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Dark Stars!!

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by budman, Nov 15, 2005.

  1. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    This one deserves its own thread.
    LeCompte CBSC-4

  2. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    Wow! Very nice!

    Is your headstock plate from the same piece of wood as the fretboard? that's a pretty sweet deal.
  3. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    Thanks. Yeah, it's Bolivian rosewood...the inlayed p/g and the heel tongue too. The accent stripe is walnut. There's a thin sliver of walnut under the heel tongue piece that'll show up when I contour it.
  4. Cool bass Bud but I'm not diggin' the pups on a purely visual level. The huge contrast grates on me. Soft, natural, and refined shapes with muted earthy tones on the one hand and a rather stark, industrial, and busy pair of objects on the other. To make it worse, the DS's aren't contributing to any of the visual lines presented in the various details of the body like the figure lines, or the way the "F" hole naturally draws your eye to the "pickguard". IMO, they overpower the subtle aspects of the rest of the instrument. A camouflaging cover is the only thing I can think of that would alleviate such a condition with large pups like those.

    But a very cool design nonetheless. :bassist:
  5. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    I think the Dark Stars look mega super cool. I think they fit perfectly with the classic shape. There's no way I'd stick them in a wooden box.

    I'd like to add that if a customer is interested in a fully boutiqued version of a similar style bass, Dark Stars not included, there's my CBSCX design.

  6. I can see your point, Allan. But, I don't think its the Dark Stars themselves that really do this, so much as their chrome rings...I like the subtle look of the brushed-metal bridge and the brushed-metal tuners...I think a set of brushed-metal rings, along with matching brushed knobs would go a LONG way to tying it all together.

    Other than that, Bud, that instrument is GORGEOUS...
    I love that thick Walnut line around the body...and the fretboard and headstock is amongst your best work to date.

    I just love your designs.
  7. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    I'm afraid I'm going to have to fall down on the side of "love the bass, don't love the Dark Stars". They're too clunky for what is a really refined looking instrument, IMO. I think they'll end up looking out of place on most wood instruments to me.

    Yes, the only way you can save this instrument is to paint it silver.
  8. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Bet you'd like to :spit: ;) :D Beware of the mod's, though.

    I have to agree with Hambone: visually the Dark Stars are 100% misplaced on that smooth and natural shape. They look like an oil raffinadery in the middle of Grand Canyon or something similar. :bawl:

    The rest is gorgeous, especially the transfer from the fingerboard to the peghead! :bassist:
  9. Luke Sheridan

    Luke Sheridan Commercial User

    Dec 30, 2004
    Yonkers, NY
    I build guitars and sell them. Strings, too
    I never thought I'd be posting a "me too" reply, but... throw those pups in a wooden box or two. The rest is stunning.
  10. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    You guys are no fun. I thought I was going to catch flack from the vintage police for boutiquing a class shape, but it's the other way around. I catch flack from the boutiquers for adding classic elements. Regardless, when this puppy is all shined up, strung up and put together it's going to be tres bien.
  11. Dan1099

    Dan1099 Dumbing My Process Down

    Aug 7, 2004
    I dig it. Les Paul Bass on Steroids. I really dig it. I think it'll look awesome once you put the finish on it.
  12. Absolutely no doubt this thing is going to rumble! This is the first double DS application I've seen. It might not be legal in all states!
  13. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    As Fred Hammon would say, "You got that right!"

  14. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    I dig the way the pickups look with the boutique bass style, although I do think black hardware would go a long way towards making them look more at home on the body. The brushed aluminum (aluminium) bridge just doesn't go with the shiny chrome pickup surrounds. If I was the buyer, that's probably the only thing I'd change. Other than that---way to go, Bud. :hyper:

    You should check out the Dark Star forum over at the Pit. Lots of double DS basses.







  15. Fred Hammon

    Fred Hammon Dark Star pickups

    May 13, 2005
    I think I understand people's reaction to the look
    with DSs here. At this point it all looks a bit odd.
    Let's wait till it's finished and all strung up, as Bud sez.
    I'm certain that it's going to sound great regardless.

    Just to throw in more ideas, I wonder if these
    plain brass versions would look better with matching hardware....?


    I believe I'm going to ask Bud to build me one too.
    Maybe a CB-4 Starfire shaped body....
  16. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    Shoot, I'd love to build you a bass, Fred. :hyper:
  17. I'm going to stick to my guns and say that the brushed hardware is PERFECT for this beast...

    Fred, can you help Bud out and get him a pair of brushed rings to try out on her? :)

    Heck...my motives are clear here...I want to see it with brush rings, MYSELF. :hyper:
  18. If you want to get overanalytical here, that last pic nails why these get so busy looking. Aside from the number of different pieces, the shiny ring tends to reflect images from all around it and those reflections act like additional "frames" around the pup. So you've got the black pup, then the edge of the frame, followed by numerous reflections that view as rings around that then the outer edge of the frame and it's mounting screws. I bet a matte black ring made from phenolic or simply a metal one that has been powder coated would be stunning and it would drop out the busy visuals.

    Fred, I understand your situation with the biz as you're going along with it. I'm not ragging or even suggesting that this is something you should offer or have to offer before I would try one of these. That's just not true! I really want to put on of these in one of my new creations but finances will make that wait. I just tend to think out loud and offer my POV for what it's worth. I just see things a little differently than a lot of folks.
  19. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    Some of those basses actually have shims under the DS's. Maybe that is what you are seeing, Hambone. It's a very low profile pickup and since there's a lot of retro-fitting going on folks are having to shim them up to get a height level that will work. I won't have to do that on my bass.
  20. Greg Johnsen

    Greg Johnsen

    May 1, 2005
    Hickory NC
    wow, that's the most beautiful bass I've seen you build yet Bud! I absolutely love it! I would love a 6 string version of this, but I can't yet, and I'm very low on cash as of now (I only have about 100 bucks in the bank because of previous splurges...)

    Keep making them like this, because if you do, I'll efiately be a customer of your's one day.