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Fanned-fret friend or foe?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by knuckle_head, Mar 15, 2004.


Own/tried a fanned fret and.....

Poll closed Mar 22, 2004.
  1. like it

    25 vote(s)
    75.8%
  2. don't like it

    8 vote(s)
    24.2%
  1. knuckle_head

    knuckle_head Commercial User

    Jul 30, 2002
    Seattle
    Owner; Knuckle Guitar Works & Circle K Strings
    I'm asking those who own or have tried them - dig 'em or not, and why.

    The idea intrigues me but I've only laid hands on a couple of Novax inspired creations. My chops leave much to be desired, but bending on these things was an odd experience. Beyond that it was a pretty comfy play.

    Weigh in please.....
     
  2. Dig em.....
    I've found no more difficult than playing on a regular parallel fretboard. The novax board is really only a visual distraction, not a physical one.
    If you've played the Novax board more than once or twice its really easy to get used to and equally easy to play on. In fact I've found playing on the novax board more comfortable on my wrist as the fanning angle seems to follow the natural angle of my wrist.
    The only niggle I have w/ the novax board is above the 15th fret where the angling is steep and unless you look, I've been known to be on the wrong fret.

    Lastly, to me its not trade off in playability and what you get in return (like equal string tension and articulate notes) is worth it.
    frank
     
  3. Totally agree. Plus I don't have any bending troubles.

    Geoff
     
  4. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Atlanta, GA!
    knuckle,

    Are you thinking about incorporating fanned frets on your basses?

    I bet it would do wonders for the sub-contra basses...
     
  5. knuckle_head

    knuckle_head Commercial User

    Jul 30, 2002
    Seattle
    Owner; Knuckle Guitar Works & Circle K Strings
    I am indeed - it will have to wait until after summer NAMM though. Too many basses to build right now to add this into the mix.

    I have to believe there is a way to shoehorn his concept into my scale length...
     
  6. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Atlanta, GA!
    Very Cool. Will you be in Nashville this Summer for NAMM, even if it isn't with the Novak-inspried Knuckles?


    You are using 38 inch scale lengths, right?
     
  7. Jean Baudin

    Jean Baudin

    Aug 27, 2003
    redwood city, ca
    Endorsing Artist: See Profile
    I've got a mild fan on my Conklin 9-string... 35" - 32". Works great - equal tension across the strings. No problems with bending here either.
     
  8. I've always wondered what happens if you want to play both a fanned fret bass and a fretless bass. Does it screw with your technique?
     
  9. it doesn't screw w/ my technique. Its all about practice and time w/ the instrument.
    My Dingwall Fretless is fanned (that took a long while to play cleanly) and my regular bass is parallel (fender).
    I did it the other way for a while. My AfterburnerI was fretted and i played a Fretless hamer cruise bass. After i heard what the Novax board could do for a fretted bass (in the context of a Dingwall Bass), I knew I had to have a fretless w/ the same attributes.

    its just takes practice
    frank
     
  10. knuckle_head

    knuckle_head Commercial User

    Jul 30, 2002
    Seattle
    Owner; Knuckle Guitar Works & Circle K Strings
    I have my sights set.... devil's in the details though. I am building enough basses to make a good showing either way.

    My scale length is 39.5"..... seems like a fan-fret is only logical, eh?

    :D
     
  11. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Atlanta, GA!
    knuckle,

    39.5!! :eek: OMG! I see what you mean...

    I actually only played a Dinger for the first time on a jazz gig a month back. A local bass-boutique Owner (TB'er too: 'Bass Atlanta', www.bassatlanta.com) dropped by and let me play set 2 with a Z-1... Loved the clarity and the playablity wasn't too difficult (except when it came to my solo :ninja: ), I bet with shed time things would be different.

    If I really could afford a Dinger (6 string) I would love to tune it down to F#. I could see that Novak patent working out real well for your basses.



    Jean? That you? How's NR?



    FCM3, fanned-fretless? Good for you, man. I remember a fanned fretless Conklin 8 string that Jauqo used used to own... Man, that's got to be a challenge.
     
  12. Jean Baudin

    Jean Baudin

    Aug 27, 2003
    redwood city, ca
    Endorsing Artist: See Profile
    now, there's an oxymoron: Fanned Fretless.
     
  13. Jean Baudin

    Jean Baudin

    Aug 27, 2003
    redwood city, ca
    Endorsing Artist: See Profile
    j-raj - yep, it's me. nr is good. making headway on our dvd - lots of gigs. working on solo cd. i think i'm giving conklin grey hairs with my new bass... it's insane.

    knuckle, go for the fanned frets.
     
  14. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Atlanta, GA!
    Sorry Knuckle for the thread 'side-tracking'....


    Jean, How can we get notified about the DVD and the CD? I want to buy a copy when it comes out... Also are you going to start a thread with the new Conk?
     
  15. The fanned fret basses are the bass guitar equivalent to that Microsoft computer keybaord with the keys split in angled halves. Make a lot of sense ergonomically, but will only serve a tiny niche market.
     
  16. Jean Baudin

    Jean Baudin

    Aug 27, 2003
    redwood city, ca
    Endorsing Artist: See Profile
    hahaha... man, I have a bad habit of sidetracking threads when I post - sorry, knuckle.

    jraj - dvd should be this summer sometime if all goes well - should be an announcement on www.nuclearrabbit.com when it gets close to completion.

    solo cd - not sure when it will be done - my website (www.jeanbaudin.com) should have info when it's getting close - (right now, it's just an image).

    thanks so much for the interest/support!!!

    conklin thread - hahahaha... naw, probably not... 1) bill's too busy for progress pics - a thread wouldn't be very exciting w/o pics 2) threads about basses with 9 strings or more often turn into intense discussions regarding ethics/politics - i equate it to talking about religion. i'm a peaceful guy and ill-equipped for messageboard kung-fu. when the time comes, maybe i'll assemble a good defense team - jt, progzilla, grossman, stew, etc. and post some pics.

    Now back to your regular fanned-fret programming...
     
  17. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Atlanta, GA!
    1st off, Knuckle the Fanned fret idea is something that I'll have to wait till NAMM/Nash-vegas '05 to try out on your basses... That's cool, I'll wait. What rig do you play the sub-contras through? Whappos'?


    messageboard Kung FU! :D That is pretty funny.

    I hear ya, that Adler 11 stringer thread and the '1st to play 7 strings' threads turned into jabberwocky after a few pages...

    Chat soon, y'all
     
  18. knuckle_head

    knuckle_head Commercial User

    Jul 30, 2002
    Seattle
    Owner; Knuckle Guitar Works & Circle K Strings
    I am hoping Mark can hook me up this summer - I'd love to have his cabs in my booth. To date I've put one of my basses tuned to A through his cab (the Whappo) and I 'bout died on the spot. Everything was there from VERY strong fundamental to glistening overtones.

    Now that he has the Grande and my critters go lower I am anxious to hear the combination.

    My cabs aren't road-worthy or pretty enough for NAMM drat it......
     
  19. So when you say "it just takes practice" that means it's harder, right? Meaning it requires more practice to be able to play both? Well, maybe a fanned fretless would overcome this problem, but the top string would be a crazy reach in the first position.
     
  20. If you started on it, it would probably be equally as difficult. Once you get used to it (which for me was very quickly) it doesn't make any difference.

    Geoff