's not just angle, it's the mass. If you string the Strings thru a Tail Piece at the end Block or make a Tail piece that reaches the Bridge, you are changing the mass between the Bridge and saddle not to mention the tuning of the strings in the after length. This can affect the color and tone of your Bass. The older more seasoned Basses are affected greater than a modern Plywood Bass. The more the Bass vibrates and the more colorful the tone is, the more it changes when things are altered.
     
  12. Wha' happened Mike? Did that Horst extension I sent you injure you?
     
  13. mpm

    mpm

    May 10, 2001
    Los Angeles
    Hi Paul,
    Sorry about the health issues, my mom has CPOD too...nah, it was unscruplious webname registrars that bit me, my webmiester is now creating mikepecanic.com as the replacement for the now defuntct mikepecanicmusic.com. It should be up soon. I'll be out of town this week so I'm hoping to have it in place next week, dunno.....
    Mike
     
  14. RadicalDad

    RadicalDad

    Mar 6, 2006
    Portland, OR
    I can verify that anything you do to the tailpiece area will affect the sound of the bass. I had a bow quiver (is that what you call it?) tied to my tailpiece and my bass sounded just awful. My luthier suggested taking it off and, voila! (not viola!) the bass sounded 100% better.
     
  15. Good to see a post from you....my health issues are improving quickly.
     

  16. I have put these on two basses, a 1966 Kay, and a 2002 Wilfer. The difference on the Kay was astounding -- it still sounds dark, and it always was fairly loud, but now it's really loud and with effort bowing towards the bridge there's a reasonable level of treble. As to the Wilfer, I think it is louder, but just a bit --- it's really hard to say, as this was a real low-hours bass and is just coming into full voice. I suspect that the full voice is in part due to the fancy pecanic tailpiece. But if you have a Kay, try one, no questions asked.