1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Finish cracks

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by Warpeg, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. Warpeg


    Jun 20, 2005
    As I was looking over my bass to examine an issue having to do with a rattling sound, I discovered that the finish was beginning to crack where the neck meets the body. It’s on both sides of the neck, but appears to only affect the finish. The cracks are very small. Is this something to worry about?


  2. What kind of bass is it?
  3. Warpeg


    Jun 20, 2005
    It’s a plywood bass, made in China. Specially, it’s made by Galveston. I’ve not been able to find much of any info on their basses.
  4. Acoop

    Acoop Supporting Member

    Feb 21, 2012
    I wouldn't worry about it. ... Do you pick up the bass by the neck? ... Remember it's made out of wood and wood moves. ... If your neck joint starts popping out then you've got something to worry about.
  5. That explains a few things. Start saving up.
    jsf729, DrayMiles and salcott like this.
  6. Warpeg


    Jun 20, 2005
    Well, it's got blessings from both luthiers and instructors as a quality instrument that should get me through the next 5-10 years. I understand your judgement on the subject, but, aside from trying to understand the criticality of the tiny finish cracks, the rest of the instrument is verified to be in perfect working order, it plays wonderfully and sounds beautiful.

    Thanks. I'll probably have my luthier look it over just be sure. When it comes to where I pick the bass up....I guess I didn't know that there was a correct way to pick it up. Is picking it up by the neck a bad idea? Is there a better/preferred way of picking it up?
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  7. Acoop

    Acoop Supporting Member

    Feb 21, 2012
    Thanks. I'll probably have my luthier look it over just be sure. When it comes to where I pick the bass up....I guess I didn't know that there was a correct way to pick it up. Is picking it up by the neck a bad idea? Is there a better/preferred way of picking it up?[/QUOTE]

    It's not unusual to pick it up by the neck but, a good habit is using both hands one on the neck and one at the F-hole. ... They're amazingly solid instruments once they settle in. ... They don't like direct heat. I live near Toronto and get hot, humid summers and freezing cold winters but my old carved bass rarely moves. Though, through the winter, when I go south, I leave her in a cooler area in her gig bag. ...
  8. Eric Hochberg

    Eric Hochberg

    Jul 7, 2004
    Pick the bass up by the heel with the other hand on the C bout. Don't use an f hole as a handle!
  9. Blues56


    Oct 27, 2012
    John Goldsby gives a good lesson here on how to handle a bass.

    salcott likes this.
  10. I was taught to never pick the bass up by the F hole. Even if it's a plywood instrument. You run a high risk of snapping off the part of the top that you are holding on to...
  11. Warpeg


    Jun 20, 2005
    Just following up to see if anyone has any more input on the finish cracks. It’s going to be several weeks before I can get the bass to the luthier and I need to use the bass quite a bit in that time.

    A previous poster mentioned that it may not be much to worry about. But, alas, I keep worrying. Haha. My concern is that the cracking is evidence of the neck joint failing. Has anyone seen cracking like this before or have any other ideas of what could be going on?
  12. Pray.

    What passes for a neck set in a lot of those low-dollar Chinese basses is a sick joke.

    Respectfully: buy cheap, get cheap.
  13. I'm guessing that if the neck joint starts to fail, you'll see your action going higher. You may feel it first. A good idea would be to measure your action now so you'll have a baseline to compare it with down the road.

    If you're really concerned about the neck joint and you can't have it seen by a luthier now, and if you do have to continue playing it for a while, you might put low tension strings on your bass just to give the neck joint as easy a job as possible.
    RSBBass likes this.
  14. Warpeg


    Jun 20, 2005
    UPDATE: So, my bass spent the last few days at The Loft in Columbus, OH getting looked-over by the luthier. Good news! The neck joint was in good shape; it just needed to have a small amount of hide glue injected into the cracks. It's as good as new, plays great, and sounds great again! The rest of my 'el-cheap-o' bass is in fantastic shape, too. It's a winner. :D
  15. robobass


    Aug 1, 2005
    Cologne, Germany
    Private Inventor - Bass Capos
    I hope you mean the C-Bout. Picking up a bass by the F-Hole is about the worst possible idea.
  16. That is not good advice. Gorilla Glue is awful.
  17. Warpeg


    Jun 20, 2005
    I appreciate everyone's continued input. However, the issue was addressed successfully (See post #14 above). Thanks again, everyone.
  18. Brass tacks: you’re posting bad advice in a forum in which you are an interloper because you do not seem to play the instrument being discussed, and talking smack to people who know what they’re talking about from hands-on personal experience.

    That is rude and pretentious.
  19. Warpeg


    Jun 20, 2005
    Whoa, whoa, whoa! Let's all back up a little here. While I agree that his advice is not helpful, if not harmful to DB repair, I think calling this member an "interloper" is a bit dramatic. Consider that he's only been a member of TB for less than 48 hours; he doesn't yet know the ins and outs of this forum. Instead of the condemnation, I'm sure we can all be a bit more respectful TB members and help him 'know the ropes' of TB. Am I wrong?
  20. Admittedly this is a mixed group here... Some of us are kitty cats, some of us are puppy dogs, some of us are guard dogs, some of us are possums, some of us are skunks, some of us are hedge hogs, and some of us are porcupines... But, everyone has some wisdom to share, and a person can learn something good from all of us.

    I'm pretty sure KFS was specifically referring to Gorilla Glue, as it is a terrible mess to work with on repeat repairs or really any time after it has set. The ideal, time tested and somewhat traditional musical instrument glue is hot hide glue and there's a clear preference here among the experienced repair people and luthiers for using that. That said, there are other glues that work satisfactorily, and while not as easy to work with related to repeat repairs, they are much better than Gorilla Glue.

    Nonetheless, with a repair that should theoretically never need to be touched again like has been described with the bass guitar peghead break, if Gorilla Glue worked, good for you. Most of us would never want to use that glue, but hey, it got the instrument working again, so good.

    That said though, I do have a few nice old instruments that have had multiple peghead breaks, and I'm pretty certain that they would not still be alive if Gorilla Glue had been used the first time around.

    Learning lessons about getting along is part of what forums are about. There are always going to be newbies, and oldies, and people in between. Text is just a horrible way to communicate because a person cannot hear vocal inflections, or see body language or facial expressions that add so much to communcation... When I was new in TB/DB at the beginning of this year, KFS made some statements to me that had me scratching my head. And that happens sometimes from other people too. But over the short time I've been here, I've grown to really appreciate his and many other people's expertise. One of the nice things about TB/DB is the significant number of extremely experienced professional builders, repair people, players and general musicians who are present and willing to share.

    Last edited: Nov 1, 2018
    KUNGfuSHERIFF likes this.

Share This Page